Collaboration is key to business success in just about every industry. Once your employees learn to work together, they’ll be able to solve difficult problems more effectively and achieve bigger goals. The question is, how do you foster collaboration in your business?

You can start by understanding the difference between a group and a team.

Yes, the terms “Group” and “Team” are often used interchangeably. But the truth is, they represent different things. In this article, we’ll explore these differences, examine the individual benefits of groups and teams, and help you determine which is right for your business.

Groups vs. Teams—What’s the Difference?

We know what you’re thinking: “Aren’t groups and teams the same thing?” Not quite… Understanding the difference between team work and group work is essential to collaboration.

With that in mind, here are definitions for groups vs. teams:

What is a Group?

A group is a collection of people, united by a shared interest, but each looking to accomplish separate goals. As such, group members are accountable for their own successes and/or failures and often work independently of each other.

Take, for example, a group of management professionals within a company…

The Marketing Director, Sales Manager, and Head of HR all share a common interest: the success of their company. But each is responsible for his or her own department and must answer for the individual decisions they make regarding its direction.

What is a Team?

A team is a collection of people who share a common goal and work together to achieve it. Team members are accountable for their individual actions. But the team, as a whole, is judged by its ability to accomplish the tasks and activities it says it will.

Think about your company’s Marketing department, for example…

Everybody, from the Marketing Director to the college interns, work together to promote your company to its target market. Some people write blog posts. Others post on social media, or run paid advertising campaigns. But all of them attempt to achieve the same thing.

The point is, teams are composed of interdependent people who rely on each other to accomplish something bigger than themselves.

Groups vs. Teams—What Are the Benefits of Each?

Now that we’ve answered the question, “What is the difference between a group and a team?” we can talk about the benefits of each working arrangement.

The Benefits of Groups

We’ll start with groups. Why should you consider operating this way? There are two main reasons why you might want to prioritize group work from time to time:

Groups Work More Efficiently

Groups are easy to assemble and often allow members to accomplish tasks in a more efficient manner. This is because group members are generally able to focus on their areas of expertise, eliminating the need to learn new skills that reduce productivity.

Groups Focus on Individual Growth

Groups also allow members to focus on their individual growth. This is because, for the most part, group members work independently of one another, giving them greater opportunity to hone their personal skill sets and abilities.

While group work can be incredibly beneficial, there are drawbacks to this arrangement as well. For example, because members work independently, there’s a chance they will begin to feel isolated—maybe even alienated—from their coworkers.

Group work can also create a disconnect between employees and their company’s overarching mission. This is mostly because group members are judged by their individual successes and/or failures, rather than the successes and/or failures of the whole organization.

The Benefits of Teams

Why work as a team? What are the benefits to this arrangement? As before, there are two important advantages you’ll enjoy when working as a team:

Teams Encourage Collaboration

Teams rely on collaboration. If members can’t work together effectively, they won’t be able to accomplish their goals. Because of this, team work is the preferred arrangement when collaboration is paramount and members are able to support each other.

Teams Simplify Problem-Solving

“Two heads are better than one,” as the old saying goes. If that’s true, and we believe it is, how much better are three, four, or five heads than one? Way better!

This is especially apparent when solving difficult problems. Because teams work closely to accomplish shared goals, they’re usually able to overcome challenges in less time. This is because each member is able to offer a unique perspective on the problem.

It can be challenging to work as a team. One of the biggest drawbacks to this arrangement is the lack of personal growth that can sometimes occur. When team goals are prioritized, individual goals are pushed to the back burner, which can be frustrating to some employees.

When to Focus on Group vs. Team Work

Should your company focus on groups or teams? Honestly, it depends on what you’re trying to accomplish. Here are a few guidelines to help you choose the right working arrangement:

Build Groups When You:

  • Need to accomplish tasks in the most efficient manner possible.

  • Are unsure when the project you’re about to begin will end.

  • Want to prioritize the individual growth of each employee.

  • Believe individuals will be able to solve specific problems the best.

Build Teams When You:

  • Need to complete a big, important project for your company.

  • Have a large amount of time to devote to an individual project.

  • Are ready to accomplish one, overarching goal for your company.

  • Prefer challenges to be overcome via the collective effort of multiple people.

Improve Collaboration With ClickMeeting

It doesn’t matter where you land in the groups vs. teams debate. Both working arrangements rely on communication to succeed. The question is, how do you communicate effectively, especially if you work remotely and don’t share an office space with your colleagues?

It’s pretty simple: you use a proven tool like ClickMeeting.

ClickMeeting is a popular video conferencing, webinar, and online event platform that’s used by tens of thousands of people in 125+ different countries around the world.

With our solution you can:

  • Meet With 25 People at Once: Get together with your entire group or team at one time to share information, swap ideas, or do whatever else you need to do.

  • Engage and Collaborate With Each Attendee: ClickMeeting includes screen sharing capabilities, a digital whiteboard, the ability to send polls and surveys, and private chat features. The result is an engaging and collaborative platform for distributed teams.

  • Record Your Online Meetings: Who said what and when? With ClickMeeting, you can record all of your group and team meetings. You can then refer back to each recording to recall important information when needed.

One of the best things about ClickMeeting is how affordable it is. Get started today for free—we won’t even ask you for your credit card number. At the end of your 30 day trial, you can continue using our collaboration platform for as little as $25 a month.

Wrapping Up

The difference between group vs. team work is important to understand. After reading this article, you should have a good handle on the way these arrangements vary!

Just remember, the success of your group or team relies on its ability to communicate. To streamline communication for you and your distributed employees, try ClickMeeting. Our platform is both easy to use and powerful—the ultimate combination. See you on the inside!

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Posted by Jacob Thomas

Content writer @ ClickMeeting

Time to move your events online. Do it with ClickMeeting

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