Team Building In Health Care

This Tool Kit item features ideas to preserve team cohesion, improve team processes, and foster growth into high-performing teams.

Phases of Team Development
According to Bruce Tuckman (1965), there are five stages of team development:

  • Forming
  • Storming
  • Norming
  • Performing
  • Adjourning

Visit the Tool Kit item, titled Profiles of Effective Teams, for more information regarding the stages of team development

Steps to Building an Effective Team
According to the US Office of Personnel Management (1997), take the following steps to create a collaborative team environment:

  • Have a common purpose and goal
  • Trust each other
  • Clarify roles
  • Communicate openly and effectively
  • Appreciate diversity
  • Balance the team’s focus

Creating the Right Team (WHO, 2007)
Team Size

  • Small teams tend to work faster and produce results more quickly, but there is less diversity
  • Larger teams often require the creation of sub-teams to operate effectively; however, these larger teams have the potential for generating more ideas, and are typically more diverse

Overall Composition

  • Since one of the greatest benefits of adopting a collaborative approach to care is the comprehensive nature in which care is delivered, and the strength of the team’s collective knowledge, diversity on a health care team will be key
  • Each member should have different abilities, such as technical expertise and skills, problem-solving and decision-making skills, and interpersonal and communication skills

Team member selection and exclusion criteria

  • Team members should be committed to the common purpose and goals, creative, flexible, and open-minded
  • The team should consist of a variety of professionals representing multiple health disciplines

Member Recruitment Process

  • Keep in mind the project goals and selection criteria outlined above
  • Make contact with people who are qualified, share a passion for team-based care, and may be interested in joining the health care team