I guess it didn’t really surprise me that our Dyer’s Team Development Questionnaire was so “boring.” The general agreement within the group is how we’ve operated all semester long. Where we did have differences in our ratings, all responses were still in the “above average” category or, should I say, in the “fabulous” category.
When we had our team discussion about the survey results, we started with the questions where we didn’t have 100% agreement, and it was interesting that though it was usually just one person who “deviated” from the majority answer, even after discussion I was not always able to determine who the outlier was. Then we talked about the questions where we all gave the same answers, and I think that ended up being a more interesting discussion because we talked a great deal about the last in-person meeting we had for our second presentation. One member had voiced a concern during that working session that she was still feeling like we were missing something, a concern I think we all had but had not wanted to say. The rest of us felt that we’d exhausted the possibilities for finding that missing piece, and that the rest of our presentation was “strong enough” that we could still make a good showing. But thanks to the tenacity of this team member, we turned good into better. With her leadership, we found another activity to demonstrate our topics, and as a team we determined the best way to integrate it into the rest of the presentation.
This episode demonstrated many of the qualities of teams tested in the Dyer Questionnaire including feeling free to express reservations and concerns, getting out and using everyone’s ideas, and sharing leadership. It also illustrated the trust that we’ve created through team cohesion that allowed the one team member to voice her concern, and it demonstrated the Paradox of Intimacy in that the rest of us had been reluctant to voice our concern because we’d all felt that we had failed in our attempts to find that missing piece. For me, there was also the first instance of inter-group tension in this class because I felt the subconscious pressure of having seen the presentations of the first two teams.
Overall, I think we have a very high-functioning team, and so far that’s kept us in line with meeting our stated goals of learning to perform effectively as a group, learning from each other, and becoming a cohesive group. Mission accomplished!