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Group_DM_OB11_IM08

Group_DM_OB11_IM08

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Robbins: Organizational Behavior Chapter Eight 
FOUNDATIONS OF GROUP BEHAVIOR
LEARNING OBJECTIVES
After studying this chapter, students should be able to:1.Differentiate between formal and informal groups.2.Compare two models of group development.3.Explain how role requirements change in different situations.4.Describe how norms exert influence on an individual’s behavior.5.Explain what determines status
6.
Define
social loafing 
and its effect on group performance.7.Identify the benefits and disadvantages of cohesive groups.8.List the strengths and weaknesses of group decision-making.9.Contrast the effectiveness of interacting, brainstorming, nominal, and electronic meeting groups.
CHAPTER OVERVIEW
We will cover a lot of territory in this chapter. Since we essentially organize our discussion around the groupbehavior model in Exhibit 8-2, let’s use this model to summarize our findings regarding performance andsatisfaction.
Performance
Norms control group member behavior by establishing standards of right and wrong. If managers know the normsof a given group, they can help to explain the behaviors of its members. Where norms support high output,managers can expect individual performance to be markedly higher than where group norms aim to restrictoutput. Similarly, acceptable standards of absenteeism will be dictated by the group norms. Status inequitiescreate frustration and can adversely influence productivity and the willingness to remain with an organization.Among those individuals who are equity sensitive, incongruence is likely to lead to reduced motivation and anincreased search for ways to bring about fairness (i.e., taking another job).The impact of size on a group’s performance depends upon the type of task in which the group is engaged.Larger groups are more effective at fact-finding activities. Smaller groups are more effective at action-taking tasks.Our knowledge of social loafing suggests that if management uses larger groups, efforts should be made toprovide measures of individual performance within the group.We found that cohesiveness can play an important function in influencing a group’s level of productivity. Whether or not it does depends on the group’s performance-related norms. The primary contingency variable moderatingthe relationship between group processes and performance is the group’s task. The more complex andinterdependent the tasks, the more that inefficient processes will lead to reduced group performance.
Satisfaction
Most people prefer to communicate with others at their own status level or a higher one rather than with thosebelow them. As a result, we should expect satisfaction to be greater among employees whose job minimizesinteraction with individuals who are lower in status than themselves.The group size-satisfaction relationship is what one would intuitively expect: Larger groups are associated withlower satisfaction. As size increases, opportunities for participation and social interaction decrease, as does theability of members to identify with the group’s accomplishments. At the same time, having more members alsoprompts dissension, conflict, and the formation of subgroups which all act to make the group a less pleasant entityof which to be a part.
190
PPT 8-2PPT 8-3
 
Robbins: Organizational Behavior Chapter Eight 
WEB EXERCISES
At the end of each chapter of this instructor’s manual, you will find suggested exercises and ideas for researchingthe WWW on OB topics. The exercises “Exploring OB Topics on the Web” are set up so that you can simplyphotocopy the pages, distribute them to your class, and make assignments accordingly. You may want to assignthe exercises as an out-of-class activity or as lab activities with your class. Within the lecture notes the graphicwill note that there is a WWW activity to support this material.
The chapter opens with the observation that NASA has a long history of minimizing differences among personnel.This had contributed, in part, to the Challenger disaster in 1986. The more recent Columbia tragedy in 2003 may have stemmed, in part, from the significant group pressures for agreement at NASA. These examples suggest that that “smart people, working collectively, sometimes do dumb things.” 
BRIEF CHAPTER OUTLINE
191
 
Robbins: Organizational Behavior Chapter Eight 1.Defining and Classifying Groups
1.A group is defined as two or more individuals, interacting andinterdependent, who have come together to achieve particular objectives.2.Groups can be either formal or informal.3.It is possible to sub-classify groups as command, task, interest, or friendshipgroups.4. Exhibit 8-1 provides information on why people join groups.Stages of Group Development
 A. The Five-Stage Model (Exhibit 8-2)
1.
Forming:
Characterized by a great deal of uncertainty about the group’s purpose,structure, and leadership.2.
Storming:
One of intragroup conflict. Members accept the existence of the group,but there is resistance to constraints on individuality.3.
Norming 
:
One in which close relationships develop and the group demonstratescohesiveness.4.
Performing:
The structure at this point is fully functional and accepted.5.
 Adjourning:
For temporary committees, teams, task forces, and similar groups thathave a limited task to perform, there is an adjourning stage.6. Many assume that a group becomes more effective as it progresses throughthe first four stages. While generally true, what makes a group effective is morecomplex. Under some conditions, high levels of conflict are conducive to highgroup performance.7. Groups do not always proceed clearly from one stage to the next. Sometimesseveral stages go on simultaneously. Groups occasionally regress to previousstages.
B. An Alternative Model: For Temporary Groups with Deadlines
1. Temporary groups with deadlines follow a pattern called the
 punctuated-equilibrium model 
.
(Exhibit 8-3).
2. Phase I—The first meeting sets the group’s direction; the first inertia phase.3. Then a transition takes place when the group has used up half its allotted time.
The group’s direction becomes fixed and is unlikely to be reexaminedthroughout the first half of the group’s life.4. The midpoint appears to work like an alarm clock, heightening members’
Notes:
192
 
PPT 8-7PPT 8-4PPT 8-11

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