PRE-TUTORIAL WORK FOR W/C 20 Jan 2014
Individuals in groups and group decision making
Huczynski, A. & Buchanan, D. (2013). Organisational Behaviour (8th edition). Harlow, Pearson Education. Read Chapter 12 (Individuals in Groups) and Chapter 20 (Decision-making) pp. 702-711
Based on your reading and experience of working in an organisation (or one you are familiar with): Provide written responses to each of the following questions. Be prepared to discuss and share these with colleagues in class. Aim for about 2-4 pages overall.
1. Review your own experience of working in groups to date (eg ICE, Understanding and Managing People study groups, social groups, work teams). (a) In what ways has it been a positive and negative experience for you? (b) Can you explain this in terms of social loafing, social facilitation, norms and sanctions, conformity, conversion, deindividuation, Ringlemann effect, Groupthink, Risky shift syndrome and so forth? (c) What could you and your team members do to counter the negative effects of group working?
2. What factors influence the cohesiveness of work groups? Give examples by referring to a work group to which you belong, or have belonged.
3. Can you provide an example or two of where groups/teams have been able to perform much better than the quality of the individual members? (Think about sports teams or a work team for instance). (a) Using your example, analyse the advantages of group decision making in that context. (b) Are there any disadvantages in your chosen context?
4. Can you think of an event in which a group/ groups of seemingly intelligent people made really stupid or dangerous decision? (a) Look at the reasons for this – were there deliberate attempts to stop anyone
contradicting the chosen solution? Indeed, were any alternatives explored at
all? (look at the symptoms of Janis) (b) What could the group (and/or the wider organisation) have done in order to
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