A team charter refers to a well-written document developed to give direction to a group with a common purpose by establishing boundaries. In any case, the document is developed early before implementing the team purpose. To facilitate buy-in as well as understanding, the charter is usually initiated in the normal group session (Ng & Tung, 2018). It has been established in many business activities that without clear definition of purpose, team members tend to have differing views hence affecting the expected effectiveness of the team. To avoid discrepancies that team members tend to portray when left to act on their own, development of a team charter is deemed important.
By being a member of the team, the charter will help by clearly highlighting each members’ roles. This will help in increasing the general effectiveness of the team as it depends on the input of every member. It helps in getting the most from every team member by allocating responsibility depending on what a person can add to the attainment of the general group goals (Courtright et al., 2017). The charter ensures individual capabilities are properly utilized and ensures proper goal alignment required to the attainment of desired members’ accountability levels.
Moreover, the charter helps in improving productivity hence enhancing chances of ensuring group success. It has been established that when a team charter is done correctly, it helps in inspiring individuals as well as the entire team which tends to become more effective. This is done through establishment of clear and measurable goals as well as agreed accountability levels.
In his book Dan Pink highlight the sense of purpose to be the major motivator to the attaining any desirable outcome (Verstegen et al., 2018). In this regard, a team charter helps us to start with ‘why’ to define the group as well as the major reason for it existence. Therefore, a team charter helps in keeping workers moving in a common direction by showing members the major aims of their existence as well as the importance of their efforts. The charter helps by coming up with the necessary factors likely to bring about the success of the team, attainment of team goals, maintaining of major values as well as behaviors. In other words, charter acts as a vision for the group by getting the clear as to the reason why the group exist. It is a necessary touchstone for daily behavior control and decision-making.
The document if properly prepared helps in enhancing the transparency levels within the group. It creates a chance for the group to agree on their operation and decisions through regular meetings as well as other logistics. Besides, a good group charter helps to increase dividends. The documented act as a checklist by establishing a smooth road map focused on collaboration and group productivity. In this case, it is important to realize that the document helps in saving on the time spent in planning through avoidance of frustrations that leads to more wastage of the same.
In addition, a properly prepared charter helps in establishment of scope and boundaries. In many instances, team members tend to wonder on what is left under their control as well as what is expected from them. A good charter helps in marking team limitations, boundaries and areas they need to be responsible. This also helps in avoiding collision within the group.
Uses of a Team Charter in Virtual Teams
To ensure success of the virtual team, there is need to have a well-prepared team charter to control virtual operations. In this case, it is necessary to realize that virtual teams are normally challenged hence they need some proper fundamentals to be put in place to facilitate their operation. More importantly, a direction of where the team is going is deemed necessary. This also involves a clear and strong structure on the manner of actions. This helps in having a shared mindset among the team members on how they carry out their activities.
Considering the increased levels of pressure in operating teams in the contemporary world, operating virtual team poses greater challenges. Virtual operations are faced with several challenges revolving around communication, unspoken signals, and time differences just to name a few (Morrison-Smith & Ruiz, 2020). With this in mind, there is need for members to use a well-prepared team charter in their operations. They will use charter in establishing a virtual structure that is worth devoting time and resources to reap later rewards.
The head of communication department will use a properly prepared charter to ensure proper sending of messages and smooth operations. In this case, the charter gives directors details on how virtual teams will operate together on daily basis as well as communicate with one another. It gives a clear timeframe of events with proper milestones of what needs to be attained in a particular team duration (Maes & Weldy, 2018).
In addition, virtual team in the university will use it in identifying how virtual team will communicate, the feedback period and the criteria the team uses to hold members accountable for their results. In addition, the charter will be used by members to agree on how the team will meet in remote surrounding to avoid it becoming a bother to one person. Therefore, group charter provides a common platform of agreement necessary for the attainment of common goals.
Additionally, students leading in various levels will use the virtual team charter to ensure support to members and allocate resources. In this regard, the document will provide the required plan virtual team operation. Considering that majority of students may not be having adequate skills required the charter will highlight necessary training and technology to enhance effectiveness of group members. The plan also helps student virtual team in establishing the work force resources required to realize desired outcomes. Besides, the plan gives criteria in which student team leaders need to support the team for smooth running of the virtual business.
The charter also will be used by the student team specifically in human resource and marketing department to identify a particular skill that every member brings to the group. This requires teams to be comprised of members with the desirable capabilities as well as skill sets. Besides, the plan gives the required number in every group with respect to task ahead of them. This helps to avoid scenarios where people tend to be bogged down due to excess members in a group. This helps in reducing operation cost hence leading to increased profit margin. This will in turn make the business to expand. In addition, to avoid virtual team members from pursuing their deals, the charter gives the team mission as well as what it intends to achieve (Walker et al., 2018).
The aims take the mission of the group by making it to be more specific and with measurable outcomes desired in every level. The set milestones of evaluations help to maintain the group focus to ensure it is in-line with the set aims. However, members in the virtual team must agree on what they intend to achieve according to the organizational objective. This helps in motivating members and increases unity among them as they feel their inputs in the team are greatly recognized.
Courtright, S. H., McCormick, B. W., Mistry, S., & Wang, J. (2017). Quality charters or quality members? A control theory perspective on team charters and team performance. Journal of Applied Psychology, 102(10), 1462. Web.
Maes, J. D., & Weldy, T. G. (2018). Building effective virtual teams: Expanding OD research and practice. Organization Development Journal, 36(3). Web.
Morrison-Smith, S., & Ruiz, J. (2020). Challenges and barriers in virtual teams: A literature review. SN Applied Sciences, 2, 1-33. Web.
Ng, P. K., & Tung, B. (2018). The importance of reward and recognition system in the leadership of virtual project teams: A qualitative research for the financial services sector. Journal of Transnational Management, 23(4), 198-214. Web.
Verstegen, D., Dailey-Hebert, A., Fonteijn, H., Clarebout, G., & Spruijt, A. (2018). How do virtual teams collaborate in online learning tasks in a MOOC? International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 19(4). Web.
Walker, R. C., Cardon, P. W., & Aritz, J. (2018). Enhancing global virtual small group communication skills. Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 47(5), 421-433. Web.