Belbin’s Theory on Team Roles

Some people are good at strategic thinking, some have a propensity for action oriented roles and yet another may thrive in a role that requires brainstorming and creative contribution. Based on extensive studies, Meredith Belbin identified nine different roles that people are naturally inclined to perform when placed in a team environment. Belbin’s team roles concept is an interesting model that can be used to assign individual roles in a manner that creates proper matching between an individual’s strengths and his or her responsibilities within the team. This model considers the work related strengths inherent in an individual.

Organisations have to understand the strengths of their employees and assigns team roles in a manner that synergises individual strengths with their team responsibility. When a team member is assigned a role that fits the kind of work that he or she is naturally inclined to perform, it sets the stage for a high performance. For a more detailed explanation on the nine roles and to read an interesting example on the use of team roles in a business environment, please see Belbin Team Roles.

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