jin12kim

Group Dynamics

Posted on: May 31, 2011

A topic about group dynamics has a close relationship with individual diversity that I posted previously. At least once in his or her life, a person would have been involved in a group activity. Its experience could be pleasant or unpleasant. Then, what kind of the criteria would determine the individual’s experience? Was there conflict in the group, and where did it originate? The conflict rises from the difference in opinions and positions. In the article, Tim Holman (2002) suggests that companies and/or organizations should always try to understand and resolve the group’s differences. Also, the article illustrates how minimize the conflict of the group as followings:

1) Providing the focus

2) Building trust

3) Maintaining and promoting a positive attitude

4) Allowing mistakes

5) Educating the team

6)  Communicating each others

7) Provide the recognition and rewards

The company should create an adequate environment where each group member can share and resolve his or her differences. Since a group has common goals or missions to achieve, it is not difficult to give the people motivation. However, it is necessary to offer incentives so that the group members are encouraged. It is almost impossible to have a perfect match for a group, just like marriage. Each individual should adjust and compromise depending on situations and circumstances.

Currently, many companies are encouraged to have a dynamic group in their organizations.  Why? The document (Group Dynamics, n.d.) indicates that “[g]roup dynamics involves the influence of personality, power, and behaviour on the group process”. It creates interactions among group members and helps to think other options that differ from one’s initial idea. Sidle (2007) looks at the effectiveness of the group dynamics in his article. He believes when there is disagreement, group members share more information and opinions. One of the Korean proverbs say that children grow together after a fight against each other. The children experience the differences, but then realize what is happening and resolves the problem. The differences are a great start for the group dynamics.

Then, how should managers design and manage effective work teams? The manager should provide specific roles to a group to reduce the conflict and ambiguity of projects. Clear roles for each of the members help a group to cooperate and to operate efficiently. Then, because of the different roles, it is natural for the individuals to behave and perform differently.  What if there is role ambiguity in the group? It will result in emotional stress, dissatisfaction, lower productivity, and disagreements. Thus, management should provide clear job descriptions and feedback to reduce the confusion.  I believe that different roles are essential. However, the roles should be not only specific but also precise like a road map. With the clear role, the group members would not be lost. The diversity of the roles creates the group dynamics naturally.

I would like to finish this post with the open question:  is it necessary for every company to have group dynamics to increase the diversity of the opinions and to come up with innovating ideas?  Is group dynamics necessary?

References

Group Dynamics (n.d.). Retrieved May 30, 2011, from http://www.intrd.gov.nl.ca/intrd/regionaldev/gd.pdf

Holman, T. (2002). TEAM DYNAMICS FOR THE COMPANY OFFICER. Fire Engineering, 155(7), 71. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

Sidle, S. D. (2007). Do Teams Who Agree to Disagree Make Better Decisions?. Academy of Management Perspectives, 21(2), 74-75. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

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4 Responses to "Group Dynamics"

Hi Jin,

Great post! To answer your question, I think that every company should have group dynamics. I don’t think it is absolutely necessary but I believe that by having group dynamics, it will help the company propser faster. By having diversed ideas from different people, you are not limiting yourself to what you know, but it allows you to open the door for new opportunities. Every individual is different from one another and they all have opinions that they can contribute. I definitely agree with the 7 different ways to minimize conflict that you provided in your post. I also found an article http://usefularticles.blogspot.com/2004/10/group-dynamics-and-team-building.html showing how group dynamics principles can be applied in developing effective work groups. Have a look at it if you have the time.

Chris

Thank you Chris. I read the article you posted for me. It gives great insights of group dynamics. I am grateful that you agreed that we need the group dynamic. I think the group dynamic is necessary for the organization but really hard to manage it.

In my opinion, group diversity exist everywhere in the society especially in the workplace and school, Sometime, I think even a clear role of each person should be doing would not totally solve the conflict that could happen in a group conflict, but it would be a great start to reduce conflict tension. Also, other people should contribute idea to other people’s role if they have knowledge in it too to help expand the idea further.

It is essential that every companies should have group diversity which will result into many different ideas being brought together to become one unique creative idea since many people go through many different experiences in their lives due to their cultures and living environment, so what they will be experiencing will mostly be different from others. Therefore, if they bring all these different people to work together, companies may have a better chance to come up with original ideas, and work may done done more efficiently.

Hey Jin. Great insight on your post! For your open question, I believe that group dynamics is very effective for the increasing diversity of ideas and opinions. At my workplace, we implement group dynamics to ensure that everyones perspective is considered and appreciated. Something relevant to your post that I came across was a PDF unit by Margaret Meade that goes over the forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning that we went over in class and much more (http://managementhelp.org/grp_skll/theory/theory.htm). Group dynamics are necessary and essentially are effective.

Jory Grunlund

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  • Jory Grunlund: Hey Jin. Similar to what I told Chris, people are usually resistant to change at first. Like you mentioned, when your accountant changed the accountin
  • irenechou1: I guess everyone are scared of being changes because there are so many factors that you could not predict after the changes are applied in an organiza
  • chrisjerickchua: Hey Jin, I completely agree with you that as the world changes, organizations need to change as well. Organizations cannot stay stagnant or else th

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