- 10 Steps to Group Success -
Take time to get acquainted---create
a phone tree, exchange email, discuss individual schedules, break the “newness”
2. Decide on norms for group
member behavior—how late
is late? What should members do if they are going to miss a meeting? How many
meetings can members miss?
3. Clarify the task
assigned. Review criteria in the assignment handout. Make sure you
agree on what’s involved/expected. Ask the instructor when in doubt.
4. Create structured
meetings—have agendas that include action and/or discussion items
with responsible group members names attached. Distribute agendas several days
before meetings. Create timelines for the project.
5. Create a
supportive environment in the group—through verbal and
participation of all members by having all members
express ideas in a round robin method, using written comments, or rotating the
7. Decide by
consensus rather than majority voting whenever possible.
Be creative—combine ideas and find common ground.
accountability measures—make sure all members are aware
of rewards and penalties for their behavior. Deal with harmful trends quickly - non-supportive behavior does not
“get better on its own.”
9. Take time at the
end of each meeting to assess progress, assign tasks and evaluate timelines. Be
realistic in your assessments, groups that just hope things will “work out” do
not generally succeed.
10. Accept that groups
go through natural stages of development—some of which are unpleasant and
uncomfortable—refuse to be a victim to circumstance
or other members’ problematic behavior; understand
that the absence of conflict is a bad sign!