Science behind Teamspective's pulse questionnaire

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Jaakko Kaikuluoma 8 Feb 2021
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Scientific research is the foundation of Teamspective’s feedback processes. In this article, we share what studies have been most influential for us in designing and building our pulse solution for modern people-oriented organizations, who want to empower people to own their personal and team development, and to maximize engagement, productivity and wellbeing.

Scientific research is the backbone of a great pulse questionnaire

In order to help our customers get the right things done and feel good about work, we’ve studied extensively the science behind successful teamwork, productivity, employee wellbeing, and great culture. Here we’re presenting the top 4 scientific theories that have helped shape the Teamspective Pulse questionnaire.

1. Google’s project Aristotle

The main objective in the Aristotle research by Google was to find out what makes some teams at Google more effective than others. Surprisingly, psychologically safe social environment was found to be the number 1 most important factor of team success. Other top five factors were Dependability, Structure & clarity, Meaning, and Impact.

Interestingly, for instance the combined experience of team members did not make it into top 5. So this reserach showed that team success is more about how the team works together, rather than who is in the team. That’s encouraging news to anyone, because ways of collaboration are well within the realm of control.

We’ve made sure that our whole concept, including the pulse questionnaire, takes into account the key findings of this study, and makes it psychologically safer to discuss about teamwork and collaboration.

Read more: https://rework.withgoogle.com/print/guides/5721312655835136/

Relevant pulse themes in Teamspective: Psychological safety, Dependability, Accountability, Goals and clarity, Meaningfulness

2. Job demands and resources (JDR)

Job demands and resources is a model for understanding employee well-being by defining job positives (resources) and job stressors (demands), and analyzing the balance between them. Different levels of job demands and job resources lead to variances in the strain that people experience at work.

High workload, short deadlines, ambiguity, low trust, micromanagement (low autonomy) and poor relationships are examples of job demands. Autonomy, good relationships, learning, recognition, coaching, and role clarity are examples of job resources. We’ve incorporated the key components of JDR into Teamspective’s pulse questionnaire.

Read more: https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/job-demands-resources-model.htm

Relevant pulse themes in Teamspective: Workload, General wellbeing, Goals and clarity, Learning, Autonomy, Satisfaction with feedback, Processes and practices, Help and support

3. SCARF-model – social threats and rewards

Our brains treat social threats and rewards similarly to physical threats and rewards. Experiencing social threat reduces our cognitive capacity while social rewards increase it. Threats have generally more weight than rewards, and thus need to be minimized at the workplace in order to collaborate effectively. The absence of social threat is conceptually identical with psychological safety.

There are five social drivers in SCARF – Status, Certainty, Autonomy, Relatedness and Fairness. Our pulse questionnaire accounts for these all of these factors.

Read more: https://neuroleadership.fi/en/blog/understand-your-social-brain-the-scarf-model

Relevant pulse themes in Teamspective: Psychological safety, Goals and clarity, Autonomy, Help and support, Fairness

4. Intrinsic motivation / Self-determination theory

Self-determination theory explains intrinsic motivation, a vital piece of psychological wellbeing. The theory of SDT consists of three components: Autonomy, Competence and Relatedness. First, people need to have a choice between options. Then, they need skills and opportunities to make progress. Finally, they need to feel connected to other people. If you have all three, you have high intrinsic motivation – good for you!

In the workplace reality, people are affected by multiple facets of both intrinsic and external motivation. For instance salary and other compensation represent external motivation.

Read more: https://positivepsychology.com/self-determination-theory/

Relevant pulse themes in Teamspective: Autonomy, Learning, Help and support, Meaningfulness

Try out Teamspective

Teamspective is a feedback and pulse solution, built for people-focused companies employing high-skilled professionals, who want to empower people to own their personal and team development, and to maximize engagement, productivity and wellbeing.

We recommend you to give us a try.

Sign up at https://app.teamspective.com or book a demo for you and your team


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