I am suprised at the power in the Tuckman model

Photo Credit: Éole via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Éole via Compfight cc

What is the Tuckman model you say?  The Tuckman model is used to describe the four stages of group development.  The model was created by Bruce Tuckman in 1965 to describe the process that a team goes through.  Many other models followed after the Tuckman model came about.

One important part of this model is as the team matures the approach to management changes.  As the team starts the leadership is a directing approach.  As they move into the next stage the leadership is more of a coaching style.  In the third stage the manager becomes more of a participant in the team activities.  In the last stage the manager delegates more to the team and the team can easily execute on the plan.


The first stage of the Tuckman Model is forming of the team.  The team members come together and each one wants to be accepted by others and they avoid and conflict or serious issues.  The team members begin to find their roles in the organization.  With the avoidance of conflict during this stage little work actually gets done.  As the group learns about the challenges ahead they also set goals and start working on the initial team objectives.  The members of the team will be modeling good behavior at this point.


The storming stage is called that as members offering competing ideas of what is their assignment and how they will go about handling it.  Also  the team is learning how they will work together and how they will be lead.  The approach to conflicting ideas will help set how they will resolve future conflicts.  In this stage the team grows a lot and could move through this stage quickly depending on the tolerance and patience of the team members. 


In the norming stage the team has to come together on its plan.  Competing ideas will now be put  aside and disagreements settled.  The begins to work toward successfully completing their goals.  Some teams can reach a point where they don’t share ideas out of fear of more conflict and this can be counterproductive.


The next stage is performing, not all teams make it to this stage.  The team is at a high-performing stage where work is done in a quick manner.  Also there is little tension as the team members understand each other very well and operate with respect.  The team is quite competent at this stage and con operate with little management.

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