Your remote teams will go through the 5 stages of team development whether or not they have your guidance, but you can accelerate their progress when you know how to support them along the way. When you can identify which development phase your teams are in, it’s much easier to provide exactly the direction they need so they feel more focused and connected. During the Norming stage of team development, team members begin to resolve the discrepancy they felt between their individual expectations and the reality of the team’s experience. If the team is successful in setting more flexible and inclusive norms and expectations, members should experience an increased sense of comfort in expressing their “real” ideas and feelings. Team members feel an increasing acceptance of others on the team, recognizing that the variety of opinions and experiences makes the team stronger and its product richer. Members start to feel part of a team and can take pleasure from the increased group cohesion.

  • Consider using cloud-based project management software, as well as ensuring all the team members have access to communication software like Zoom, Google Meet, or Microsoft Teams.
  • Lots of tools offer free trials, so use that time to experiment and check its compatibility with other products you use.
  • The individual roles your team members play are incredibly important to team performance.
  • Team leaders need to facilitate introductions and highlight each member’s background and skills.

This is also a great opportunity to recognize and praise the talents of specific team members. Learn more about proactive work management in this infographic, review this guide to asynchronous communication, or see how you can use Teamhood for remote team management. Check out the best Workload management tools to pick out the best solution for you.

Key actions to support Forming

HR is important in this stage, since they may need to be called upon to settle disputes and assist the team. Norming is a great stage for a team, since many barriers will have been broken down and the team can really start working in harmony. This is also the time in which teams can celebrate everything they have achieved together. Take the time to reflect on your achievements and remind your team why they’re doing what they do.

team development phases

Regardless of the tools used for team development, the process must be maintained through long-term awareness. A team is a group of individuals who work together toward a common goal. Each member of a team is valuable to the common goal in their own way, using a unique set of skills to fulfill a team role.

How Leaders Can Help at the Adjourning Stage

In the process, one should focus on better communication, morale, and conflict resolution. According to the study offered by Gallup, teams with a higher sense of cohesion are 21% more productive than teams that are not cohesive. While there are many methods to improve team performance, you still need to know the key stages in team development regardless of whether you look for dedicated or in-house teams. Track objectives as part of your meeting workflow with our Objectives tool. Clearly record, define, track, and review the progress of your objectives during team meetings. In the third stage of team development, try Fellow’s Feedback feature to deliver valuable positive and constructive feedback that empowers individuals to complete new tasks.

The goal at the end of the forming stage is to have a team that is comfortable with one another and excited to begin work on a project. In this stage of group development, individual members are just getting to know each other and don’t have a group process yet. At this stage, the group isn’t very productive, as they’re still getting acclimated and figuring out the role that each person will play on the team. This first stage of the team development cycle brings a lot of uncertainty. The team members must get to know each other and determine what they are trying to achieve and how they will start doing that.

Build relationships

The team members all have their own opinions of how and what should be done to get to the goal, and as a result, competition will emerge. Challenges have a minimal impact on team performance and morale because members have strategies for resolving them without compromising project timelines and progress. A team’s performance is at peak capacity at this stage because everyone has learned to identify and leverage each other’s strengths for the common good. During the forming stage, team members are often optimistic and enthusiastic about getting started. The apprehensive behavior usually arises because members are unsure about the project goals and their roles. However, once that’s explained, they’ll adjust to the roles that await them.

team development phases

Your team starts to increase their productivity at this stage as they become more familiar with their teammates and their working styles. The Norming stage is the first indication that the team is going in the right direction, but the unity at this stage is still very fragile. The Storming stage is characterized by conflicts, power struggles, and a lack of clarity, which can significantly impact productivity and team dynamics. If new issues arise and the team fails to solve them, they can return to the Storming stage and thus reduce their productivity again. The first stage of the team development cycle is Forming, and it talks about a new team getting acquainted. The main purpose of this activity is to remind and reflect on what group members or participants have been through and to create a collective experience and shared story.

AI Meeting summary

At the norming stage, teams set norms and expectations for the group based on the team’s true potential identified in stages one and two. Team members might feel more relaxed now that they understand their colleagues and their day-to-day work, and may be more willing to share their true thoughts and feelings. The norming stage is also when team members resolve any issues that surfaced in phase two. Leaders can capitalize on this new camaraderie within the team and use this stage to refocus on previously established priorities and processes.

team development phases

The norming stage is when the entire team starts to work as a cohesive unit. By now, team members have figured out a strategy for working together. The internal competitions prevalent at the storming stage have been rooted out. 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. As strong personalities emerge, team leaders should ensure these individuals don’t inadvertently dominate the rest of the team and the project’s outcomes. An easy way to do so is by encouraging everyone’s participation in team activities.

Why are the Five Stages of Team Development Important?

Psychologist Bruce Tuckman was the first to document the different phases that teams go through as they develop. In this article, we discuss the different stages of group development and how you can guide your team through them to optimize collaboration. As the work process is not yet decided, the team is making little progress, and their progress is often riddled team development phases with errors. As such, the Forming stage is filled with uncertainty, and most team members seek guidance. If one or a couple of team members are willing to take on this responsibility, they are the most likely candidates for becoming the group leaders at the following stages. All teams are made up of individuals with varying skill sets, perspectives, and needs.

Adjourning stage is when the group emphasizes completing all deliverables and meeting reporting requirements. The moment brings a bittersweet feeling, meaning that the team that undergoes all the stages above is about to start a new assignment or be dispersed. Team leaders can help navigate and resolve conflicts during the storming phase. For instance, instead of letting individuals battle one another in private messages, one can invite both parties into the chat room and mediate the conflict resolution process.

Meeting guidelines

Thus, most team interactions in the Forming stage are social, helping the team get acquainted. While most teams progress through the development cycle naturally, by knowing what it is you can actually help them get out of sticky situations. So keep on reading to learn more about the team development cycle or scroll down for a visual infographic on the topic. A workshop to support teams to reflect on and ultimately increase their alignment with purpose/goals and team member autonomy.

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