Imagine if you were a manager at a big firm. The number of people working under you increases daily as your firm is constantly expanding. In such a scenario managing more than a hundred people at a time can seem like a daunting task. Not just that it will unceasingly add on to your stress levels while also affecting you and your team’s productivity. Not to mention the feedback and pressure you might experience due to this from your superiors. This is where self-managed teams come in the picture. A self-managed or self-directed team is a small group of employees or individuals who are dedicated to accomplishing one task. Members of a self-managed team do not constantly answer to a hierarchical supervisor but make use of their individual talents and abilities to fulfill the task at hand. The task could be anything from management to delivering a service or product. 

One of the many advantages of self-managed teams is the improvement in productivity, as the group will work together to solve an issue. This productivity also serves positive outcomes for the company in the long run as teams get to divide huge tasks into bite-sized pieces and handle them one at a time, instead of being burdened by a single challenging assignment all at once. Self-managed teams also reduce the individual stress levels of every employee, as roles for individuals become more flexible. It also enhances the resourcefulness within the group as members can work with one another and apply their individual skill set to tackle a problem. Such a set-up is not only beneficial for the company or business but also the employees as they get to learn new skills and find their niche for specialization. In a way self-managed teams allow both the employee as well as the company to grow together. This also paves the way to enhance the relationship between coworkers for a healthier and stress-free work environment. 

However, self-managed teams are not always about productivity, individual freedom and flexibility. With the lack of proper administrative oversight, things can go wrong. For example, the inclusion of too many members in a team might slow down the decision making process or a tendency to group-think might arise and an individual’s creative ideas might get pushed aside. All of which can be detrimental to an organization’s growth in the long run. But these mistakes can be fixed by being mindful of a few things. 

Firstly, as a leader of a self-managed team it is your duty to remind the group about their collective responsibility from time to time. Collective responsibility means that every individual in the team is accountable for the tasks assigned to them and that they should be aware of the importance of the project at hand. Secondly communication is a key component of managing a team. Good communication between team members and supervisors will help the team to understand their shared goals. Communication among team members is also crucial for eliminating the chances of conflict as well as enhancing team unity and understanding. Maintaining harmony in a group set-up is essential as every individual’s task is connected to their partners, and working together fruitfully will enable them to achieve their collective goals faster and more efficiently. Furthermore, it is only through clear communication that you can lay down your goals and directions for the team to follow. Understanding the ultimate goal of the task at hand, can give the self-managed team a sense of shared purpose as well as enable them to chalk out an effective plan of action. Encouragement along with a certain amount of constructive criticism is also crucial to maintain the morale of the team.