Team management: Is your ‘group thinking’?

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers,Management Training,Team Building

Collaboration works, until it starts to resemble groupthink. That’s when healthy dissent evaporates, self-defeating tendencies surge, and negative emotions corrode the potential of the group’s work.

Make sure your team is working more like the Manhattan Project and less like Enron. Three team management tips:

1. Model constructive dissent.
Play devil’s advocate and disagree with a unanimous decision. Benefit: You’ll encourage a reluctant but wise person to speak up.

2. Have a brainstorming group write ideas on unattributed Post-it notes. Why? No one knows whether an idea came from top brass or a low-level player, so people back ideas based on merit.

3. Encourage team members to do self-affirmations. Research by behavioral scientist Tanya Menon shows that simply listing one’s own skills and accomplishments before meeting with a group enhances one’s ability to let colleagues shine.

— Adapted from “When Groups Don’t Think,” Jake Mohan, Utne Reader. 

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