A group project is an opportunity to work with others to explore or work on a particular topic. Students learn the importance of communication, teamwork, decision-making, problem-solving, conflict resolutions, organizing, and planning through group projects. As such, cooperation increases collaboration, productivity, and the ability to brainstorm. The structure of a group project is in such a way that all members need to participate and provide feedback. However, certain aspects of a group project are similar to a group incentive plan. Also, both group incentive plans and team projects share the same problems at school, work, and home.
Group incentive plan and group project are very similar in meaning because they aim to reward teams members if they work hard. Firstly, they help to establish relationships between members and encourage them to work together to achieve goals. Indeed, employees or students who work in teams perform any job effectively, and this helps to enhance team spirit. Secondly, they encourage responsibility and cooperation between colleagues. Consequently, this promotes job satisfaction, employee participation, and the quality of work life in any environment (Parks, 2018). Also, it is important to note that everyone is unique and working in a team enhances skills and abilities. Therefore, teamwork improves inherent abilities and rewards hard work.
On the other hand, some members of the group prefer to sit back and let others do all the work. Such people are known as free-riders. Unfortunately, free rider problems emerge when a member of the group feels superior and refuses to contribute. Therefore, free riding discourages group work because the free rider and the hard worker will each get equal grades. Today, institutions use group work to encourage productivity and teamwork. Furthermore, how the group performs depends on the output of each member. A free rider situation can occur, for instance, during an environmental conservation project where people seldom participate because they believe other corporations are carrying out the same plan. Consequently, conserving, and sustaining the environment becomes a challenge because such initiatives heavily depend on group work effort. Similarly, group projects also experience the same because the free rider will find it unnecessary to contribute if the result is going to have the same incentive. Thus, free riding is unfair to the hardworking members in the group project.
Conversely, working in groups can have adverse effects if some of the members work harder than others. As a result, the problems could lead to infighting and resentment amongst each other. Firstly, group works tend to encourage cheating and unethical behavior. Moreover, members will not spend time researching because they will be focusing on the reward. Secondly, they crush creativity by focusing on the prize, which tends to narrow the focus on jobs that require creativity. Thirdly, they diminish performance by creating a focus on the compensation plan, and this reduces the overall output. Additionally, they extinguish the internal drive or passion of an individual, and in most cases, the reward is not enough. Also, they tend to become addictive. It is because participants want to finish the tasks and get the bonus instead of improving on performance. They also foster short time thinking because people only care about what is required to get the reward (10 Reasons Incentive, 2017). Thus, such problems are evident in group incentive plans and team projects in school, work, and home.
Group works allow students and employees to handle complex assignments and projects that they would typically not handle individually. For group projects to be useful, instructors should create a schedule that leads to a fair method of assessment. Group incentive plans are very similar to group projects because they center on teamwork. Furthermore, the group incentive plan is a rewarding platform for members of a firm. On the other hand, a group project is an assignment given to a group of students working on a particular task. Working in groups can lead to problems such as free riding and short time thinking. Moreover, it can decrease passion, diminish focus, crush creativity, and encourage cheating. Despite all of the issues, teamwork is the best option if all the members contribute towards the goal.
Parks, C. D. (2018). Group performance and interaction. Routledge.
10 Reasons Incentive Compensation Plans Fail. (2017). Retrieved from http://constructionexec.com/article/10-reasons-incentive-compensation-plans-fail