Module 4: Agile Team Dynamics & Leadership
Roles and Rewards
Organizing teamwork includes setting roles and responsibilities, defining leadership, and making decisions.
Responsibilities and role setting can have two extremes:
- Each role is clearly defined and has its belonging responsibilities, or
- Roles are blurry,and responsibilities are therefore overlapping
Depending on the task at hand, you can decide which role setting is most appropriate. When tasks are known and plannable, for instance in car manufacturing, the work can be divided into clear separate jobs along the assembly line.
In innovation, it is unclear what tasks need to be done and how the final product will look. This situation is called true uncertainty.
Motivation and rewards
To keep motivation high, benefits and rewards must be aligned with the leadership structure.
- With distinct roles, the individual added value is visible, and rewards should be given to individuals
- In (innovation) teams with blurry and overlapping roles, individual contributions to the overall result are difficult to trace.
Therefore, rewards should be collective for the whole team. Freeriding problems in teams with collective rewards can destroy motivation in a team.
The solution is to build and renew trust among team members continuously.
One would assume that sharing information in teams with overlapping roles is easy, as everyone is involved in everything. Paradoxically, however, information can be very tricky to share in those teams, as most knowledge is tacit –it is in the head of people, but not written down.
Tacit information is difficult to share for two reasons:
- We are unaware that we have it, as we take it for granted
- We assume it is common know-how and don’t talk about it
Teams can overcome this obstacle by making the information visible, using different methods presented in other modules. Never assume that just because everyone is involved in everything, information is automatically shared with the team!