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MLOS 501 Group and Team Dynamics :

MLOS 501 Group and Team Dynamics Session Three Group Development and Climate

Quotes for the Week:

Quotes for the Week If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable. Not all who wander are lost. We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.

Short-Term Objectives:

Short-Term Objectives At the end of this evening, you should be able to 1. Be able to describe a group from the systems, functional, interaction, and structuration perspectives. 2. Articulate the difference between “reinforcing fit” and “extending fit.” 3. Be able to describe how a group to which you belong developed. 4. Understand the difference between cooperative and competitive climates in groups.

Long-Term Objectives:

Long-Term Objectives Over the course of time, you should be able to 1. Determine whether additions to your group should be in terms of “reinforcing fit” or “extending fit.” 2. Intervene in the phase development of a group to benefit its development. 3. Be able to diagnose the climate of groups to which you belong and enact strategies to improve that climate.

Simulation #1 :

Simulation #1 Communication Patterns

Groups as Systems:

Groups as Systems Group is comprised by elements Elements linked to one another in hierarchy Systems are self-regulating Systems adapt to environmental demands Systems theory concerning with manner of organization

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective :

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective Wholeness/nonsummativity/synergy Dyad is basic unit of organization Dynamic homeostasis Differentiation Hierarchy

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective, cont.:

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective, cont. Equifinality Negative entropy Communication is viewed as the process of organizing Feedback Interconnectedness Boundaries—physical, psychological, and linguistic

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective, cont.:

Characteristics of groups -- systems perspective, cont. Systems theory seeks to understand information networks memory boundary processes control

One implication:

One implication It takes ambiguity to remove ambiguity, because of Rules Cycles


Game/Simulation Mensa Puzzle

Discussion Question—15 minutes:

Discussion Question—15 minutes Describe an organization or a small group as a system. Make sure you identify the various components such as differentiation, homeostasis, etc.

Other approaches: The Functional Tradition:

Other approaches: The Functional Tradition Examines how communication affects decisions expressing a difficulty defining the problem analyzing the problem suggesting solutions testing solutions against a set of objectives implementing the best solution

Other approaches: The Interaction Tradition :

Other approaches: The Interaction Tradition Looks at the way people act in groups Groups do not move linearly through decision-making but go through cycles and may repeat ideas in different ways

Other approaches: Structuration Theory:

Other approaches: Structuration Theory Groups act according to rules to achieve their goals and thereby create structures that come back to affect future actions Behaviors have unintended consequences



Putting Groups Together: Reinforcing vs. Extending Fit:

Putting Groups Together: Reinforcing vs. Extending Fit Extending Fit —individuals whose characteristics round out or complement those of other organizational members Reinforcing Fit —individuals who are similar to current employees in what they have to offer the organization

Reinforcing vs. Extending Fit:

Reinforcing vs. Extending Fit Issues of cohesiveness in groups and organizations Advantages of cohesiveness Strong organizational culture Quicker adjustment, lower turnover, higher satisfaction Disadvantages of cohesiveness People who don’t fit might be good for organization Inbreeding Lack of creativity

What Fit?:

What Fit? Organizational Perspective: Cohesiveness Organizational Perspective: Diversity Person/Organization Fit Fit on what personal attributes? Fit for employees in what jobs? Fit in what situations? Reinforcing Fit Extending Fit

Group Development:

Group Development How newcomers get information and enter groups overt—asking for the information in a direct manner indirect—getting another to respond to non-interrogative questions and hinting third party—asking someone else rather than the primary information target testing—annoying the information target or breaking a rule and then observing the target’s reaction disguising conversations—using verbal prompts, self-disclosure, and jokes to ease information from a source without the source’s awareness. observing—watching another’s action in order to model a behavior or to discern the meaning in events surveillance—indiscriminately monitoring conversations and activities to which meaning can be retrospectively attributed

Developing Group Climate:

Developing Group Climate Cooperation superior to competition for building groups Competition is MEGA Cooperation is MIGA Three reasons why dogma of competition is wrong Attempting to achieve excellence ≠ beating others Cooperative atmosphere uses resources ↑ efficiently Competition  antagonism  diminished performance


Game/Simulation Pushy Partners


Game/Simulation Who Started It?

Your Discussion Questions:

Your Discussion Questions Divide into groups, take 20 minutes to discuss, and be ready to report back to the class

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