CategoriesSoftware development

Mastering the Key Stages of Group Development

Renowned psychologist Bruce Tuckman created an easily-understood model in 1965. It illustrates how teams in different fields undergo five similar stages of group development. Understanding the stages of team development enables you to build successful and high-performing teams. While working on a high-performing team may be a truly pleasurable and growthful experience, it is not the end of team development. There is still a need for the team to focus on both process and product, setting new goals as appropriate. Changes, such as members coming or going or large-scale changes in the external environment, can lead a team to cycle back to an earlier stage.

team development stage

In order to understand how and when each of them spends time working in the garden, they track their time. They feel proud when they see that they each spend about 4 hours a week on gardening, as that means a larger amount of vegetables will produce well. Here is the 20 best team management software you can try now. 💡 To facilitate this transition from the Storming Stage to the Norming Stage, you’re advised to incorporate team management software into your team workflow. However, this stage is crucial if you want your team to succeed — you won’t get far with your project by sweeping vital questions and potential problems under a rug. Well, truth be told, some teams may skip this step altogether, all in the hope that they’ll avoid unpleasant conflict and the clash of ideas.

HR’s Key Roles in Forming Teams

Daisy called a lot of shots in the Forming stage, so she emerges as the dominant team leader in this stage. She proposes a clear schedule and takes charge of contacting the local store to see what supplies they can get here, and what supplies they may need to go to the city for. She wants to go to the city to buy seeds because they cannot get the broccoli seed she wants in the local store.

Take advantage of expert, personalized guidance by phone or in person. Seminars and webinars are designed to help you navigate the college admissions process, plan, and pay for your—or your child’s—college education. Use a collaboration tool like Teamwork Spaces to organize and store your documentation. You’ll be able to access all of your important documents in one location so your team won’t waste time searching for important materials.

team development stage

Track the time you spend on individual tasks, to build daily and weekly reports of the time you spend on the project. You can then further analyze your reports to see how much time you need to finish individual project tasks and whether there is room for improvement in that time. Delegate tasks appropriately, and according to the skills, experience, and interests of individual team members.

Corporate Team Building is the Key to Team Development

Leaders should support and help the team members transition through this phase smoothly. Once you have risen above the storm, your team can move onto the third stage of development – morning. It’s true that picking random people and developing them into high-functioning teams is quite challenging. Especially in today’s competitive environment, the issue of creating a trusting team takes new dimensions. If powerful superhero and entrepreneur teams have taught us anything, it is that working with others can increase your strength and success. Even if your group has two or three leaders, you can’t alwaysmonitor your team.

team development stage

And, because there’s a bond and a relationship already built amongst the team members, it’s easier and faster to get to a resolution if a conflict were to occur. Now that we know where the stages come from, let’s break down the ins and outs of each stage and what you can expect from your team in each. And although it may be slightly cliche, there’s a lot of truth to it. When you’re on a team full of high performers and go-getters, even the most daunting of goals or end-result becomes a lot easier to face head-on and accomplish. Agenda TemplatesKeep all of your meetings running smoothly with these pre-built meeting agenda templates. Browser ExtensionsAccess meeting notes inside of Google Meet and get helpful details through Google Calendar events.

That’s part of the reason HR departments task their job candidates with personality tests — to see whether they’d be adequate in terms of behavior and values. In the end, they sell the garden, and go their separate ways, capping off the project as a complete success in every way. Now, if the team members have grown close over time, and grown accustomed to working with each other, they may mourn the fact that it’s now time to move on and work with other people.

How Can Leaders Initiate Team Development?

In order to withstand the storming stage, it’s important for the team to remain focused on its goals and desired outcomes. Otherwise, the group is likely to become mired in relationships and emotional stages of group development issues and never progress to completing the actual task. Teams assembled for specific project or for a finite length of time go through a fifth stage, called adjourning , when the team breaks up.

team development stage

Make sure team members have access to the team’s final product and any other documentation or materials they need. Acknowledge the hard work and dedication that your team has put in. This will help to motivate them to continue to produce high-quality work. Make sure your team has all the resources they need to be successful.

This stage puts the team to the test and may cause a lot of tension if people vastly disagree. Be prepared to step in and help ease people’s anxieties about the project. The introduction of a group should be structured by the leader. They should provide a safe and welcoming environment for all team members to share their skills, background knowledge and goals. Everyone has learned to identify and make the most of each other’s strengths for a common purpose.

Any insights should be shared in a public forum so everyone in the company can learn. If you’re here, your team members are working well together and performing at a relatively high level. Team members have worked out the boundaries, the expectations and the rules of the game. In the Forming stage, expect to feel confident and optimistic. People will show the signs of getting along, being civil and polite as they start working together.

How to Help Your Team Progress Through the Stages of Group Development

The team members have all learned each other’s strengths and weaknesses and can use this knowledge to everyone’s advantage. Every member of the team knows their role in the project and is able to complete their tasks efficiently. When a group of any kind first meets, it’s critical that things start off on the right foot. This is where teams get to know each other, the abilities of their teammates and the details of the project they will all work on together.

  • When each stage carries through successfully, the entire group will be more in sync and functional.
  • The position of this unofficial leader may also be occupied by the strongest authority figure in the team.
  • Leadership decisions, individual work habits, and communication lapses during the storming stage can create tension within a team.
  • Identify any issues between team members as early as possible to help alleviate the tension.
  • A critical rule to emphasize is that team members should always listen to each other and feel free to consult and raise concerns.
  • Team development typically follows the above five stages in a linear progression.

Organize the agenda so that each team member has five to ten minutes to talk through their insights and ideas. Allow extra time to review the ideas the team shares and to answer questions. When teams work in the same space, it’s easy to see what everyone’s doing.


In 1975, Bruce Tuckman added a fifth stage to his Forming Storming Norming Performing model. This stage occurs when the original task of the group is completed and everyone can move on to new goals. It’s important to note that, since you’re dealing with humans, there’s no way to fast-forward to this stage because your team needs time to become comfortable with each other. Trust takes time, and often bonds arise out of conflict, so the storming stage is actually necessary to develop the kind of cohesiveness that propels successful groups forward. Team leaders may want to use visuals, such as swimlane diagrams and process flows, with everyone’s roles and responsibilities clearly outlined. Such visuals can be easily distributed to the group and can prevent arguments and confusion.

Practical Tips To Master the Norming stage

Each team member’s roles and responsibilities are also clear. As a result, the team works more efficiently because members understand what’s expected of them and know how to share their ideas and seek feedback. The storming stage is the most difficult and critical stage to pass through. It is a period marked by conflict and competition as individual personalities emerge. Team performance may actually decrease in this stage because energy is put into unproductive activities.

Where do “Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, and Adjourning” come from?

The members learn to manage responsibilities, and conflicts remain minimal at this stage. Team members are excited and optimistic about getting started during this stage. Everyone in the team needs to develop good relationships and understand each member’s role to avoid future conflict. The first stage of team development is forming, where the team members come together for the first time and meet each other. This phase is relatively slow since the all the members are getting acquainted with one another.

What is the team development process?

The first stage is forming, which is when the members within the team first come together to meet. This stage is characterized by an overall air of excitement and can be considered the period of orientation when everyone is getting to know one another and becoming acquainted. Desktop & Mobile AppsPlan and run productive meetings… wherever you work best. Google MeetUse Fellow’s Google Meet extension to collaborate on meeting notes and record action items, right within your video calls. Cross-Functional MeetingsStay aligned on projects, drive progress and accountability, and improve collaboration. Team MeetingsCollaborate on meeting agendas, take notes in real-time, and end every team meeting with an action plan.

The official team leader takes a back seat much more than in the previous stages, and the individual team members are given their chance to shine. Use this model to establish where you are in the development stages, and decide what steps you personally want to take to help the team move towards performing. It’s one thing to be given a task and quite another to get a group to successfully complete that task. As a team leader, it’s your job to help the group navigate through these insecurities and emotions and prepare for the next group formation and leadership successor. No matter what, it’s important to celebrate the team’s achievements and give them the opportunity to say good-bye to each other.

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