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Comm 222 Final Notes

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COMM 222
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Chapter 7GroupsTeamworkGroup Development A group is two or more people interacting interdependently to achieve a common goal Interaction is the most basic aspect of a group Interdependence simply means that group members rely to some degree on each other to accomplish goalsGroup memberships are very important because they exert tremendous influence on us they are social mechanisms by which we acquire many beliefs values attitudes and behaviours and groups also provide a context in which we are able to exert influence on othersFormal Groups Established by organizations to facilitate the achievement of organizational goals They are designed to channel individual effort in an appropriate direction Most common formal group consists of a manager and the employees who report to the managerOther types of formal groups include task forces temporary groups that achieve goals or solve problems and committees permanent group that handle assignments outside the usual work group structure like a committee on workfamily balanceInformal Groups Groups that emerge naturally in response to common interests of organizational members They can either help or hurt an organization depending on their norms for behaviourPeople Join Groups to satisfy mutual interests to achieve security to fill social needs to fill need for selfesteemCharacteristics of a wellfunctioning group are relaxed and informal atmosphere tasks well understood members listen and participate consensus decision making people express ideas handle conflicts well etcTypical Stages of Group DevelopmentFormingStage where group members try to orient themselves Little agreement and unclear purposeStormingStage where conflict often emerges Sorting out roles and responsibilities Increased conflict but clearer purpose power struggles and coachingNormingMembers resolve the issue that provoked storming and develop social consensus Agreement and consensus clear roles and responsibilities and faciliatationPerformingDevote energy towards task accomplishment Clear purpose and vision focuses on goal delegationAdjourningGroup members disperse after achieving their goal Task completion feel good recognitionPunctuated EquilibriumPunctuated equilibrium modela model of group development that describes how groups with deadlines are affected by their first meetings and crucial midpoint transitionsapplies ONLY to groups with DEADLINES think of a school projectPhase 1 oBegins with first meeting and continues until the midpoint of the groups existenceoFirst meeting is critical in setting the agenda for what will happen in remainder of phaseoThe group makes little visible progress toward the goalMidpoint TransitionoOccurs at almost exactly halfway point in time towards groups deadlineoMarks a change in the groups approachis critical for the group to show progressoCrystallizes the groups activities for Phase 2 just like the first meeting in Phase 1Phase 2oDecisions and approaches adopted at midpoint get played out in phase 2oConcludes with a final meeting that reveals a burst of activity and concern for how outsiders will evaluate the productGroup Structure and Its ConsequencesGroup structure refers to the characteristics of the stable social organization of a groupthe way a group is put togetherGroup SizeSize and SatisfactionoMembers of larger groups rather consistently report less satisfaction with group membership than those who find themselves in smaller groupsoAs opportunities for friendship increase the chance to work on and develop these opportunities might decrease owing to the sheer time and energy requiredoLarger groups might prompt conflict and dissension oMany people are inhibited about participating in larger groupsoIndividual members in larger groups identify less easily with the success and accomplishment of the groupSize and PerformanceoTeam size depends on the exact task that the group needs to accomplish and how we define good performanceoSome tasks areAdditive TasksTasks in which group performance is dependent on the sum of the performance of individual group members Disjunctive TasksTasks in which group performance is dependent on the performance of the best group member
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