Posts Tagged ‘group work’

There’s no I in team…or is there?

Image by rawpixel from Pixabay

Aaaah, those two dreaded words that no conscientious student wants to hear…group work. While for some people, group work is an easy ticket to get to the other side, for others, it can be a cause of stress and frustration. While the availability of digital tools such as wikis should, in theory, enhance the ability for everyone to contribute equally, it still relies on each individual to have the motivation and inclination to do so.

As I mentioned in my previous post, my experience of online group work has not been as engaging as I had hoped, and instead of being a wonderful opportunity to genuinely connect and grow with other students in my class, I have found it quite cumbersome. Despite that fact that it has not afforded me the opportunity to bounce ideas off my peers in the way that I would have liked, I have found it a useful way to reflect on what leadership skills I possess and where I need to go from here.

For case study 4, I took on the role of of collator, however in hindsight, in ended up being more of a facilitator role. As someone who values communication, I drew heavily on this trait throughout the process. It was my plan that by doing this, I would be drawing on a democratic leadership style whereby all group members had an equal opportunity to contribute their thoughts and ideas. While Cherry (2019) suggests that democratic leadership can lead to better ideas and more creative solutions, she also warns that it can lead to communication failures and uncompleted projects. While we did complete and submit the case study and there was ample opportunity to contribute and discuss, the quality of the work itself was poor and as a group, we didn’t communicate as effectively as we could have.

In addition to the lack of communication between our group members, we once again had one member that did not contribute. I must admit, that if we were engaging in face-to-face group work, I would have drawn on some transactional leadership strategies and brought delicious snacks and coffee as a way to coerce our non-contributing group member to the party, but alas, this is one clear disadvantage of engaging in group work with individuals that you don’t know. Next week, I plan to take a step back and provide my peers with the opportunity to set up the wiki space and discussions. Though this will be a challenge for me, the art of listening to others is a critical leadership skill and one that I need to work on.


Cherry, K. (2019). The democratic style of leadership. Retrieved from

Managing group tasks

Last week, we submitted our first group task for Case Study 3. This task provided us as students with the opportunity to work as part of a group in order to achieve the goal of submitting our collective thoughts about Case Study 3. Given that we were juggling this with our first assignment, I was anxious to complete this task so I could direct my energies into the assignment so I kicked things off in our group. I’m not a natural leader so this was challenging for me. I was quickly aided by another member who volunteered to collate the first task, which I felt grateful for.

Something that was obvious from the get-go was that there was quite a difference in the way that we all work. While several of the group were keen to thrash out a plan of attack and get things moving, others were less inclined to do so and took longer to contribute. One member did not contribute until after our group response had been submitted and if I am completely honest, I felt that it was unfair that this student had their name listed first in our group of contributors, given that they if fact, had not contributed to the task. Nevertheless, the rest of the group worked well together.

For the next case study, I have volunteered to collate the group response and I am hopeful that the people who were least active in our group last time might have more input moving forward. As someone who does not like conflict, but also believes in teamwork and equal contribution, I am hoping that for the sake of our group, there is greater input from all members.

One thing that I have enjoyed doing through this task is using the Wiki as a collaborative work space. I have never done this before and I can see definite value in this as a way of communicating between members in an organisation.