You are on page 1of 2

Session 35

Group Dynamics 101

As a leader we need to understand group dynamics.

There are three kinds of behaviors you'll find in a group, and specific, predictable
stages a group will go through.

The three kinds of behavior are:
1. Power: I want control over the group to serve my own agenda.
2. Achievement: I want to make sure the group achieves the tasks it was intended to.
3. Affiliation: I want to make sure everyone in the group is satisfied and plays a part.

Control People will try to take over the group, change the agenda, make suggestions,
etc.

Affiliation People are so concerned with making sure people's emotional needs get
met that they don't care so much about getting the task done.

In all groups, these 3 forces are in conflict and need to be balanced.

Groups go through 4 stages.

Stage 1: Forming
1. Do I want to be part of this group? (Inclusion)
2. Know that you'll have followers come and go, and you'll need to help the group
adjust as this happens.

Stage 2: Storming
1. Power struggle for control of the group. (Control)
2. Some groups never get past this stage. They are always fighting and don't get
much done.

3. 3. 2. think ahead of time about the norms you want the group to form. a. Assuming what other people want and trying to please them. a. 2.. If the group isn't achieving it's goal. The single most important factor on group cohesiveness is the decision as to how to make decisions. Members must be prepared to stand up for what they want and don't want. you need to be aware of every stage and lead the group through at each point. . Group think example: The Abilene Parable. Discuss openly to make it conscious." • As leader. and frequently this is done unconsciously.• Stage 3: Norming 1. Most groups don't last forever. We've worked out a balance so work can get done. Another important factor in group cohesiveness is the group member's willingness to discipline other members when they violate the norms. the question becomes when to stop and "acknowledge failure.. Many should have stopped working together long before they eventually do.. is a recipe for disaster. • Stage 4: Transforming 1. there's a vacuum.. As a leader. When groups end. 5. 4. You want to go to Abilene? Oh. you want to go to Abilene? OK. You can't leave this to chance.