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Learning Team Charter

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Learning Team Charter

Learning Team B

University of Phoenix

Com 285

Dr. Ramere

May 05, 2011

The best teams are those that not only combine the skills of their members to fit the demands of their task but also energize team members through the bonding that comes with striving toward a common goal (Harvard Business School, 2009). Learning team charters will challenge each member to work together in a collaborative effort. In order for a team to reach establish goals all members must participate and a learning team charter is imperative. The charter will provide direction and will define the purpose of the team. The subject at hand is the definition of group communication, how group communication is different from individual communication. Effective strategies must be in place to promote group and individual communication. Making sure that the learning team charter's dispute resolution section has enough information for strong strategies for fostering good team communication is a must. Proper technology that will facilitate group communication and knowing what the advantages and disadvantages of using these technologies will help ensure the final project is a success.
Group communication

Communication has many forms: face-to-face, formal meetings, phone conversations, e-mail messaging these types of communication all use words and are forms of verbal communication. Today in the business world more companies are achieving goals through teamwork. Working in teams brings different strengths and talents together to solve and make decisions (Locker & Kienzler, 2008). A communication between two people is primarily an interchange – dyadic communication. Additionally, a group often meets face-to-face with a common purpose in mind. Such a group may also be informal, un-planned, free-flowing discourse or formal, clear, planned purpose (free-books-online, 2011). Group communication takes place with a group of people who bring knowledge and experience to reach goals and make effective decisions. Effective communication is the key for the group to achieve set goals. Group communication involves dialogue, verbal or written coming from, and intended for more than two people, while individual communication is the dialogue, which takes place between two people. Individual communication is more one-on-one and more like a social interaction. Effective communication is to understand the audience. This can pose a problem within group communication because of the different levels of understanding, and communication styles within a group versus individual communication. Within a group environment some may choose not to speak out on his or her thoughts whereas; with individual communication most conversations are reciprocal. Each idea is of the individual and is left up to the individual to accomplish his or her goal without help from anyone else.

Strategies

Effective strategies to help individuals with communication are phone, letters, e-mails, memos, and face-to-face communication. Today most individuals are already communicating through e-mails and text messaging and would prefer to communicate using these communication methods. Strategies for group communication are ideas, planning, and discussion. Always be a good listener, this makes the person speaking feel comfortable. Ask questions or ask group participants to share feedback. When communicating always speak clearly, and be precise, relay details pertaining to the specific group at hand. Effective communicating can help relieve the chances of dispute. If disputes do come about developing effective resolution strategies will help resolve issues more quickly.

Charter

In the learning team charter there is an emphasis on team members turning in their responsible parts of the assignment as well as turning the sections in on time. The reason for such an emphasis is that all members of the team have experienced lack of participation in prior learning teams and the responsibilities have fallen to members of the learning team now. Under the conflict resolution it is mentioned that if a member should find him or herself in a situation in which he or she cannot perform his or her assigned task he or she should contact other members of the team to discuss alternative actions, prior to the assignment. If a member does not meet the required actions to be taken for missing an assignment there will be a team meeting. All points mentioned in the learning team charter are sufficient and clear until we reach the team meetings. The questions that may arise, how should the team conduct the meetings so that no individual feels attached and how to come to a resolution that all members are satisfied with and follow-up on?

Team Meetings

As a team we are here to receive a good grade for any team assignments and to make sure all members understand the material presented throughout the course. We are not here to criticize any individual's ideas or persona. To prevent a member feeling attacked by the other members of the group, members will need to understand that he or she must not be negative when presenting the point of view on the situation. Instead of accusing the person of not caring or lazy one can ask was there something he or she did not understand or was there a family emergency. This will allow for the member to be more forthcoming with information instead of going on a defensive attitude and not be up-front with information. Second a mediator will be assigned before any team meetings for an individual who is impartial to the situation. The mediator will stop any attacks from becoming personal and at the end of the meeting will paraphrase what happened in the meeting and what each side is trying to convey. This allows for all members to understand what took place and to make sure there is a misunderstanding instead of miss communication between the parties. Finally there will be two meetings, first meeting will address the issues and allow the sides to present his or her issues and provide evidence to support his or her argument. The second meeting will be the next day, to allow time for all members to calm down, to think clearly about a resolution to the issue. When the team meets the next day a resolution will be achieved and all members of the team agree and will follow through with the resolution. With a more defined agenda for the team meetings it will make sure no individual of the team feels he or she is being attacked and that all agreements are thought of with a clear mindset.

Communication

The learning team charter does address team member communication well. In the charter it states that all members’ goals for the team throughout the course are to produce quality papers and presentations. With all members developing the same goals it is easier for the individuals to understand the thought process of the other members. The charter provides two methods of communication for all team members, the forms are through cell phone numbers or e-mails. Also all members understand that OLS provides a third form of communication because all members need to post individual assignments there and that it will notify people if there is a new post for the team. The charter also provides times in which all members can be reached. The times are Monday through Saturday after 6 p.m.; this is because most team members work during the day and leaves Sundays for the members to spend time with their families. As for assignments the learning team charter addresses the issues prior to the assignment, during the process, and after. Prior to the assignment it states that members will be assigned parts that they are comfortable with and that a turn in date and time will be agreed upon. During the assignment if any problems should occur that members are to reach other members through phone calls, e-mails, or OLS postings to notify them of situations. After assignment communication is addressed with the follow-up feedback on all assignments. If a member agrees he or she just needs to say good job and if they do not address the parts that he or she has issues with this feedback will be left in OLS. Using all the proper technology available will enable all members the ability to communicate effectively with each other.

Technology

As we have learned in class over the first three weeks, there are many ways to communicate to an audience. The methods we have discussed are known as external, which is used to reach out to customers to make them aware of the product or the service causing the customer to buy. This type of communication can be through telephone calls, brochures, advertisement and websites, anything that informs the public about the product offered by the company. Then there is the method known as internal, where the owner is communicating the message of the direction of the company and motivating the staff through various forms of communication such as e-mails, newsletters, and conference calls expressing the vision of the company. Effective communication is the key in the business world and there are various forms of communication, the role of any business owner is to communicate his or her desires and vision for the company through available technology, this has made communication much easier. Many people still use the conventional way, which is the telephone, but for the purpose of this paper our team will discuss other forms of technology for communicating. Video and web conferencing is big in the corporate world, “Video conferencing transmits and receives images and voice in real-time. Web conferencing adds another dimension – it allows you to share documents and applications." This method of communication allows the customers and the business executives to communicate face-to-face as if he or she were sitting in the same room. Tele-presence takes video to a totally different level than regular television, the Tele-presence uses large video screens and cameras that display large life size images in real-time,” "in person" experience facial expressions for crucial business discussions and negotiations can be discerned across the virtual table." The technology of the Tele-presence is a excellent form of communication that allows everyone to see how each person responds to very difficult decisions made in the business world. The advantage of this technology allows the customer and executives come face-to-face and discuss the product or share sensitive material about the company, it also gives the meeting a more in-depth dialogue to see how people respond under pressure, also it keeps executives and customers from doing a large amount of traveling, cost-effective, and the time it takes to travel can be used to conduct a meeting. The disadvantage is that this technology cost anywhere from $15,000 or more, depending on the equipment the company purchases and also the various types of video screens used to project the images. Companies must keep in mind that some people have trouble sitting in front of video screens for long periods. The other type of technology, which everyone seems to have is the Smartphone. The Smartphone's are capable of anything a laptop or computer can perform. Smartphone's have become high in demand because many prefer this method over the conventional telephone, which when conducting business over the phone can be very draining. Smartphone’s can send e-mails or texts, follow stock markets and even download company websites to access information at the touch of a button, also there is the capability of using the Smartphone like a walkie-talkie and conduct business on the move. The phones come in different models such as I Phone, Blackberry, Droid, and Google's Nexus One. Each has different strengths the company will need to factor into the needs of the business. The advantage of the Smartphone is the capability to conduct business anytime, anywhere in the world and have constant communication with any business, or business associates, the disadvantages are some Smartphone's have short battery life, and sometimes, depending on the signal will not process as fast as sum other forms of communication. The technology has changed but the lines of communication we have are endless and we need to explore the various lines of presenting to our audience. The business world will always continue to be a large conglomerate of companies; the longer people conduct business, the more technology will expand it is the responsibility of the individual and leaders of any company to find ways to communicate effectively in technology world. Companies must upgrade as technology changes to meet the demands of the consumer and to be competitive in the market.

In conclusion communication is the key to success not just in the business world but in everyday life. Learning teams must collaborate so that each member is not left thinking he or she is unworthy. Strategies must be in place to handle situation to accomplish goals that have been set by the team. Every member has valuable knowledge and experience that should be shared to gain a richer understanding of the members this process can help in learning the weaknesses and strengths of the team. Making sure that all communication channels are accessible to all members, so if a situation does arise, the members can communicate effectively so the result will be successful.

References

Communication (2011). Communication tools. Retrieved on May 01, 2011 from www.myownbusiness.com

Group Communications. (2011). Definition of a group meeting. Retrieved on May 01, 2011 from http://free books online.org

HBS. (2009). Sharpening your skills: Managing Teams. Retrieved on May 01, 2011 from http://hbswk.hbs.edu

Locker, K., & Kienzler, D. (2008). Business and Administrative Communication. Retrieved on May 02, 2011 from http://ecampus.phoenix.edu

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