Team Trust...Earned or Assumed
Is trust assumed when working in teams or does trust have to be earned among the team members? I have worked for a number of years in a fast passed, self managed team concept environment with Kimberly-Clark Corporation. When I first applied for a position with the company, applicants who were selected for interviews had to submit to a two week evaluation class, on our own time, as part of the selection process to move to the next phase of the interview. In this class individuals were tested on out analytical skills as well how they worked as a team. The class consisted of 30 individuals who had been selected to include a diverse cross section of personality types. The company wanted people who could think out of the box and not simply go along with the crowd. The group was given a variety of assignments and tasks and placed in groups of five. Our tasks were as simple a deciding what type of ice cream the group favored and making a unanimous decision.
Once the class was completed and 10 of the individuals had been selected to move into the next phase, each person went through a series of seven one-on-one interviews with the staff, team leaders and facility manager. When selected to be part of the team a class of 30 was grouped together to become one team. There were five teams total, one for each shift and a support team. The teams were given the names J,E,N,K,and S, which made sense because the facility is located in Jenks Oklahoma. I became part of “J” team and the team spent the next 14 weeks in class building our math and reading skills, learning how to function as a team, and specific training in analytical trouble shooting. At the end of out training period the team was given the task of running the Tulsa County “ROPES course to build trust cooperation among team members.
The best team building exercise within the ROPES course that emphasizes trust was the last obstacle, The Pole Jump. The Pole Jump was a 45 foot tall...