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