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Communicating at Work: Putting Together a Team

Participants learn how to work as a team by delegating responsibili- ties within a group in order to complete an assignment involving the development and marketing of a particular product.

Learning Objective Learners will contribute their skills and ideas to a team effort. Learners will affirm each other’s strengths as they coordinate their efforts with those of their teammates to accomplish a simple but fun task.

Work-Based Skills EFF Skills: Interpersonal Skills: cooper- ate with others; Communication Skills: convey ideas in writing, speak so others can understand, listen actively; Lifelong Learning Skills: reflect and evaluate.

KSAs: Works on a team effectively; Cooperates with others; Listens for understanding; Talks with respect; Follows instructions.

SCANS: Basic Skills: writing, speaking, listening; Interpersonal Skills: partici- pates as a member of a team; Resources: human; Personal Qualities: self-esteem, self-management.


  • Critical thinking

  • Interpersonal relationships

  • Job skills

  • Life skills

  • Listening skills

  • Problem solving

  • Work environment

  • Writing skills

Activity Description More and more, teamwork is “how the job gets done.” Learners need to know how to work in teams and how to value the contributions that each member can make in achieving a goal or accom- plishing a task. This particular activity is an opportunity for learners to use their communication skills in deter- mining separate responsibilities for each team member. Learners will then combine their different, specific jobs as a means of completing the project.

  • 1.

    Introduce this activity by telling the class that they are going to have an opportunity to use their imagina- tions and work together in a challenging project. Each team will be required to delegate the follow- ing jobs for “brainstorming.”

    • Product design/remodel (all


    • Advertising

    • Demographic study

    • Marketing

    • Cost and accounting

    • Product presentation

  • 2.

    Divide the learners into heteroge- neous teams with five members. If it is necessary to have smaller teams, some members will need to take on extra responsibility. Teams discuss one another’s skills, interests, strengths and weaknesses, and decide who will take each job.

Families First is the Tennessee program to provide training for those welfare recipients who lack basic education skills. While learners do work toward a GED, emphasis in these classes is shifting toward the knowledge, skills, and attitudes learners need to acquire and keep a good job.


Kathie Bowles Smith County Families First/ABE

Project This is the first activity of a two-part project on Commu- nicating at Work. The lessons could easily be combined into one learning activity or used separately as presented here. The lessons in the project are:

  • 1.

    Putting together a team

  • 2.

    Developing a new product

Materials and Resources

  • Items for marketing: sug- gestions include plastic cups, nail and string, piece of cardboard, etc.

  • Handout 1: “Team Member Responsibilities”

  • Handout 2: “Developing a New Product: Basic Steps”

Learner Level Multi-level

Learner Grouping Whole class working in teams

Time Needed 2-hour session

Setting I teach a combination Fami- lies First/ABE class that meets Monday through Fri- day, 8:00 AM – 12 NOON. There averages 7-10 learners in attendance, ranging in age




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