Building a Team Culture: Moving Through the Tuckman Model of Team Development

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Teamwork is essential in every workplace, whether you are a construction worker, restaurant manager, or the CEO of a large organization. However, team composition can change from day to day or project to project. Within any industry, the ability to build a team culture significantly impacts organizational performance.

We know that respect is the foundation of team building. Now what? The Intégro Leadership Institute saw a connection between their trust model and Tuckman’s Model of Team Development. They combined their eight values of trust and Tuckman’s four phases of development to better identify how teams can move from one level to the next.

Learn how to use trust behaviors to effectively move through the Tuckman Model of Team Development and create high performing teams in your organization:

Cross-Functional Teams Need Fluid Solutions

A recent study by Wiley Workplace Solutions found that 80% of employees are on two or more teams and that individuals spend nearly 60% of their time working in groups. Since teams are becoming increasingly cross-functional, it creates a need for efficient, practical, and universal solutions to build a team culture in short amounts of time. The Tuckman Model of Team Development can be applied to any team in any industry to quickly improve teamwork. Whether team composition rarely changes or is constantly changing, there is a need to adapt to team structure and meet performance goals.

high performance teams webinar

The Tuckman Model consists of four phases a team goes through to grow: forming, storming, norming, and performing. The key to successfully moving through the Tuckman Model is correctly identifying your teams starting point. When you know your current stage, teams can move quickly through the model by focusing on specific trust behaviors that build teamwork. You can find out where your team is in the Tuckman Model by using the Team Alignment Survey. This tool identifies areas of improvement and measures aspects of alignment and trust so you can build trust and teamwork within your organization.

evolution of a high performing team

Diagram from Integro Leadership Institute

Trust Behaviors to Move Through the Tuckman Model

At each stage of the Tuckman Model, different trust behaviors are needed to move forward. The behaviors vary based on where a team is in the development process and require different approaches. Follow these trust building behaviors to move through the Tuckman Model and build teamwork to improve performance:

The Foundation: Respect

Last month we talked about how respect is the foundation for building a team culture. Once respect is established, teams can successfully move through the forming, storming, norming, and performing stages.

Forming to Storming: Receptivity

For example, one of the trust values that help teams move from forming to storming is receptivity. Team members should be listening to everyone’s input and contributing their own ideas. Behaviors that indicate receptivity include:

  • Actively listening and considering different views
  • Asking clarifying questions to understand new ideas
  • Openness to new methods or approaches
  • Willingness to make changes based on input from team members
  • Seeking and receiving feedback without becoming defensive

Norming to Performing: Seeks Excellence  

On the other end of the spectrum, one of the trust values that help teams move from norming to performing is seeking excellence. Team members should be achieving high-quality work to contribute to the team. Behaviors that indicate seeking excellence include:

  • Setting clear instructions and expectations
  • Willing to delegate tasks to the appropriate team members
  • Fulfilling obligations with quality and accuracy
  • Focusing on performing and professional growth
  • Holding each other accountable to a high level of performance

How Action-Strategies-By-Design Can Help You Build a Team Culture

Action-Strategies-By-Design offers a wide range of services, assessments, and trainings to help organizations build high-performing teams. For example, the Team Alignment Survey allows teams to precisely move through the Tuckman Model and build sustainable team culture. After the survey, we can help your organization pinpoint a starting stage in the Tuckman Model and provide training and resources to quickly move from one level to the next. Learn more about how you can build a team culture using the Team Alignment Survey.

Download Our Free Virtual Webinar

Missed our free virtual showcase on Building High Performance Teams? It’s not too late! Download the free webinar and join speaker Keith Ayers, president of Intégro Leadership Institute, as he explores the six aspects of team alignment and how your team can increase productivity. Download the webinar today.

Contact us for more information on building team culture, free webinars, and Trust Inside Assessments.


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