If I have to find the easiest comparison, Benefit is definitely a smooth, mouth-watering cheesecake while Obligation is the tedious process to make that delicious cake. What’ssup with the cheesecake?! It is so pleasant to enjoy and everybody loves it while only a handful of people knows how to make it and even if they do, a smaller fraction would be willing to work hard in the kitchen to produce a decent one.
It’s easy to dream about a castle, harder to imagine what you got to do to build it.
Unclear distribution of benefits and obligations might constitute problems in group work. The common issue is that human brains are one-sided, so many people only think about Benefit but forget about Obligation. It’s easy to dream about a castle, harder to imagine what you got to do to build it. I personally met with this problem before: I mentioned about the benefits to persuade others to join in the team and did not make their responsibilities clear because I assumed they should know what to do. It was expected that people to come forward to initiate activities if they wish for more benefits. No-one understood my intention apparently since they gradually asked for more benefits and I was titled as Ms. Sassy for “overusing them”. Unintentionally, I drove my team members away because of the ambiguous communication about their roles and responsibilities.
Saying that, it’s important that each member knows what are his/ her rights and responsibilities within a team right from the start. The “10 tips for Working Effectively in Groups” advises that assigning roles and establishment of a common goal are the two foremost critical things to do when forming a team. It all boils down to the most basic element: communication. Benefit and Obligation have to be thoroughly discussed at the beginning of any teamwork relationship. Confusion of understanding and using these two definitions might result in heart-broken consequences.