Group and Groups Behavior

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Journal of Comprehensive Research, Volume 5, Page 32

Groups and Group Behavior
Dr. I. Chaneta
Faculty of Commerce
University of Zimbabwe
ABSTRACT
Groups and teams are a major feature of organizational life. The work organization and its sub-units are made of, are groups of people. Most activities of the organization require at least some degree of co-ordination through the operation of groups and teamwork. An understanding of the nature of groups is vital if the manager is to influence the behavior of people in the work situation. Groups are an essential feature of the work pattern of any organization. Members of a group co-operate in order for work to be carried out and managers themselves work within the groups. People in groups influence each other in many ways and may develop their own hierarchy and leaders. Group pressures can have a major influence over the behavior of individual members and their work performance. The activities of the group are associated with the process of leadership. The style of leadership adopted by the manager has an important influence on the behavior of members of the group.

Keywords: co-ordination, upheaval, interaction, co-operation, loyalty, cohesiveness, norms and values.

Groups and Group Behavior

Journal of Comprehensive Research, Volume 5, Page 33
INTRODUCTION
The essential feature of a group is that its members regard themselves as belonging to the group. A group is defined as any number of people who: • interact with one another;
• are psychologically aware of one another; and
• perceive themselves to be a group.
A work group is a collection of people who share most, if not all, of the following characteristics:
• a definable membership;
• groups consciousness;
• a sense of shared purposes;
• interdependence; and
• ability to act in a unitary manner.
FORMATION OF GROUPS
Tuckman (1965) devised a model of group formation which consists of the following five stages as shown in Table 1: Group Formation.
Stage 1 – Forming
This refers to initial formation of the group where tasks have to be understood, resources and information acquired, individuals have to get to know one another and there is considerable reliance on the leader.

Stage 2 – Storming
It represents the period when problems begin to be faced more openly than in the earlier stage. Individuals begin to question or challenge the task and have to confront emotional issues between and among themselves.

Stage 3 – Norming
This period of relative upheaval moves into a more considered stage where conflicts are settled, new standards are developed and owned by the members. Cooperation really takes off.
Stage 4 – Performing
This stage opens the way for the most productive moment when the group is working effectively both in terms of goals and its internal relationships. Teamwork develops and solutions are found.

Groups and Group Behavior

Journal of Comprehensive Research, Volume 5, Page 34
Stage 5 – Adjourning
This stage underlines the fact that a group’s life will eventually come to an end as people move on elsewhere in the organization or as original purpose is attained and the job is completed.
The above analysis demonstrates that the group/team development can only take place over time. To begin with, the group is more like a collection of individuals with little or no idea about what they are there for and who depends heavily on the leader for guidance and support. At this stage, they have no sense of team - spirit, no knowledge of each other’s strengths and weaknesses and no mutual norms of behavior, apart from those laid down at the outset by the leader. Over time, the group will gradually develop a sense of itself, its purpose and prime tasks, the purpose and prime tasks, the capabilities of its members, the roles they might be able to play and will develop norms of behavior capable of carrying it through the foreseeable future. The role in the development of a group from a state of...
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