Organisational Communication – Belbin’s Team Roles
This article will investigate Belbin’s Team Roles in effect during a group assignment requiring high degree of coordination, and collaboration. The Participants, referred to as A, B, C, and D, had the task of completing a group university assignment. Members were found to assume Belbin’s roles of Resource Investigator, Monitor Evaluator, Implementer, Shaper, Co-ordinator, Plant, Team worker, Completer Finisher and Specialist and changed their communications styles accordingly. Chalkly (2015) elaborates that teams need a mix of the nine traits to function efficiently and this team did.
Enthusiastic A spent much of their time in the Resource Investigator role. Each time we would open our email and find A had posted yet another research article for the group to look at. While A was not always as great at following up on these.
This is where our Monitor Evaluator, B, came into their own. B was great at sifting through the research articles to see which were of greatest relevance, and quality to our purposes. Belbin’s website description of a Monitor Evaluator as ‘sober, strategic and discerning’ fitted B perfectly. After some time, it was B who eventually presented the best way forward for the group out of the wide array of options. D was also a practical and reliable Implementer and came up with a strategy to combine all our efforts.
C was essentially our Shaper and was instrumental in getting us started, by compiling the initial contacts lists, and set up and enforced the timeframes for completion of the individual tasks. C seemed a bit overly driven at times but in retrospect, really helped us get the job done on time, by pushing through any obstacles. I could see them working in a high-pressure broadcast news type situation in the future. C also acted as reliable Co-ordinator with a knack for delegating work (sometimes their own) depending on our strengths and keeping us focused on the goals.
We were not even sure if our Plant, D, was participating in our group until one day when they came up with a creative idea about how to present our findings using an alternative presentation method. D’s insights became invaluable to our project, but we made sure sometimes forgetful D was not responsible for uploading our presentation. D’s team diplomatic worker traits eventually when activated by C, helped us gel as a team and avoid group tensions.
What makes a deconstruction like this useful is it allows us to see the different elements that are required in effective organisational communication
Belbin M. 2018, The Nine Belbin Team Roles, Belbin, retrieved 21 May 2018, http://www.belbin.com/about/belbin-team-roles/
Chalkley, T 2015, ‘Organisational and Professional Communication’, in T Chalkley, M Hobbs, A Brown, T Cinque, B Warren & M Finn (eds), Communication, digital media and everyday life, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne pp. 170-184