While it is easy to evaluate individuals and programs, evaluating teams as a whole is a challenge many organizations struggle with. Knowing the process to follow is the first step in ensuring appropriate team evaluation that will result in data, recommendations and plans for action that will make the team work more efficiently in the future. For team evaluations to work best, every team member must participate.
Define the Goal
The first step of team evaluation is the definition of a common goal. The best assessment systems have a defined end objective. One example of a team evaluation's goal is to review a past project to gather lessons learned. Another might be to use the evaluation to make a decision, or to use the evaluation as a benchmark that will be re-evaluated in the coming weeks or months to see if the team meets its objectives as it should. Keep the goal clear and simple.
Select Evaluation Criteria
Decide what information you will need and what criteria you'll base the evaluation on. Start by brainstorming with all key members of the group, and make sure the suggested criteria align with the set goal. Once the evaluation criteria have been decided on, you can work on establishing the specific questions that need to be asked or monitored to gather the appropriate data.
Identify which methodology is best used to conduct the evaluation. Some teams will prefer surveys, while others will need to go through individual interviews; additionally, some criteria may be analyzed by gathering data about the team's performance. Decide if your evaluation will be strictly quantitative or qualitative, or if you will use a mixture of both types of methodologies.
During this phase of the process, the team members will fill out the required surveys, participate in the interviews and provide the evaluator with any other data requested. Some of these tasks will be individual while other may be shared by multiple team members. The data from the evaluation will then be compiled to be presented in a clear report.
Present the Results
For team evaluations, you should present the results to all team members at the same time and put some time aside to discuss the findings. The information should be presented with consistent, high-visualization charts and graphs, which will allow individual participants to quickly grasp the strengths and weaknesses of the team.