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September 2019
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Successful Change Requires Strong Teams
TD Magazine

Successful Change Requires Strong Teams

Most organizations struggle to manage change effectively, often due to poorly operating teams.

Companies often face some form of adversity, which often leads to altered processes. Yet, as is often reported, companies are commonly unable to manage change. According to Eagle Hill Consulting's The Change Agents Hiding in Plain Sight: Workforce Teams, only 21 percent of full- and part-time workers polled strongly agree that their team enthusiastically embraces change. “An inability to effectively manage change can prevent business from achieving results at a time when many industries are undergoing radical change," the report states.

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Although aligning around a goal is crucial to a team's success, just 28 percent of respondents strongly agree that their teams have a stated purpose. About a quarter strongly agree that their teammates are highly dedicated to the team's work, and 29 percent trust their teammates.

On team performance, only 21 percent of respondents strongly believe their team regularly meets its goals, and 24 percent strongly agree that their team constantly learns and improves. Almost half of employees (46 percent) believe that their team leader or manager is the most influential driver of change in their company. Unfortunately, managers don't think the same way; embracing change and continuous growth rank last among all the factors that team leads foster for their teams, suggesting that the recognized change champion is not prioritizing change.

Teamwork has long been important to organizations, but the changing nature of work will likely require greater commitment to being a team player. After all, Harvard Business Review has found that employees spend 50 percent more time on collaborative work than they did 20 years ago. A shared experience, such as collaborative learning, can bolster the trust needed for teams to realize success. By working together and focusing on the skills and knowledge each person brings to the experience, strong teams are forged.

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About the Author

Stephen Newman is a writer/editor for the Association for Talent Development.

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