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Groups and Teams


'A group of individuals within a larger organization, that has a common goal, ... Group members have developed a good working relationship. ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Groups and Teams

Groups and Teams
What are Groups and Teams
  • Group
  • Two or more people working together
  • Team
  • ... intact social system complete with
    boundaries and differentiated roles among
    members...with one or more tasks to perform,
    resulting in discernable and potentially
    measurable group products...within an
    organizational context
  • A group of individuals within a larger
    organization, that has a common goal, whose tasks
    and outcomes are interdependent, and whose
    members view themselves and are viewed by others
    as a team.

Why Do Groups Matter to People?
  • Social needs (think back to Maslow…)
  • Interest in the groups activities
  • Agreement with groups goals / values
  • Extrinsic benefits

Why do Teams Matter to Organizations ?
  • Teams are the fashion
  • Why?
  • Synergy
  • Need for coordinated cross-disciplinary
  • Self-management

2 2 5
Kinds of Groups and Teams
  • Functional groups
  • The boxes we see on organizational charts
  • May or may not be a team or include teams
  • Informal groups
  • Task groups / teams
  • Temporary vs. standing
  • Managed vs. self-managed
  • Purpose
  • Management
  • Work tasks
  • New products
  • Organizational change
  • Single-function vs. cross-functional
  • Virtual teams

Team Performance
  • Assessed by team, by outsiders, or both?
  • Team performance (Hackman,1987)
  • Organizational outcomes
  • Group members outcomes
  • Teams future viability

Sources of Group Effectiveness
  • Organizational context
  • Goals
  • Resources
  • Group resources
  • Knowledge
  • Motivation
  • Leadership
  • Group structure
  • Formal structure
  • Group roles
  • The task
  • Extent of interdependence
  • Complexity

What Is An Effective Team?
  • All group members understand group roles and
  • Group members have developed a good working
  • Group members are attracted to the group and are
    loyal to the leader.
  • Group members have a high degree of trust and
    confidence in one another.
  • Group activities such as decision making and
    problem solving occur in a supportive atmosphere.

An Effective Team (Continued)
  • The group leaders role is to create a supportive
    atmosphere in which group work occurs. The leader
  • Seek information from group members about
    decisions that will affect them and
  • Provide information that they need to do their
    jobs better.
  • The group should attempt to develop each members
    full potential.

More On an Effective Team
  • The process for selecting a group leader should
    be based on the qualities that the individual
    brings to the group that encourage a supportive
    and open atmosphere.
  • Communication among members and the leader should
    be encouraged. If problems exist, free and open
    communication will bring problems to the surface.

Stages in Group Development
  • Forming
  • Members begin to become acquainted and try out
    behaviors basic norms are establishes
  • Slow evolution to…..
  • Storming
  • Members struggle to set group goals, patterns of
    behavior and there is a competition for
  • Rapid transformation to…..
  • Norming
  • Members develop sense of cohesion and settle into
    their roles
  • Slow evolution to….
  • Performing
  • Now, the work gets done, tasks are accomplished
  • Adjourning
  • This stage occurs only if the group will dissolve
    or disband

Group Roles Task-Oriented Behavior (I)
  • Initiating Activity
  • Helping the group get started proposing
    solutions, suggesting new ideas new definitions
    of the problem, new attacks on problem, or new
    organization of what has already been discussed.
  • Seeking Information/Opinion
  • Asking for additional input or clarification of
    ideas and opinions that have been presented.
  • Giving Information/Opinion
  • Offering facts, beliefs, or additional useful
    information, relating one's own experience and/or
    feelings to group to illustrate a point.

Group Roles Task-Oriented Behavior (II)
  • Elaborating
  • Offering further clarification of points trying
    to "spell out" what other members have already
    said, or trying to help the group imagine how a
    proposal would work if adopted.
  • Summarizing
  • Pulling together related ideas or suggestions,
    restating suggestions after the group has
    discussed them or trying to organize the ideas
    so the group will know what has been said.
  • Testing Workability
  • Making application of suggestions to real
    situations, examining practicality and
    workability of ideas trying to help the group
    test a proposed decision for workability.

Group Roles Group-Oriented Behavior (I)
  • Encouraging
  • Being friendly, warm and responsible to others
    accepting others and their contributions
    regarding others by giving them an opportunity or
  • Expressing Group Feelings
  • Sensing feeling, mood, relationships within the
    group sharing his/her feelings or affect with
    other members. This starts the group toward
  • Harmonizing
  • Attempting to reconcile disagreement reducing
    tension through "pouring oil on troubled waters"
    getting people to explore their differences.

Group Roles Group-Oriented Behavior (II)
  • Gate-Keeping
  • Attempting to keep communication channels open
    facilitating the participation of others
    suggesting procedures for sharing opportunities
    to discuss group problems.
  • Setting Standards
  • Expressing standards for group to achieve
    applying standards in evaluating group function
    and production.

How Roles Develop
Expected Role
Sent Role
Perceived Role
Enacted Role
More About Learning Norms
  • Norm generalization
  • Can you take norms from one setting and apply
    them to another setting?
  • Norm variation
  • Who can deviate from the norms?
  • How much deviation is acceptable?
  • Norm conformity
  • How much pressure is there to conform to norms?
  • Socialization

Problems With Group Roles
  • Role overload
  • Too much to do
  • Role ambiguity
  • Uncertainty about what to do
  • Role conflict
  • Incompatible demands

Group Cohesion
  • Definition
  • Types of cohesion
  • Antecedents and consequences

What is Cohesion?
  • …The cement binding together group members and
    maintaining their relationships to one another
  • The resultant of all the forces acting on the
    members to remain in the group
  • The attraction of individuals to the team or
    group itself, where the individual defines
    herself as a member of a group, rather than as an

Types of Cohesion
This is the cohesion that matters
  • Interpersonal or social
  • The attraction between and among group members
  • Liking, friendship
  • Task
  • The ability of the group to facilitate
    individuals goals
  • Not necessary for group members to like one

Cohesion and Group Norms
Cohesion Antecedents and Consequences
  • Where does it come from?
  • Propinquity and interaction
  • Perceived similarities in personality, status,
    attitudes, demographics, etc.
  • External frustration or threat
  • Shared success or failure
  • What are the results?
  • Higher perceptions of similarity
  • Uniformity of thought / behavior
  • Performance
  • Better communications

Problems in Groups
  • Anti-group behaviors
  • Groupthink
  • Conflict

Anti-Group Behavior (I)
  • The Blocker
  • …tends to be negativistic and stubbornly
    resistant, disagreeing and opposing without or
    beyond "reason" and attempting to maintain or
    bring back an issue after the group has rejected
    or bypassed it.
  • The Recognition-Seeker
  • …works in various ways to call attention to
    himself/herself, whether through boasting,
    reporting personal achievements, acting in
    unusual ways, struggling to prevent his/her being
    placed in an "inferior" position, etc.

Anti-Group Behavior (II)
  • The Dominator
  • …tries to assert authority or superiority in
    manipulating the group or certain members of the
    group. This domination may take the form of
    flattery, of asserting a superior status of right
    to attention, giving directions authoritatively,
    interrupting the contributions of others, etc.
  • The Avoider
  • …makes a display of his/her lack of involvement
    in the group's processes. This may take the form
    of cynicism, nonchalance, horseplay, etc.

  • Pressures for cohesion and togetherness,
    resulting in poor decisions
  • Symptoms
  • Illusion of invulnerability
  • Rationalizing signs of problems
  • Belief in own moral justification
  • Stereotyped view of opposition
  • Pressure for conformity (group members and
  • Self-censorship
  • Illusion of unanimity
  • Mindguards

  • Disagreement about a goal or the way to reach a
  • A process that begins when one party perceives
    that another party has or is about to negatively
    affect something the first party cares about
  • Types of conflict
  • Task
  • Relationship
  • Process

Conflict Good or Bad
  • Traditional view all conflict is negative and
    should be avoided
  • Human relations view Conflict is natural and
  • Interactionist view Conflict is necessary to
    prevent group inertia and self-criticism

Handling Conflict
Choosing A Style
  • Personal preferences
  • Importance of issue
  • Cost / time
  • Future relationship