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3 Proven Team Effectiveness Models You Need to Use Today!

Continu Team
One Platform for All Learning
Learning & Development
October 10, 2023

Boost your team's performance with these 3 effectiveness models. Dive into proven strategies that foster collaboration, productivity, and optimal team dynamics.

Developing Executive Presence

Team effectiveness models establish frameworks for group communications and dynamics, team building, and productivity. Understanding established models and applying them to your situation can help you determine a way forward. 

But what team effectiveness model should you use? There are many different models out there, but three of them stand out: 

  1. Hackman Model
  2. T7 Model
  3. Katzenbach and Smith Model

Each model has its own respective strengths, and what will ultimately work best for your team could be a blend of methods. Using these models and a bit of adult learning theory, you can take your teams from surviving to thriving. 

1. The Hackman Team Model 

Hackman’s team effectiveness Model is based on a team’s dynamics. It also has clear objectives as well as team goals, so the team can see what it needs to do in order to become more effective in relation to those objectives and goals. 

The team member’s behaviors are categorized based on their involvement. 

These team member behaviors are supposed to create team cohesion and team effectiveness. Other team members need to know that they have these controlling team players on their team because they will need to learn how best to work with this type of player in order for the team to be more effective and productive. 

The Controlling team members may not understand what makes the other team members tick, so communication is critical in order for the team as a whole to become more cohesive. 

Applying the Hackman Model 

This model focuses heavily on team dynamics, morale, and the idea of servant leadership. The major gist is make sure your teams have everything they need, and keep communication active to stay aware of changes.

The model creates team cohesion by explaining team 

  • Interactions
  • Tasks
  • Changes
  • Processes

Team leaders understand the different levels of team member behaviors and how they fit into the model as a whole. They can use this information to increase productivity and empathy and enhance team morale in significant ways. 

Pros: The Hackman model is intended to help make decisions easier because it helps explain how some behaviors are more successful than others when dealing with particular challenges. 

Cons: Involvement doesn’t always indicate a team’s ability to be effective and some are looking for a more holistic approach.

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"Boost your team's performance with these 3 effectiveness models. Dive into proven strategies that foster collaboration, productivity, and optimal team dynamics."

2. The T7 Model

The T7 Model of Team Effectiveness takes a thorough and holistic approach to teamwork. 

Best used for large groups, the model assesses team members on their behavior and skills and measures the team itself against cohesion and performance goals. 

In the T7 team model, team members are divided into seven categories. They are either team players or team challengers. Identifying these roles and then applying the 7 Ts to them

Applying The T7 Model to Your Teams

This model can help you:

  • Assess behavior
  • Identify strengths and weaknesses 
  • Establish roles against a framework

In any team, team challenges will occur from time to time but if they manage to rise above them, they become better team players than before. 

No team is complete without team challengers or team players. It’s about how well the group functions as a whole. This model is great for large teams because it focuses on overarching goals instead of individual tasking. 

Pros: Team leaders can assess strengths and weaknesses to set team goals everyone can achieve. This model works well for large teams.

Cons: Research is a little outdated and there are other modern approaches.

3. The Katzenbach & Smith Team Effectiveness Model 

The Katzenbach and Smith team effectiveness model offers an approach to measuring team effectiveness that focuses on both task results and team processes. This model encourages positive assumptions and behaviors and tries to address conflicts proactively.

Team performance is measured by team members against goals in five dimensions: 

  • Readiness
  • Processes
  • Commitment
  • Outcomes
  • Context

This model is useful for measuring team effectiveness across departmental or cross-functional teams rather than just within one department or team. Additionally, Katzenbach and Smith's Model does not contain negative team players (team challengers) like other models. Its positive approach makes it more effective in organizations that want to emphasize teamwork more than confrontation among team members.

Applying the Katzenbach and Smith Model 

Here are a few team effectiveness measurement ideas to consider when applying this team model:

  • Team readiness, as measured in the team assessment tool above, includes team members’ feelings about their team leader. Do they feel like team goals have been explained well enough? Does the team leader work with all team members equally or is there favoritism? If so, what can be done to fix that? 
  • Team commitment, mainly team members’ satisfaction with their team leader and team goals. Do team members feel that their team leader is truly invested in the team? Are team members being treated fairly? If so, how can team leaders demonstrate this to team members more effectively? 
  • Team processes like decision making, goal setting, problem handling, conflict resolution, and communication between team members. Any of these process areas should be measured by using an assessment tool based on the Cognitive Conflict Theory. 

Team effectiveness is not always the same team goal or team outcome for all teams. Teams with clear team goals will have team process component outcomes that are more effective than those of a team lacking team goals but focusing on team processes instead. 

Pros: The model has a positive outlook on teamwork, focusing on strengths rather than team challenges and emphasizing sharing perspectives to find solutions to conflicts

Cons: The main disadvantage of this model is that it requires active engagement from all team members in order for the team to be considered effective. This team effectiveness model works best in team environments where team members are willing to cooperate, share different perspectives, and work together towards a common goal. 

Key Takeaways

It’s a leader’s responsibility to understand team dynamics, support their members, and drive success. These models can help you gain a better understanding of your teams. One of the keys your teams may need to be more effective is training. Whether it’s sales enablement, upskilling, or emotional intelligence training, it’s important to recognize how your teams can be more effective across the board. If your goal is for your organization to scale, empower your teams with the right tools and frameworks for success to build a solid foundation.

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