Team decision-making and communication preferences | The Oxford Review - OR Briefings

Team decision-making and communication preferences

Research Briefing

Keywords: decision-making, team, group, team decision-making, group decisionmaking, communication preferences, gender, team leader, leadership, altruism, trust, leader, leadership, emergent leader, appointed leader

Teamwork usually comprises of a series of decisions of varying degrees of risk made on a daily basis by both the members of the team and/or the team leader. The level of risk involved in decision-making largely depends on the level of certainty of information that the team has about the decision being made and the ability of the team to focus on and use the correct information to make the decision.

Such decisions range from recruiting new team members right through to making decisions that can affect and impact the entire organisation, customers and even, in certain circumstances, entire populations of people, the health of the planet (such as the decision by individuals and teams within VW to cheat on diesel engine emission tests), etc.

Clearly, the further up the hierarchy the individual is within an organisation the greater the authority they have to make decisions with wider levels of impact. Every decision, no matter how small, has some element of risk, even if it is so small that we don’t notice it. This is because we can never have 100% of all of the relevant information about all of the variables that may impact or result from that decision.

A new (2019) study looking at group/team decision-making and the influence of communications and leadership has made some useful findings.

This study is essential reading for anyone involved in teams and team decision-making.

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