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Building a
Collaborative
Web Project
Define
Building teams
Protect your
students
Communication
strategy
Effective
Web projects
Web project
examples
Brainstorming
Development
strategy
Summary
Further reading
Design
Deliver
1. Developing trust
2. Four stages of team development
3. Characteristics of an effective team member

1. Developing Trust

"Trust me..."

That's easy enough if you've spent years working together. But, what if you've never had a chance to work with the person you're now working with face to face?

"Before people can begin sharing and creating ideas they need to trust each other," Bill Hill of MetaDesign, said in a recent interview. And, that trust requires people get to know each other.

Side Bar

The entire creative process is based on trust. It's like when your dad took you to the pool for the first time as a kid and he says jump, I'll catch you.

Todd Lief,
writer

Side Bar

How do you develop trust? Well, the first step is to know the people you're going to work with. Any amount of time you invest early in getting to know your team mates will payoff in the long run.

There are a number of "icebreakers" you can use to get to know your fellow students. The best types of icebreakers call for participants to explain something about themselves, their likes and dislikes, their backgrounds. Some of these icebreakers can be a lot of fun and can be completed in class or through e-mail correspondence if your team includes students from elsewhere. See TeleSensations Quick-Start Projects for some sample activities).

If you're working with another school at a remote location, it's always a good idea to send a general message of greeting at first, especially if they students are from a different culture.  At this time you can throw out several suggestions for icebreakers. Let your fellow teammates decide which questions they'd prefer to answer.

Earning Trust

The second step for developing trust is earning that trust. Developing a Web project requires each member to do his part. It requires a team effort.

The following includes a list of characteristics that help build trust in a team:

  • team members follow through on promises and complete tasks
  • team members have open, productive and frequent communication
  • team members surface problems when they arise and don't collect bad or hurt feelings
  • team members don't form cliques or groups within groups

Section: Introduction to Building Teams
page 1: Developing trust 
page 2: Four stages of team development
page 3: Characteristics of an effective team member

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