So far, we've talked about individual motivation, and both the content and process theories help us understand the cause and the mechanisms that drive people to exert effort into towards tasks and activities that they care about. But clearly, people don't always work in isolation and exert effort towards individual goals, and more often than not, they actually work as part of the team, and with the team jointly they exert effort towards a collective goal. In these situations, it's the team context and the team dynamics that is really critical for the individual motivation and individual performance. Teams can be a great boost to motivation. They can foster a sense of belonging and loyalty to the team, and social facilitation can lead to really strong performance norms. I can look around and see other people work hard, so I don't want to let the team down, so I work hard myself. It's one of the reasons I really enjoy going to the gym or running with friends because I see them push themselves and I don't wanna look like the wimp and the weakest link in the chain, so I push myself further, as well. This is positive herding behavior, if you want. Teams also have the ability to combine diverse skill sets and perspectives and what could follow from that is a cross pollination of ideas and synergy effect among these different skill sets. One of the aspects that I really enjoy about working here at Bocconi is that I constantly am in interaction with people from different backgrounds, different nationalities. That encourages me to really look at things from a different perspectives, and see things in a fresh light, if you will. Lastly, of course, teams can divide the labor. They can assign tasks according to different team member's unique strength. If you feel more comfortable doing analytic tasks and number crunching, that can be your unique contribution to the team. You can let others handle other aspects of the job. Getting that sense that you're operating from a basis of strength gives you a higher sense of self efficacy and therefore stronger motivation. Now, clearly, teams are not all sunshine and roses. They also pose challenges. Some leaders actually are not comfortable working in a high performing team context, in a collaborative manner, because it bruises their ego. The celebrity chef, Mario Batali once confessed that that's his biggest leadership challenge, to work in a high performing team, and to realize that he is not the smartest and the most capable person in the room, and to be okay with that. But we've all been parts of teams that were actually not high performing, that didn't boost our motivation but instead were dragging our motivation down. That often occurs if there's social loafing, the evil twin of social facilitation, if you will. This most frequently is the case when you have some team members free riding on the efforts of others and that can really set a bad precedent and can cause a negative spiral of eroding trust and diffusion of responsibilities. People start distancing themselves from the team goals, and they start looking around and adopt the logic of, hey, you don't commit, I don't commit. They can get to a really bad place where everybody has the conception that in the team, everybody is holding back, and everybody is not making a strong contribution and therefore they are making no contribution themselves. You can imagine that this kind of attitude really puts the team in a bad place. Diversity of different skills and perspectives can also create conflict. We come back to this conflict issue a little later in the course but it can also enhance evaluation apprehension, your concern about what the other team members think about your contributions. Imagine you're part of a team with highly talented and diverse individuals. You might be concerned what they think about your contributions. Maybe they see your contributions as weird, as too different. Maybe they see them as insufficient, that you're not good enough. If you have that impression, if you're concerned about that sort of criticism, you might not invest yourself quite as much in the team. Whenever you have division of labor and a distribution of responsibility for partial tasks, you also have to have coordination. People are often notoriously bad at estimating how difficult coordination is, they don't take enough time to actually do that. A task gets misspecified, people have different and wrong understandings of what they should be doing, so some of the efforts might get wasted because the individual pieces just don't fit well together. Those are fairly universal problems that teams can run into, they don't really depend on a cultural context. But in intercultural context there are a different set of complicators that can occur because people have different views of teams and teamwork across different cultural areas, different cultural spheres. They use, actually, different metaphors for describing teamwork. When I was in the U.S., very often I heard that people describe and compare working on a team to a sports team but you can use other metaphors, of course, so you can think of teamwork as being part of a military unit or being part of a family. Now what this metaphors carry with them is essentially a set of expectations of how the teamwork is going to be led and how team processes are going to unfold. If you think of a sports team, then the expectation is more of a equal amongst equal, agile, flexible, self-directed decision making of the team. But if you think of the team as a military unit there would be more of an expectation for a clear direction from above, in a way, and very clear performance targets and performance goals. Now with these different metaphors, we basically see a resonance and reflection of different notions and different norms around hierarchy, for example. Members of high power distance cultures often have an expectation that they get treated differentially in a team setting, while people from a low power distance culture expect that, if you work in a team, everybody is basically working on the same level. These metaphors also show that they are different norms of decision making in a team. Depending on what cultural context you're from, you may be more or less comfortable with quick decision making or some expect a longer period of data analysis and discussion before they're willing to commit to a decision. If those norms regarding hierarchy or decision making get violated, that can cause, of course, frustration in the team and loss of face and credibility of the leader for not being able to recognize those needs in the team members. Now, those a re a lot of challenges that team leaders have to face in intercultural settings. What can they do? I want us to actually look towards professional sports for inspiration, for solutions, because coaches nowadays for the big leagues, for the really high performing teams in those leagues, face a very diverse set of different nationalities amongst the athletes that they are coaching. Clearly, it's their responsibility to bring these athletes to peak motivation and peak performance.