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Norming - a stage of fitting in

Responsibility, agreement, commitment, acceptance

· team,to-sort

Norming is where the team members:

  • take responsibility,
  • agree on and
  • commit to team goals and processes, and
  • accept other team members as they are.

Giesen and Osborne (2008) divided this stage into two:

  • good norming and
  • bad norming.

Examples of bad norming are where:

  • a team member talks about a team member and not to that team member about an issue,
  • the team leader refuses to handle a problem within the team,
  • team members break into two or three cliques which do not cooperate effectively with each other, and/or
  • team members avoid raising issues because they are apprehensive about how their fellow team members would respond (Giesen & Osborne, 2008).

Teams that fall into a bad norming stage either:

  • (1) stay stuck in this stage and eventually have to be replaced, or
  • (2) address the issues that are holding them back and go back to the storming stage before (hopefully) progressing to a good norming stage (Giesen & Osborne, 2008).

Examples of good norming are where:

  • team members are able to raise issues and address disagreement and conflict, and
  • the team leader's level of trust and confidence in the team grows, leading to team members taking on greater roles and responsibilities within the team (Geisen & Osborne, 2008).

The type of thing that a team might say at this stage is: This is what we do.

You might ask yourself at this stage: How can I help the team?