Group development is a dynamic process. This process involves five step-wise stages. These stages include forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning. All these stages have distinct characteristics. However, in this paper, I will explore the characteristics of the final stage of group development and the role of group leaders in group functioning and transition.
The final stage of group development is group termination or adjourning where members prepare to dissolve the group (Corey, Corey & Corey, 2016). This phase often occurs after the team has accomplished its intended purpose. Members often react differently to this process. Some members may feel excited and have the feeling of accomplishment for having fulfilled the purpose for which the group was created while others may feel sad for the loss of friendships (Corey, Corey & Corey, 2016). Likewise, members may also be less involved in group activities in anticipation of the adjournment of the group (Corey, Corey & Corey, 2016). Lastly, members may open up on future ventures such as using the group for another project in the future or make arrangements for follow-up meetings and hold each other accountable for their contribution to the team's current performance.
Similarly, group leaders play an important role in ensuring a smooth transition of the group during the termination phase and the accomplishment of team projects. First, group leaders help members to rework unfinished business by offering guidance, assigning the remaining duties, or personally doing some of the unaccomplished tasks (Griffin, 2008). Secondly, the group leaders lead members in an evaluation exercise where members review their experiences within the group and identify positive behavior that may be used in the future. Such behaviors include cohesiveness and confidentiality. Moreover, group leaders dedicate some time for the group to celebrate its achievement or rather accomplishment of the project (Griffin, 2008). During the celebrations, members are provided with the opportunity to bid each other farewell and wish each other success in future endeavors hence addressing feelings of separation or rather sadness.
In summary, group termination is like mourning. Members are faced with feelings of sadness and the cohesiveness that was visible during the performing stage fades away in this phase. Members begin to abscond duty and if the group leader fails to intervene business may remain unfinished, thus, group leaders need to guide their teams through this phase to ensure tasks are completed, positive behavior is reinforced and each member walks away feeling satisfied.
Corey, M., Corey, G., & Corey, C. (2016). Group: Process and practice (10th ed.). Cengage Learning.
Griffin, R. (2008). Fundamentals of management: core concepts and application (5th ed.). Boston [u.a.]: Houghton Mifflin.
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