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Journal 5 - Essay Example

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The most conspicuous factors are the sitting patterns and the personality of the group members. The sitting patterns experienced tonight are corner-to-corner, face-to-face, distant-opposite, corner-to-end, side-by-side, and…
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Journal 5
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Undertaking Group Work Activities Group activities are influenced by different factors. The most conspicuous factors are the sitting patterns and thepersonality of the group members. The sitting patterns experienced tonight are corner-to-corner, face-to-face, distant-opposite, corner-to-end, side-by-side, and end-to-end. Corner-to-corner, side-by-side, and face-to-face patterns were very helpful for the discussions of the group while the rest not. Among the seating patterns, the one that encouraged communication was the face-to-face seating pattern. This is because it promoted verbal and facial interaction that played a great part in promoting communication. I have seen this kind of seating patterns in conferences and interview panels and I thought that individuals are seated in such a manner so that they can be able to share opinions more effectively.
Communication within a group is influenced by the distance between the group members. In the class tonight, we learnt about different distances that could be used by individuals in a group. We found out that the distance could be categorized into four groups that include intimate distance, personal distance, social distance, and public distance. In our group discussion, I was comfortable when seating at a personal or social distance with my group members. On the other hand, I was very uncomfortable when seating at an intimacy distance with my group members. Moreover, I was not comfortable when seating at a public distance with my fellow group members. I realized that by group members were also uncomfortable with very little distance and very large distance. Therefore, I learnt from them that the most appropriate distance for a group work discussion is actually the personal distance that ranges from 18 inches to 4 feet.
From the life highlights, I learned that I have a personality that is different to that of other members of my group. This personality makes me to have an ability to play some group work roles better than others. I also learned that in a group, every member has a personality that is different from that of the others. This makes every member to have unique abilities as well as weakness. According to Orey and Prisk (138), the main objective of a Johari Window is identification of personal blind spot. From the Johari Window activity, I learned that I have a personality of trying to assist individuals even when they do not need assistance. Moreover, I learned that almost everybody in our group had a personal trait that he was not aware. This could have affected the effectiveness of the group in undertaking group work activities.
After learning about the seating patterns, seating distance, personality, and group traits, we were able to work well on the case study and the complexity simplified. This is because we chose an appropriate seating pattern for our group discussion. The seating pattern we chose was a face-to-face seating pattern. We also choose an appropriate distance of around 10 inches between the group members. Moreover, we choose to take advantage of each member’s strengths and avoid the weakness of the members by either supplementing each other or complementing each other in the group work activity. In our discussion, we come up with the topic of ‘Developing and Strengthening groups aimed at Problem Solving’ as our topic. We unanimously agreed that this topic would produce a good training presentation for the group.
Our group is diverse since it consists of individuals with different personalities as well as abilities. Strengthening such a group would make it more effective in terms of achieving its purpose. Several strategies exist that could help us strengthen the group. Some of the strategies include identifying and celebrating you commonality in the group, intolerance to discrimination, celebrating and rewarding differences, being patient with each other, and engaging in team building activities. The information about leadership and strengthening a diverse team would also help me in my future career as a leader. This is because as a professional leader, I would be required to lead a diverse team. The information would help me to strengthen the team I would be leading and thus make it more effective and cohesive.
Orey, Maureen, and Prisk, Jenni. Communication Skills Training. Alexandria, VA: American Society for Training and Development Press, 2004. Print. Read More
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