You work for the Thirsty Beverage Corporation (TBC) and have been on the same team, in the same position, for three years. When you started at the company three years ago, there were five people on your team, but due to recent growth at the company, the team has expanded to 20 employees. Two of your original team members are still working with you on the team, but the rest of the team members just joined the company within the last year.
You have a very good relationship with one of the original team members. However, you have had conflicts with some of the other team members because they have opposing personalities.
The new team members are quite diverse in their personalities and backgrounds. You work well with some of them, but have had confrontations with others. With the rapid growth on the team, there have been some growing pains, such as:
- Some of the new employees have said that they feel frustrated by the lack of training and clarity in job roles.
- You and the other two original employees are feeling the stress of constantly needing to train the new employees and answer their questions.
- With so many new hires, the company’s leadership was not able to create a unified team. Now, the diversity in personalities and backgrounds has caused conflict among the team members.
Recently, a management position opened up on your team and you decided to apply. You know that the other two original team members are also applying for the position. If you are promoted, you will be managing these two employees who used to be your peers. You are not worried about managing one of the employees, but you know that managing the other employee would be more difficult.
Leadership is aware that there are conflicts on the team. So, as part of the interview process for the new management position, they have asked you to develop a communication plan. Your plan should explain how you will effectively collaborate with your team members and create positive team dynamics. To help you develop your plan, leadership has shared some demographic information about your team.
You have been asked to create a communication plan as part of the interview process for a management position on your team. In your plan, be sure to discuss:
- Team Dynamics: Before you can develop a plan to manage yourself and your team, you must first analyze the team dynamics of the specific team. This analysis will then inform the development of your collaboration strategies. As you analyze the team dynamics, be sure to:
- Describe the age and cultural differences among the people on the team.
- Based on these differences, describe the implicit biases that might be at play on the team. Explain how these biases may impact team communication.
- Describe difficult situations that may occur with challenging employees on the team. How will these situations make communication more difficult? For example, what might happen when you have to manage your coworkers who were not promoted?
- Personal Approach: As part of your communication plan, the hiring committee has asked you to explain how you will manage yourself as a leader. Specifically, how will you use what you know about emotional intelligence to analyze your personal approach to management? How will this knowledge help you manage the specific team dynamics? As you describe your personal approach, be sure to:
- Describe how you will assess your own strengths and weaknesses as a leader and your plan to continuously improve these skills.
- Explain how you will address your own biases and use empathy when communicating with the diverse team.
- Explain how you will manage your emotions when working with challenging team members.
- Collaboration Strategies: The hiring committee has also asked you to explain your strategy for collaborating with the team. As you develop your plan, be sure to:
- Explain how you can create a safe, open environment that encourages feedback to build relationships within the team. For example, will you establish specific group norms?
- Describe how you will take culture and age into consideration. How will you promote effective collaboration within this diverse team? For example, how will you ensure that communication is relevant and appropriate for all members of the team?
- Describe the strategies you will use to collaborate with challenging employees. For example, how will you manage the employees who did not receive the promotion?
What to submit:
Develop your personal approach to managing a team and plan your collaboration strategies. Explain how you will create a positive and productive team dynamic. Your communication plan must be 750–1,500 words in length, or about 3 to 6 pages (plus a cover page and references). Make sure to cite all sources appropriately.
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