How to empower your team at every stage of development

Then, the teams need to come up with a wonderful plan that fits their budget. This is one of the interesting activities to strengthen the bond between colleagues. In this activity, each person needs to discuss a bad experience that they had in their personal life or at work. Then, the teammates should analyze the issue and suggest the positives that can be taken from it.

  • For this, you need to provide them a map of any location and also a list of information such as type of car, price of fuel, etc.
  • This activity helps you understand how your teams respond to change.
  • The forming-storming-norming-performing cycle repeats more often than you might think.
  • In the beginning, team members will be unsure of how to work best together.
  • This final part of the team building process grants teammates closure and provides a chance to reflect on the experience.

The forming → storming → norming → performing model of group development was first proposed by psychological researcher Bruce Tuckman in 1965. The use of fun and engaging team building activities outside the team’s work environment can create a strong bond, improve communication and ensure they can work together more effectively. In this stage, the group members try to share their individual goals and expectations. Additionally, some people resist control, and they try to oppose others.

Signs and questions to look out for in the forming stage

This doesn’t mean your team won’t see additional challenges or that there won’t be opportunities to improve. The first version is for teams who want to get to know each other better. The second version is for teams who want to explore how they are working together as a team.

at which developmental stage of team building

Here the team is just formed but its members have not yet connected with each other. So, each individual would be trying to understand the attitudes and personality types of their colleagues. Moreover, they might be looking to make an impression on their coworkers. The only role the employers have during this stage is to monitor their teams and make sure that they don’t run into any obstacles. You can check on their progress levels frequently and provide them with adequate guidance whenever required.

Forming — Getting projects started

If it exists, conflict in this stage will be minimal and resolved quickly. At this stage, team members are able to talk about their differences honestly and openly without things escalating and without judgment. In virtual teams, the need for activities to help teams get to know each other is even greater, as some of the usual spaces for mingling and forming bonds are unlikely to be unavailable to them.

at which developmental stage of team building

Although many authors have written variations and enhancements to Tuckman’s work, his descriptions of Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing provide a useful framework for looking at your own team. Our activities are designed to be fun and engaging and are therefore an excellent way of forming relationships whilst becoming familiar with each other’s strengths. The fun, pressure free environment assists with norming and storming and performing by requiring teams to work together and perform in a pressure free environment.


On a remote team, you need to be more thoughtful about the tools and the processes that you use to identify and deal with disagreements. Choose a project management software that lets you plan the entire project and assign deadlines and responsibilities so everyone can see what tasks need to be accomplished. Finally, share the project roadmap so the team can see the starting point, the proposed check-in points, and the end goal.

at which developmental stage of team building

Encourage team members to develop a schedule filled with large blocks of time that are free from interruptions like meetings or check-ins. In this world of constant notifications, it’s easy for people to get derailed and forget which goals are really important. Behaviors during the Storming stage may be less polite than during the Forming stage, with frustration or disagreements about goals, expectations, roles and responsibilities being openly expressed.

Scenario: You’re leading your team through the forming stage

Self-assessment is an important part of the team development process and using a structured framework can help ensure a productive conversation that doesn’t overspill or create further conflict. The learnings from this activity can then be used to resolve issues, strengthen the group and help move the team from Norming to Performing. During the “forming” stage of team development, the team members acquaint themselves with the basic aspects of their task.

The more group activities your team does together, the more familiar everyone will become. When you look through our complete virtual happy hour guide, you’ll see that team activities include social occasions. Arranging events that allow your teammates to interact as people rather than coworkers can go a long way toward resolving conflict and establishing lasting cohesion. Conflict between team members may force a team to rework project goals and reassign critical tasks. You may also have to tweak your group’s workflow to break down silos created by professionals who are acting like cliquish high school students.

The Flywheel Growth Model

The forming-storming-norming-performing cycle repeats more often than you might think. This can be a period of adjustment for some team members, as routines can be disrupted and new plans are made to tackle future work. It’s important that internal communication is handled well throughout all stages, however it can be particularly important during this final stage to prevent a significant relapse period. Bruce Tuckman was a renowned American psychologist who spent his career studying the theory behind group dynamics. In 1965, he published a paper titled “Developmental Sequence in Small Groups”, detailing the four stages that teams follow on their way to success and high performance in their job function. This is a change management exercise that can reduce resistance to change.

As the team works out the majority or all of their issues, they form a sense of unity and a common goal, thus entering the Norming stage. Every team has different needs when it comes to their development. Which means, you may experience these stages in sequential order, or find yourself in a loop with one or more of the stages outlined above. Disagreements are unavoidable on teams, especially when each person on the team has a different perspective on how to approach the issues the team encounters. When you all work in the same location, it can be easier to hash out problems quickly.

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By going through the development cycle, teams stop being a group of individuals and become a unit, all working together towards the same goal. Keep reminding the team to check in with each other regularly at which developmental stage of team building in person or via instant chat, but stay out of their way. They will waste time and lose their focus if they have to answer frequent, unscheduled questions about what they’re working on.