The Forgotten Group Member

Case Study 7: The Forgotten Group Member Developed by Franklin Ramsoomair, Wilfred Laurier University The group is in storming stage right now. Every member of the group is in tension. Unannounced meeting shows that they are forming cliques. They could have easily informed every member of the group to discuss the project. Christine, the leader of the group could have managed the team in a better way. Group in this stage need more communication, training, supervision, and controlling. But she did not provide any of it. Knowing the stages of group development was also an issue within Christine’s team.

The team never went through the forming stage. They never got to know one another. Clear expectations were not set amongst the group. Frankly, Christine probably wasn’t a good pick for the team lead because of the ongoing distractions she was experiencing with her grades in school. That was more important to her, not the team’s success. Janet or Steve would have been a better choice for the team’s leader. Basically, this group never got passed the storming stage. Christine never took the time to evaluate the situation. She just preceded status quo.

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The group is facing many problems. The main problem is, Christine is not an effective leader for the group. She didn’t assign work to the team or we can say the team never went through the forming stage. They never got to know each other. Even Christine did not know her team very well and did not take any steps to improve it. No clear work was assigned to the team members, no meeting were set in advance. Christine failed to cater to everyone’s need within the group which was evident because necessary steps weren’t taken to ensure Mike would be able to join the team for meetings.

Christine failed to pack them in. Had she paired Mike up with Janet whose more reliable and always over achieve when it comes to the group Mike would not have felt excluded from the group. She could have even paired Mike with Steve who’s more businesslike being that he ensures that things are on point and according to plan for the teams meetings. She failed to promote creativity and definitely lacked communication within the group. With the latest technology, other means of communication should have been used as a resource.

She could have suggested or used video conferencing, teleconference, or simply resulted to a simple email or chat to delegate tasks for the group’s project which ties into the constant communication with the group. Communication can make or break any relationship, especially in the workplace. The failed communication was evident when members didn’t know the team was meeting. Everyone should have been informed of all upcoming meetings well in advance so they would have been prepared to be in attendance and effectively contribute to the team’s project during the meetings.

This could have promoted creativity, innovation, and initiative amongst all group members which would have resulted in group motivation. Christine did more managing tasks and not leading the group. A good leader would do things somewhat differently when compared to a manager. I’d prefer a leader when picking someone to build a team for this task based on my thread earlier. I personally think that leaders have more motivational traits versus managers. I have been in both shoes.

To summarize the difference between Christine’s traits versus that of an effective leader I have provided a useful table that will help summarize the differences and really drive home what it takes to be an effective leader. Upon reviewing the characteristics below of a leader versus a manager by subject matter you will get a clearer picture. This is a very useful table that I came across while researching this topic for our class discussion threads. Based on this information, managers tend to have more demotivating traits while leaders have more motivating traits. I would rather have a leader!

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