Conformity and groupthink (video) | Behavior | Khan Academy
Cohesiveness may thus lead to avoidance of disagreement, groupthink, and The relation between group cohesiveness and performance: An integration. Groupthink is a phenomenon that occurs when members of a cohesive group are . Direct pressure to conform placed on any member who questions the group, for the hypothesized relationship between cohesion and groupthink symptoms. For example, if you are supposed to give a group presentation and one person What is the relationship among cohesiveness, conformity, and groupthink?.
And some of the ways that people change their behavior in social situations.
- Professionalism/Irving Janis and Groupthink
- Groupthink: The Role of Leadership in Enhancing and Mitigating the Pitfall in Team Decision-Making
- Advantages & Disadvantages of Group Cohesiveness & Productivity
So the first group process that we'll review today is conformity. Now, this won't be the first time you've heard about conformity. You've probably just known it by another name, peer pressure.
And conformity is a tendency for people to bring their behavior in line with group norms. And it's a powerful in social situations. We use social situations, especially ones with peers, to determine what's acceptable, to question standards and authorities, and get feedback on behaviors.
So it is important, especially for younger folks, to have positive peers, because if the group's behavior is positive, then it can lead to peace, harmony, and happiness. But if the group's behavior is negative, it can be catastrophic.
So, when behaviors are negative or wrong, why do people still conform to group norms? So, imagine you're part of a group and the group's been asked to train a dog. So, the group training the dog decides to train it with a shock collar, and you decide to agree.
Now according to social psychologist, there are two main influences that explain why you would conform with the group. So first lets pretend that you've never interacted with the dog before, and you're uncertain about your method of training a dog and whether it would be correct or not to use a shock color. So in that case, you may look to the group for guidance, in this instance, you assume that the group is correct and so you just go along with their opinion and whatever else they suggest.
And this is known as informative influence. Now, let's pretend that you are an expert dog trainer, and you know that it's easier to train a dog with treats, rather than using a shock collar. So even though you know the group's method of using a shock collar is incorrect, you might still decide to go along with the group in order to avoid being a social outcast. And in this instance, you're conforming because of a normative influence. So, in that case, you fear the social rejection that can come with dissenting from a group, and so you decide to conform, instead of rocking the boat.
In addition, there are two different ways in which a person can conform, publicly, or privately. If you privately conform to a group's belief, you change your behaviors and opinions to align with the group. If you publicly conform, you're temporarily or superficially changing, so outwardly you agree with the group, but on the inside you actually maintain your own core beliefs. So thinking back to our example, if you privately conformed to use a shock collar, you would leave the group situation with a genuine belief that the best way to train a dog is with a shock collar.
In other words you could say you're convinced. On the other hand if you publicly conformed then you would agree to the shock collar while in the group situation. But you would also know that the treats are the more effective route and when you're alone or out of the group situation you would continue to train dogs with the treats.
Conflict management: cohesiveness, conformity, groupthink
So, you could say that you weren't convinced. Now let's talk a little bit more about group processes. Problem decision making can often take place in groups.
Factors that influence individual's problem solving and decision making, continue to operate when an individual's in a group, but group interactions also shape the outcome. So, group polarization is a phenomenon in which group decision enhances or amplifies the original opinions of group members, and for this to happen several factors must be present.
In an experiment conducted on college students, Fodor and Smith discovered that people with low scores on power motivation shared more information with the group and also considered more options before narrowing down on a decision. Since closed leaders establish their personal views early in the decision-making process, they reduce the discussion of more alternatives, which can also lead to the fallacies of Common information effect and Hidden Profile.
Directive and promotional leaders are closed leaders who promote a particular alternative and ignore others, giving rise to groupthink symptoms and more observable defects in the group decision-making process Chen et al. When such leaders express a preferred solution early in the discussion, groups are far more likely to adopt that solution as the final group choice Leana, Open Leadership It has been found that an effective leader is one who has an open outlook and can don different hats, such as those of a consultant, adviser, and facilitator to meet the requirements of the situation.
Open Leadership Styles Bay of Pigs vs. This is an example of when the same group succumbed to groupthink in one account Bay of Pigs and not in the other Cuban Missile Crisis.
A leader has to maintain a healthy atmosphere of divergent thinking that steers the team away from premature convergence Small, In addition to creating an environment of trust and openness, in which team members are encouraged to speak up and critique ideas and opinions without fear of being reprimanded, a leader could make use of the following best practices in order to mitigate groupthink.
Use of Devil's Advocate role: The Devil's Advocate role is that of a person who takes a position for the sake of fostering argument and conflict and is one of the oldest tools that can be used to mitigate the groupthink bias.
Conflict in teams is not always a bad thing, especially task and process conflict For more information refer to Types of conflict. The downside of this is that dissenters are disliked and treated unfairly Greitemeyer et al. So team leaders should establish procedures to protect these alternative viewpoints Thompson, and protect minority dissenters from backlash and being relegated to outgroup status. Use the Six Thinking Hats approach: In the early stages of problem solving, it is imperative to explore the solution space, without narrowing down too quickly.
Better training of leaders in the use of experts could be vital to the decision making process Smith, The presence of an expert can reduce the insulation of the group from the outside world.
Team size is positively correlated with groupthink Thompson, Though there is no magic number that may work, by keeping a team lean the leader may encourage its members to speak versus conforming to popular views.
Diversity in groups often facilitates group performance and also reduces group cohesiveness, which in turn increases diverse perspectives Greitmeyer et al. But while diverse groups are good at generating more ideas, overall task performance is higher in homogeneous groups Thompson The leader first creates sub-groups to explore opposing alternatives and then the whole group comes together to debate the options Roberto, Refrain from stating opinion: This engenders an atmosphere of open inquiry and impartiality.
Structure discussion methods and alleviate time pressure: By sharing guidelines on methodical decision-making processes and reducing time pressure, leaders can mitigate groupthink antecedent conditions of lack of methodical principals and stress Thompson, Case Study Letterman or Leno: A Groupthink Analysis of Successive Decisions Made by NBC By analyzing two consecutive decisions made by the same group of executives at National Broadcasting Company NBC Neck explored the role leadership played in enhancing groupthink in the first case and mitigating it in the second.
Conformity and groupthink
Who would take over from Carson: Jay Leno or David Letterman? The decision-making group, led by Bob Wright President of NBCwas cohesive, insulated from outside opinion, homogeneous and under stress to make the right decision. The second decision was regarding what to do with Letterman since they chose Leno for the Tonight Show. In this case all the antecedents of groupthink were present except two: Bob Wright maintained a neutral position and encouraged all the members to speak up and the presence of experts checked the insulation problem.
Advantages & Disadvantages of Group Cohesiveness & Productivity | japancarnews.info
This led to a thorough evaluation of a wide range of criteria and careful weighing of associated costs and risks. Analysis of the second decision yields information that proved that groupthink decision-making defects did not occur, despite the presence of some antecedents Neck, This study proves that leader behavior and the presence of experts are important factors in moderating and mitigating other existing antecedents and symptoms of Groupthink in team decision-making.
Conclusion While there is no one-size-fits-all approach to mitigating groupthink, keeping in mind that there are no fixed attributes of a group or personalities that may be causing the phenomenon, leadership can avoid the snares of groupthink by: Testing the groupthink model: Effects of promotional leadership and conformity predisposition.
Social Behavior and Personality, 29 1 Deciding with the leader and the devil. Psychological Record, 46 4 Groupthink and communication processes: Dissertation Abstracts International, A laboratory investigation of groupthink.
Communication Monographs, 45 3 ,