1.1 Explain how teams differ from groups in the workplace 

A group is a collection of individuals who coordinate their individual efforts. On the other hand, at team is a group of people who share a common team purpose and a number of challenging goals. Members of the team are mutually committed to the goals and to each other.

What Is a Group?

A group in the workplace usually comprises three or more people who recognise themselves as a distinct unit or department, but who actually work independently of each other to achieve their organisational goals.

For example, a catering business may have a range of people in the kitchen. One might focus on the deli, one person may focus on prep, and one person may focus on food service. Whilst they might achieve a common goal at the end, their efforts are primarily on their own responsibilities. 

Each person in a dependent-level work group has his or her own job and works under supervision of the manager. The manager is in charge and may be involved in telling the employees the do’s and don’ts in their jobs.

What Is a Team?

To call a group a team does not make them a team: wishing for them to work as a team doesn’t work either.

A team comprises three or more people who collaborate together over time to achieve some set purpose, goal or project. With a team, individuals recognise the expertise and talents of others needed to achieve the team’s goal. Additionally, teams are often focused on one specific goal or outcome in mind, that is shared by all.


Teams meet more often than traditional work groups. Work groups may meet periodically, based on the manager’s style, primarily to hear and share information. Teams, by comparison, do much more than communicate when they meet. Team meetings are forums for planning work, solving work problems, making decisions about work, and reviewing progress.

On a team, the manager or team leader frequently involves team members in helping shape the goals and plans for getting the group’s work done — may as well get them involved, they’ve got to do the work! But in other kinds of work groups, managers more commonly work with staff individually to set goals and determine assignments. Of course, in many cases, managers just assign work with little discussion or collaboration with the staff members. And staff are then left to figure out what’s expected and how best to get it done.