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An introduction to public leadership
An introduction to public leadership

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3.1.1 Team reflexivity: A way of understanding how teams function

In his book Effective Teamwork (2004), Michael West provides a useful framework for understanding how a team is functioning and how this may be improved. The animation below explores some aspects of his framework.

‘Reflexivity’ refers to the ability of a team to review how it works and adapt to what is required. West identifies and discusses these two separate elements.

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Activity 1

Think of a team you are part of. Using the idea of team reflexivity, how well do you think the team functions?

Do you agree that teams should always aspire to the ideal of a fully functioning type A team? Why/why not? Do you, for example, think that it is important that more people feel they are working in a ‘fully functioning’ type A team?

Perhaps you have good reasons for disagreeing with this norm implied in West’s (2004) model. Do you, for example, want to make a case that ‘cold efficiency’ is preferable in certain contexts?

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An image of seven people figures seated around a circular table, with a large red question mark in the centre.
Figure 2