The purpose of this assignment is to analyze a group communication climate from an experiential standpoint and to evaluate the reciprocal relationship between social and task outcomes.
For this paper, focus on a group you belong to at work (or alternate organization) such as a task force, department, or committee. Write a 5-7 page analysis applying a relevant concept or set of concepts from the material on group climate and culture. Below are detailed guidelines for the content and organization of the paper.
First, develop a thesis:
Each paper must advance a clear and specific thesis. Further, the paper should be restricted to material that supports the thesis statement. State your thesis early in a brief introduction, and underline it. In preparing your thesis statement, you need to select a concept or set of concepts from chapter 4, and then show how that applies to your group. Here are a few examples of appropriate thesis statements (but of course, you should develop your own):
“In this group, co-cultural differences resulted in two isolated cliques.” “In this group, an emphasis on empathy and respect increased group cohesiveness.” “The individualist orientation of this group’s millenial members created a cold climate.”
Next, develop the following three sections of the paper. (Please clearly label each section.):
Begin with a background discussion of the selected concept(s). Note: this is NOT background on the group/members; it is background on the CONCEPT(S) referenced in your thesis. Thoroughly define and explain the concept(s) identified in your thesis including any relevant connections between concepts that may relate to the rest of your paper. Consult and incorporate the textbook for this section (use of additional outside sources is optional). Proper citations are a must.
Next, apply the concept(s) to your group. This section should employ specific examples and observations of the communication behavior in the group. It is important to use direct observations (e.g., quoted statements from group discussions, descriptions of particular behaviors, etc.) rather than your indirect impressions of group process. For example, it is better to write, “Alan demonstrated his low involvement in group process by saying he was too busy to attend group meetings,” rather than, “Everyone seemed to feel that Alan was uninvolved in our group.” Use concrete behaviors and statements as the database for your analysis.
Conclude with a candid evaluation. What is the concept’s utility or value in explaining what occurred? How might knowledge of the concept improve the communication of the group? What could have been done differently in the group? What critical questions might be raised? Get insightful here!
Grading Criteria – Clear and thoughtful thesis, effective application of chapter terminology, use of concrete supporting data and examples, and insightful conclusions about the impact of climate.