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Ellis and Bell (2005), posits that “team work is the process where two or more people interact interdependently towards a common and valued goal or objective and who have each been assigned a specific roles or functions to perform “(p.641). The ability to work together is so far important as it helps with some critical skills needed in a lifetime. Kraatz, (2013) once said that” we are a team. It’s part of our job to help each other quickly. Otherwise, we’d never get anything done.
Therefore we have to help each other especially in tertiary level in order to achieve more and learn more since some students do best when they learn from each other which is peers learning from each other.
Teamwork in the tertiary level is very important because it improves certain skills that are needed and very important in our daily life. According to Moatlhodi and Modubeki (2017), these skills are called “transferable skills”. Teamwork helps students to communicate well with others and interact.
Skills such as decision-making skills are promoted in team work because decisions are made based on the whole team. This avoids issues like favoritism because after decisions are made, agreements are also made so that decisions made do not affect the team negatively. Therefore teamwork helps a student to be a good decision maker and a good communicator because at the end of the day you have to communicate those decisions to other team members.
With a student being a good decision-maker, it helps him/her to prioritize and know what is most important in their life.
In cases where there are conflicts in a team, they are resolved quickly because of discussions made and at the end of it members come to an agreement. The reason why conflicts tend to be resolved is that according to Gamage and Pang, 2003 “conflicts have a negative connotation and many situations involving conflicts are disturbing and stressful to the participants and observers alike. They continue saying that conflicts, however can also be a source of creativity and construction action. This goes back to the fact that teamwork help students to have problem-solving skills
Teamwork also helps students understand more as they collaborate and come up with different ideas and views. They tend to explore those different ideas and views together and there is likely a high possibility for each member of the team to understand. Amabile ET. Al (2001) defines collaboration as “individuals who differ in notable ways sharing information and working towards a particular purpose” therefore this collaboration help students attain more knowledge from each other. Learning from each other may help us avoid future mistakes and learn new ways of doing things.
Working in teams helps students boost their confidence and self-esteem due to the different roles given to each member of the team. Team members share duties and roles within a team for example; there can be a secretary, timekeeper, bookkeeper and leader. When you are a leader of the team obviously you have to guide the team and direct it. You have to make sure that goals are achieved therefore one can gain confidence and self-esteem in cases whereby you have to communicate the team’s problems and how they can be solved. A leader can also be called to represent his/her team therefore improving self-confidence and self-esteem. This self-confidence and self-esteem fall under “transferable skills” that Moatlhodi and Modubeki, (2017) talked about.
Teamwork makes success possible and it makes goals to be achieved quickly. It is because many people are working together to get a common goal or many people with the same visions and goals are working together that is why they reach their goals quicker. According to StudyMoose, (2016) “no person can be good at everything and working in a team provides a great opportunity for students to learn from each other’s skills and produce faster outcomes and celebrate their success together too.
In a team, team members motivate each other therefore working in teams can also act as a motivator. Members motivate each other so that they maintain team morale and perform well and achieve their set goals. It is not only about supporting each other on academic work but team members can also support each other socially. For example, they can make sure that they meet to do the work by arranging transport for those who do not have transport fee. Moatlhodi and Modubeki, 2017 suggest that students should work in teams as they can give each other the morale they need to finish their tasks successfully and on time.
Teamwork prepares students and helps them have critical skills that are needed in the workforce. Skills like communication skills, decision-making skills, problem-solving skills, critical thinking skills, being cooperative and other abilities are very important and needed in the workplace therefore students gain them when working in teams and through teamwork assessments (according to Ngu and Mun, 2013). This means that working in teams prepares a student for his/her future career. The skills that are obtained when working in teams also contribute to a person’s development. The fact that you are working with people brings back the aspect of respect, trust patient and listening to people’s views and ideas, and expressing yourself without hurting others. Therefore, this shows that teamwork is very important in so many levels.
Working in teams builds synergy. The more the people with different capabilities but with the same goal working together, the more and better ideas being brought about therefore producing good results. After building synergy, problems that students encounter together during team assessments tasks that enable students to show their understanding lead to students adopting or having deep learning approaches. According to Campell and Cabrera, (2014), these deep approaches to learning include approaches that are integrative, of a higher order and that are reflective.
Teamwork brings the spirit of being competitive and producing the best because each member’s performance affects the whole team. Each member is accountable for the overall performance of the team. If one of the team members is lacking behind, it can pull the whole team’s morale. Therefore this spirit of competition helps members to pull each other and help each other so that the team achieves its goals and members do not blame each other for their failures.
In conclusion, without teamwork, there is likely to have procrastination on growing, formulating, and implementing new and innovative views and ideas.
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