Collaborate (a Little!) – Collections III

Small Group Communication Factors
(done all by my lonesome 🙁 )

  • The most important goal for a group in this class would be to complete the stated task(s). The most important goal for a group in this class would be to complete the stated task(s) in a timely manner while contributing proportionately. [I added the timely manner portion because I believe it is important to do things timely so a grade can be received for the group’s effort.]
  • Groups are most productive when a leader steps forward to run meetings and allocate tasks. Group member roles should be decided early on. [I decided to focus on establishing roles instead of explicitly saying group leader because some groups work well with a leader and others do not.]
  • We should have a high degree of tolerance for group members who are late to synchronous meetings or do not attend due to other obligations. Group members that have prior or unexpected obligations should inform the other team members of these obligations as soon as possible in order to make changes if needed. [It’s inevitable, we all have things that pop up. Therefore, I decided to focus on being respectful and courteous to your fellow team members because they are dealing with their own obligations.]
  • Creating friendships and completing the group task are equally important. Working together effectively is almost as important as completing the tasks. [If the primary focus of formal education was to truly educate and create a rich learning environment for their students, grades and time limits would probably not be as strict as they are. However, we do deal with strict timelines and our transcript only tells our grades, not our learning. Therefore, I changed it to almost as important because when it comes down to it, your grade depends on completing the tasks.]
  • Criticizing other group members should be avoided. Give positive input and try to suggest alternatives/solutions to any unfavorable situations that occur. [I decided to rephrase this in a positive light. Keeping things positive helps moral. Also, I think it’s important to offer positive alternatives instead of just dissing someone’s efforts or ideas.]
  • Avoiding smaller conflicts is the best method to reduce conflict escalation. Address concerns promptly and clearly. [In order to avoid smaller conflicts, I think concerns need to be addressed. Keeping your mouth shut just to avoid a conflict isn’t always the best idea.]
  • All group members should have identical goals and reasons for being involved. The group should have a unified vision. [I think it’s important for the whole group to have a unified vision of the final product. It keeps people on tract and the predictability and clarity is comforting to most people.]
  • Majority rule is the best method of group decision making. Groups should agree on a method for decision making early on. [Some groups prefer the majority rule method, others don’t. Do what your group prefers and what works best for your group.]
  • If one group member is not pulling his or her weight, the other group members should confront that person together. If one group member is not completing their agreed upon duties, group members should attempt to converse with the nonparticipant to see if alternative duties are required. [I think a nonparticipant should be addressed. Addressing it in a neutral way, such as seeing if an alternative plan would work better, is a way of keeping spirits positive.]
  • Everyone in the group should receive the same grade for group projects. Understanding of grading policies should be understood prior to the group meeting. [I think it is the responsibility of the instructor to provide grading information, and I think it is the student’s responsibility to be receptive to that information. Going into a group project, all members should know the grading policy. *I don’t usually agree with the ‘everyone same grade’ thing, but I wanted to make the rule general since the focus was on communication factors instead of education philosophies*]

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