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Chapter 11 The Nature of Work Groups and Teams

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1 Chapter 11 The Nature of Work Groups and Teams

2 Chapter Objectives Describe the different types of work groups and the difference between a group and a team Appreciate the characteristics of work groups and their effects on the behavior of group members Describe how groups control their members through roles, rules, and norms

3 Chapter Objectives Appreciate the need for conformity and deviance in groups and why and how group goals need to be aligned with organizational goals Understand the socialization process and how socialization tactics can result in an institutionalized or an individualized role orientation

4 When Is A Group A Group? Interactivity Mutual Goal
Groups are the basic building blocks of an organization. There are two basic attributes that define a group. Members of a group interact with each other, so that one person’s actions affect and are affected by another person’s. Members of a group perceive that there is the potential for mutual goal accomplishment – that is, group members perceive that by belonging to the group they will be able to accomplish certain goals or meet certain needs. A group is a set of two or more people who interact with each other to achieve certain goals or meet certain needs.

5 Types of Work Groups Formal Work Groups Command Groups Task Forces
Teams Self- Managed Work Teams One way to classify groups is by whether they are formal or informal. Formal work groups help the organization to achieve its goals. The goals of a formal work group are determined by the needs of the organization. Figure 10.1 illustrates the types of formal and informal work groups. The informal work groups are shown on the next slide. A command group is a collection of subordinates who report to the same supervisor. They are frequently represented on organizational charts as departments. A task force is a collection of people who come together to accomplish a specific goal. Once the goal is accomplished, the group is usually disbanded. A team is a formal work group in which there is a high level of interaction among group members who work intensely together to achieve a common group goal. A self-managed team is a team with no manager or team member assigned to lead the team.

6 Types of Work Groups Informal Work Groups Friendship Groups Interest
A friendship group is a collection of organizational members who enjoy each other’s company and socialize with each other (often both on and off the job). Friendship groups help meet employees’ needs for social interaction, can be an important source of social support, and can contribute to employees’ experiencing positive moods at work and being satisfied with their jobs. Members of an organization form interest groups when they have a common goal or objective that they are trying to achieve by uniting their efforts. Interest groups are often formed in response to pressing concerns among certain members of the organization.

7 Figure 10.2 Five-Stage Model of Group Development
Forming Storming Norming This five-stage model of group development was proposed by Bruce Tuckman. During the forming stage, group members try to get to know each other and establish a common understanding. They struggle in this stage to clarify group goals and determine appropriate behavior within the group. Once individuals feel they are members of the group, the forming stage is complete. The storming stage is characterized by considerable conflict. Group members resist being controlled by the group and disagree about who should lead the group and how much power the leader should have. This stage is complete when group members no longer resist the group’s control. In the norming stage, members really start to feel like they belong to the group. Feelings of friendship are common in this stage. By the end of this stage, group members agree on standards to guide behavior in the group. When the performing stage is reached the group is ready to tackle group tasks and work toward achieving group goals. It can take a short time to reach this stage or it may take years. In the last stage, the group disband after accomplishing its goal. Ongoing work groups do not go through this stage. Performing Adjourning

8 Team Development: Stages Model
Adjourning Adjourning (Dissolution) Task completion and termination of roles Performing (Work) High task and goal orientation Norming (Structure) Cohesiveness and roles develop Storming (Conflict) Disagreement and tension among members Forming (Orientation) Members become familiar with each other Performing Norming Storming Forming Adapted from Exhibit 11-4: Models of Team Development

9 Team Development: Punctuated Equilibrium Model
First Stage: Norming Activities Focus on Socioemotional Roles Second Stage: Performing Activities Focus on Task Roles Task deadline approaches or half-way mark in teams’ tenure Adapted from Exhibit 11-4: Models of Team Development

10 Work Group Characteristics
Group Status Group Size Work Group Characteristics Group Composition Group Function Groups may range in size from 3 people to more than 20. It is an important determinant of how people behave. In making a decision about group size, an organization should balance the skill and resource advantages that large groups offer against certain disadvantages. The benefits of small versus large groups are provided on the next slide. Group composition refers to the characteristics of members of a group. Groups may be homogeneous or heterogeneous. The benefits of both are discussed on an upcoming slide. Group function is the work that a group performs as its contribution to the accomplishment of organizational goals. The function of a group affects behavior by letting the group members know how their work behaviors contribute to the organization’s achieving its goal. Group status is the implicitly agreed-upon, perceived importance for the organization as a whole of what a group does. Group efficacy is the shared belief group members have about the ability of the group to achieve its goals and objectives. Group efficacy develops over time. Social facilitation is the effects that the physical presence of others has on individual performance. This is discussed further in a later slide. Social Facilitation Group Efficacy

11 How Large Should A Group Be?
Benefits of Small Groups Regular interaction Ease of sharing information Recognition of individual contributions to group Strong identification with group Higher group satisfaction Benefits of Large Groups More resources Division of labor When groups are small, members are more likely to know one another and interact regularly. It is easy for them to share information, recognize individual contributions and identify with the group’s goals. Strong identification with the group can lead to increased motivation, commitment, and satisfaction with the group. Large groups may have little personal contact and the lower level of interaction makes sharing information difficult. However, larger groups have greater resources (including the skills, abilities, work experience, and knowledge of group members) and can reap the benefits of division of labor.

12 3 Social Loafing Social loafing: The tendency for individuals to exert less effort when they work in a group than when they work alone. Proposed causes of social loafing: Lack of connection between inputs and outcomes Perception that individual efforts are unnecessary or unimportant Both causes are linked with group size Sucker effect: A condition in which some group members, not wishing to be considered suckers, reduce their own efforts when they see social loafing by other group members.

13 Ways to Reduce Social Loafing
4 Ways to Reduce Social Loafing Make individual contributions identifiable Make individuals feel that they are making valuable contributions to a group Keep the group as small as possible

14 Avoiding Social Loafing
Make Individual Contributions Visible Evaluation system in which everyone’s individual contributions are noted Smaller rather than larger teams Monitor who oversees everyone’s contributions Foster Task Cohesiveness Team-level rewards to increase pressure Teamwork training to develop a sense of cohesiveness Select “team players” for teamwork High on agreeableness High on conscientiousness

15 Table 10.2 Group Composition
Benefits of Homogeneous groups Collegiality amongst group members Information sharing Low levels of conflict Few coordination problems Benefits of Heterogeneous groups Diversity of views represented High performance Variety of resources Group composition refers to the characteristics of members of a group. Members of a homogeneous group have many characteristics in common. Members of a heterogeneous group are characterized by diversity while homogeneous groups are characterized by similarity. It may be easier for a homogeneous group to function, but may not make decisions that are as good as a heterogeneous group. This is because the heterogeneous group has more points of view.

16 Group Function Communicates how work behaviors contribute to goal achievement Provides sense of meaning (task identity) To motivate group members to perform at a high level, managers should tell members how their activities, behaviors, and the group’s function contribute to organizational effectiveness.

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18 5 Advice to Managers Whenever feasible, make individual contributions or individual levels of performance in a group identifiable, and evaluate these contributions. When work is performed in groups, let each member know that he or she can make an important and worthwhile contribution to the group. When you are unable to evaluate individual contributions to a group, consider having group members evaluate each other’s contributions and rewarding group members on the basis of group performance. Keep work groups as small as possible while making sure that a group has enough resources (member knowledge, skills, experiences) to achieve its goals.

19 6 Task Interdependence Thompson’s model of group tasks helps managers identify Task characteristics that can lead to process losses. The most effective ways to distribute outcomes or rewards to group members to generate high motivation. The model is based on the concept of task interdependence, which is the extent to which the work performed by one member of a group affects what other members do. There are three types: Pooled Task Interdependence Sequential Task Interdependence Reciprocal Task Interdependence

20 7 Task Interdependence Pooled Task Interdependence: each member of a group makes separate and independent contributions to group performance. Sequential Task Interdependence: requires specific behaviors to be performed by group members in a predetermined order. Reciprocal Task Interdependence: the activities of all work group members are fully dependent on one another so that each member’s performance influences the performance of every other member of the group.

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22 9 Task Interdependence As task interdependence moves from pooled to sequential to reciprocal interdependence, the potential for process losses increases because Identifying individual performance becomes increasingly harder. Coordination becomes more difficult. The potential for process gains also increases as task interdependence becomes more complex because of the increased likelihood of synergy. Synergy: A process gain that occurs when members of a group acting together are able to produce more or better output than would have been produced by the combined efforts of each person acting alone.

23 10 Advice to Managers When a group task involves pooled interdependence, allocate individual tasks to group members to avoid duplication of effort, and evaluate individual levels of performance and reward group members for their individual performance. When a group task involves sequential interdependence, do as many of the following as feasible: Monitor on-the-job behaviors of group members. Reward group members for group performance. Assign workers with similar ability levels to the same group. Reward workers for good attendance. Have multiskilled workers available to fill in when needed. When a group task involves reciprocal interdependence, do as many of the following as feasible: Keep group size small. Make sure that each group member knows that he or she can make a contribution. Reward group members for group performance. Increase physical or electronic proximity of members. Encourage clear and open communication. Encourage members to help one another as needed.

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25 12 Signs of Cohesiveness Low cohesiveness: Information flows slowly within the group, the group has little influence over its members’ behavior, and the group tends not to achieve its goals. Moderate cohesiveness: Group members work well together, there is a good level of communication and participation in the group, the group is able to influence its members’ behavior, and the group tends to achieve its goals. Very high cohesiveness: Group members socialize excessively on the job, there is a very high level of conformity in the group and intolerance of deviance, and the group achieves its goals at the expense of other groups.

26 Factors Contributing to Group Effectiveness
Group Efficacy Group composition Ability to work well together Coordination of efforts Resources Shared information Development of effective strategies Group efficacy is the shared belief group members have about the ability of the group to achieve its goals and objectives. Group members consider the factors affecting group effectiveness when developing efficacy. Ultimately, group efficacy also affects the group’s effectiveness. Group efficacy does not exist when a group is first formed but develops over time.

27 Types of Social Facilitation Effects
Audience Effects Co-Action Effects Social facilitation is the effects that the physical presence of others has on an individual’s performance. There are two types of social facilitation effects. Audience effects are the effects of passive spectators on individual performance. Other group members are not engaged in the task itself but are present as an audience. Co-action effects are the effects of the presence of other group members on the performance of an individual when the other group members are performing the same task as the individual.

28 Figure 10.3 Social Facilitation
Presence of other group members enhances performance of repetitive tasks Presence of other group members impairs performance of difficult tasks When individuals are stimulated by the presence of other group members, their performance of difficult, complex, or novel tasks and behaviors is impaired. When individuals are performing well-learned tasks, the presence of others tends to enhance performance.

29 Group Member Control Mechanisms
Roles Rules Norms Groups must control – influence and regulate – its members’ behavior. Three mechanisms are useful: roles, rules, and norms. Roles and written rules are formal control mechanisms while norms are an informal control mechanism. A role is a set of behaviors or tasks that a person is expected to perform by virtue of holding a position in a group or organization. Certain rights and responsibilities are associated with each role. All of the behaviors expected of a role occupant are the role occupant’s responsibilities. Each role occupant also has rights or privileges. Roles facilitate control by telling members what they should be doing, providing the group standards for evaluation, and by helping managers to determine who performed behaviors and should be rewarded. The process of taking the initiative to create a role by assuming certain responsibilities that are not part of an assigned role is called role making. In contrast, role taking is the performance of responsibilities that are required as part of an assigned role. Role taking is the common process of assuming a formal organizational role. Rules are written guidelines for behavior. Rules are discussed on the next slide. Norms are informal rules of conduct for behavior that are considered important by most group members and are not put into writing. Groups enforce norms by rewarding members who conform to the norm and punishing those who deviate.

30 Advantages of Rules Ensure that members perform desired behaviors
Facilitate control of behavior Facilitate evaluation of individual performance Provide information for newcomers Rules are often called standard operating procedures. They have several advantages in controlling and managing group members’ behavior and performance. These advantages are described on the slide.

31 Why Do Group Members Conform to Norms?
Compliance Identification Internalization Compliance is the most widespread basis for conformity. It means assenting to a norm in order to attain rewards or avoid punishment. When individuals comply with a norm, they do not necessarily believe that the behavior specified by the norm is important for its own sake, but they believe that following the norm will bring certain benefits and ignoring it will bring certain costs. Identification means associating oneself with supporters of a norm and conforming to the norm because those individuals do. Internalization means believing that the behavior dictated by the norm is truly the right and proper way to behave. Although most group members are expected to conform to group norms, one or a few group members sometimes are allowed to deviate from the norms without being punished. These privileged individuals are generally group members who have contributed a lot to the group in the past. Their above average contributions to the group give them what has been termed idiosyncrasy credit. Idiosyncrasy credit is the freedom to violate group norms without being punished.

32 How Can Groups Respond to Deviants?
Attempt to change deviant Expel deviant Change norm Deviance occurs when a member of a group violates a group norm. Groups can respond to deviance by trying to get the deviant to change, by expelling the deviant from the group, or by changing the norm in question to be more in line with the deviant’s behavior. Conformity is good when it helps a group control and influence behavior so that the group can accomplish its goals. Groups can also encourage members to reduce levels of performance, though. A group of employees might develop norms that control the pace or speed at which work is performed. Employees who work too quickly may be called “rate busters.” Those who work very slowly may be called “goldbrickers” or “slackers.”

33 Figure 10.4 The Relationship Between Levels of Conformity and Deviance
Figure 10.4 illustrates the relationship between levels of conformity and deviance and group goal accomplishment. Goal accomplishment is highest when there is a moderate level of conformity and deviance.

34 Socialization and Role Orientation
Role Orientations Institutionalized Individualized Socialization is the process by which newcomers learn the roles, rules, and norms of a group. Role orientation is the characteristic way in which members of a group respond to various situations. John Van Mannen and Edgar Schein developed a model of socialization which describes the different ways in which groups can socialize their members to ensure proper learning of roles, rules, and norms. How groups socialize newcomers, in turn, influences the role orientation that newcomers adopt. Van Mannen and Schein identified six pairs of contrasting socialization tactics that influence a newcomer’s learning and role orientation. The use of different combinations leads to two different role orientations: institutionalized and individualized. In an institutionalized role orientation, newcomers are taught to respond to situations in the same way that existing group members respond to similar situations. This orientation encourages obedience and conformity to existing roles, rules, and norms. In an individualized role orientation, individuals are taught that it is acceptable and desirable to be creative and to experiment with changing how the group does things. The socialization tactics are summarized in Table 10.3 and listed on the next slide.

35 Table 10.3 Socialization Tactics
Tactics Leading To An Institutionalized Orientation Collective tactics Formal tactics Sequential tactics Fixed tactics Serial tactics Divestiture tactics Tactics Leading To An Individualized Orientation Individual tactics Informal tactics Random tactics Variable tactics Disjunctive tactics Investiture tactics When collective tactics are used newcomers go through a common learning experience designed to produce standardized or highly similar responses to different situations. When individualized tactics are used, newcomers are taught individually how to behave. Newcomers are encouraged to behave differently in the various situations they may encounter. When tactics are formal, newcomers are segregated from existing group members during the learning process. When tactics are informal, newcomers learn on the job as members of their new work group. When sequential tactics are used, newcomers are provided with explicit information about the sequences in which they will perform new behaviors. When random tactics are used, the order in which socialization proceeds is based on the interests and needs of individual newcomers. Fixed tactics give newcomers precise knowledge of the timetable associated with completing each stage in the learning process. Variable tactics provide no information about when newcomers will reach a certain stage in the learning process. When serial tactics are used, existing group members socialize newcomers. When disjunctive tactics are used, newcomers must figure out and develop their own way of behaving and are not told what to do by experienced group members. With divestiture tactics, newcomers receive negative interpersonal treatment from other members of the group. With investiture tactics, newcomers immediately receive positive social support from other group members.

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