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Informal team roles

Encourager, Harmonizer, Compromiser, Gatekeeper, Standard setter, Commentator, Follower

· team,personnality

Team members can also have informal roles.

Informal roles are often related to interpersonal relations.

Many informal roles influence – or are influenced by – conflict.

As such, it is important to investigate informal roles.

There are several lists with informal roles, but in this course we use the classic – but still relevant - table of Benne and Sheats (1948):

Role & Explanation

  1. Encourager: Rewards others through agreement, warmth, and praise
  2. Harmonizer: Mediates conflicts among team members
  3. Compromiser: Shifts his or her own position on an issue in order to reduce conflict
  4. Gatekeeper: Smooths communication by setting up procedures and ensuring equal participation
  5. Standard setter: Expresses or calls for discussion of standards for evaluating the quality of the team process
  6. Commentator: Points out the positive and negative aspects of the team’s dynamics and calls for change if needed
  7. Follower: Accepts the ideas offered by others and serves as an audience for the team
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