Group dynamics and Teams

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Information about Group dynamics and Teams

Published on January 17, 2014

Author: jayantisaac



In organizational development(OD), group dynamics or group process‖ refers to the understanding of the behavior of people in groups, such as task groups, that are trying to solve a problem or make a decision.

What is a group? • Two or more freely interacting people (Interdependent -interact and influence each other) • Mutually may not be accountable for achieving common goals • Common Identity • Collective Norms. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

CONCEPT OF GROUP DYNAMICS • GROUP = Collection Of Two Or More Persons • DYNAMICS = Greek Meaning “Force” “So group dynamics is a social process by which people interact face to face in small groups”. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Group Dynamics • Group dynamics is the study of groups, and also a general term for group processes. • Human beings exhibit some characteristic behaviour patterns in groups. • In organizational development(OD), group dynamics or group process‖ refers to the understanding of the behaviour of people in groups, such as task groups, that are trying to solve a problem or make a decision. • An individual with expertise in group process, such as a trained facilitator , can assist a group in accomplishing its objective by diagnosing how well the group is functioning

Group Formation and Important characteristics of Groups Groups are formed because of various general tendencies within us such as: i. Exposure: we like people whom we have been exposed to repeatedly. ii. The similarity-attraction effect: we like people who are similar to us in some way. iii. Reciprocity: we like people who like us. iv. Basking(revel) in reflected glory: we seek to associate with successful, prestigious groups.

Some other reasons why people join groups? 1. Affiliation: Humans are by nature gregarious(fond of a company). Groups provide a natural way for people to gather in order to satisfy their social needs. 2. Goal achievement 3. Power 4. Status 5. Self-esteem 6. Security

Important characteristics of groups 1. Social interaction: The members of a group affect each other and there is a definite pattern of interaction among them. 2. Stability: Groups also must possess a stable structure. Although groups can change, which often they do, there must be some stable relationship that keeps the group members together and functioning as a unit. 3. Common interests or goals: Members of a group must share some common interests or goals that bind the group together. 4. Recognition as being a group: It is not just being together would ensure the formation of a proper group. The members of the group must also perceive themselves as a group. They must recognize each other as a member of their group and can distinguish them from non-members.

Groups versus Teams • All teams are groups. • Teams have task interdependence whereas some groups do not (e.g., group of employees enjoying lunch together). • Teams have a positive synergy(2+2=5 EFFECT). • Skills in teams are complementary. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Groups & Teams Groups Teams Assemblage of people or People working objects gathered together together Less Concrete Action Concrete Action Group members may Team is a group with not be committed to a common goal(teams common goal are group) Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

GROUP TYPES • One common way to classify group is by whether they are formal or informal in nature. • Formal work groups are established by an organization to achieve organizational goals. • Formal groups may take the form of command groups, task groups, and functional groups. It is determined by the organizational chart depicting the approved formal connections between individuals in an organization.

COMMAND GROUPS • Command groups are specified by the organizational chart and often consist of a supervisor and the subordinates that report to that supervisor. • An example of a command group is an academic department chairman and the faculty members in that department.

TASK GROUPS • Task groups consist of people who work together to achieve a common task. • Members are brought together to accomplish a narrow range of goals within a specified time period. • Task groups are also commonly referred to as task forces. The organization appoints members and assigns the goals and tasks to be accomplished. • Examples of assigned tasks are the development of a new product, the improvement of a production process, or the proposal of a motivational contest.

FUNCTIONAL GROUPS • A functional group is created by the organization to accomplish specific goals within an unspecified time frame. • Functional groups remain in existence after achievement of current goals and objectives. • Examples of functional group would be a marketing department, a customer service department, or an accounting department.

INTEREST GROUPS • Interest groups usually continue over time and may last longer than general informal groups. • Members of interest groups may not be part of the same - organizational department but they are bound together by some other common interest. • The goals and objectives of group interests are specific to each group and may not be related to organizational goals and objectives. • An example of an interest group would be students who come together to form a study group for a specific class.

FRIENDSHIP GROUPS • Friendship groups are formed by members who enjoy similar social activities, political beliefs, religious values, or other common bonds. Members enjoy each other's company and often meet after work to participate in these activities. • For Example a group of employees who form a friendship group may have an exercise group, a Volleyball team, or an outing lunch once a month. • Friendship groups develop among the organizational members when they share some common interest like participating in some sports activities or staging the office drama, etc.

REFERENCE GROUPS • A reference group is a type of group that people use to evaluate themselves. According to Cherrington, the main purposes of reference groups are social validation and social comparison. • Social validation allows individuals to justify their attitudes and values while social comparison helps individuals evaluate their own actions by comparing themselves to others. • Reference groups have a strong influence on members' behavior. By comparing themselves with other members, individuals are able to assess whether their behavior is acceptable and whether their attitudes and values are right or wrong. • For example, the reference group for a new employee of an organization may be a group of employees that work in a different department or even a different organization. Family, friends, and religious affiliations are strong reference groups for most individuals.

Stages of Group Development • According to the Five-Stage Model of group development, groups go through five distinct stages during the process of its development. These are as follows: 1. Forming 2. Storming 3. Norming 4. Performing 5. Adjourning

1. FORMING • Forming is the initial stage of group development when the group members first come in contact with others and get acquainted with each other. • This stage is characterized predominantly by a feeling of uncertainty among the group members as they now try to establish ground rules and pattern of relationship among themselves.

2. STORMING • Storming is the next stage that is characterized by a high degree of conflict among the members. • Members often show hostility towards each other and resist the leader‘s control. • If these conflicts are not adequately resolved, the group may even be disbanded • But, usually the group eventually comes in terms with each other and accepts the leadership role at the end of this stage.

3. NORMING • Norming is the third stage of the group development process during which the group members become closer to each other and the group starts functioning as a cohesive unit. • The group members now identify themselves with the group and share responsibility for achieving the desired level of performance of the group. • Norming stage is complete when the group members can set a common target and agree on the way of achieving this.

4. PERFORMING • Performing is the fourth stage when the group is finally ready to start working. • As the group is now fully formed after resolving their internal conflicts of acceptance and sharing responsibility, they can now devote energy to achieve its objectives.

5. ADJOURNING • Adjourning is the final stage when the group, after achieving the objectives for which it was created, starts to gradually dissolve itself.

Group Structure and its Important Aspects • Group Structure refers to the pattern of interrelationship that exists among the group members, and makes the group functioning orderly and predictable. Four important aspects of group‘s structure are: 1. 2. 3. 4. Role Norms Status Group Cohesiveness

1. Role • Role or the typical part played by an individual group member in accordance with the expectations of other members from him. • Role expectations refer to the behaviours that are expected from the person playing the role. • The person holding the role is known as the role incumbent. • Role ambiguity takes place when the person holding the role feels confused and does not know what is being expected from him.

2.Norms • Norms are the rules and mutual expectations that develop within the group. • This refers to the generally agreed upon rules that guide the group members behaviour. • Norms have profound effect on members behaviour as it ensures conformity among them.

3. Status • Status or the relative prestige or social position given to groups or individuals by others. • People often join the core group or a renowned club because of the prestige associated with these groups.

4. Group Cohesiveness • Group Cohesiveness referring to the strength of group members desires to remain a part of the group. • This also refers to the degree of attraction of the group members for each other and the 'we-feeling' among the members. • The degree of cohesiveness has been found to depend on external threats.

Group Decision Making • Group decision making is a type of participatory process in which multiple individuals acting collectively, analyze problems or situations, consider and evaluate alternative courses of action, and select from among the alternatives a solution or solutions. • The number of people involved in group decisionmaking varies greatly, but often ranges from two to seven. • The individuals in a group may be demographically similar or quite diverse. • Decision-making groups may be relatively informal in nature, or formally designated and charged with a specific goal. The process used to arrive at decisions may be unstructured or structured.

Methods of Group Decision making • Some of the more common group decision-making methods are as follows: • BRAINSTORMING • DIALECTICAL INQUIRY • NOMINAL GROUP TECHNIQUE. • DELPHI TECHNIQUE

Theories of Group Formation • • • • Propinquity Theory Homans Interaction Theory Balance Theory Exchange Theory Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Propinquity Theory • The term Propinquity means nearness. • This theory states that an individual affiliate with one another because of spatial or geographical proximity. • In organizational context ,individuals working together tend to form a group with others more easily as compared to with individuals working relatively at a distance place. • Here in this theory nearness is only a facilitating factor for group formation and not the reason for it. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Homans Interaction Theory • This theory is based on the activities, interactions and sentiments. • All these elements are directly related to one another. • Acc. To this theory “the more activities persons share, the more numerous will be their interaction and the stronger will be their shared activities and sentiments. • This theory helps to understand the basic idea behind the group formation.

BALANCE THEORY • Provided by Newcomb, suggested similarity of attitudes towards relevant objects and goals as the basics for group formation. • Persons are attracted to one another on the basic of similar attitudes towards commonly relevant objects and goals . • Once a relationship is formed, it strives to maintain a symmetrical balance between the attraction and common attitudes. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM


EXCHANGE THEORY • In this theory the people involve in social exchange on the basis of perceived reward-cost relationship in a particular relationship. • This theory suggest that an individual will join(or will not join) on the basis of the outcomes of reward and cost. • If the reward is equal to or more than cost, the individual will join the group, in reverse case ,(s)he will not join the group. Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

TEAM • A team is small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose , performance goals, and approach for which they hold themselves mutually accountable. --------------------- by Smith Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Importance of Team • Enhanced Performance (2+2=5 effect) or synergy effect. • Employee benefits • Reduced costs • Organizational Enhancements Jayant Isaac,Asso.Profesor –Mkt.,Sys.,& HRM

Self-Managed teams • Self managed teams are closely associated with the concept of employee empowerment which entails the employee to have the requisite authority and resources required by him to carry out his responsibilities. • A self managed team, differs from a normal work team or group in one essential way that the processes or the means to achieve the team goal are designed and decided by the team itself.

Various types of team • Problem-Solving Teams • Cross Functional teams: The goal was to improve communication and tracking of work, which would lead to increased productivity and more satisfied clients. • Self managed teams • Project teams

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