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 Oyeniyi Joshua

Quite a number of things that seem to be similar are actually different. Humans are probably more concerned about an outcome than deeper evaluations of their processes and functions. The sun and moon, a biro and pencil, whiteboard marker and blackboard chalk, watercolor and paint and many more seems to possess significant similarities, when in reality they are not. They appear so because of the outcome we get. Meanwhile a deeper evaluation of their workings tells us about their differences. For example, the sun and moon beyond just serving as sources of light are best distinguished by the light they give – the higher and the lower light. And yet, there are more established facts of their differences.

Likewise is the common misconception in the comparison of group and team. There is usually the feeling that both concepts can be intertwined based on the profound sense of depicting some united people with an objective. Whereas, there are some clear-cut understanding of their respective meanings and features. This understanding can help us not to fall victim of the improper usage of language and yet, earn us some prestige in the aspect of language competence and performance as a second users of a language. Better still, it is responsible for the manner by which we understand these terms wherever they appear – in writing or speech.

According to, group (as a noun) is any collection or assemblage of persons or things; cluster; aggression. By this, we can have a group of protesters; a remarkable group of paintings. On the other hand, it defines team as a number of persons forming one of the sides in a game or context. For instance, a football team. 

If we consider the above definitions well, it appears almost immediately a common distinction of which we can draw out how other differences of group and team. The idea of collectivity in group and the message of individuality working together in team is precisely expressed. 

Group is a ‘collection or assemblage of persons’, team is defined in terms of ‘number of persons forming’. In a more technical sense, group is based on the approach that gathers all sort of things or persons together regardless of their respective ambition for its sole purpose of establishment.

In distinction, team as ‘numbers of people forming’ a side would simply connote a place of agreement, cooperation and decentralized structure set up on the basics of objective that favors everyone. Moreover, an illustration can suffice. In an operation of soldiers going for war, there is the tendency that more often than not, soldiers work as a group. Whereas for the open discussion on sourcing for a vaccine to a deadly virus, scientist do work as a team. This will involve set of professional personnel coming from different fields to share ideas till there is a result. However, this does not conclude that those that work as a team will succeed or those that work as a group will likely fail. There is usually different method for different situations. What this tend to do is to expose the practicability of workings and show ways that distinct both terms.

While it is often quite possible to work as a team, the case is different for group. This is because a group is usually to be headed by a head or leader, while the workings of a team is a condition that identifies each member as one that can make a decision on how things should be done. In a team, each member rub minds together as to how they can integrate their respective abilities in achieving a goal and bear the consequence of actions made. A group headed by a leader is more likely never to take into consideration other person’s opinion on a project. In fact, the leader who bears the responsibility of actions make bold and final decisions on steps to take in reaching a goal.

Other differences could include working separately in group while constantly getting verifications and approvals from their leader. On the other hand, team is doing a corroborative effort in acting as watch dogs on each other while everyone does it as they know it.

Having been made to see the difference in usage between team and group, we are expected to take this to heart and accustom our vocabulary to the standard way it is used.


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