The Open University since 2006
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
BBC Inside Science - 2016/2017 series: Rosetta's comet touchdown finaleThursday, 29th September 2016 16:30 - BBC Radio 4The ESA's Rosetta mission is about to finish so Adam Rutherford looks at how the crash will happen. Read more: BBC Inside Science - 2016/2017 series: Rosetta's comet touchdown finale
The Bottom Line: Autumn 2016: TheresanomicsAvailable for over a yearTheresa May wants a bigger role for government in business. Will it happen? Can it work? Read more: The Bottom Line: Autumn 2016: Theresanomics
The Bottom Line: Autumn 2016Evan Davis hosts the business conversation show with people at the top giving insight into what... Read more: The Bottom Line: Autumn 2016
Take the photographic memory testCan you capture scenes just by looking at them? Find out with our photographic memory test. Launch now: Take the photographic memory test
Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital worldThis free course, Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital world, will develop your confidence... Try: Digital literacy: succeeding in a digital world now
Introduction to bookkeeping and accountingLearn about the essential numerical skills required for accounting and bookkeeping. This free... Try: Introduction to bookkeeping and accounting now
This free course, How teams work, provides an introduction to working in virtual project teams by explaining terms and concepts related to teams and to projects. The complexity of the interaction of people and technology is highlighted.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- understand the issues and processes that relate to team formation and development in a virtual context
- identify barriers to effective team work in a virtual environment and propose solutions
- review and comment on team activities in a virtual environment and develop insights to make informed judgements and recommendations for future good practice
- synthesise theory and practical experience to make recommendations for good practice in new team environments.
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Different types of team
- 2 Types of virtual team
- 3 Team formation
- 4 Functional team roles
- 5 Decision making and trust
- 6 Team rules
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
1.3 Self-managed teams
Self-managed teams have been described as one of the more important approaches to improving team performance in recent years. Other teams with this style of team organisation are described as ‘self-directed teams’ and ‘semi-autonomous work groups’, which gives some sense of how a self-managed team manages itself.
A self-managed team is a team in which the members take collective responsibility for ensuring that the team operates effectively and meets its targets. Typically, members of self-managed teams are employees within an organisation who work together, within a broad framework of aims and objectives, to reach a common goal. When setting up the team, two of the parameters that have to be defined are the levels of responsibility and autonomy that are given to the self-managed team. So teams can have varying degrees of autonomy, from teams who have considerable control over their work, and the boundaries within which they operate, to self-managed teams that are set boundaries by team leaders. (Some authors give different names to teams at different ends of this spectrum. In this course we use the same term.)
In general, self-managed teams have considerable discretion over:
- the work done and setting team goals
- how work is achieved – which processes are used and how work is scheduled
- internal performance issues – distributing the work and the contribution made by each member of the team
- decision making and problem solving.
This free course includes adapted extracts from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Leadership and Management courses or view the range of currently available OU Leadership and Management courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Tuesday, 15th March 2011
Last updated on: Monday, 22nd February 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
If you enjoyed this, why not follow a feed to find out when we have new things like it? Choose an RSS feed from the list below. (Don't know what to do with RSS feeds?)
Remember, you can also make your own, personal feed by combining tags from around OpenLearn.
- Latest OpenLearn pages
- Latest pages from OpenLearn - Leadership and Management
- Latest pages tagged - M891_2
- Latest pages tagged - BepiColombo
- Latest pages tagged - magnetic poles
- Latest pages tagged - apocalypse
- Latest pages tagged - rotating moon
- Latest pages tagged - skills for study: digital and online
- Latest pages tagged - skills for work: digital
- Latest pages tagged - skills for work: project planning
- Latest comments on this page
All our alternative formats are free for you to download, for more information about the different formats we offer please see our FAQs. The most frequently used are Word (for accessibility), PDF (for print) and ePub and Kindle to download to eReaders*.
- PDF (1.8 MB)
- RSS (293 KB)
- HTML (890 KB)
- OUXML Package (37 KB)
- OUXML File (126 KB)
- Moodle backup (396 KB)
*Please note you will need an ePub and Mobi reader for these formats.