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Chapter 7


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Chapter 7I What Is a GroupA group consists of two or more people interacting interdependently to achieve a common goal Interaction is the most basic aspect of a group as it suggests who is in the group and who is not Groups exert tremendous influence on us They are social mechanisms by which we acquire many beliefs values attitudes and behaviours Formal work groups are established by organizations to facilitate the achievement of organizational goals The most common formal group consists of a manager and those employees who report to that manager Informal groups are groups that emerge naturally in response to the common interests of organizational members Informal groups can either help or hurt an organization depending on their norms for behaviour II Group DevelopmentWhile employees often know each other before new groups are formed simple familiarity does not replace the necessity for team development A Typical Stages of Group Development Leaders and trainers have observed that many groups develop through a series of stages over time Each stage presents the members with a series of challenges they must master in order to achieve the next stage These stages are forming storming norming performing and adjourning Forming Group members try to orient themselves by testing the waters Storming Confrontation and criticism occur as members determine whether they will go along with the way the group is developing Norming Members resolve the issues that provoked the storming and they develop social consensus Performing The group devotes its energies toward task accomplishment Adjourning Rites and rituals that affirm the groups previous successful development are common Members often exhibit emotional support for each other B Punctuated Equilibrium When groups have a specific deadline by which to complete some problemsolving task we often observe a very different development sequence from that described above The punctuated equilibrium model is a model of group development that describes how groups with deadlines are affected by their first meetings and crucial midpoint transitions
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