Module 4 Case: Continuous Improvement

Virtual Team Background

You have just been placed on a virtual team that must complete a training plan for new software that will be released in 6 months. Your team consists of six individuals from across the company.
Team Member 1 is in the East Coast office and has a background in software development.
Team Member 2 is also in the East Coast office and has a background in computer engineering.
Team Member 3 is in the Midwest office and has a background in Web development.
Team Member 4 is in the Midwest office and has a background in human relations.
Team Member 5 in in the West Coast office and has a background in corporate communications.
You are team Member 6.
The company has devoted a great deal of money and resources to this software, and senior leadership is extremely interested in how the training will roll out. You are a highly experienced virtual team member and have been assigned as team advisor as well as assistant in the training plan development.

Case Assignment

You have been assessing the team all the way through the course, but in this Case, you are going to condense your analysis into a format that will become the basis for an action plan for continuous improvement. (You are looking at this from the perspective of this being a hypothetical team.)

Review your SLPs, and Cases from Modules 1-3 (attached files), and create a table (see below). Below the table are five areas of discussion and each area has 2-3 questions to address. Put one question into each box in the column on the left with the heading “Question.”

For each question, enter yes or no and list appropriate actions for improvement in the column on the right.

In your conclusion paragraph summarize what you have found with your assessment of the team. Provide the “why” you made the assertion rather than a mere description of a process or theory.


QuestionYes/NoAppropriate Actions
Team Design Is the chosen leadership structure optimal for guiding and ensuring team success?YesSchedule has been kept and working relationships have grown over time. Leadership is a process, a complex and dynamic exchange relationship built over time between leader and follower and between leader and the group of followers who depend on each other to attain a mutually desired goal (Hollander & Julian, 1969).

The Case Assignment should address the following:

Team Design

  1. Is the chosen leadership structure optimal for guiding and ensuring team success?
  2. Are there adequate opportunities for the development of ideas and creativity? If not, how can this be achieved?

Team Climate

  1. Is trust established individually between members and through team task assignments? If not, how can this be accomplished?
  2. Is there an open dialogue regarding team and individual responsibilities and accountability? If not, how can this be accomplished?

Team Resources

  1. Did the team develop a communication plan? If so, what are the details and purpose of the plan? If not, why would a communication plan be relevant?
  2. Does the team make use of relevant collaboration tools? Which tools are used and what is the agreed-upon frequency of use?

Team Norms and Procedures

  1. What agreed-upon norms guide team communication?
  2. What procedures are in place to assist in the management and accomplishment of team projects and tasks?

Team Improvement

  1. What procedures are in place for ensuring success by capturing knowledge for later assessment and learning?
  2. Does the team actively assess and monitor areas of improvement? If so, how?
  3. Which areas need improvement, and what is needed to make these improvements?

Assignment Expectations

Your paper should be a minimum of 6 pages (excluding title and references pages) and include a minimum of 3 high-quality peer-reviewed scholarly sources found in the Trident Online Library. The assignment should include a title page, an introduction, a body of work (table), a conclusion, and a reference list page.

Your paper will be evaluated using the following six criteria:

Assignment-Driven Criteria (Precision and Breadth): Does the paper fully address all Keys to the Assignment? Are the concepts behind the Keys to the Assignment addressed accurately and precisely using sound logic? Does the paper meet minimum length requirements?

Critical Thinking (Critical Thinking and Depth): Does the paper demonstrate graduate-level analysis, in which information derived from multiple sources, expert opinions, and assumptions has been critically evaluated and synthesized in the formulation of a logical set of conclusions? Does the paper address the topic with sufficient depth of discussion and analysis?

Business Writing (Clarity and Organization): Is the paper well written (clear, developed logically, and well organized)? Are the grammar, spelling, and vocabulary appropriate for graduate-level work? Are section headings included in all papers? Are paraphrasing and synthesis of concepts the primary means of responding to the Keys to the Assignment, or is justification/support instead conveyed through excessive use of direct quotations?

Effective Use of Information (Information Literacy and References): Does the paper demonstrate that the student has read, understood, and can apply the background materials for the module?  If required, has the student demonstrated effective research, as evidenced by student’s use of relevant and quality sources? Do additional sources used in paper provide strong support for conclusions drawn, and do they help in shaping the overall paper?

Citing Sources: Does the student demonstrate an understanding of APA Style of referencing, by the inclusion of proper end references and in-text citations (for paraphrased text and direct quotations) as appropriate? Have all sources (e.g., references used from the Background page, the assignment readings, and outside research) been included, and are these properly cited? Have all end references been included within the body of the paper as in-text citations?

Timeliness. Was the assignment submitted on time or did student collaborate with professor for an approved extension due date? 

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