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

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Avoiding Groupthink

Another term almost as popular as win-win is groupthink. Janis’s (1971; 1983) often-cited work on groupthink found that highly cohesive groups suspend critical thinking and adopt proposed solutions too quickly. Harmony among group members becomes more important than a critical examination of issues. This absence of productive conflict over issues can cause a group to make a decision that, upon further reflection, would have been considered ill advised. In his early work, Janis spent two years examining group decision making in the political policymaking arena such as the discussions leading to the Bay of Pigs invasion during the administration of President John Kennedy. He noted that people involved in all the decisions

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