Teamwork is crucial to the advancement of an organization, the collaboration and joint effort of every individual within the organization can significantly improve the overall outcomes of the organization. The formation of groups can help reduce the stress and distribute the workload within a healthcare organization to help certain individuals function as a group and focus on certain assignments to effectively deliver a high quality healthcare to the population. Effective communication and great team player skills are significantly important when considering the formation of a group, the leader of the group must understand the dynamics and be an effective communicator and understand what it takes to facilitate the group members (Marquis and Huston, 2015).
Four Stages of Group
The first stage is called the Forming stage, at this level the group rules are set and explained, interpersonal relationships are formed, and the culture of the group is established. The second stage to group formation is the Storming stage, at this level ideas are exchanged and members can agree and disagree effectively and collaborate together to achieve a set goal. The third stage is the Norming stage, at this stage, individual strength and weakness are recognized and appreciated, teamwork is a lot more evident at this level, the authority of the leader is recognized and improvements and adjustments will be made at this stage to the group dynamic (mindtools.com, 2012). The fourth and last stage of group formation is the Performing stage, at this stage all the effort and collaboration of the group becomes evident as the goal is met and work is accomplished. The team members are now comfortable with their duties and can independently work to contribute to the group as a whole (Marquis and Huston, 2015).
In an attempt to reduce 30 day readmission in the heart failure population, we serve within my organization, we developed a clinical excellence team to address the issue and find a way to correct the situation. The team developed a program called the heart failure program which was initially tested in one care center and then finally introduced to the entire organization. Individuals from separate care centers were selected as team members, all who had prior leadership role within their department, therefore there was a little challenge to conclusively appoint a group leader due to the strong leadership personalities of every member. Once we got past this hurdle the group communication was effective and the set goal was achieved. Respect and exceptional communicating skills was one area that I can attest to that really propelled the excellent outcome of the group through all the stages. Currently the group is at its performing stage, the program is now introduced to the entire organization and every patient admitted with the diagnosis of heart failure is placed on the program due to its success rate in keeping our patients readmission rate low, with members of the group now serving as resources to the entire organization.
Role as a leader and strategies to improve Group
It is important for the leader to be well vested in multiple roles to effectively manage a team, the leader must always be patient, have the ability to manage other individuals, recognize each individual strength and weakness and be able to effectively utilize the information gathered towards achieving the set goal of the group. One of the role of a good leader is the Gatekeeper, as the gatekeeper facilitating the members and encouraging an open communication within the group is significant (Marquis and Huston, 2015). It is the responsibility of the formal leader to recognize and appreciate an informal leader within the group, someone who is efficient and has the skills of managing and effectively communicating with other members of the team or has gained their respect.
A great strategy for the leader is to have a great communicating skills, this is especially important to effectively manage and direct the group as a whole (Chun & Choi, 2014). A clear understanding of each individual’s role within the group, division of duty can make it very easy for every individual to function as a unit within the group. Respect for the leader’s role is an area that can bring conflicts to the group, certain individuals may naturally have the skills of a leader and become a dominator, attempting to step into the role of a leader without the authority, and this can disrupt the dynamics of the group. As the leader, I continually oversee and redirect every team member to help each one effectively perform their individual role as a team player.
The combination of individual effort and contribution to a group cannot be overlooked, multiple ideas can be shared and result concluded to achieve a set goal. The clear understanding of each team member’s role and task is a great step towards accomplishing a positive outcome from a group. Health care providers perform interdependent duties and operate in different roles but ultimately share the common goals of providing high quality and safe care to the population. Almost all the delivery of health care requires teamwork by members who are not necessarily trained together. Therefore the introduction of TeamSTEPPS training to all health care providers is a great way to ensure a proper functioning group with individuals having a clear understanding of their role within a team (Haynes and Strickler, 2014).