Help Your Team Understand What Stage They Are In


It illustrates how teams in different fields undergo five similar stages of group development. Understanding the stages of team development enables you to build successful and high-performing teams. In the performing stage, consensus and cooperation have been well-established and the team is mature, organized, and well-functioning. There is a clear and stable structure, and members are committed to the team’s mission. Problems and conflicts still emerge, but they are dealt with constructively. The team is focused on problem solving and meeting team goals.

This fifth stage of the Tuckman model, introduced later, refers to when high-performance teams must disband because they have fully fulfilled their mission. The leader will coach the team, encouraging the participation of the different workers, but within the boundaries of a climate of dialogue and assertiveness, which enriches the group. For this, it is crucial to work on the team’s values and define processes and structures that clarify group and individual functioning.

The challenge now is to move a bit faster while keeping the quality of your work high. Pose lots of questions to your team, even if you think you know the answer. Take a cue from the Atlassian Team Playbook and make time for these three activities.

Tuckman’s Stages Of Team Development

The imposing personalities in the team will become evident at this stage, especially when members start to share ideas openly. Those who stand out start to get accepted by their peers as potential leaders. Team leaders should implement measures for managing competition and potential conflict among members. They also need to streamline competition and ensure the projects they’re handling stay on track. Initially, they might not understand each other’s expectations and roles.

  • How can we prioritize our personal lives while excelling in our careers?
  • The scientific term is “social loafing,” and it’s a possibility for even high-performing teams when people get siloed into their specific responsibilities.
  • The forming stage involves a period of orientation and getting acquainted.
  • They begin to see the value in those differences on the team.
  • You don’t wait to be told how to do your job – you determine the best way to meet your objectives and get on with it.
  • At the storming stage, members will start to feel comfortable around each other, share ideas, and learn how their colleagues operate in a team setting.

Teams that are not working effectively together will display the characteristics listed below. The team leader will need to be actively involved with such teams. The https://globalcloudteam.com/ sooner the team leader addresses issues and helps the team move to a more effective way of working together, the more likely the project is to end successfully.

Module 8: Groups, Teams, And Teamwork

In addition, teams may work at varying rates based on issues and obstacles they may encounter, such as changing team members, tasks, and goals. With a thoughtful look at each stage of team development, you can solve problems before they derail the team. You cannot treat a team the same at each stage of its development because the stages dictate different support actions. These support actions, taken at the right time, will allow your teams to successfully meet their challenges. It’s important to note that while this model seems linear, teams can move back and forth between these phases. Each time a team experiences a change, the team is likely to move back into storming.

At times, norming might feel like after-school-special group therapy, but as we discovered in a recent survey, professionalism can’t patch over a team’s underlying emotional connections. Teams that stay in Norming are constantly working out things like communication preferences, recognition of achievements, and workflows. A deadline is missed, a launch doesn’t go as planned, or maybe it’s just that the workloads are heavy and it’s been too long since the last long weekend. Some team members may no longer be enthusiastic about all of the goals set out at the forming stage. Depending on the personalities and experiences of its members, a team may be able to absorb new elements with less friction.

We are dedicated to provide articles, detailed project management software reviews, PM book reviews, training and course reviews, and the latest news for the most popular web-based collaboration tools. Remember that at any time this team could revert back to a previous stage. Or, let’s assume that Mohammed slips back into his old ways of keeping to himself and not sharing information with the team – this may cause the team to revert back to the “storming” stage. Peter has put up the project schedule based on conversations with only Mohammed and Ameya on the team. Donna and Sarah feel as if their input to the schedule was not considered.

team formation stages

There will be a higher chance of realizing the project goals within the timelines set at the forming stage. At the adjourning stage, team members will be eager to collaborate again on other projects. An organization is only as strong as the teams it creates to handle various projects. For this reason, organizations should invest in team development since it impacts the bottom line significantly. Developing an effective team is akin to maintaining a garden.

Drive Continuous Feedback

While a number of these changes are to the benefit of the workforce, it can make team development more challenging for managers. Team dynamics and rapport may not develop naturally, as members don’t have a water cooler or coffee machine to interact around. This means it’s all the more important for managers and team leaders to prioritize and facilitate team development. It’s critical that virtual teams learn to collaborate and communicate effectively.

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. Storming often starts with conflicts, because team members have different experience and working styles.

team formation stages

For team members who do not like conflict, this is a difficult stage to go through. Team leaders will be glad to know that the storming phase will eventually come to an end if managed effectively and gives way to the norming stage. Now team members begin to pull together toward the common goal. These changes also mean that managers must reevaluate how they enable team development. While remote teams may be just as productive as a team sharing an office space, it can be more difficult to facilitate cohesion and build rapport between team members.

How To Help Your Team Progress Through The Stages Of Group Development

They begin to see the value in those differences on the team. In this stage, the team has agreed on their team rules for working together, how they will share information and resolve team conflict, and what tools and processes they will use to get the job done. The team members begin to trust each other and actively seek each other out for assistance and input. Rather than compete against each other, they are now helping each other to work toward a common goal. The team members also start to make significant progress on the project as they begin working together more effectively.

team formation stages

The five stages of team development go a long way in ensuring that your teams thrive and that conflicts are kept minimal. The performing stage is critical to the team, and reaching it usually portends the success that’s to come. It also precipitates team learning, which is the process of gathering, discussing, and rolling out the strategies for team success. Team learning can happen through group initiatives, innovative leadership, and training and is essential in ensuring healthy team development. In the adjourning stage, most of the team’s goals have been accomplished. The emphasis is on wrapping up final tasks and documenting the effort and results.

During the forming stage, team members are often optimistic and enthusiastic about getting started. They may also be polite and nervous about how the team will gel. The apprehensive behavior usually arises because members are unsure about the project goals and their roles. However, once that’s explained, they’ll adjust to the roles that await them. On their part, members should learn how to organize their responsibilities. The forming stage is a honeymoon phase in team development.

The 5 Stages Of Team Development

A team is simply a tool that accomplishes a project or goal. When the team moves into the “norming” stage, they are beginning to work more effectively as a team. They are no longer focused on their individual goals, but rather are focused on developing a way of working together . They respect each other’s opinions and value their differences.

Proper Team Support

They are interacting via the SharePoint site and the project is off to a good start. Introduction on how to use the SharePoint site that will be used for this project to share ideas, brainstorm, store project documentation, etc. This article provides background on each stage and an example of a team going through all five stages. If you feel your team is stuck, share this information with them and ask them to self-diagnose where they think they are and what they need to do to move on to the next stage. Understanding that each stage is normal and expected can relieve a lot of tension and free the team up to break through and move on.

Think about any classic hero team; before they assemble, they’ve got to meet and get to know each other. The forming stage is when the team meets for the first time. A team leader facilitates introductions, highlights each individual’s qualifications, background, and skills , roles are assigned, and responsibilities delegated. In 1965, American educational psychological four stages of group development researcher Bruce Wayne Tuckman published Tuckman’s Stages as a way to improve teamwork and enhance company efficiency. His method originally only comprised four stages of team development until 1977, when he teamed with doctoral student Mary Ann Jensen to add a fifth stage. The key to moving through this stage is to make things as simple as possible.

The major drawback of the norming stage is that members may begin to fear the inevitable future breakup of the group; they may resist change of any sort. 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. Sandra has worked on projects with Sarah and Mohammed, but has never worked with the others. Sandra has been given a very tight deadline to get this project completed. Her work has been published in «Entrepreneur,» «Complete Woman» and «Toastmaster,» among many other trade and professional publications.

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A continuous improvement mindset is the enemy of the status quo. Providing consistent feedback prevents team stagnation because everyone is always striving to do and be better. The adjourning stage is an excellent opportunity for team leaders to encourage long-term relationships, celebrate the project’s closing, and reflect on the team’s progress and efforts. In an organization, the adjourning stage could translate into a change in employees’ job responsibilities. For instance, if the team develops a new work process for improving the customer experience, members may be asked to oversee the new and improved process. This is the final stage of the team development process.

Communication in the Workplace Crossed wires and missed connections – good communication among teams is tablestakes for effective teamwork. Establishing ground rules from the get-go ensures they get followed as the group moves from one stage to the next. A critical rule to emphasize is that team members should always listen to each other and feel free to consult and raise concerns. No idea is too stupid to raise, and no question is too silly to ask. That can only happen if a solid foundation gets laid and communication channels are kept open.