running head: Kolb’s Experiential Essay Effectiveness of Individual Communication Styles In Small Groups [Pick the date] The Effectiveness of Individual Communication Styles in Small Groups Subtopic 1: Role of Group Members Description of Concrete Event: I have participated in quite a few social welfare programs…
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During our fund raising sessions, there were a lot of negotiations and discussions that sometimes took a serious turn as well. We also went to the offices of local companies for fund raising in the teams of two members with rotating partners. This practice helped me analyze the behavior of individual members along with their strengths and weaknesses. Furthermore, I also observed how individual group members had an impact on the overall campaign itself. Reflection: During these group meetings and fund raising sessions, I noticed that every person among us had a different persona and a varied way of handling situations in hand. Where me and my younger peer who was also a student attempted to come up with ideas that were dynamic and robust but risky, group members that were employed, were tempted to follow a pre-determined plan. Same was reflected in their communication styles as well. Our group leader who was an experienced social worker was highly persuasive mainly because of his experience and passion towards his work. On the other hand, younger members of our group possessed highly energetic approach and provocative communication styles. This strength enabled us to deliver some extraordinary presentations and gather handsome amount of funds. Furthermore, other team members from corporate background had a subtle and calculated approach towards their deliverance. This mannerism created balance in our teams and allowed us to secure more leads. Generalization/ Principles/ Theories: Careful analysis of our group dynamics made me aware of the processes in which small groups operate. I realized that in small groups the role of the leader becomes more important since processes are rather informal. Also, the level of interaction between team members is highly influenced by their personal traits. I also learnt that small teams tend to have more reliance on the equilibrium between communication styles of its group members. Usually in such groups, workers from different background have more opportunity to communicate and transmit their messages through formal and informal communication modes. This ability also has an impact on their ability of affecting each other. I came to understand that in an average task oriented group, team members have to play several roles including initiator, opinion giver, elaborator, coordinator, orienteer, evaluator, energizer, procedural technician, and recorder. Examining my group in the light of this model made me understand that in small teams, group members may have to adopt multiple roles. Testing & Application: I had a chance to examine individual group members including our leader with the help of this theoretical model and I came to know that most of the roles such as initiator, elaborator, orienteer, critic and information giver were assumed by our team leader. Further roles were played by other group members in a rotating fashion. In addition to that, individual team dynamics (of two members) were different than the group itself. In individual teams, there was a dominating partner who was governing and leading the team and supervising the performance of other team member although this hierarchy was highly informal and governed by the level of knowledge and expertise possessed by the group members. Subtopic 2: Group Problem Solving Processes Description of Concrete Event: In the
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"Components of Small Group Communication." The Fundamentals of Small Group Communication. Sage Publications, 2008. 1-22. Components of Small Group Communication. Sage Publications Inc. Web. 17 Mar. 2011. . Socha, T.
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