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Scarcity of Resources

Organisations manage a scarcity of resources. Costs must be minimised; the budget must be adhered to. To a certain extent, scarcity is the living space of organisations, to take in more than is being spent is a condition for survival. For teams, this means that they can very rarely access all the desired resources, instead, they must get by with less budget, less personnel, less space, less time, less ‘xy’ than individual team members would wish for, from a functional point of view. Scarcity of resources is, therefore, stressful for the member’s environment within the team. It is like a birthday for children with twelve kids and eleven pieces of cake! Scarcity, per se, leads to challenging, group dynamic situations: anxieties, formation of coalitions, isolation, defensiveness, preservation of ownership, protection of beneficial positions, fights over distribution, envy, jealousy, demotivation, greed, secrecy, winner/loser situations and many more.

Dealing with this stimulated stress world within the team, caused by shortages, must be viewed as a very important task of self-direction and leadership in every team. This can, of course, be very much in the background under stable conditions, but the principle challenge remains: as a member of a team one requires a high level of frustration competence, so that one can get by happily with less than one would desire. Otherwise, constant suffering in the organisation, constant moaning about the conditions and constant irritation about the unfairness in the firm are the alternatives.

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