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Malfunctioning teams damage morale and productivity

It may be true that novelists, composers and Greta Garbo do all their best work alone, but for most of us it's the team effort that reaps the biggest rewards. Teamwork is also crucial for building morale. Studies have shown that employees perform best and are most likely to feel engaged when they know that their voice is heard and when they can understand how their ideas and opinions contribute to outcomes.

So it's cause for concern that more than a third of UK employers prefer to work on their own, according to a survey from Cedar. The authors suggest that this is because many businesses are failing to encourage employees to communicate ideas, share responsibility and trust fellow team members. Indeed, nearly half of respondents thought that their organisation did not help them build effective teams.

A dysfunctional team can have a devastating impact on productivity and morale. A third of respondents said they dreaded coming in to work because of sour relationships within their teams and a similar number said they couldn't do their job properly. Lack of trust between team members, and team leaders who couldn't or wouldn't resolve conflicts were also picked out by many as damaging to performance.

Acas can help your team managers improve their communication skills, and lead and motivate their teams with effect. Acas offers practical training courses on Skills for supervisors and Conflict management. The service also holds courses on boosting levels of employee engagement, listed under Staff retention on the Acas website.

Visit the Acas Training and Business Solutions area for more information.

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