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Mgt 311 Week 3 Student Guide

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Week Three Student Guide

In Week Three, you start to learn about the foundations of group behavior, the stages of group development, the various types of work teams, the difference between groups and teams, and how to create effective teams. You also learn about more about conflict in organizations through the different conflict-handling intentions and the negotiation process, and you learn more about the conflict process as a whole.

Groups and Teams

OBJECTIVE: Determine strategies to develop effective groups and teams.

Resources: Ch. 9–10 of Organizational Behavior


• Ch. 9: Foundations of Group Behavior

o Defining and Classifying Groups – we define a group as two or more individuals, interacting and interdependent, who have come together to achieve particular objectives. Informal group, command group, task group, interest group, friendship groups

• Why do People Form Groups? Gives a sense of social identity

o Stages of Group Development – groups generally pass through a predictable sequence in their evolution

• The Five-Stage Model – Forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning.

• An Alternative Model for Temporary Groups with Deadlines – 1) their first meeting sets the group’s direction. 2) this first phase of group activity is one of inertia; 3) a transition takes place at the end of this phase, which occurs exactly when the group has used up half its allotted time; 4) a transition intitiates major changes; 5) a second phase of inertia follows the transition; and 6) the group’s last meeting is characterized by markedly accelerated activity. This ithe punctuated equilibrium model.

o Group Properties: Roles, Norms, Status, Size, and Cohesiveness

• Group Property 1: Roles – a set of expected behavior patterns attributed to someone occupying a given position in a social unit. • Group Property 2: Norms – all groups have established norms – acceptable standards of behavior shared by their members that express what they ought and ought not to do under certain circumstances. • Group Property 3: Status – a socially defined position or rank given to groups or group members by others – permeates every society • Group Property 4: Size – the size of a group has a great affect on the group’s overall behavior. Evidence suggests smaller groups are faster at completing tasks than larger ones. Except in problem solving • Group Property 5: Cohesiveness – the degree to which members are attracted to each other and motivated to stay in the group. Some groups are cohesive because the members have spent a great deal of time together or the group’s small size facilitates high interaction

o Group Decision Making – today many decisions in organizations are made by groups, teams or committees.

• Groups versus the Individual – if group members have diverse backgrounds, the alternatives generated should be more extensive and the analysis more critical. When the solution is agreed on, there are more people in a group decision to support and implement it. These pluses however can be more than offset by the time consume by group decisions, the internal conflicts they create, and the pressures they generate toward conformity. In some case therefore, individuals can be expected to make better decisions than groups.

• Groupthink and Groupshift – Groupthink relates to norms, describes situations in which group pressures for conformity deter the group from critically appraising unusual minority or unpopular views. Groupshift describes the way in discussing a given set of alternatives and arriving at a solution, group members tend to exaggerate the initial positions they hold. Managers can minimize group think by monitoring group size, encouraging group leaders to play an impartial role.

• Group Decision-Making Techniques – The most common form of group decision making takes place in interacting groups. Members meet face to face and rely on both verbal and nonverbal interaction to communicate. Brainstorming can overcome pressures for conformity that dampen creativity by encouraging any and all alternatives wile withholding criticism. Nominal group technique restricts discussion or interpersonal communication during the decision making process, hence the term nominal. Group members are all present but they operate independently. Electronic meeting a computer assisted group – where up to 50 people sit around a horseshoe-shaped table, empty except for a series of networked laptops. Issues are presented to them and they type their responses into their computers.

o Global Implications o Summary and Implications for Managers

• Ch. 10: Understanding Work Teams

o Why Have Teams Become So Popular? As organizations have restructured themselves to compete more effectively and efficiently they have turned to teams as a better way to use employee talents. Teams are more flexible and responsive to changing events than traditional departments or other forms of permanent groupings

o Differences Between Groups and Teams a work group is a group that interacts primarily to share information and make decisions to help each member perform within his or her area of responsibility. A work team generates positive synergy through coordinated effort, These individual efforts result ina level of performance greater than the sum of those individual inputs. o Types of Teams – teams can make products, provide services, negotiate deals, coordinate projects, offer advice, and make decisions.

• Problem-Solving Teams – members share ideas or suggest how work processes and methods can be improved; they rearely have the authority to unilaterally implement any of their suggestions. • Self-Managed Work Teams – are groups of employees (typically 10-15 in number) who perform highly related or interdependent jobs and take on many of the responsibilities of their former supervisors. Typically these tasks are planning and scheduling work, assigning tasks to members making operating decisions, taking action on problems, and working with suppliers and customers. • Cross-Functional Teams – made up of employees from about the same hierarchical level but different work areas, who come together to accomplish a task.

• Virtual Teams – use computer technology to unite physically dispersed members and achieve a common goal. They allow people to collaborate online – using communication links such as wide-area networks, video conferencing, or email.

o Creating Effective Teams – we can organize the key components of effective teams into three general categories.

• Context: What Factors Determine Whether Teams Are Successful – Adequate resources, leadership and structure, climate of trust, performance evaluation and reward systems. The four contextual factors most significantly related to team performance are adequate resources, effective leadership, a climate of trust, and a performance evaluation, and reward system that reflects team contributions. • Team Composition – abilities of members, personality, allocating roles, diversity, size of teams, member flexibility, member preferences. The team composition category includes variable that relate to how teams should be staffed. – the ability and personality of team members , allocation of roles and diversity, size of the team, and members’ preference for teamwork.

• Team Processes – common purpose, specific goals, team efficacy, conflict levels, social loafing. The final category related to team effecitiveness is process variables such as member commitment to a common purpose, establishment of specific team goals, team efficacy, a managed level of conflict, and minimized social loafing. These will be especially important in larger teams, and in teams that are highly interdependent.

o Turning Individuals Into Team Players

• Selecting: Hiring Team Players • Training: Creating Team Players • Rewarding: Providing Incentives to Be a Good Team Player

o Beware! Teams Aren’t Always the Answer o Global Implications o Summary and Implications for Managers

OBJECTIVE: Determine strategies to resolve conflict within organizations.

Resources: Ch. 14 of Organizational Behavior


• 14: Conflict and Negotiation

o A Definition of Conflict o Transitions in Conflict Thought

• The Traditional View of Conflict • The Interactionist View of Conflict • Resolution Focused View of Conflict

o The Conflict Process

• Stage I: Potential Opposition or Incompatibility • Stage II: Cognition and Personalization • Stage III: Intentions • Stage IV: Behavior • Stage V: Outcomes

o Negotiation

• Bargaining Strategies • The Negotiation Process • Individual Differences in Negotiation Effectiveness • Third-Party Negotiations

o Global Implications

• Conflict and Culture • Cultural Differences in Negotiations

o Summary and Implications for Managers…...

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