Ms. Wheelan makes clear how participating in a T-group differs from observing another T-group or gaining the same information through a lecture. Ironically, I have been exposed to many of the ideas in this class and have gone through the process of forming groups numerous times in my life, but my purposeful participation with the idea to observe and reflect on the process gave me many “aha” moments and additionally required that I grapple with the emotions that went with it. For instance, for years in the military I’ve heard about forming, storming, norming and transforming (or in this class performing) but never thought about how that actually plays out, what that would mean to me as a leader or how to deal with some normal behavior that happens in each stage. I o...
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... they reacted (or failed to react) to the trainer that was in the room making short comments reflecting to them what was going on during their group time. It was clear that they were exhibiting some counter dependency behavior that was in contrast to our dependency on “positive” trainer comments. Even the ending stage was taken right from the script. We moved into the feedback stage with each other, asked how we compared to the other group, self-evaluated and self-assessed our group performance. The statement “It was a textbook performance” could not be more applicable.
Ultimately, the description of a T-group matched the experience of being in a T-group…to a T. However, even though I had read in advance these descriptions I could not have gained as much insight into my behavior in a group and the finer details of group dynamics as I did through my participation.
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