Group behavior in the Workplace

Introduction Group Behavior is well defined as, situations that allows people to interact in large or small groups. These individuals working together may begin to coordinate their behavior by acting in a certain way to achieve a goal that differs from what each person would do if acting alone. Group dynamics, combined with great leadership or management, can achieve goals that are set for organizational success.

The organizations social systems are made up of many complex sets of human behavior and relationships that interact in many ways within the workplace and also in the businesses world they face every day. These working groups can be comprised of like-minded individuals, a diverse group of individuals, or a group of specialized skilled individuals who are developed by management to achieve one common goal in the organization or project at hand.

Balancing the rights of each individual in the workplace is sometimes difficult for the employer since most organizational goals are set to be achieved through group effort. People become dependent on established cultural systems that gives each individual stability, understanding, security, and the ability to respond to any given situation.

Working Groups impose certain expectations and rules on each individual member of the team which can expose the weaker member’s lack of shared responsibilities. This can affect the working teams set goals that must be met by everyone involved in the group’s effort to get every detail finished and accomplished.

Employer’s views on Group Behavior Quality Management Systems within the workplace will become the key element that will measure the success or failure of an organization. Individual attitudes within the workplace can reflect a person’s likes/dislikes toward other co-workers and management within his or her working environment. Supervisors and managers must understand how workplace group behavior can be inspired to increase productivity, motivation and product quality by establishing a secure and stable group environment that can be managed effectively and minimally.

The Manager – Worker relationship is usually influenced by management’s egoistic needs that are mainly governed by two types: the needs that relate to the leader’s reputation, such as recognition, status, respect of associates, and appreciation; and those that relate to self-confidence, achievement, decision making, self-esteem and knowledge. Management is not usually designed to help employees satisfy their human needs in a manner that will create healthy working environments.

If management and high level leadership in the corporate world will develop more like minded, working group environments; employee’s will experience fewer frustrations and will devote more time and commitment to their production processes.

These motivating factors I have listed would be aimed to benefit the organization as a whole and not slow down productivity through dis-satisfied and non-productive employees. 1. Altruism – is concerned with being of help to other people. Help of a practical nature can be a psychological or emotional kind. 2. Productivity – Efficiency managed by a productive management team will help minimize the working relationship gap that will usually exist between average employees and productive employees.

3. Self-Development – This motive can show concern by helping to develop individual skills and abilities that can be used as a plus in the working group. 4. Team Building Events – Managers who schedule team building events will see more productivity and motivation in their groups efforts to achieve its goals. 5. Staff morale – This motivator will help management build their teams and groups effectively, if they practice boosting morale within the working group environments. High morale is one of the major components in the workforce.

Traditional Management is no longer practiced within today’s workforce. This style of management focuses on using the majority of the time working with and through people. The working individual now has to become a skillful psychologist, since most of what people do on a daily basis, is shaping the behavior of others. Whether you are a manger or subordinate, you are only successful as a group effort if each individual has skills at motivation, interpersonal influence, working together with peers, good communication with individuals and superiors.

Managers are reflections on each working individual and their style of leadership will determine the quality of groups they orchestrate to build organizational power, growth and success. New management styles tend to base their success on feedback from individuals bottom line performance. Management believes that everyone’s performance is important and should be aligned with the organization’s values, vision, and strategic priorities. The Employees View

Today’s corporate world calls for effective and efficient working professionals that will go beyond their comfort zones to build good working interpersonal relationships at work that help all workers understand their role and target goals that contributes to the strategic vision of the organization. Healthy interpersonal relationships in team members will enhance favorable working environments and keep morale strong as teamwork progress toward one common goal. The culture of an organization is a very important and powerful element when that shapes working relationships, work enjoyment, and teamwork progress. Not every working individual has the psychological make-up that enhances the workplace and makes way for an enjoyable teamwork environment.

Some employee’s feel that working in a team group causes blurred vision between the self and others which causes a mixture of anxiety and false self. Working in close-knit work relationships can be positive or negative depending on the culture of the organization and how management governs the project or goal at hand. Each individual adopts a role on behalf of the working group which functions as a team looking to achieve one common goal. If a certain team member is not using his or hers interpersonal relationship skills, then the goal of the team can be hindered and unprogressive, leaving a negative impact on the team’s functionality and creativity.

Several issues emerged as a result of the employee’s lack of fulfillment in the teamwork environment. Employees who are not prone to building interpersonal relationships can assume a particularly negative team role, or scapegoat role, where the team member can take on the entire responsibility or guilt of the working group if they chose not to produce as required by the working group and management. Interpersonal relationships are very important when it comes to teamwork and effective production levels within the organization.

Management should be aware of certain individuals that do not possess the interpersonal or relational skills it takes to be a good and effective team member. Team building events can be very effective when it comes to helping individuals achieve certain career goals and team building skills. Each individual brings diversity and creativity to the total work group, and should therefore be treated fairly and carefully, to bring a positive outcome to all working groups that are looking to achieve a common product or goal.

Developing Group Norms Each employer has an obligation to ensure all of his or her employees are working toward achieving a common goal. This is to include any and all of the relationally challenged individuals in workplace. Some of these employees may not already be recognized as interpersonally challenged workers, and may need a personal assessment performed to calculate the degree of his or hers developmental needs. As the culture of the organization is important for productivity, the development of group norms should also be at the top of management’s organizational goals.

Successful communication between managers and employees can be critical components of group interaction and functioning. Some steps that an organization can take to adopt group norms can be very effective in managing group efforts that will produce one common goal. First, a session or team building event should be scheduled for all group members to attend.

This should be fun, exciting, motivating and positive in order for each individual to learn their particular roles and effectiveness they will bring to the common production goal at hand. Once this team building session is scheduled and established, the facilitator builds on each team member’s creativity and abilities to begin a common working environment for all to build reliance, trust and self-confidence.

A brainstorming session is vital to this team building process. This allows each individual to bring their personal thought processes and skills to the table of production. The more ideals generated the better. Recording these ideas on a large white flip chart or white board where everyone can see, will build upon the common goal management has tasked the working group with.

Ensuring positive and effective communication and keeping commitments are very essential to teamwork efforts. Each member of the group is committed to living the guidelines that is set in motion. The team should commit to confiding in each other if they think a group member is in violation of the agreed upon “group norm”. A list of all group norms should be distributed to each team member and posted in a common area like the team’s meeting room.

These group norms that were established should be periodically reevaluated and implemented to ensure the effectiveness of the groups common goals and achievements. Keeping management updated and informed of the groups progress can be a big plus to each individual as evaluation time rolls around to show the team members how effective and productive they were in achieving the common goal that was tasked as a group effort.

Conclusion Today, the major task within the working groups is communication and team building sessions that will bring everyone together to build interpersonal relationship skills with other coworkers, to show each individual the importance and effectiveness of working together as a team. One of the most important things to remember when it comes to team development and team building is to consider that effective teams are developing organisms. Each team goes through stages of development the same way plants and animals do. The Wheelen’s Integrated Model of group development describes the evolution the group evolves through. The model shows the groups progression from immaturity to maturity in four stages.

The first stage is modeled after a toddler or young child. These newly created members of the working team are insecure and unsure of themselves, the group and its structure. This new group will need instruction, guidance and direction to establish a routine that will help each member gain security and stability in their individual roles that will enable them to move toward their next stage.

The groups’ second stage is similar to middle school. These easy to recognize issues are prone to rear its ugly head. Lots of disagreements; subgroups and cliques emerge where some of the members will show discontent and resentment toward the leader. This makes the leader frustrated with the group of workers since no matter what he or she tries to do, will always add up to “wrong”. Stage two can be compared to teen years.

For leadership or management, this stage is critical in the team building adventure. This is the time to give each member the opportunity to take on a larger role, and not the time to relinquish authority or rewrite the script on power. As the group matures into stage three, it will soon learn what it takes to accomplish the group’s task at hand. At stage three, each working individual will have to give equal weight to what and how they will work within the group’s efforts. This stage allows for individuals to fine-tune their roles and form positive partnerships and coalitions. Each member masters this part of the stage and the group can now move effortlessly into stage four.

It is great to see working groups progress into stage four. They are focused on the process it takes to carry out the work. This stage characterizes the independence of the leader and trickles down to each individual that is working toward the goal of completion. The team learns delegation skills from the leader and this relationship now resembles that of the adult-child or older parent relationship. The leader is dedicated and consulted as needed, for clarification and feedback that results in the final decision of the group.

As working groups learn what it takes to work together effectively, this integrated model of group development will help organizations to achieve effective teams that are armed with knowledge, interpersonal skills, individual creativity that allows everyone to work together. Working as a team will help build effective products and services that will show a quality that cannot be produced by one person, but built upon by an effective group of individuals who learned how to come together to achieve one common organizational goal.

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