Belbin Team Roles, EQ and Creativity


Belbin, Emotional Intelligence and Creativity.

Creativity tends to be enhanced in organisations that have less formality, allow more ambiguity and flexible roles, give workers autonomy, have open flows of information and operate in mixed or multidisciplinary teams.

Two stages to the flourishing of innovation in organizations are:

Initiation – Coming up with bright ideas in the first place. (different people form different groups.)

Implementation – Getting the idea enacted.- those who are champions here are particularly adept at influence and political awareness: Selling the ideas and finding support and allies.

While it goes without saying that the relevant technical expertise is vital in generating innovative ideas, when it comes to putting those ideas into practical use, navigating the web of influences that permeates an organization makes all the difference. So an organization that values innovation needs to support both kinds of competence in it’s key people.

Based on research with hundreds of top executives in fifteen global companies – including IBM Pepsico & Volvo, just one cognitive ability distinguished star performers from average. Pattern recognition, the ‘BIG PICTURE’ thinking that allows leaders to pick out the meaningful trends from the welter of information around them to think strategically far into the future.

Whilst this typically a trait associated with the Belbin Team Role of Plant, not all ideas and patterns put forward by Plants are practical or attainable. It requires the progressive inputs of other Team Roles to be well timed and to refine and aplly these patterns and ideas to real-world outcomes. To take an idea or insight from "concept" to "execution" requires a balanced team.

As Dr Meredith Belbin himself says "nobody is perfect, but a good team can be".

Emotional competence makes the crucial difference between mediocre leaders and the best.

The stars showed significantly greater strengths in a range of emotional competences, among them influence, team leadership, political awareness, self confidence and achievement drive. On average 90% of their success in leadership can be attributed to emotional intelligence. Emotional competence accounts for virtually the entire advantage.

A key aspect of EQ, is the baility to demonstrate insight and empathy with styles and Team Roles that differ from your own.

A good leader who knows their own Belbin Team Role Profile, those of their team members (and is also armed with a Team Report) can make far better calls about how to time their own inputs and those of others into the creative process.


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