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EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION AND TECHNOLOGY FOR TEAMS Abstract I find, that in order to have a successful working team, you need good communication. Online teams today need to master the skills of the online environment and know how to use effective online technology in order to be successful with team projects. Online communication is new way businesses today are operating and online teams at big companies are formed with team members being in different parts of the world. Change is an inevitable occurrence, which affects organizations.

Changes in technology proficiency are accepted and integrated into the employees’ work. Mastering minor technology skills makes employees more eager to learn new, more advanced technology. Online teams are able to communicate through newsgroup discussions, email, faxes, and telephone calls, but in the end, communication in any team is important and without it the team can’t operate properly. Changes in technology proficiency are accepted and integrated into the employees’ work. Mastering minor technology skills makes employees more eager to learn new, more advanced technology.

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Effective Communication and Technology for Teams In this age of global competition and advancing technologies, no organization can afford to remain stagnant. Change is something that everyone experiences daily through smooth or rocky transformations. The changes and innovations are requests from management, supervisors, investors, associates, staff, suppliers, customers, and the government. Although changes, which lead to improvements, can be initiated by anyone, they can often be met with resistance. Because of the resistance factor, businesses should not focus on how to eliminate change.

Instead they should focus on how to facilitate change and how to make it a positive experience for the entire organization. Of course, as the world becomes more complex, companies need to improve technologically. New and innovative tools are developed daily to make organizations as efficient and effective as possible for their customers. The technological advances of the Internet have been one of the most frequently used by organizations worldwide. The use of the Internet allows organizations to contact and remain in touch with customers.

Technology will continue to change the world in which we live and affect how work is done. Online teams or virtual teams need to master the skills of the online environment and know how to use effective online technology in order to be successful with team projects. Online communication is new way businesses today are operating and online teams at big companies are formed with team members being in different parts of the world. Technology for working online is more user friendly now and basic online skill needs to be mastered by every employee in any job field today. According to Temme, J. & Katzel, J. 1995), “The main point here is that calling a team a team does not make it a team! Teambuilding must become a way of life – a behavior change on the part of management and its employees” (p. 112-114). The regular team is able to meet face-to-face and work in real time with each other. Non-verbal communication is not much of an issue with a regular team but body language would be. The main issue that a regular team does not need is the technology that a virtual team needs, but they may need to travel in order to meet with other team members and that sometimes results in loss revenue to the business.

The virtual teams are fast becoming the most cost effective solution for this reason. The reason why is because of, “The enhancement of productivity in international virtual teams can be accomplished through improved technology support, since technology support represents the enabler for traditional teams to operate virtually. As leaders of virtual teams (regardless if the teams are international, national, regional, or local) begin to form and manage virtual workplaces, it is important for them to provide a portfolio of technology support for their teams. Technological tools such as Webcons (i. . , Web conferences), Webcasts (i. e. , Web broadcasts), Webinars (i. e. , Web seminars), virtual private networks, instant messaging, electronic white boards, and others play a vital role for teams in order to perform effectively in a virtual work world”( Seilheimer, S. , Ishman, M. , & Seilheimer, P. , 2006 p 4-17). Virtual teams are able to communicate through newsgroup discussions, email, faxes, and telephone calls. They can set up threads in a team folder for assignments/duties, ideas, and etc in order to keep communication in the team folder organized.

Some potential barriers for virtual teams are time, differences in opinions, miscommunication between the individual team members, or misunderstanding parts on the project. Online security is something to consider for virtual teams because of sensitive business information being sent over the World Wide Web and there are a number of firewalls and Internet security software packages to help deal with this problem. But in the end, communication in virtual teams and regular teams is important and without it the team can’t operate properly. What is communication?

I did a search at www. google. com and this is the definitions that I got back from the website, the activity of communicating; the activity of conveying information and a fundamental component of social behavior; the transmission of information (messages) between a sender and a receiver using any of the five senses. The best forms of communications are simple and to the point, all the while keeping an open mind when listening to, or communicating with others team members. According to Battisti, P. (2006), “Trust results in great communication.

If you don’t have trust, you don’t have communication. A couple can get marriage counseling to work out a problem but if you don’t trust your spouse you won’t work out the problem. The real problem is trust” (Walls & Ceilings 69. 12 78(2). A simple thing like misunderstanding and doing the wrong task on a team project can be frustrating to other team members. The team needs to be aware and focus on this possible problem. When team members communicate a thought or idea, the members need to clarify the following things: 1. Who 2. What 3. Where 4. When 5. Why 6. How

Everybody on a team needs to do their part, because it’s not fair to the team, if someone doesn’t do their part to the best of their abilities, or expect others to carry them along. I believe that work in a team is the best way to get the best results of a task or project. According to Ellen Belzer (1995) Twelve Ways to Better Team Building, “Everyone knows that when people cooperate on a project (without wasting energy on rivalry and competitiveness), they can create powerful results”. I have had good and bad experiences working in a team and I find, that in order to have a successful working team, you need to have good communication.

Conclusion In the corporate world of today it is important to anticipate, recognize, and understand change. The most effective and efficient teams will always be those who are highly motivated. Though motivating individuals is different from motivating teams, it is important to understand the significance of both of them. According to Michael McCann (2005) Encouraging team communication. (Business Sense) “To instill confidence in your employees and encourage them to contribute, here are four vital components to help your company grow and prosper: 1. Communicate needs. Communication is a two-way process.

Employees have just as much responsibility for speaking up, setting expectations and communicating barriers and opportunities, as does management. Ask your employees to speak up and proactively tell management what they are struggling with and what managers can do to help. 2. Share skills and knowledge. Encourage employees to educate you about their job specifics. Ask them to explain what goes into each successful project by proactively listing all the actions and costs, including time. 3. Create a motivation cycle. Your input plays a big part in motivating employees to communicate with you and reach goals.

For example, send employees a personal thank-you note for a job well done. Offer 10-minute, one-on-one sessions between managers and employees. 4. Get results now. Make it a shared responsibility for everyone to educate each other, express what they need and show how specific duties affect the bottom line. When you get everyone actively involved in the process, your team will operate more efficiently and you’ll achieve greater success” (Embroidery Monogram Business 12. 5 50(1). In any worthwhile endeavor, a team needs to accept and even welcome the adversity of online teamwork with a spirit of challenge.

By applying resourcefulness, analytical thinking, and patient resolve to overcome problems, an online team needs to strive to turn mistakes into positive learning experiences, and failures into success. A person needs to realize that no matter how ‘skilled’ they may become, they must always display proper understanding of the online environment, and that they are never ‘above’ being corrected or needing improvement. Change is an inevitable occurrence, which affects organizations. No matter what philosophy organizations go by to adapt and accept change, one common theme is, to communicate through all levels of the organization.

Keeping every individual involved in the process and being open for new ideas is key to a successful change process. Also, staying positive and gradually changing will receive a warm welcome. In order for an organization to successfully implement the change process three things must occur: open communication, positive support, and gradual implementation. Changes in technology proficiency are accepted and integrated into the employees’ work. Mastering minor technology skills makes employees more eager to learn new, more advanced technology. References Belzer, E. 1995) “Twelve Ways to Better Team Building,” To Lead or Not To Lead, Phi Theta Kappa Leadership Development Studies, p6. 1. Seilheimer, S. , Ishman, M. , & Seilheimer, P. (2006). Technology Support for the Enhancement of Productivity in International Virtual Teams. Journal of Information Science & Technology, 2(3), 4-17. Retrieved Monday, February 19, 2007 from the Business Source Complete database. Jones, P. (2006). SIMPLE RULES FOR COMPLEX TEAMWORKING IN A 24/7 WORLD. People Management, 12(15), 46-46. Retrieved Saturday, February 17, 2007 from the MasterFILE Premier database.

Temme, Jim, & Katzel, Jeanine. (1995) Calling a team a team doesn’t mean that it is: successful teamwork must be a way of life. (teambuilding). In Plant Engineering, 49, p112-114. Retrieved February 25, 2007, from InfoTrac OneFile via Thomson Gale. Battisti, P. (2006). “Team up. (All in AGREEMENT). ” Walls & Ceilings 69. 12 78(2). Retrieved February 19, 2007, from InfoTrac OneFile via Thomson Gale. McCann, M. (2005). “Encouraging team communication. (Business Sense). ” Embroidery Monogram Business 12. 5 50(1). Retrieved February 19, 2007, from InfoTrac OneFile via Thomson Gale.

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