High Performance Teams #100daysofscouting

So, awhile back I was in college again to get a BS in Business Management.  Yeah, BS in Management…;) I still find it funny.  That being said, as my time as Troop Guide draws near to be on course I am remembering some of the classes that I took.  This is a paper that I wrote for one class.  For those of you have taken Wood Badge, this looks familiar.  For those who have taken Lean Six Sigma, it also looks familiar.   To me, with all of the volunteers within Scouting, who could be within Fortune 100, 500 companies and within Govt, it amazes me that the principles of Wood Badge are not used more.

If Wood Badge were to be massaged into Lean Six Sigma (LSS), a lot more fun would happen.  Accountants, Engineers, Managers and HR based people would really fall in love with what they do.  To much of the time I see LSS used to find a pain point and take it out.  Within Wood Badge, a pain point is really something that is not being done.  Such as:  more service projects, more skill development, family time, learning Native American history or camping more.  The pain point within business sales have fallen due to product ROI is low.  That might mean cutting jobs due to moving production overseas.  Or sourcing parts from outside the company.  All this means loss of jobs and letting people go.  That’s wrong.

Why do we as Scouter’s love Scouting.  It is because it is fun.  If our job was just as fun, we would go to meetings and skill development on weekends and spend weeknights with our friends at more meetings.  We would hand out more recognition and goofy awards more than once a year.  Our Quarterly reports would be a lot more fun to deliver.

It used to be that way.  It used to be that we would do what we can for work because it was fun.  For me, I still have fun at work.  But it’s just that. Work.  My overall point is that if Corporate/Govt would really use Wood Badge, work would be a lot more fun and the world would be a lot better place.
(FYI: This was written in the APA format within an academic setting.  Not all the formatting was possible when pasted into WordPress.)

Groups and Teams Paper

Adam Cox

MGT 344: Organizational Behavior and Ethical Responsibility

Ms. Kimberly Cox

University of Phoenix

February 16, 2009

            This paper will discuss how a group can be transformed into a high-performance team and how business and ethical considerations of globalization impact team dynamics.

High-Performance Teams

Creating a high-performance team in any company or department requires skill, knowledge and the right people for a successful outcome.  However,  according to Courtney, H., Navarro, E.,  O’Hare, C. (2007) p 40-42.  A team must focus on these five features to be successful; Purpose, People, Partnerships, Process and Performance.   The team must have a clear and direct purpose for being.  Not just having a mission statement or business plan will suffice.  The people who are brought into the team must be highly skilled in both technical and team human relation skills.  Having a partnerships of this caliber will allow efficient communication create solid information freely between colleagues.  This allows for a process between colleagues between vendors, internal departments and other resources to be created.   Overall the manager of the high-performance team purpose is to keep them in task, focused and not to micro-manage them.  Status meetings are required since  tracking progress is needed. The manager must allow the team to function and grow as needed to attain the stated objective.  However, the building of the team is extremely important.  The manager is not always able to  build from the ground up, but has to use what they inherit.  When recruiting into the high-performance team the team itself must be included within the hiring process.  The team needs to have direct input into what the new team member skills are, what minimums need to be and the stretch skills as well.  Select team members need to interview the prospective  applicants to ensure there will be a good fit within the team.  The mentor will help will help explain internal processes, policies and ease the integration into the high-performance team.  Smooth and seamless integration is highly desired since all team members will work closely together and friction between team members can slow down or derail any projects.

Managing High-Performance Teams

The true goal of any manager of a team, including the HPT is to understand how teams work together and keep that motivation going.  To manage a high-performance team a manager must: “listen before deciding, keep team members up to date, be available and responsive to people’s problems, develop balanced teams, allocate work to people based on their capabilities, encourage respect and understanding among team members, delegate work that is not essential for them to do, set a high-quality example for the team, coordinate and represent team members and involve team members in solving key problems.” McCann, D., Margerison, C. (1989, November). P 59-60   If the manager is not able to keep team members relatively happy and un-encumbered from outside distractions, the task at hand will be off target.

Business and ethical considerations of globalization impact team dynamics

             In today’s world of the ever being able to buy products from all over the world with a click of the mouse while surfing the worldwide web , the ability to provide products and services to the world expands a simple business model to incorporate many more loose ends.  Mom  and Pop shops are unfortunately, a dying establishment.  However,  Mom and Pop must deal with issues from China, India and other corners of the world.  These issues also impact the large corporations like Nike. Doing business on a global scale entails not understanding customs and laws of the home country of the company, but also of the countries that are used to source, produce and sell.  Because of where Nike does business a code of conduct was created.  The first sentences of the document sets the tone on how Nike expects; Nike, employees, contractors, vendors, suppliers and anyone else doing business with Nike. “Implicit in that act was the determination that we would build our business with all of our partners based on trust, teamwork, honesty and mutual respect. We expect all of our business partners to operate on the same principles. At the core of the NIKE corporate ethic is the belief that we are a company comprised of many different kinds of people, appreciating individual diversity, and dedicated to equal opportunity for each individual.”   Nike Code of Conduct. (n.d.). P 1.

Because of my work at Nike, Inc from 1997 to 2000 and had visibility with many teams that dealt with ethics on a global scale.  During this time, Nike was constantly attacked about working conditions within factories in China, Taiwan and other countries.  It was the duty of N.E.A.T  (Nike Environmental Action Team) to ensure that factories were using the correct glue that was not toxic, workers were trained in the use of chemicals and the supplies used were in compliance. N.E.A.T had every material date sheet right in the office for each chemical in every facility that produced it’s produces.  During my time supporting N.E.A.T, I was able to ask Dusty Kidd the Director for N.E.A.T  any question I had about how Nike operated.  Dusty was very approachable and truthful about what Nike did and why the media was saying what it was saying.  Because of this interaction with Dusty and my observance on how Nike operated Globally, I found that with diligent work, issues are easier to resolve.    A. Cox (personal communication, February 16th, 2009)


Creating high-performance teams within a company will allow for highly skilled workers to resolve issues and complete projects with measurable benefits.  The creation of these teams is as important as the work produced.  The teams must be allowed to have a hand in selection and training of new hires.  Using these high-performance teams will also allow companies to focus on ethical issues that affect the company in many countries and cultures.  This is a necessary step within business because without the step a company could unknowingly hard the workers, environment and break laws.



Courtney, H., Navarro, E., & O’Hare, C. (2007). The Dynamic Organic Transformational (D.O.T) team model for high-performance knowledge-worker teams. Team Performance Management, 12, 34-46. Retrieved February 9, 2015, from http://www.emeraldinsight.com/1352-7592.htm

Cox. A (16 February 2009). Personal communication.

McCann, D., & Margerison, C. (1989, November). MANAGING HIGH-PERFORMANCE TEAMS. Training & Development Journal, 43(11), 52. Retrieved February 16, 2009, from Professional Development Collection database.

Nike Code of Conduct. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2009, from http://www.nikebiz.com/responsibility/documents/Nike_Code_of_Conduct.pdf

About Adam R. Cox

Current Skyloo District Commissioner Current Skyloo District & Council Trainer Current Council Member at Large (Cascade Pacific Council) Former Tiger DL & CM of P221 in Pioneer District Former Skyloo District CS Roundtable Commissioner. Former Ast Council Commissioner for Commissioner Tools and Communication Former Pioneer District Training Chair WE1-492-09 Beaver W1-492-11 Bobwhite TG ASM Logistic W1-492-17-2
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