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Understanding Group Processes

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1 Understanding Group Processes
PART IV Understanding Group Processes Chapter 7—Group and Team Dynamics Chapter 8—Group Cohesion Chapter 9—Leadership Chapter 10—Communication

2 Group and Team Dynamics
CHAPTER 7 Group and Team Dynamics

3 Session Outline Group and Team Dynamics How Groups and Teams Differ
Theories of Group Development Group Structure Creating an Effective Team Climate Social Support Individual and Team Performance in Sport Transition or Disengagement for Teams

4 Group and Team Dynamics
Why study groups? “Talent wins games, but teamwork wins championships”—NBA great Michael Jordan “Teamwork is the essence of life”—NBA coach Pat Riley Almost any position in the sport and exercise field requires understanding of the processes and dynamics of groups. To understand behavior in sport and physical activity, we must consider the nature of sport and exercise groups.

5 What Is a Group? Group A collection of interacting individuals who share  a collective identity,  a sense of shared purpose or objectives,  structured modes of communication,  personal or task interdependence (or both), and  interpersonal attraction.

6 How Groups and Teams Differ
A team is any group of individuals who must interact with each other to accomplish common goals. All teams are groups, but not all groups are teams. Team members have to depend on and support one another to accomplish shared objectives (they have interdependency and common goals).

7 Theories of Group Development
The linear perspective The cyclical (life cycle) perspective The pendular perspective

8 The Linear Perspective
Forming Familiarization, formation of interpersonal relationships, development of team structure Storming Rebellion, resistance to the leader and to control by the group, interpersonal conflict

9 The Linear Perspective
Norming Development of solidarity and cooperation, stabilization of team roles, effort to achieve economy of effort and effectiveness Performing Channeling of energies for team success

10 The Cyclical (Life Cycle) Perspective
Development of groups is similar to the life cycle—birth, growth, and death. Emphasis is on the terminal phase of the group’s existence. As the group develops, it psychologically prepares for its own breakup. This model is especially relevant for physical activity (exercise) groups and recreation teams that last 10 to 15 weeks.

11 The Pendular Perspective
Shifts occur in interpersonal relationships during the growth and development of groups. Groups do not progress through linear phases. Stages of group development: 1. Orientation 2. Differentiation and conflict 3. Resolution and cohesion 4. Differentiation and conflict 5. Termination

12 Group Structure Group Roles
Behaviors required or expected of a person occupying a certain position

13 Group Structure Formal Roles (e.g., Coach, Instructor, Captain)
Formal roles are dictated by the nature and structure of the organization. Informal Roles (e.g., Enforcer, Mediator) Informal roles evolve from the group’s dynamics or interactions among group members.

14 Group Structure Both role clarity and role acceptance are critical for team success. Role conflict exists when role occupant does not have sufficient ability, motivation, time, or understanding to achieve goal (e.g., “wears too many hats”).

15 Group Structure Group norms
A norm is a level of performance, pattern of behavior, or belief. Leaders need to establish positive group norms or standards (especially standards or norms of productivity). Positive norms are important to establish.

16 Group Structure Modifying team norms
The source of the communication is critical—more credible, better liked, similar, attractive, high-status, and powerful individuals are more effective persuaders. Speaking in a rapid (vs. slow, deliberate) manner increases persuasiveness. Modifying norms is more effective when both sides of argument are presented and there are multiple commonalities, novelty, and explicitly stated conclusions.

17 Creating an Effective Team Climate
Social support: Mutual respect and support enhance team climate. Proximity: closer contact promotes team interaction. Distinctiveness: The more distinctive the group feels, the better the climate. (continued)

18 Creating an Effective Team Climate
Fairness: Fairness—or a lack of it—can bring a group closer together. Similarity: Greater similarity = closer climate

19 Social Support Social Support
An exchange of resources between at least two people perceived by the provider and the recipient as intended to enhance the well-being of the recipient

20 Social Support Functions of social support
Provides appraisal, information, reassurance, and companionship Reduces uncertainty during times of stress Aids in mental and physical recovery Improves communication

21 Social Support Seven Types of Social Support 1. Listening support
2. Emotional support 3. Emotional-challenge support 4. Reality-confirmation support (continued)

22 Social Support Seven Types of Social Support
5. Task-appreciation support 6. Task-challenge support 7. Personal-assistance support

23 Individual and Team Performance in Sport
Basic Principle While individual ability is important, the individual abilities of team members alone are not good predictors of how a team will perform.

24 Individual and Team Performance in Sport
Steiner’s model Actual productivity = potential productivity – losses due to faulty group processes. Losses: 1. Motivation 2. Coordination

25 How Individual Skills Relate to Group Performance
The greater the need for cooperation and interaction in a task, the more the importance of individual ability decreases and the importance of group productivity increases. Teams of equal ability tend to play best.

26 The Ringelmann Effect Ringelmann Effect
The phenomenon by which individual performance decreases as the number of people in the group increases

27 Social Loafing Social Loafing
Individuals within a group or team putting forth less than 100% effort due to motivation losses

28 Conditions That Increase Social Loafing
An individual’s output cannot be independently evaluated. The task is perceived to be low on meaningfulness. An individual’s personal involvement in the task is low. A comparison against group standards is not possible. (continued)

29 Conditions That Increase Social Loafing
Other individuals contributing to the collective effort are strangers. Teammates or coworkers are seen as high in ability. Individual team members perceive their contribution to the outcome as redundant.

30 Eliminating Social Loafing
Emphasize the importance of individual pride and unique contributions. Increase identifiability of individual performances. Determine specific situations in which social loafing occurs. (continued)

31 Eliminating Social Loafing
Conduct individual meetings to discuss social loafing. Walk a mile in a teammate’s shoes. Break down the team into smaller units.

32 Transition or Disengagement for Teams
KEY QUESTION— How are teams affected by teammate departures (e.g., due to injury, graduation, cutting)?

33 Transition or Disengagement for Teams
Facilitating smooth transitions for teams 1. Clarify role differentiation. 2. Increase individual awareness of disengagement. 3. Facilitate group interaction. 4. Negotiate closure and new group development.

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