Theory of group development

In by chuzzete

Bruce Wayne Tuckman Theory of group development

Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, Adjourning

According to Bruce Tuckman’s group development theory a team undergoes various stages with time in-order to perform with its 100% productivity level.

Tuckman, B., Jensen, M. 1997

Tuckman’s Theory of group development – Stages

Stage 1 Forming

Members start interacting and try to work out what is expected of them. Excitement and enthusiasm is mixed with fear and uncertainty.

Characteristics of a group in this stage:

  • It feels like a honey moon for the team. Everything seems fine.
  • Low level of conflict between team members.
  • People are careful about selecting words, when they are going to use them and how.
  • Things could be unclear and a little bit undefined.
  • People are getting to know each other.
  • The focus is in the individual and to understand what the team does.
  • The team is trying to answer the questions: Who are we? What do we do? How do we do things here?
  • Work process, methods and tools are still in the process to be defined or if in place, there is confusion about how they might be used.

Stage 2 – Storming

Members start interacting and try to work out what is expected of them. Excitement and enthusiasm is mixed with fear and uncertainty.

Characteristics of a group in this stage:

  • It feels like a honey moon for the team. Everything seems fine.
  • Low level of conflict between team members.
  • People are careful about selecting words, when they are going to use them and how.
  • Things could be unclear and a little bit undefined.
  • People are getting to know each other.
  • The focus is in the individual and to understand what the team does.
  • The team is trying to answer the questions: Who are we? What do we do? How do we do things here?
  • Work process, methods and tools are still in the process to be defined or if in place, there is confusion about how they might be used.

Stage 3 – Norming

Members start interacting and try to work out what is expected of them. Excitement and enthusiasm is mixed with fear and uncertainty.

Characteristics of a group in this stage:

  • It feels like a honey moon for the team. Everything seems fine.
  • Low level of conflict between team members.
  • People are careful about selecting words, when they are going to use them and how.
  • Things could be unclear and a little bit undefined.
  • People are getting to know each other.
  • The focus is in the individual and to understand what the team does.
  • The team is trying to answer the questions: Who are we? What do we do? How do we do things here?
  • Work process, methods and tools are still in the process to be defined or if in place, there is confusion about how they might be used.

Stage 4 – Performing

Members start interacting and try to work out what is expected of them. Excitement and enthusiasm is mixed with fear and uncertainty.

Characteristics of a group in this stage:

  • It feels like a honey moon for the team. Everything seems fine.
  • Low level of conflict between team members.
  • People are careful about selecting words, when they are going to use them and how.
  • Things could be unclear and a little bit undefined.
  • People are getting to know each other.
  • The focus is in the individual and to understand what the team does.
  • The team is trying to answer the questions: Who are we? What do we do? How do we do things here?
  • Work process, methods and tools are still in the process to be defined or if in place, there is confusion about how they might be used.

Stage 5 – Adjourning

Members start interacting and try to work out what is expected of them. Excitement and enthusiasm is mixed with fear and uncertainty.

Characteristics of a group in this stage:

  • It feels like a honey moon for the team. Everything seems fine.
  • Low level of conflict between team members.
  • People are careful about selecting words, when they are going to use them and how.
  • Things could be unclear and a little bit undefined.
  • People are getting to know each other.
  • The focus is in the individual and to understand what the team does.
  • The team is trying to answer the questions: Who are we? What do we do? How do we do things here?
  • Work process, methods and tools are still in the process to be defined or if in place, there is confusion about how they might be used.

Being curious and passionate about helping people and teams to thrive in a sustainable fashion had brought to me to think about the following question:

  • How could I help agile teams navigate through each stage of Tuckman’s model, and do it in a practical way?
  • What techniques should I use?
  • What kind of challenges am I going to face?
  • How do I do it?