How does a facilitator look at a group?

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Just a look into the definition of group - just to make it more understandable. For a facilitator, "group" is important and therefore, s/he must have enough knowledge about group dynamism. These slides give some insight about groups.

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How does a facilitator look at a group?

  1. 1. HOW DOES A FACILITATOR LOOK AT A “GROUP” ? SAEID NOURI NESHAT 2013 Email: nourineshat@gmail.com Weblog: http://cbfacilitation.blogspot.com
  2. 2. WHAT IS A GROUP? • If you google it, the first and the upmost answer is: A number of people or things that are located close together or are considered or classed together.
  3. 3. WHAT IS A GROUP? • What do you think? Based on this definition in google, are those standing in a bus stop, a group? They are “a number of people”; they “are located close together”. In fact, they are a group of people standing in a bus stop, but they are not considered a group – in the way a facilitator looks at it. Coutesy of ©2006 Norfolk County Council
  4. 4. • There is a difference between “a number of people” and “a group”. A number of people here in this example “are located close together” but they are not a group. • What do you think: what is a group?
  5. 5. WHAT IS A GROUP? • Sometimes, people say that the group is a two or more persons with a common goal. Let’s go back to the but stop and see if they have goals and whether the goal is a common one ! Having one common goal or objective does not make them a group. Bus, only bus, please be on time Bus, when will you come? I want to get on the bus Hey Saeid, you want me to set my goal as “wanting a bus to come”; if you want, Okay, this is my goal. When I need you, just close my eyes, and I’m with “bus”
  6. 6. READ THESE WORDS FROM FORSYTH (2006) “But what is a collection of human beings called? A group. …. [C]ollections of people may seem unique, but each possesses that one critical element that defines a group: connections linking the individual members…. [M]embers are linked together in a web of interpersonal relationships. Thus, a group is defined as two or more individuals who are connected to one another by social relationships.” “Hundreds of fish swimming together are called a school. A pack of foraging baboons is a troupe. A half dozen crows on a telephone line is a murder. A gam is a group of whales.”
  7. 7. INTERCONNECTEDNESS ! • Let’s talk more about this definition: “a group is defined as two or more individuals who are connected to one another by social relationships”. • What do you think?
  8. 8. EXAMPLES OF SOCIAL RELATIONSHIPS: • A man and a woman fall in love and they are going to marry (a social relationship). • People may have a shared cause (for instance: let’s protect the environment). • People are challenged by a question and they have to face the challenge (they may become socially related). • Three persons who are studying in a school, are friends. They go to cinema together. They are socially connected. They have a friendship circle.
  9. 9. OTHER EXAMPLES OF GROUPS • Find elements of “social relationship” in the following groups: • A football team • An internet listserv (where people exchange views on one specific issue) or a friendship group in facebook • A college psychology class with 14 participants • A cult • A community-based group working to create a better environment for the citizens with their participation • A business team working on the vision and mission of a company
  10. 10. INTERACTION IS NECESSARY ! • For such social interconnectedness, interaction is a must. Conformity Coordination Cohesiveness A group is said to be in a state of cohesion when its members possess bonds linking them to one another and to the group as a whole. Each and every member feel a sense of group identity. Solidarity Conformity means that a member / members match their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors to group norms. Coordination is the act of organizing the roles, making different members work together for a goal or effect to fulfill desired goals in the group. Solidarity is unity that produces ties that bind members together. Dynamics The flow of coherent activities - as envisaged - leads the group towards the realization of its goals.
  11. 11. ATTENTION! • A group may have “norms”, “roles” (assigned to group members), “communication structure” (who talks to whom), and “a power structure” (how much the members have authority and influence) but the group cannot remain a group without having the interconnectedness – which means to have “interaction”. • A group dies if the interaction fades. talking listening seeing on-going feedback Interaction
  12. 12. Primary groups Secondary groups Planned groups Founded/concocted Emergent groups Open group Closed group Membership groups Support groups Peer groups Formal groupsInformal groups Charity groups Friendship groups Community-based groups Fan groups Teams Project groups Self-help groups A FACILITATOR WORKS WITH/IN GROUPS… It is practical for a facilitator to know about the following types of groups – why they are beneficial and useful? Who are their members? What they do ? and what could be the role of a facilitator in each group?
  13. 13. HOWEVER, THESE THREE FORMS ARE IMPORTANT FOR A FACILITATOR: Small groups Workshop group Public Decision-making is easier It can be diverse/ or homogenous More diversity Good for resource-raisingAble to carry out a specific task Effective for synchronic trainingConflict resolution can be easier More sustainable Participants become sensitive Brain-storming brings more ideas Participation increasesSuitable for exchanging experiences Voices are heardDeep interaction Knowledge sharing Participatory evaluation Needs assessment and priority-settingLearning by doing Planning and goal-setting
  14. 14. RESOURCES • FORSYTH, D. R. (2006). GROUP DYNAMICS (INTERNATIONAL STUDENT EDITION).THOMSON/WADSWORTH: BELMONT, CA. • LEWIN, K. (1945). "THE RESEARCH CENTER FOR GROUP DYNAMICS AT MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY". SOCIOMETRY 8 (2): 126–136.

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