According to Belbin, the definition of team
role means “a tendency to behave, contribute and interrelate with others
in a particular way” (Belbin.com, 2017). An important aspect of work in a group is productivity.
Every team member takes on different responsibilities in the group to achieve
the common goal. Belbin’s research identifies that is nine team roles, and
every team role has characteristic strengths and weaknesses.
Those roles categorized into three groups: action oriented which include shaper,
implementer, and completer-finisher; people-oriented which include coordinator,
team worker, and resource investigator; and thought oriented which include
plant, monitor-evaluator, and specialist (Appendix 1). However, a team does not
need to consist of nine people with different roles to be a perfect team, as
people have a mix of roles.
In the class, I completed the Belbin Team Role
Inventory and my results showed that I am an implementer and a specialist. The
implementer is the practical organizer who gets things done by takes team’s
idea into positive actions. However, they can be too conservative to new ideas.
Specialists are dedicated people in a group who provide specialist knowledge
and skills but may have only known in a specific field. It helps me to learn
about my strengths and I can manage my weaknesses after I did the test.
An example worth mentioning is the first
assignment in the group at the beginning of the academic year, where we have to
do the presentation. On our first group meeting, we shared the work between
five people and we were discussing the task. The problems began when one of the
members a ‘plant’ did not send any e-mail and he stopped working at the next meeting
because ‘plants’ prefer to work alone. The other two members ‘shaper’ and
‘coordinator’ gave out their ideas, but they both want to be leaders, so
conflict was unavoidable. Another student represents a ‘team worker’ expressed
his opinions and I thought was great. If we vote to decide who will be a leader
in our team and which idea will be the best, both students will feel
unsatisfied. My work as an implementer was to turn ideas into practical actions
and I tried to convince the shaper and coordinator to modify their ideas to
make the final plan accepted by all team members. We finished the presentation
as a team but made some mistakes. I think that we allocated tasks in the wrong
way to team members. Tuckman and Jensen (1977) as cited by Tubbs (2017) can
help me better understand various problems at different stages of team
development. A group passes through five phases of development as forming,
storming, norming, performing and adjourning (Tuckman and Jensen, 1977). During
this teamwork on different stages of group development positive and negative
circumstances happened. Next time we should allocate tasks in the group
according to Belbin’s theory because people are more motivated if they working
in the way that is natural to them. By doing the Belbin Team Role Inventory and
after this teamwork experience I know my role in a team and I know how to
position myself in the next teamwork.
Good teamwork plays a vital role and can be an
effective way to learn and is also very important in the workplace. By
identified different roles in the team, I learn that all roles having different
strengths and weaknesses. This exercise helps me to better understand teamwork
and group formation.