Chapter Twenty-FiveCREATING CHEMISTRY WITHIN AN ENTIRE GROUP

If one-on-one relationships have so much going on beneath the surface, imagine how infinitely complex an entire group of people can be. With so many conflicting personalities and competing motivations, it's a miracle for any team of people to decide on a shared goal and make progress toward it.

Yet, we work in companies, live in communities, and bind ourselves together as families. Group dynamics are at play in most areas of social and professional life, so it is well worth your time to understand how groups work. Or, you can shoot from the hip and hope that you continue getting invited to dinner parties. The choice is yours.

WHY GROUPS ARE SO HARD TO DEAL WITH

There's a concept in software engineering called Brooks's Law, more commonly known as the “Mythical Man-Month.” This law observes that adding more people to a project actually causes the project to take longer to complete.

This goes against common sense logic. If a project with two engineers was supposed to take eight weeks, shouldn't four engineers be able to complete the project in half the time?

If you have ever been involved in the product development process, you know that the answer is a resounding “no.” While there are many reasons this occurs, the root cause has to do with the math of group intercommunication.

The group intercommunication formula looks like this:

In this formula, n is the number of people in the group, and x is the number of communication ...

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