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Small Group Facilitation: Improving Process and Performance in Groups and Teams by Judith A. Kolb

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Importance of Climate and Ground Rules

Climate and conflict have a reciprocal relationship; each affects the other. Group climate emerges from and builds upon the interactions and relationships among members. Norms of behavior that exist in long standing groups have an effect on the ways in which disagreements are handled. And the ways in which disagreements are handled over time have an effect on climate. In short-term groups, lack of history makes facilitator action and the use of supportive communication and appropriate ground rules even more important.

Ground rules for productive conflict. Supportive behaviors, first described in a discussion of climate in Chapter 7, include describing without judgment, focusing on problem orientation and ...

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