Enlist the aid of a group of coworkers, friends, or members of your family to participate in a 20- to 30-minute discussion in which they have to solve a problem or make a decision; for example,
deciding where to go for vacation (as in the case of a family), how to deal with a problem of morale at work or what to do with a troublesome colleague (as in the case of a work group), or
determining how often and at what time a group, such as a bridge club, should meet (as in the case of friends). It may be helpful to you if you can secure permission to record the discussion, but
recording it is not necessary. Your role in this assignment will be that of observer, not participant. During the discussion, you should keep track of what is going on, who seems to be having the
most and least influence, as well as why, how well the group moves through its task, any breakdowns in communication, and the like. Using either your notes or the recording of the discussion, and
drawing on pertinent material in Chapter 12 of your textbook, write an analysis (750 to 1000 words) in which you:
1. describe what the group was trying to accomplish,
2. indicate how well the members performed the task,
3. identify aspects of communication that both contributed to and detracted from successful completion of the task,
4. discuss what appeared to be the most significant sources of influence on how the group performed, and, finally,
5. indicate what you learned from the discussion and your observation of it that you would try to avoid and what you might also try to do in decision-making or problem-solving discussions in which
you are a participant.
#You are to act as an observer during the group discussion.
Although you may observe a group with which you are a member (such as, your family, friends, or
coworkers), you must remove yourself from the discussion and act only as an observer.
#Carefully consider your response for item #3 of the 5 required aspects of the assignment.
After reviewing the 5 required aspects of your assignment (see Lesson 5 on the course website), you should
carefully consider your response for item #3. This item asks you to “identify aspects of communication that
both contributed to and detracted from successful completion of the task” (CAS100B website, 2013,
paragraph 3). A successful response to item #3 will consider the communication among group members and
identify 4-6 communication concepts that we have studied this semester. You should describe the behavior
your observed, then identify the concept that is exemplified, why you feel this is a good example, and how it
affected the group dynamic. Ideally, you will have observed many more behaviors than the 4-6 I am
suggesting you include, but this would be an appropriate amount for this assignment.
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