This stage can be characterised as its name suggests: by spirited discussions and arguments among team members. This can be a difficult stage and the initial politeness in addressing each other may have gone. Characteristics of this stage include:
- team members challenging the validity of the task
- tension and rivalry between team members
- anger with the team processes or progress
- concerns expressed that you won’t be able to reach your goal
- disagreements over roles and responsibilities
- small cliques or fractions appearing
- some team members may become passive while others become more active.
Activity 4 How to cope with Storming
It can help to remember that this is a necessary stage that any team needs to go through in order to be able to function successfully. Disagreements resolved at this stage can pave the way for future high performance and the reality is that if this stage is not navigated successfully, the team may never go on to achieve its goals.
Consider what you could do at this stage of team formation to help the group move forward. Think about what you need to accomplish in this stage before you are able to move onto the next stage. Note down your thoughts.
Activities you may want to consider include:
- refocusing on the goal and breaking it down into small steps
- possibly redefining the goal
- establishing functional roles and tasks
- developing and using conflict management skills (more about this next week).