Teamwork is considered to be a significant aspect of nursing care. The success of such kind of work influences considerably the level of the treatment provided, determines the outcomes of services, and defines the relations which have to be developed between health care workers, leaders, and patients. During this course, a good opportunity to evaluate the peculiarities of teamwork has been provided: each member of a team can understand the necessity of his/her functions, define the actions which may improve teamwork or, vice versa, prevent the success of a team, and realize what strategies are more effective for future work in the appropriate healthcare environment.
Description of Teamwork
To succeed in teamwork, each member of our group tries to consider theoretical material and its possible implementation in practice. “The success of the team depends on individual excellence and the ability of the individuals to work together to tap the potential of the whole” (Cohen & Cesta, 2004, p. 84). Being aware of this fact, our team makes everything possible to define our best qualities and help each other achieve perfection.
This time, I got a team where almost every member was familiar to me: past cooperation with three members helped me define their strong and weak points as well as develop good communication with a new member. The team worked together dividing the roles and duties accordingly: one member was a leader, another person agreed to perform the functions of an organizer, and the rest of the team choose worker roles.
The leader of a team should correspond to all the requirements which are obligatory for any leader. As the team was sensitive, supportive, and respectful, this leader should make everything possible to understand the need for sensitivity during the decision-making process (Marquis & Huston, 2008). It was a real surprise for me that my team offered me the position of a leader, and I was happy to demonstrate my best professional qualities in nursing leadership.
However, effective leadership should be based on appropriate organization and work, this is why not less important role was devoted to our team organizer, a person who was responsible for the organization of various activities like information search, analysis, interpretation, and application. The planner had to comprehend the essence of each activity to offer it to the workers. And the workers, in their turn, had to follow the orders, choose the most effective ways of communication, and promote in time completion of the work.
Brainstorming is one of the most effective techniques to be used to find the correct solution of a problem (Hoeman, 2007). This teamwork helped me understand how it is better to brainstorm ideas: collective work is not easy to organize; this is why it is necessary to choose a good leader, be able to listen, and to offer suggestions when they are required. Being a leader, I had to brainstorm as many ideas as my team offered, and it was important to focus attention on each of them. However, a considerable challenge was also observed. In a team of several people, it is problematic to consider the opinion of each member at once.
Still, the possibility to demonstrate personal interests, help other members’ understand personal points, and assist them was really good experience in this team work. In spite of the fact that it was not always possible to find common solutions and prove personal positions by means of unequal disputes, this challenging task helped me become stronger and more confident in personal skills as a leader.
Strategies to Improve Teamwork
I find time management strategy and communication strategy the most successful means to improve teamwork. On the one hand, communication strategy helps to focus on each level of cooperation and provide clear decisions, ideas, and offers (Marquis & Huston, 2008). On the other hand, time management is a technique that aims at decreasing the level of human stress and the felling of uncertainty (Scott, 2007). These two strategies seem to be a kind of complement to each other: in case the leader fails to promote proper time management, it will be hard to develop communication on a good level. And if communication is hard to build, there are no chances to manage time properly considering the interests and duties of each member.
Impact on Future Work
I think that the idea to work in groups has a number of benefits for future health care workers. It is not that easy to work in a team and perform the functions set in a good way. This is why the skills gained in the process of teamwork may be applied in future in order to develop good relations with leaders, managers, workers, and patients. A future worker has to mind the strategies, understand the duties, and improve personal knowledge and skills as frequent as possible.
In general, teamwork is a powerful activity that helps students define their strong and weak points and understand how it is better to develop professional relations. I was lucky enough to have a team where each member was ready to help and support the other member as we understood that success of our teamwork was a mutual task for everyone, and if one person failed, the rest of the group could fail as well. I was happy to become a leader of such a good group and gain appropriate experience in nursing. This is why the basics of teamwork become effective elements in our group and promote the success achieved.
Cohen E. & Cesta G. T. (2004). Nursing Case Management from Essentials to Advanced Practice Applications. St. Louis: Elsevier Health Sciences.
Hoeman, S.P. (2007). Rehabilitation Nursing: Prevention, Intervention and Outcomes. St. Louis: Elsevier.
Marquis, B.L. & Huston, C.J. (2008). Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing: Theory and Application. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.
Scott, R.W. (2007). Guide for the New Health Care Professional. Boston: Jones & Bartlett Learning.