Stages of Teams Development

 

Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing

Teams go through various stages of development. Bruce Tuckman and M.A. Jensen (1965-1977) refer to these stages as Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing. Knowing what to expect in each stage can help teams or individuals in the team. Team leaders and other members of the group have an important role to play in each stage. Effective team players can successfully move a team toward maturity with specific positive actions.

 

 Stage 1: Forming 

Characteristics of this stage:

Group members may be anxious, adopt wait-and-see attitude, or be formal.
No clear idea of goals or expectations.
Not sure why they are there.

What you can do to help:

Team writes its own charter or mission statement and clarifies goals.
Remember, goals must have personal buy-in.
Help team establish boundaries and determine what is expected.
Team members get to know each other doing non-conflict laden task. This builds commitment towards one larger goal.
Help them know what to expect; communicate and reassure.

 

Stage 2: Storming

Characteristics of this stage:

Team members eager to get going.
Conflict can arise as people bring different ideas of how to accomplish goals, notice differences rather than similarities.
Some members may drop out mentally or physically.

What you can do to help:

Continue with no surprises and communicate.
Tensions will increase. This is normal, so recognize and publicly acknowledge accomplishments.
Lead/participate in meetings.
Value diversity.
Gather information and be supportive. 

 

Stage 3: Norming

Characteristics of this stage:

People begin to recognize ways they are alike.
They realize its sink or swim, we’re in this together.
People get more social.
May forget their focus in favor of having a good time.

 What you can do to help:

Recognize how they are alike.
Help with training if applicable.
Encourage them to feel comfortable with each other and with systems.
Help group stay focused on goal.

 

Stage 4: Performing

Characteristics of this stage:

Team members are trained and competent, and able to do their own problem-solving.
Leader will ask for critical self-assessment and look at ways to challenge them and develop them.
Mature, understand their roles and responsibilities.
Want more input in processes.

 

For more team building skills, check out our team building instant download training package: Building High Performing Teams