THE TIGERS TEAM SURVEY TOOK FOUR YEARS TO VALIDATE AND REQUIRED TWO INDEPENDENT STUDIES CONDUCTED BY GONZAGA UNIVERSITY AND THE WASHINGTON STATE EDUCATION ASSOCIATION.
After posing the question, “What is necessary to develop an ethical, quality-focused, productive, cooperative and successful group of people?”, TIGERS® Success Series Founder, Dianne Crampton, went to work. She performed a meta-analysis of psychology, business and education group dynamic research. Out of this research, six principles emerged. They are trust, interdependence, genuineness, empathy, risk and success – TIGERS®.
The next question was, “Can each of the six principles be identified in group behavior and is the model solid and true?”
Dianne created a 57-question survey that measured each of the six principles as it relates to the other five for effective team building and group development. This survey was then subjected to validation testing.
Teams from 17 intact groups, including a Boeing facility participated in the survey. The teams received a pre and post survey and teambuilding interventions over an 18 month period. The results were independently monitored by Wayne Powel of Gonzaga University’s Psychology department and were interesting.
- One finding concluded that the core values interdependence and success are highly correlated with the other four values. This means that an improvement in either Interdependence or Success will increase the other values, too.
- What was also interesting is that the value, Interdependence, speaks to building collaborative relationships while Success speaks to accomplishing quality work and achieving goals. Therefore, balances between the work people do and the well being and relationship quality of people doing the work is critical for long term group success.
- Another finding concluded that the six values predict group behavior either by their inclusion or omission. This means that group dynamics is measurable and corrective action can be taken to shorten the time new teams spend in conflict.
- Another finding indicated that certain understandings that people have about effective team behavior line up with individual values. Therefore, the survey could measure with a good degree of reliability where teams are strong and areas for improvement.
Following this initial validation testing, Dianne and Wayne condensed the survey to 30 questions and waited for Department of Psychology Peer Review Findings. The results were encouraging and the Findings suggested that another study was warranted to be conclusive.
Officials from the Washington State Education Association teacher’s union wanted to identify specific training to offer teachers to improve team skills for school site councils. The concept of school site councils – teams — was a new concept in Washington State.
The trend toward site councils — composed of teachers, parents, and principal – proposed that a site council was best suited to make decisions, solve the school’s problems, create and monitor improvement programs then school administrators who had little knowledge of the school’s daily operations and service area. This was a transitional shift from school administrators making all the decisions to localized, team decision making.
Unfortunately training and development days for teachers were seriously limited. WEA wanted to know where they would receive their best return on their training investment on a school-by-school basis.
As a result of the work, WEA concluded:
- The TIGERS survey was highly predictive and gave the school a good team opinion snapshot for strategic training and development purposes.
- Since the six values are demonstrated by behaviors that are readily visible, WEA officials concluded that TIGERS was basic, simple and made good common sense to everyone involved. Therefore, it was easy for Staff members to understand, recognize and adopt.
- Officials further concluded that the quality of the values can also be measured and monitored over time as a site council changes or grows.
- Change monitory was an important feature for any team that gains and looses team members and for leaders who want to know what to look for in new employee candidates.
- WEA concluded that the TIGERS Team Survey offered a way to track and monitor a strategic team development process on a school-by-school basis.
From the time the studies were concluded in 1993, work with merging organizations and newly emerging teams cultures concluded that the six TIGERS values — trust, interdependence, genuineness, empathy, risk and success — reinforce the vision, mission, goals and operational values of team-driven organizations.
The values and supporting behaviors limit the time teams spend in conflict and are powerful predictors for selecting successful new employment candidates to fill positions on existing teams
What Four Years Of Hard Work Means For Your Team
The results of this extensive testing showed Dianne and Wayne that not only can these six principles be measured by organizations but they also reveal the current status of a team and predict future team behavior. Today you can benefit from this research with a solid, intricate online survey system and team evaluation. The TIGERS Team Survey will show you where your team stands now and provide insight for a reasonable (and positive!) outlook for a year from now.