teamwork development and school performance analysis

When I joined this college, and particularly this course, I was not curious about how to effectively meet my performance goals. During the start of the summer, the manner in which this course would evolve confused me because of the high demand for group work. The class I am associated with has shown high performance throughout the course. The many groups I have been involved in during my classes have encouraged me increase my confidence in passing exams, and changed the attitude and experience in class. In order to know the effective of team development and management, this paper will use Wheelan four stages of group development from the book “Creating Effective Teams” to analyze the effect of group work in class performance. Moreover, the paper will analyze the effect of teamwork spirit in class performance.


Stage one: Dependency and Inclusion

According to Wheelan (2013, p. 8), in a group setting, the members depend on the leaders for vision, direction, organization, and good performance. The dependency concept makes each member in a group seek recognition and works hard so that others can recognize his or her efforts. On the other hand, inclusion involves giving chance to every member to give his or her own views. Inclusion also involves giving recognition to each member in the projects and recognizing their ideas. The stage’s desired outcome is a feeling of confidence and comfort while group members interact with one another (Wheelan, 2013, p. 9).

The theoretical application of this stage corresponds to the first week because the experience was not appealing. Rockas (2014) claimed that forming a group circle was challenging during the first week in the class because there was a feeling of dependency among students. During the first stage, the mode of learning and adaptation was not known. The group was disintegrated because group members hardly knew one another because of the lack of inclusion.

Developing and strong and united group is a challenging process during the first stages of growth (Wheelan, 2013, p. 8). There were no familiar faces the class, so I knew this would be a great opportunity to meet new people!” It was a great opportunity since I would meet new people. Members started establishing connections soon after the formations of groups and introductions. I realized the international student appreciated the teamwork. This was advantageous since he knew his skills would develop. The presentations by each team, aided a lot in the inclusion and understanding of each team member

One of the challenges of working in-group is clear understanding of the complexity surrounding individuals` personality. Individuals have variations in terms of character complexity. Kerchhoff developed interest in developing his English communication skills because of meeting new people who were fluent in the language (Kerkhoff, 2013). In the same way, the lessons from the first stage have helped me in understanding my peers and gaining more experience on some issues like communication and learning styles. In addition, I managed to connect with every member. The first week performance was good. I was able to develop a positive attitude towards the teamwork. Moreover, I was able to learn the importance of teamwork. According to Kerchoff (2013), failure to select his own team members made him excel in studies. From his learning, I also wished not to chose my group members and allow our lecturers place us in groups.

Stage two: Counter dependency and Fight

The characteristics of Wheelan’s second stage of group development involve the activities of protecting a person’s position and fighting for power. According to Wheelan (2013, p. 26), during group formation members are royal but the behavior changes as the group grows old. The cultures developed at initial the stage brought conflicts among the members. The conflicts and fights come in because of deviations from set rules and cultures. The conflicts and resolutions help in the building of strong trust and cohesion among the members. A unique and strong group structure is essential in management and cooperation in the group (Wheelan, 2013, p. 27).

The theoretical period associated with group two in my course is the second week. The second week between May 19th and May 26th made me realize my potential and I could perform better than my set goals. According to Wheelan (2013, p. 11), the counter dependency and fight stage makes learners gain more confidence in their groups and stop depending on their colleagues for assistance. The feeling of ambiguity had disappeared by then. Rockers narrated how he was more comfortable during the second week. “I felt a bit overwhelmed with how much reading was expected (Rockers, 2014)”. In addition, every team member was cohesive and relaxed. The contract formation, selection, and resolution of conflicts reduced occurrences of conflicts. Our team handled any conflicts and any misunderstandings early. We ensured we dealt with conflicts accordingly after detections to prevent poor performances.

Below are some facts that support my conclusion about the second stage of team development. Firstly, attitudes towards the teamwork became more positive than before. Some of the team members who were present facilitated the team contract drafting. Cavinee’s claimed to be very anxious of the activities of the class and absence of any group member did not hinder them from fulfilling their targets and goals (Cavinee’s, 2014). Conflicts of interest were expected, however; this never interfered with the normal learning operations because members had learned how to become dependent in studies. The dissonance was one of the major problems, which causes conflicts and low performance in a group. Our team member’s appreciation of the activities and work was high.

Poor performance in a group comes along because of lack of teamwork (Wheelan, 2013, p. 13). Some members of my group excluded themselves weakening the group spirit, and lowering performance. Members split because of conflicts of interests because some felt more superior, while others wanted to work things on their own. In addition, other factors such as jealousy and competition caused group conflicts. During the second week, Cavinee’s (2014) argued that competition forms an essential tool in group development because it works as a motivator to group members. On the other hand, competition introduces negative outcomes when members show conflict of interests.

The teachings from Wheelan’s second stage of development had many implications on my stay in the college. I was able to accept the new mode of study and learn each other. Learning about individual members` characters enabled me to work with the team effectively. I was able to identify the weaknesses of everyone through interactions. Learning of the weaknesses was an advantage to me since I could handle everyone. In addition, I gained capacity for conflict management and discovered various strategies of dealing with selfish and trouble makers in a group. As other group members would say, Wheelan’s lessons enabled the group to work in a timely manner (Cavinee’s, 2014).

Stage three: Trust and Structure

Stage three forms the most crucial stage in group development because it concerns trust that members have for one another because it helps in developing a strong structure. This stage involves trust among the group members and the formation of an organizational structure. At this stage, the group members had gained many experiences and learned characters of their team members. Trust is important in the success of any work done by the group. The members at this stage have started communicating openly among themselves Wheelan, 2013, p. 38).

The period of the semester that corresponds to this stage was during the third and fourth week. During this time, my team had more confidence in expressing themselves due to the trust that had built up. My group members had gained courage not only in the presence of the team, but also in the presence of the entire class. Some team members might have communication problems, but a strong structure brings together every member (Rockas, 2014).

To support the above argument, I learnt that courage helps in self-explaining. Good communication is important in a group set up (Kerkhoff, 2014). Loyalty and trust had emerged during the third and fourth week. For example, there were many instances when members criticized the works of others which acted as a way of motivating one another to increase our performance. The above trait was a clear indication of Wheelan’s the transformation from stage two to stage three. On the other hand, other group members experienced the same learning environment as Kerkhoff (2014) claimed, “My team works very well together. I feel really good about my team. We do a good job of complimenting each other’s skills.”

On the other hand, the increased clarity of the team goals enables the team to perform better (Wheelan, 2013, p. 15). The leadership and self-management enabled the class to take responsibilities. There was lack of discrimination among my team members because they had learned how to effectively deal with different communication styles. According to Wheelan, (2014), discrimination is a factor of failure in the group because it leads to poor performance. Being on the team is feeling formation of a bond among us taking place. Moreover, I have managed to make new friends. My team has opened up conversations. The fear and lack of understanding disappeared with time.

The implication of the third stage was supported by a lot of development and learning. One of the most important aspects of group work learned from this stage was collaboration. Working together as a group helps in achieving objectives. In addition, the avoid conflicts among group members management of the differences is vital because it helps maintain trust. Kerkhoff’s group attained higher levels out of collaboration between members. “The class has done a good job in guiding team members in group development…” Concentration during class work and offering assistance during group discussions leads to great specialization, strong cohesion, and trust.

Stage four: Work and High Performance

Wheelan`s stage four involves work done and accomplished by the teams. At this stage, the team is productive and the work accomplished is effective. The focus is the quantity and quality of the teamwork and class in general (Wheelan, 2013, p. 44). The objective at this stage is the perfection of the work. The learning process is over. The teams try to ensure that high performance of the work.

The period that represents the fourth stage was during the fifth week. In this period, my team gained the trust, confidence, and positive attitude towards teamwork leading to higher performances. Every member focus was high and insisted on getting work done on time and perfectly. The goal of the team was to make effective decisions and maintenance of high performance. My team already has completed a lot of workload that I believe is good. In the fourth week of the study, every member had put more effort in the exercise (Rockas, 2014).

The following indicators support my selection of week five. Firstly, during my group discussions, I realized that I knew little about my course work. Out of proper interaction with team members and hard work, I have gained more knowledge and discipline. Moreover, positive changes have occurred in class. Students who did not have courage to face the audience can now perfectly express themselves. Cavinee’s (2014) realized that self-expression helps a lot in self-satisfaction. The idea of uncertainty has disappeared and now I can confidently express myself. On the other hand, the objective of effectiveness accomplishment took place during the fifth week. The class had turned into a high performing team. Everyone’s performance, increased tremendously. I gained many experiences and made new friends.

In order to maintain a high performance, the team should make regular evaluations of work done. A comparison of the work achievement among the teams is also crucial. The team performance curve is an effective tool used in an evaluation of the work done among the teams. Moreover, it is a motivational tool. My class has not yet adopted the tool though I strongly encourage the tutor to use this tool in evaluating the performance (Cavinee’s, 2014).

Lessons Learned

The semester has helped me acquired a lot of knowledge from my classmates. I have experienced a lot of change in my attitude towards the teamwork. During the first days, I had negative attitudes towards the teamwork, which eventually changed as I came to realize the significance of teamwork. Moreover, I now know the importance of teamwork and how it is can affect a group’s performance. I have also acquired the skills of managing conflicts and maintaining trust. Teamwork has enhanced my creativity skills. Teachings from Wheelan’s four stages of team development help me solve problems without much struggle. I have also learnt to be tolerant and to manage conflicts. I can now cope with any personality since I have learnt different characters. Moreover, am more creative and this has improved my performance. My creativity has enabled me to formulate problems and solve them without much help though, where need be I consult my team.

On the other hand, teamwork has enabled me identify my areas of weaknesses. Initially, I had never had an experience with group work that made me more afraid of expressing myself in the presence of others. Teamwork has helped me gain more confidence of expressing myself without fear of critics. Based on my experiences in the group, I would like to be a leader in a group. Good leadership ensures that new members feel comfortable and have the freedom of expression.


Rockas, K. (2014). MGT 4720 Class Journal. Wright State University. May 12-June 2

Kerkhoff, Joseph, R. (2014). MGT 4720 Class Journal. Wright State University. May 15

Cavinee’s, C. (2014). MGT 4720 Class Journal. Wright State University. June 9-16

Wheelan, S. A. (2013). Creating Effective Teams. Los Angeles: Sage.






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