Software development

The Stages Of Group Formation, And How They Aid Your Teams Success

Initially, they might not understand each other’s expectations and roles. Even so, they’ll still need to collaborate and divide roles and responsibilities to ensure the project gets completed on time. Team development is the structured process of bringing together a group of diverse individuals and teaching them to appreciate their differences as they work towards a shared goal.

formation stage of team building

For example, “Do just enough to get by,” “Every person for themselves,” “Coach plays favorites,” are all norms and attitudes that have prevented teams from reaching their potential. Teams with poor standards continually keep themselves from progressing. Forming is the first stage and occurs as your players begin each new season. Your returning players are a year older and your new freshmen and/or transfers are trying to figure out what is going on. This initial stage involves excitement as well as uncertainty because some players are not even sure if they are going to make the final cuts.

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Compiled below is a list of just five project management tools to help your team better integrate and communicate. This phase might turn out to be a nightmare, if not handled carefully. The differences of ideas, feelings, and opinions will be expressed here for the first time.

Team members work alone, rarely sharing information and offering assistance. Team members “throw work over the wall” to other team members, with lack of formation stage of team building concern for timelines or work quality. Its Importance For Productivity If you question someone who has achieved significant success, they will tell…

Even though people are generally social and work is something of an afterthought during forming, it’s wise to use this stage as an opportunity to set your team up for success. Also known as a responsibility assignment matrix, a RACI chart documents who is responsible for what and when deliverables are due. The success of your team development efforts depends on the tools you use. You need to invest in tools that enhance team development meetings, workshops, and training. The efficiency-obsessed virtual meeting tool is designed to foster a culture of connection in your teams.

  • It allows you to enjoy a seamless workflow that enhances your team’s productivity.
  • The norming stage of team development is like a months-old couple that accepts each other’s quirks and flaws.
  • It’s best to set clear expectations at every stage so that the team has seamless alignment when proceeding to the next.
  • In this phase, everyone is 100 percent sure about their individual roles and who the team leader is.
  • Then, the participants should respond to each word by moving forward if it induces a positive response or backward if it induces a negative response.
  • Many team members are more productive in norming as are the majority of teams.

Others know they will make the team but are unsure about the role they might play. Experienced players will be trying to get a feel for the newcomers in an attempt to see if they can help the team or if their position might be threatened. Many people experience the feeling of loss when their group disbands. Not only will they miss the work they were doing, but team members will also mourn the loss of the relationships they’ve established with other members of their group. The longer a group works together, the greater the sense of loss might be.

Team Building Stages: 5 Steps

Making a team or group is exactly like maintaining a healthy relationship. Just like a relationship, every member of the group has to be patient, give relentless efforts, and also requires support and understanding from the other members of the group. Every member changes from being a collection of strangers to a united group with a common goal.

formation stage of team building

In this activity, the participants need to brainstorm ideas on any given topic within the specified time. The topic can be anything related to work or a real-life problem. By studying this theory and being able to spot the stages in real life, you can prepare yourself for what lies ahead and how best to tackle it. However, having positive shared experiences will make it easier if you work with some of these people again. At this stage, looking to a strong leader for guidance is vital. They enjoy each other’s company – both while working on the project and after hours via communicating on email, instant messaging, on Twitter, or over the telephone.

Team Building Exercises For The Storming Stage

The stage can cause uncertainty, especially among team members who are unsure about their subsequent roles. Thus, leaders should be supportive and help members transition smoothly into the new roles. Although members understand each other, conflicts may still arise at the norming stage of team development. Nonetheless, the conflicts can’t spiral into dysfunction because the team has gelled. Members have a more profound commitment to each other and the project’s completion, so it’s easier to handle conflicts.

Accomplishments in team process or progress are measured and celebrated. Behaviors during the Norming stage may include members making a conscious effort to resolve problems and achieve group harmony. There might be more frequent and more meaningful communication among team members, and an increased willingness to share ideas or ask teammates for help. Team members refocus on established team groundrules and practices and return their focus to the team’s tasks. Teams may begin to develop their own language or inside jokes.

formation stage of team building

This stage is not avoidable; every team – most especially a new team who has never worked together before – goes through this part of developing as a team. In this stage, the team members compete with each other for status and acceptance of their ideas. They have different opinions on what should be done and how it should be done – which causes conflict within the team.

Once your group moves past the chaos involved in the aptly named storming phase, your team will land in the norming stage. Compared to the phase that came before it, norming is a mostly enjoyable stage where a sense of, you guessed it, normalcy finally kicks in. Instead, it’s about doing the assigned work, achieving goals, and pushing yourself and others forward. If someone is unhappy with the way you resolved a conflict but what you did was for the team’s greater good, so be it. When part of a team stops working while others keep up the hard work, stress and conflict are usually the result.

Stage 4: Performing

Nelson Mandela once said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” While Mandela’s quote is certainly inspiring, it doesn’t mean forming a high-performing team is an easy task. Getting a team to gel, so to speak, takes time, effort, compromise, and the commitment to overcome what may seem impossible at the start at least. Challenges have a minimal impact on team performance and morale because members have strategies for resolving them without compromising project timelines and progress. A team’s performance is at peak capacity at this stage because everyone has learned to identify and leverage each other’s strengths for the common good. Getting everyone on the same wavelength sounds easy on paper, but that isn’t the case.

formation stage of team building

You may even want to alert your team to the fact that not everyone is going to agree and like each other 100% of the time and that this is a normal and necessary part of team development. The biggest key is how constructively your team handles the inevitable conflict. Typically, we take time on the front end to teach our players some conflict management skills in an effort to weather the Storming stage. It involves a challenging yet critical transition from the laid-back forming stage.

In the storming stage, it’s necessary to manage conflicts and direct the teams towards your company goals. For this reason, exercises that focus on conflict resolution, communication, problem solving, and trust building are desirable. Remember that at any time this team could revert back to a previous stage. To avoid sliding back into a previous stage, team leads must respond to major changes and the damaging results they may yield quickly. When a leader does that successfully, the person’s team my stay in the performing phase indefinitely.

The Top 22 Team

She is Partner/VP Strategic Solutions at Peak Performance Group, Inc. in Gloucester, Massachusetts. She has been honored by PMI® as one of the Power 50 and has served as Chair of PMI®s Global Corporate Council Leadership Team. She has presented at various conferences on topics ranging from general management and leadership topics to project management software. Gina received her MBA from Simmons Graduate School of Management. It is important to remember that every team – regardless of what the team is working on – will follow these stages of team development. It is the job of the team leader to help see the team through these stages; to bring them to the point where they are working as effectively as possible toward a common goal.

At the same time, Sarah was arguing with Ameya over who should lead the database design and development effort for this project. If she knew Ameya was going to be the lead, she wouldn’t have bothered joining this project team. Additionally, Mohammed appears to be off and running on his own, not keeping the others apprised of progress nor keeping his information up to date on the SharePoint site. No one really knows what he has been working on or how much progress is being made. Groups that don’t go through each stage will struggle to become a high-performing team compared to units that experience all five developmental stages.

For more advice, check out these lists of team building books and team building tips. This is a change management exercise that can reduce resistance to change. After a few seconds, ask them to cross their arms the other way. This activity helps to improve the adaptability skills of your employees. Here you need to ask your teams to draw their dream workplace on a flipchart. The members should only communicate by writing, not verbally.

The principal work for the team during the Forming stage is to create a team with clear structure, goals, direction and roles so that members begin to build trust. During the Forming stage, much of the team’s energy is focused on defining the team so task accomplishment may be relatively low. The team building exercises have gone well; everyone participated and seemed to enjoy the exercises. The team lead on this project is Sandra from the Chicago office who has 15 years experience as a project manager/team lead managing process improvement projects. The adjourning stage ends the process of the formation of a group.

In this activity, the participants need to plan a trip with the help of available resources. For this, you need to provide them a map of any location and also a list of information such as type of car, price of fuel, etc. Then, the teams need to come up with a wonderful plan that fits their budget. This is one of the interesting activities to strengthen the bond between colleagues. In this activity, each person needs to discuss a bad experience that they had in their personal life or at work. Then, the teammates should analyze the issue and suggest the positives that can be taken from it.

In any team, members can’t work in tandem if there’s no chemistry between. A team’s effectiveness gets enhanced by a commitment to ongoing growth and development. That’s particularly for new teams because members need to get acquainted with each other first before they start to work towards the common goal.

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