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Consulting That Matters

A Handbook for Scholars and Practitioners

Edited By Jennifer H. Waldeck and David R. Seibold

Each year, thousands of consulting contracts are awarded by organizations to experts who help them with challenges involving people, processes, technologies, goals, resource allocation, decision making, problem solving, and more. These experts – consultants – diagnose problems, recommend solutions, facilitate interventions, and evaluate outcomes that are often related to human communication. Some consultants are academicians skilled in both doing and interpreting research for clients; others are practitioners with little use for research and theory. Driving all of the ideas showcased in Consulting That Matters: A Handbook for Scholars and Practitioners is the premise that sound theory and research are critical to consulting success, and should be the blueprints for successful organizational transformation. Thus, this book is for all types of consultants, including the very best who are at the top of their games and those who believe theory and research belong in ivory towers, not business settings. Featuring a «who’s who» of preeminent communication scholars/consultants, each author shares frameworks, strategies, and examples from their own diverse experiences, all grounded in rich, substantive theory and research. The volume offers even the most skilled and experienced consultants a range of alternative approaches, paradigms, and competencies to build their credibility and make them more valuable to their clients in a dynamic, ever-evolving business climate.
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Chapter Eleven: Facilitating Team Development in Embedded Organizational Work Groups


← 196 | 197 →CHAPTER ELEVEN

Facilitating Team Development in Embedded Organizational Work Groups


University of California, Santa Barbara

Over the course of more than three decades, working alone for the most part but occasionally with collaborators, I have formulated three methods that I use in consultations involving team development. I have employed these methods in interventions to enhance teamwork in embedded organizational work groups (Seibold, Hollingshead, & Yoon, 2014). These team development methods include “team process consultations” with one or more embedded work groups that take place over extended periods of time and include activities to develop teamwork along each of four dimensions and in a specific order; “team workouts” with single embedded work groups or cross-functional teams, or even with multiple groups simultaneously, that occur during relatively brief time periods and incorporate activities intended to aid members to identify problems in their unit(s) and how they will redress them after the intervention; and variations in these two team development interventions that promote members’ and my “critical praxis and reflexivity.”

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