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Management Theory of Meredith Belbin

Jeanne Dininni

Belbin's management theory leads to more effective and better balanced workplace teams

Meredith Belbin's research into worker behavior led to his widely regarded team management theories. Based on his long-term observations of group behavior, he developed his Belbin Team Roles concept. The model is based on the nine roles that Belbin determined contribute to effective teamwork. He divided his nine roles into three categories: Action-Oriented Roles, People-Oriented Roles, and Thought-Oriented Roles.

According to Belbin, his team roles do not represent personality types, though certain personality types might be better suited to particular roles. Rather, team roles are those necessary functions that must be fulfilled by individual team members (with each member sometimes assuming multiple roles) for the team to function effectively as a whole and successfully meet its objectives. Belbin delineated the characteristics of each role, describing what each role contributes to the team. He also outlined some of the weaknesses inherent in each role. He believed that, by understanding these, team members could consciously work on maximizing the strengths of each role's contribution to the overall team effort and minimize the impact of the weaknesses that tend to accompany them. Belbin's nine team roles are these:

1. Shaper

2. Implementer

3. Completer-Finisher

4. Coordinator

5. Team Worker

6. Resource Investigator

7. Plant

8. Monitor-Evaluator

9. Specialist (though Belbin theory doesn't require all roles in every team)

Build a thorough understanding of Belbin's theories on team roles

Numerous websites provide valuable information about Belbin management theory. In addition to diagrams and summaries of Meredith Belbin principles, you'll find various videos and instructional materials that can help you develop the background knowledge and practical expertise to put Belbin's theories to work for your company.

Consult an expert to make Belbin management theory a reality for your business

Consultants with knowledge and experience in the management theory of Meredith Belbin can guide you in maximizing the benefit of his principles in your own company's unique environment.

Investigate Belbin theory resources which can help you implement his advice

Widely available online tools and resources can help you more easily implement Belbin team management theory. Games, software and other products designed around Belbin's theory on teamwork let you choose the resources most valuable to your business.

  • You'll likely find the many facets of Belbin theory fascinating, as you delve more deeply into them. Take advantage of the wealth of information available online. It will be well worth your while, as you learn to put Belbin's theory into practice to help your teams grow.
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Jeanne Dininni