Group dynamics is a process
The September session of Leadership Menomonee Falls will talk about history and group dynamics. When you think about it; these topics go well together. As long as people have been gathering to work, play or live together, they have had to deal with the dynamics of other people.
In the history session we will learn how our village was formed, what trials we endured, what successes we created together and most of all where we came from.
The group dynamics portion of our day will be spent discussing the types of people who make up groups as well has the stages that groups go through in becoming high performing teams and team members.
Here is a little story:
My daughter Katie had an awesome opportunity to intern for a company in Australia over the summer. This was probably the opportunity of a lifetime. She wanted it to be perfect. However, she was going to be the newest, least educated and only American on her team.
She arrived at the office on the first day, nervous, excited, and afraid I am sure. She called me at lunch to tell me they were nice, BUT, they all seemed to know what to do and how everything worked. She didn’t feel like she fit in. My advice of course-hang in there for a few days it will get better once you are not so new to the team.
And of course it got better. Katie started to learn the expectations of her and the group, she started to understand some of the unspoken rules, and she learned who the go-to people were. She found out what their normal was. She called all excited to tell me it was going to be just fine. My words that time were “Okay honey”.
I knew those things would change-- and of course they did. The next phone call I received was a panic filled call about a deadline, a miscommunication, having to work late, and no one caring about what she thought. This I told her was the opportunity. The opportunity all team members face…the opportunity to “storm” to the challenge. This is the time you will define yourself as part of the team or you will choose to stay on the outside. The choice was up to her.
She chose well. She worked late and completed the project. The next day she spoke to the team leader and discussed how it could work better the next time, and how she was glad to be a part of the process. She was in--she worked through the challenge and she earned the right to be a part of the team.
After that day there were more challenges but none that were as scary, as they had worked through many challenges already. Katie and the team worked as a high performing team to achieve great success for the company, the client, and each other.
This little story is just a microcosm of what we all face on a daily basis in dealing with other people. Just knowing it is a process that must be gone through is sometimes all we need to know.
Posted by Ruth Graczkowski at 08:35 AM.
Filed under: Group Dynamics LMF