Business Administration 2295F/G Chapter Notes - Chapter 7: Group Cohesiveness, Role Conflict, Social Loafing

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Mos Midterm 2 (chapters 7, 8, 9, 10)
Chapter 7: Groups and Teamwork
What is a group
oGroup = two or more ppl interacting interdependently to achieve a
common goal
Interdependence means that members rely on each other to
accomplish goals
oGroup memberships are important because
Groups exert a tremendous amount of influence on us
Groups provide a context in which we are able to exert
influence on others
oFormal work groups = groups that are established by orgs to facilitate
the achievement of organizational goals
Ex: manager and the employees who report to that manager
Task force, project teams: temporary groups that meet
to achieve particular goals/solve particular problems
Committees: permanent groups that handle recurrent
assignments outside the usual work group structures
Most orgs consist of a series of formal, interlocked work groups
oInformal groups = groups that emerge naturally in response to the
common interests of org members
Can either help or hurt an org, depending on their norms for
Group development
o5 stages of group development
Each stage presents the members with a series of challenges
they must master o achieve the next stage
1) Forming
Testing the waters
The situation if often ambiguous and the members are
aware of their dependency on each other
2) Storming
Conflict often emerges
Members determine whether they will go along with the
way the group is developing
Sorting out roles and responsibilities
Problems more likely to happen earlier rather than later
in group development
5) Norming
Members resolve the issues that provoked the storming
Develop social consensus
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Interdependence is recognized, norms are agreed to and
the group becomes more cohesive
Info and options flow freely
4) Performing
Energies devoted to task accomplishment
Achievement, creativity and mutual assistance
5) Adjourning
Some groups (task forces, design project teams) have a
definite lifespan and disperse after achieving their goals
oCorporate layoffs or downsizing
Rites and rituals that affirm the groups previous
successful development are common (ceremonies,
Members exhibit emotional support for each other
This 5 step process mainly refers to groups we have not met
Storming and norming can be eliminated in highly structured
org group setting
Ex: airline cockpit crew
oPunctuated equilibrium
Connie Gersick
Punctuated equilibrium model = model of group development
that describes how groups with deadlines are affected by their
first meetings and crucial midpoint transitions
Phase 1
oBegins with the first meeting and continues until
the midpoint in the groups existence
oFirst meeting critical in setting the agenda for
what will happen in the remainder of this phase
oAssumptions, approaches and precedents that
memebers develop in the first meeting end up
dominating the first half of the groups life
oGroup makes little visible progress toward the
Midpoint transition
oHalfway point to the groups deadline
oMarks a change in the groups approach and how
the group manages the change is critical for the
group to show progress
oNeed to move forward is apparent
oCrystallizes the groups activities for phase 2
Phase 2
oDecisions and approached adopted at the
midpoint get played out in phase 2
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oConcludes with a final meeting that reveals a
burst of activity and a concern for how outsiders
will evaluate the product
Advice for monitoring successful groups
Prepare carefully for the first meeting
oMotivation and excitement about the proj
As long as ppl are working, do not look for radical
progress during phase 1
Manage midpoint carefully
oFundamental change in approach must occur for
progress to occur
oFocus on strategy
Adequate resources are available to actually execute the
phase 2 plan
Resists deadline changes
Group structure and its consequences
oGroup structure refers to the characteristics of the stable social
organization of a group
The way a group is put together
oStructural characteristics
Member diversity
oGroup size
Smallest possible group consists of 2 ppl
Largest between 300-400 ppl
Usually between 3-20 members
The larger the group, the less opportunity there is for members
to make friends
The larger the group, the more different viewpoints there are
and the more conflict that arises
The larger the group, the less available time for verbal
The larger the group, the less individuals identify with the
overall success and accomplishments of the group
oSize and performance
Depends on the exact task that the group needs to accomplish
and on how we define good performance
Additive tasks = group performance is dependent on the sum of
the performance of the individual group members
Predict potential performance by adding the
performances of individual group members together
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