The Role Of Trainer And The Intervention Strategies Of A T Group Essay

The Role Of Trainer And The Intervention Strategies Of A T Group Essay

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We began our groups dynamics class by being given the definition and task of a T-Group. “An intensive effort at interpersonal self-study and an attempt to learn from the raw experience of being a member. The task of a T-group is to study its own process.” It was explained that this was a “cultural island” and were given five key concepts: A here and now focus, unfreezing, group support and an atmosphere of trust, self-disclosure and feedback. Yet, for the following two weekends we searched, argued and discussed what the goal for our group was to be. Susan Wheelan’s article outlines both the process of running a T-group as well as the stages that a group will go through from beginning to the end. She outlines the reasons as to why this kind of setting is a ripe environment for one to learn. She describes the role of the trainer and the intervention strategies that they can use. This paper will compare these descriptions with the actual experience of being in a T-group.
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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