Showing posts with label Team Work. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Team Work. Show all posts

Motivational Video on Teamwork

Superordinate goals: Robbers Cave Experiment

The boys were unwittingly the star cast in a classic experiment conducted in the 1950s on building positive inter group relations.

TAKE 22 white, middle-class, 11 year-old boys who did not know each other, send them on a 'summer camp experience' at the Robber's Cave State Park in Oklahoma (USA), and what do you get? A remake of William Golding's 'Lord of the Flies'? No. Rather, a powerful lesson in peace building.
The boys were unwittingly the star cast in a classic experiment conducted in the 1950s on building positive inter group relations, conducted by psychologist Muzafer Sherif. Although they were unaware of it, Sherif had divided the boys into two groups of 11 that were approximately equal in athletic ability and camping experience. He arranged experiences that would amplify, and then resolve, destructive conflict between them. The study was conducted in 3 stages of roughly 1 week each.

In the first stage, each group lived in its own cabin and had no knowledge of the other's presence in the park. Each group developed its own swimming hole and hideouts and co-operated in activities such as pitching tents, preparing meals, hiking and treasure hunts. During this stage, each spontaneously developed its own rules, leadership and identity. One group called itself the 'Rattlers', the other boys dubbed themselves the 'Eagles'.

us and them

Near the end of this stage, each was made aware of the other's presence in the camp, hearing the other's voices or seeing cups left behind. Strong territorial reactions, such as 'they'd better not be in our swimming hole', were the result. There was an immediate division between 'us' and 'them'.


By design, Stage Two amplified the competition between the young 'warriors'. The staff announced a series of contests, including baseball games, tugs-of war and counsellor-judged events such as cabin inspections. The scoring was manipulated to keep the two teams close, thereby heightening the sense of competition. The two groups began eating together in a common mess hall, where the tournament's grand prize (a trophy and 11 medals and four bladed knives for individual members of the winning team) was on display for all to see.


Good sportsmanship quickly deteriorated to name-calling during the first baseball game and then in the mess-hall. Following their first loss the dejected Eagles burned the Rattlers' flag, with the group's leader proclaiming 'you can tell those guys I did it ... I'll fight 'em'. The Eagle flag was burned in retaliation the next day. Fighting erupted and the counsellors intervened.


Tensions increased further when the Eagles won the second tug-of-war through a strategy of sitting down and digging in their heels. Judging this unfair, the Rattlers launched a commando style raid on the Eagles' cabin that night. The following morning, the Eagles took revenge on the Rattlers' cabin; then, fearing reprisals, they began to store rocks to stone their new enemies. Once again, the staff intervened.


Skirmishes continued throughout the tournament, which the Eagles eventually won. The defeated Rattlers immediately raided the other group's cabin and stole the prized knives and medals, provoking further fighting. Hostilities at this point ran extremely high.


Stage Three aimed at resolving the conflict. Initially, non-competitive activities were attempted, such as watching movies while eating together in the mess hall. This contact failed. The two groups stayed separated, jeered at each other or engaged in food fights.


To build peace, it was necessary to induce co-operation towards shared goals. A series of urgent problems was devised, which the boys could solve only by working together. The camp's water was cut, for example, and staff announced a possible leak in the supply pipe. The boys had to inspect the 1.6km pipe, and finally discovered a clogged valve at the tank. They rejoiced together when the problem had been fixed. On another occasion, they had to join forces to start a truck which had broken down. By the time the third stage had ended the boys had become reconciled, and even asked to go back to the city on the same bus.


In interpreting these results, one must be careful to note that no single experiment can establish by itself a principle of broad applicability. Furthermore, the conditions of Sherif's experiment differed markedly from the conflict-torn situations in the real world. The inescapable conclusion, however, is that co-operation on shared goals is of vital importance in resolving conflict peacefully.


This conclusion has far-reaching implications for building a culture of peace. Simply stopping the fighting or bringing hostile groups together is not enough. Rather, co-operation must be nourished at diverse levels in the social system, building the sense of positive interdependence that lies at the heart of a culture of peace.

Quotes of Team Building and Team Work

1. Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. -Margaret Mead
2. A group becomes a team when each member is sure enough of himself and his contribution to praise the skills of the others. -Norman Shidle
3. Socrates: Let us examine the question together, my friend, and if you contradict anything that I say, do so, and I shall be persuaded. -Plato
4. The most successful decision makers follow a set of rules that helps them select the best alternatives under the circumstances. -Phillip Bransletter
5. None of us is as smart as all of us. -Anonymous
6. "Someone ought to do it, but why should I?" "Someone ought to do it, but why not I?" Between these two questions lies whole centuries of moral revolution. -Annie Besant
7. There is a big difference between hard work and teamwork. -Jim Lundy
8. We will never be better as a team than we are to each other. -Unknown
9. We didn’t come over in the same ship, but here we are in the same boat. -Unknown
10. How is it we can find time to do it over, but not the time to do it right initially? -Proverb
11. Build with your team a feeling of oneness, of dependence on one another, and of strength derived from unity in the pursuit of your objective.
12. We would rather have one man or woman working with us than three merely working for us.
-F.W. Woolworth
13. We are born for cooperation, as are the feet, the hands, the eye-lids, and the upper and lower jaws. -Marcus Aurelius
14. Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, and working together is success.
-Henry Ford
15. You can buy someone’s time, you can buy someone’s physical presence at a given place; you can even buy a measured number of skilled muscular motions per hour or day. But you cannot buy enthusiasm; you cannot buy initiative, you cannot buy loyalty; you cannot buy devotion of hearts, minds, and souls. You have to earn these things. -Clarence Francis
16. All are but parts of one stupendous whole. -Alexander Pope
17. We must indeed all hang together, or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately. -Ben Franklin
18. The keynote to progress in the 20th century is teamwork. -Dr. Charles H. Mayo
19. The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism.
-Norman Vincent Peale
20. You have to listen to adversaries and keep looking for that point beyond which it’s against their interests to keep on disagreeing or fighting. -Cyrus Vance
21. We are dependent on one another, every soul of us on earth. -George Bernard Shaw
22. A habit cannot be thrown out the window. It has to be coaxed down the stairs one step at a time. -Mark Twain
23. I asked "Why doesn’t somebody do something?" Then I realized, I was somebody. -Unknown
24. It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others. -John Andrew Holmes
25. I don’t believe in just ordering people to do things. You have to sort of grab an oar and row with them. -Harold Geneen
26. It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself. -Ralph Waldo Emerson
27. Few burdens are heavy when everyone lifts. -Anonymous
28. It is not who is right, but what is right, that is of importance. -Thomas Huxley
29. Nothing ever succeeeds which exuberant spirits have not helped to produce. -Nietzsche
30. What do we live for if not to make the world less difficult for each other. -George Eliot

Inspirational Team Work

# Together Each Achieves More
TEAM WORK Inspirational

# No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it. ?
# Many Hand makes work light
# It is amazing how much you can accomplish when it doesn't matter who gets the credit.
# Coming together is a Beginning. Keeping together is Progress. Working together is Success.
# Teamwork divides the Task and doubles the Success.
# Teamwork: Simply stated, it is less ME and more WE.
# Strength lies in differences, not in similarities.
# Teamwork is the ability to work as a group toward a Common Goal.
# A successful team beats with one heart.
# A job worth doing is worth doing together.
# The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.
# Coming Together, Sharing Together, Working Together, Succeeding Together.

Inspirational Team Work Posters

Story: Hare and Tortise with many Morals

This is an age old fable of the tortoise and hare race. Everyone knows who won the race or do you? Well, recently I heard a new version of this story with a new twist. Read this inspirational teamwork story with lessons in teamwork from an age old fable.

1. Once upon a time a tortoise and a hare had an argument about who was faster. They decided to settle the argument with a race. The tortoise and hare both agreed on a route and started off the race. The hare shot ahead and ran briskly for some time. Then seeing that he was far ahead of the tortoise, he thought he'd sit under a tree for some time and relax before continuing the race. He sat under the tree and soon fell asleep. The tortoise plodding on overtook him and soon finished the race, emerging as the undisputed champ. The hare woke up and realized that he'd lost the race.

The moral of the story is that slow and steady wins the race. This is the version of the story that we've all grown up with.


2. But then recently, someone told me a more interesting version of this tortoise and hare story. It continues.

The hare was disappointed at losing the race and he did some soul-searching. He realized that he'd lost the race only because he had been overconfident, careless and lax. If he had not taken things for granted, there's no way the tortoise could have beaten him. So he challenged the tortoise to another race. The tortoise agreed.
This time, the hare went all out and ran without stopping from start to finish. He won by several miles.

The moral of the story? Fast and consistent will always beat the slow and steady. If you have two people in your organization, one slow, methodical and reliable, and the other fast and still reliable at what he does, the fast and reliable chap will consistently climb the organizational ladder faster than the slow, methodical chap.

It's good to be slow and steady; but it's better to be fast and reliable.

3. But the story doesn't end here. The tortoise did some thinking this time, and realized that there's no way he can beat the hare in a race the way it was currently formatted. He thought for a while, and then challenged the hare to another race, but on a slightly different route. The hare agreed. The tortoise and hare started off. In keeping with his self-made commitment to be consistently fast, the hare took off and ran at top speed until he came to a broad river. The finishing line was a couple of kilometers on the other side of the river.

The hare sat there wondering what to do. In the meantime the tortoise trundled along, got into the river, swam to the opposite bank, continued walking and finished the race.

The moral of the story? First identify your core competency and then change the playing field to suit your core competency.

In an organization, if you are a good speaker, make sure you create opportunities to give presentations that enable the senior management to notice you.
If your strength is analysis, make sure you do some sort of research, make a report and send it upstairs. Working to your strengths will not only get you noticed, but will also create opportunities for growth and advancement.
The story still hasn't ended.

4. The tortoise and hare, by this time, had become pretty good friends and they did some thinking together. Both realized that the last race could have been run much better. So the tortoise and hare decided to do the last race again, but to run as a team this time.

They started off, and this time the hare carried the tortoise till the riverbank. There, the tortoise took over and swam across with the hare on his back. On the opposite bank, the hare again carried the tortoise and they reached the finishing line together. Both the tortoise and hare felt a greater sense of satisfaction than they'd felt earlier.

The moral of the story? It's good to be individually brilliant and to have strong core competencies; but unless you're able to work in a team and harness each other's core competencies, you'll always perform below par because there will always be situations at which you'll do poorly and someone else does well.


Teamwork is mainly about situational leadership, letting the person with the relevant core competency for a situation take leadership.

There are more lessons to be learnt from this inspirational teamwork story.

Note that neither the tortoise nor hare gave up after failures. The hare decided to work harder and put in more effort after his failure.

The tortoise changed his strategy because he was already working as hard as he could. In life, when faced with failure, sometimes it is appropriate to work harder and put in more effort. Sometimes it is appropriate to change strategy and
try something different. And sometimes it is appropriate to do both.

The tortoise and hare also learnt another vital lesson in teamwork. When we stop competing against a rival and instead start competing against the situation, we perform far better.


When Roberto Goizueta took over as CEO of Coca-Cola in the 1980s, he was faced with intense competition from Pepsi that was eating into Coke's growth. His executives were Pepsi-focused and intent on increasing market share 0.1 per cent a time.
Goizueta decided to stop competing against Pepsi and instead compete against the situation of 0.1 per cent growth.

He asked his executives what was the average fluid intake of an American per day? The answer was 14 ounces. What was Coke's share of that? Two ounces. Goizueta said Coke needed a larger share of that market. The competition wasn't Pepsi. It was the water, tea, coffee, milk and fruit juices that went into the remaining 12 ounces. The public should reach for a Coke whenever they felt like drinking something.

To this end, Coke put up vending machines at every street corner. Sales took a quantum jump and Pepsi has never quite caught up since.

To sum up, the story of the hare and tortoise teaches us many things. Chief among them are that fast and consistent will always beat slow and steady; work to your competencies; pooling resources and working as a team will always beat individual performers; never give up when faced with failure; and finally, compete against the situation, not against a rival.