Changing the Dynamic

Today we welcomed 2 new team mates – Ebru & Dan, and it’s really not long since Sarah R (we have 2 Sarahs) joined either.  And in the last 2 weeks we’ve waved goodbye and good luck to Anita & Luisa.  As well as that we are interviewing today, tomorrow & Friday next week for 3 more Henley Careers teammates too.


This all means that our team is being constantly re-energised and re-invigorated, and all this newness & energy needs to be mixed in with the relative status quo.  In our monthly meeting today Naeema reminded us of Tuckman’s venerable model of group development – which posits 4 stages – Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing.

Put simply, when a group first comes together everyone is on their best behaviour – Forming.  As they get to know each other opinions will form, and some of these are likely to be negative, which leads to clashes – Storming.  This stage needs to be actively addressed, or can stall or break up the group; when worked through though it creates a bond, bringing the group together into a positive whole – Norming.  If this is working well the team members can properly focus on achieving their goals, where the team becomes greater than the some of the parts – Performing.

Of course life isn’t as simple as a cycle – people can join or leave the group at anytime, taking the group back to Forming again.  It’s fair to say that we had a very polite team meeting today, not to say that we aren’t always professional of course!

Whoever you are reading this post will be part of this cycle at the moment – and if you are going to be starting a new job, internship, group project etc. soon you’ll be part of a team in Forming mode. So beware of where you are in the cycle, accept it, and then work as hard has to you to get to Performing – because that’s where the really good stuff is!