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Product Enhancement Team & Good Team Identification

Scenario: You are in the conference room on the sixth floor of the corporate headquarters of the ACME Dynamite Company, manufacturers and worldwide distributors of construction grade explosives. Perhaps you've heard of them: ACME Dynamite / We Blow Away the Competition.

You are observing a Product Enhancement Team (PET) during one of their bi-monthly meetings. This team is comprised of five team members: Billy Bob, Samantha, Dee Chopra, Le Nguyen, and Clyde. The team has been together for over a year; Clyde is the newest member, having joined the team three months ago. This PET is very, very good at what they do. They function very well together as a team.

This problem is designed to answer a simple question: How would you know a very good team if you saw one? This is the task: As you observe this PET team during one of their meetings, identify five (5) qualities that indicate this team is a very efficient and effective team. "Qualities" is an all-encompassing term meant to represent behaviors, actions, interactions, competencies, characteristics, or attributes.
For example, you might see that the team is using an agenda, and this would represent the quality of "effective time management." Alternatively, a behavior, interaction, or verbal exchange between team members may allow you to infer the existence of a more intangible quality: for example, you may see team members display behaviors that represent good listening skills, and from that you infer the quality of "mutual respect among team members".
For each of the five "qualities" observed, you will also state (a) why that quality is important for a team to possess and/or exhibit, and (b) specifically, what you "see" or "hear" as you observe the team that leads you to conclude or allows you to infer the team has that specific quality. You must be specific in your answers; referring to the previous example, you cannot simply say "we observed good listening skills among team members" without noting the specific behaviors that you observed.
In your answer to this question, simply list each of the five qualities you observe and provide your justification for including that particular quality. For each quality, format your response like this:

PET Quality #1: Psychological Safety
Justification for listing this quality:
 Why this quality is important for a team: xxxxxxxxx (Be specific!)
 What we saw or heard as we observed this team that
reflected this quality: xxxxxxxxx (Be specific!)

Again, be specific, and do not resort to generalities or platitudes. You will want to ground your responses in information about teams. For each of the five qualities observed, you must reference appropriate source material when discussing the justification. In the above example, you will need to provide source information for the quality "psychological safety." In discussing why this quality is important for a team, you might say, "The team seems to display a high level of psychological safety, whereas they openly express their true thoughts and feelings to one another; this allows team members to provide both positive and negative feedback, and get a more realistic view of their own performance" . And in the next step, be specific when noting "what we saw or heard as we observed this team that reflected this quality."

NOTE: The ACME Dynamite Product Enhancement Team is obviously fictional; You are to imagine you are observing this highly efficient and effective team; You are not expected to actually observe any real-life team in completing this assignment.

Solution Preview

PET Quality #1: Effective Communication
Justification for listing this quality:
? Why this quality is important for a team: Effective communication is important for the team to ensure all team members continually listen and clarify what is being said in order to maximize the results of the team. In addition, this quality aids in the functioning and results of the team, making the team a cohesive group.
? What we saw or heard as we observed this team that
reflected this quality: During the presentation team members interacted with one another with respect, actively listening when each team member was speaking, and backing up each other points. When Clyde presented information about the company's newest product and detailed questions were asked, his fellow team members stepped in to assist Clyde in answering the questions without taking control of the presentation. It was a seamless unity of collaboration rather than an effort for each team member to hear his voice.

PET Quality #2: Shared Sense of Purpose/Goal
Justification for listing this quality:
? Why this quality is important for a team: By having a common goal team members are able to work together to make progress rather than each member working on his own agenda. It is better for the company and the team as a whole to work towards a goal and make progress rather than be fragmented.
? What we saw or heard as we observed this team that
reflected this quality: The team kicked ...

Solution Summary

This solution outlines how to identify a good team based on behaviors, actions, interactions, competencies, characteristics, or attributes. It is based on a scenario dealing with the ACME Dynamite Company. It includes examples.

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