Group Facilitation Journal LO26713

From: Sandor P Schuman (
Date: 05/22/01

Group Facilitation: A Research and Applications Journal
Issue Number 3
Special Issue on Group Development

Articles in this issue:

Group Development:A Review of the Literature and a
  Commentary on Future Research Directions
By George Smith

Abstract: The use of groups, and more specifically teams, in organizations
has been on the rise during the past decade. While many benefits have been
attributed to these organizational arrangements, few researchers and
practitioners have stepped back to look at the history and research
underlying many of the models that are used to understand and anticipate
group/team development. This paper takes a step in that direction as it
reviews many of the developmental models, their roots and patterns.

Group Newcomers: From Disruption to Innovation
By Marie A. Cini

One of the ways that groups change over time is through the introduction
of newcomers. However, group research has primarily focused on the
attempts of the existing group to socialize the newcomer, whereas the
effect of the newcomer on the group has been relatively less explored.
However, research on newcomer influence suggests that newcomers can
influence the group under certain conditions. Research on the power of the
(numerical) minority in groups has also uncovered some intriguing findings
regarding the positive effects a newcomer can have on a group. For groups
seeking to be more innovative and effective, newcomers may be an
overlooked source of innovation. Group facilitators can prepare the group
and the newcomer to maximize the potential of newcomer contributions.

Facilitating Team Development: A View from the Field
By John E. Jones & William L. Bearley

The purposes of this paper are to describe a guidance model for assisting
groups of people to generate the conditions of teamwork and to describe
the types of interventions that we have made in facilitating team
development in a wide array of groups internationally. We will lay out the
groundwork by commenting on differences between teams and groups and the
appropriateness of team building.

A Critical View of Facilitating Labor-Management Collaboration
By Grant T. Savage and Chadwick B. Hilton

Labor-management group facilitation is a complex but increasingly
necessary skill. Facilitators need both clear practice guidelines and an
understanding of why those guidelines are legitimate. To meet these needs
this paper first provides a descriptive (structural-functional) framework
for understanding the facilitator's role and the communicative practices
on which it is based. A critique of this framework is then proposed using
Habermas' theory of communicative action. From this theoretical critique,
group decision-making is viewed as both a negotiative and a dialogical
process, entailing an expanded appreciation of the facilitator's role.
In congruence with this theoretical stance, a set of directives for
facilitating consensual decision-making is proposed. A combined case and
discourse analysis of two labor-management groups' decision-making
processes illustrates the utility and implications of these directives.

Classics for Group Facilitators:

Developmental Sequence in Small Groups*
Bruce W. Tuckman

As group facilitators we are often concerned about the development of the
groups with which we work. Frequently we make reference to "the stages of
group development" and the stages most frequently cited are forming,
storming, norming and performing. These stages were proposed by Bruce
Tuckman in 1965 based on his examination of empirical research studies.
In this classic article, Developmental Sequence in Small Groups, we find a
rich description of these stages under a variety of settings as well as
their applicability to both group structure and task activity. In a
subsequent 1977 article, Stages of Small-Group Development Revisited,
Tuckman and coauthor Mary Ann Jensen noted that subsequent empirical
studies suggested a termination stage which they named adjourning. While
the table below summarizes the stages with a description of their
associated group structures and task activities, the original article
provides a much more complete understanding of their context, meaning, and
limitations. Although other articles in this special issue suggest the
limitations of "stage models" such as this, the memorability and
popularity of Tuckman's model make this article required reading for every
group facilitator.

Book Reviews

The Logic of Failure:
  Why Things Go Wrong and What We Can Do To Make Them Right
  by Dietrich Dorner.
Book review by Nancy S. Hewison

Success with Soul
  by Doris Pozzi and Stephen Williams
Book review by Judy Robb

The Dance of Change:
  The Challenges to Sustaining Momentum in Learning Organizations,
  by Peter Senge, Art Kleiner, Charlotte Roberts, Richard Ross,
  George Roth and Bryan Smith
Book Review by Patricia R. Tuecke

To purchase a copy contact:
International Association of Facilitators <>

For Call for Papers and Submision Guidelines visit:

For more information contact
Sandor P. Schuman, Editor
Group Facilitation: A Research and Applications Journal
University at Albany
Center for Policy Reesarch
Albany NY 12222 (518) 442-5889


Sandor P Schuman <>

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