Tuckman’s Model Five Stages of Group or Team Development Theory

Tuckman’s Model- Five Stages of Group or Team Development Theory Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing and Adjourning. Advantages and Disadvantages of Tuckman’s Theory or Model.

Table of Content
  1. Tuckman’s Model.
  2. Tuckman’s Group Development Stages.
  3. Advantages and Disadvantages of Tuckman’s Model.

1. Tuckman’s Model

Bruce Tuckman introduced his group and team development model in 1965. In the 1970s, he added the fifth stage adjourning to his model. In 1977, Tuckman and Mary Ann Jensen added the fifth and final stage into Tuckman’s model. The name of the fifth stage is Adjourning that represents the happiness of achieving the interdependent group goal. According to Tuckman’s model, the five stages are Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, and Adjourning. It is one of the appropriate theories for explaining the behavior of group members with dynamic characteristics. A perfect theory to describe how to group and team members adjust and adapt in a group.


Tuckman’s Model of the five stages of group development

2. Group Development Stages of Tuckman’s Model

Although, in 1965 Tuckman proposed a four-stage of group development model but later he added the fifth stage called adjourning. This model implies not only group and team development theory but also group facilitation theory. Tuckman’s group and team development model consists of five important stages that facilitate group formation and development, for example, forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning.

1. Tuckman’s Model-Forming Stage:(Orientation)
  • Members carefully explore both personal and group goals.
  • Tentatively feel uncomfortable about working with a group of strangers or unfamiliar colleagues try to understand and test personal relationships.
  • Orient itself to itself.

Primary Tension of the Forming Stage in Tuckman’s Model

  • Social unease and stiffness that accompanies the getting-acquainted stage in a new group
  • To be overly polite with one another
  • Members don’t interrupt one another
  • Often speak softly and avoid expressing strong opinions
  • Talk less and provide little in the way of content

How to Solve the Tension?

  • Be positive and energetic so that other members build positive attitudes toward you.
  • Smile and Laugh at others
  • Nod in agreement and Exhibit enthusiasm, because it is a very useful non-verbal cue to hold effective interactions.
  • Be patient and open-minded knowing that certainly, the primary tension will decrease with time.
  • Finally, Be prepared and informed before your first meeting so you can help the group focus on its task.
2. Tuckman’s Model-Storming Stage: (Power Struggle)
  • Conflict ⇒ cohesion dialectic.
  • Leadership ⇒ follower ship dialectic.
  • Group members become argumentative also emotional.
  • The most confident members begin to compete for both social acceptance and leadership.
  • Many groups try to skip this stage in order to avoid competition and conflict
  • Conflict is necessary to establish a climate in which members understand the value of disagreeing with one another.

Secondary Tension

  • Frustrations and personality conflicts experienced by group members as they compete for acceptance and achievement within a group.
  • Members have gained enough confidence to become assertive and even aggressive as they pursue positions of power and influence.
  • High level of energy and agitation
  • The group is noisier, more dynamic, and physically active
  • Members speak in louder voices, interrupting and overlapping one another so that two or three people may be speaking at the same time.
  • Members sit up straight, lean forward, or squirm in their seats
  • Everyone is alert and listening intently.
How to Solve the Tension?
  • Making jokes.
  • Work outside the group setting to discuss the personal difficulties and anxieties of group members.
3. Tuckman’s Model-Norming Stage: (Cooperation)
  • Members start learning to work as a cohesive team and task-oriented.
  • Start developing “rules of engagement”.
  • Feel more comfortable with one another and are willing to disagree and express opinions – communication becomes open.
  • Finally, a feeling of trust and clear goals emerge.
4. Tuckman’s Model-Performing Stage: (Synergy)
  • Members are fully engaged and eager to work at this stage.
  • Adjust and adapt, Members start solving critical problems.
  • Group identity, loyalty, and morale are generally high.
  • Disagreements do occur, but members usually resolved intelligently and amicably.
  • “Interaction patterns reflect virtually no tension; rather, the members are jovial, loud, boisterous, laughing and verbally backslapping each other”.
5. Tuckman’s Model-Adjourning Stage: (Closure)
  • Members have usually achieved their common goal and may begin to disband. It also represents whether the group members will work together or form a new group.
  • Disband = confront relational issues (For example, how to retain friendships with other members).
  • They are happy for what they have achieved but feel a sense of loss when the group dissolves.
3. Pros and Cons of Tuckman’s Model

Strengths, Pros or Advantages of Tuckman’s Theory or Model

  • Firstly, this model clarifies the specific stages of any group and team for instance forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning.
  • In addition to that, this model helps to learn more about primary tension and secondary tension also how to solve them.
  • Furthermore. It strengthens the relationship among group members and motivates them to be productive.
  • Finally, Tuckman’s group developing model shows the perfect way of solving group uncertainty issues.

Weaknesses, Cons, or Disadvantages of Tuckman’s Theory or Model

  • Tuckman’s Theory consists of five important stages that really difficult to maintain one by one. Group members need to follow different instructions at every stage to maintain effective communication and a good relationship with group members.
  • Additionally, there is no specific solution that can solve all conflicts in group communication although suggested some recommendations to reduce conflicts.
  • Furthermore, it did not mention what would have happened if the storming stage had not been ended.
  • Finally,  this model has been failed to discuss why the group change over time.
Citation for this Article (APA 7th Edition)

Kobiruzzaman, M. M. (2021, January 30). Tuckman’s Model Five Stages of Group or Team Development Theory. Educational Website For Online Learning. https://newsmoor.com/tuckmans-model-five-stages-of-group-and-team-development-theory/