Analyzing Effective and Ineffective Groups

You have probably belonged to many small groups throughout your life. Some have likely been effective, some ineffective. Some have lasted briefly, some perhaps for years. You most likely had leaders in these groups. Some leaders may have been effective; others many have been effective.

Examine your memories carefully. List the groups that were the most and least effective. Then write as much detail as possible about each one. First, analyze the group(s) that were the most effective:

  • What was the effective leader like?
  • What were the interests or duties that brought the group together?
  • What seemed to keep the group from falling apart?
  • Can you find a common thread that unites the positive group experience?

Now, analyze the ineffective groups that you have belonged to.

  • What was the ineffective leader like?
  • What interests brought the group together?
  • Why were they not strong enough to hold the group together and make it effective?
  • Can you identify common elements that might have made them fail?

After analyzing your groups, what do you think makes a group successful (answer should be 3 or more sentences)?

What do you think makes a group ineffective (answer should be 3 or more sentences)?


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You have probably belonged to many small groups throughout your life. Some have likely been effective, some ineffective. Some have lasted briefly, some perhaps for years. You most likely had leaders in these groups. Some leaders may have been effective; others many have been effective.

Examine your memories carefully. List the groups that were the most and least effective. Then write as much detail as possible about each one. First, analyze the group(s) that were the most effective:

  • What was the effective leader like?
  • What were the interests or duties that brought the group together?
  • What seemed to keep the group from falling apart?
  • Can you find a common thread that unites the positive group experience?

Now, analyze the ineffective groups that you have belonged to.

  • What was the ineffective leader like?
  • What interests brought the group together?
  • Why were they not strong enough to hold the group together and make it effective?
  • Can you identify common elements that might have made them fail?

After analyzing your groups, what do you think makes a group successful (answer should be 3 or more sentences)?

What do you think makes a group ineffective (answer should be 3 or more sentences)?

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