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Effective Use of Teambuilding in Social Welfare Organisations reviewed


Title: Effective Use of Teambuilding in Social Welfare Organisations
Author: Alan Dearling
Publisher: Russell House Publishing Ltd
Date: 2000
Format: A4 wiro paperback, 212 pages
Price: £19.95 plus £1.50 delivery
ISBN: 1-898924-87-2

This new version of the ‘Effective Teambuilding’ manual is designed as a working tool. It offers a structured package of materials and exercises to help trainers, managers and facilitators enable groups in organisations to move towards becoming effective teams. The manual has been designed for use in as many different social welfare settings as possible, including multi-disciplinary teams, short-term teams, independent autonomous project teams and virtual teams. Exercises, notes for facilitators and photocopiable handouts (some of which can be transferred on to OHPs) all help create staff development training that focuses on collaborative approaches to decision-making, and helps teams to clarify individual members’ roles and organisational aims.

The manual has useful examples and anecdotes from a wide range of practice fields, which demonstrate how team building can be used or abused and how team members can build on strengths while also spotting signs of trouble.

The team building that results should enable teams to:

  • identify objectives
  • clarify the way in which organisational structures work
  • consider the relationship to power and decision-making in the organisation
  • facilitate positive organisational changes to take place
  • strengthen collaborative working
  • understand and respond to problems which staff members are experiencing
  • consider how their team relates to other teams and the organisation as a whole
  • utilise the creative potential of individuals in the group
  • gain benefits at a personal and professional level from being members of a team
  • help in the overall improvement of effectives services for clients and users

This is one of the most usable, concise and practical training manuals that I have ever used. The flexible format enables the user to facilitate team-building activities using the excellent quality materials and exercises. The materials are produced in language and formats that are suitable for a whole range of learners and offers exercises that suit a range of learning styles. I would highly recommend this manual to every manager who facilitates teams.

Usability *****
Readability *****
Clarity *****
Value for money *****

Alison Lowe
Training Development Officer
VOLCAAN Training Development


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