A Team Charter is
- a genre of discourse
- a tool that Project Managers use to
Writers produce Team Charters in collaborative contexts. Team Charters play an important role in coordinating work in the workplace.
Team Charters, a Rhetorical Perspective
A Team Charter is an expression of a team’s purpose and means of achieving that purpose.
- provide teams with greater clarity about the goals of the team and responsibilities of team members.
- help teams assign tasks according to the strengths of the team members.
Team Charters are living documents because the work of teams is constantly ongoing. Teams may get new information that changes how team members distribute tasks. As teams change, they may revise their Team Charters.
Effective teams, especially when they are first coalescing around ideas, benefit from ongoing reflection about (1) what the team needs to accomplish; (2) how the team will accomplish its goals, specifically what are the roles and responsibilities of team members.
Groups vs. Teams
Groups are random collections of people; teams are an interdependent group of individuals working toward a shared goal. The single most critical success factor in high-performing teams is having a shared understanding of why a team exists and what it is trying to accomplish.
When a group first comes together, there may be minimal trust, no shared goals, no history of past performance, and unclear roles and responsibilities. Despite this lack of clarity, members are usually eager to jump into the task at hand. Jumping in without a roadmap, however, is recipe for failure.
In the workplace, managers and team leaders use Team Charters to help develop consensus around shared tasks and goals. time and money. Without a focus, conversations and presentations can meander. People get off topic.