Team Building through Mutual Sharing and Open Discussion of Team Functioning

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Matthew Pain Loughborough University

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Chris Harwood Loughborough University

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This article describes a team building intervention with a soccer team during a competitive season. Based on a mutual sharing paradigm we facilitated a series of four team meetings in which team functioning was openly discussed. These meetings were based upon highly structured performance reviews completed by players after each match and analyzed to provide the stimulus for discussion. We adopted a single-case, time series design with multiple pretests and posttests. A postintervention focus group was also conducted with the players. Results suggest the intervention led to improvements in perceptions of team functioning (cohesion, communication, and trust and confidence in teammates), training quality, self-understanding, player ownership and team performance. Players associated the meetings with themes of honesty, open team discussion, sharing of information, and improved communication. The results support the efficacy of team building interventions designed to encourage open discussion of team functioning.

Pain and Harwood are with the Sport and Exercise Psychology Research Group, School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE11 3TU, UK.

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