Groupthink (Social Psychology)

Despite the advantage of commitment in executing decisions brought by groupthink, the phenomenon is blamed for compromising individual rational contribution in a group-based decision making process. This is because committing to groupthink attitude takes away the reasoning and judgmental capability of the individual members (Rothwell, 2009). Through this, the influence of an individual(s) might undermine the viable views of other members in the group. This essay gives a brief description of a personal experience on the negative consequences brought by group think.

The author will also take a look on how such a situation could have been prevented as well as giving a discussion on possible alternatives to groupthink. Groupthink behavior is a common phenomenon among unionized employees in an organization. As members of the union, employees tent to engage their employer in protecting the job security regardless of their conduct at the workplace. This was one my personal experience during by employment after graduation from college. The incidence involved a call for employee strike following the sacking of one of the employees due to misconduct at the workplace.

The particular employee was blamed for being drunkard and lateness at the workplace. Such practices had sufficiently compromised the performance of the employee, an element that prompted his discharge from job. Although effective employee engagement dictates for providing medical care to drug addicts rather than dismissal from job, our demands called for immediate reinstating of the employee rather than calling for his provision of rehabilitation. This confrontation with the company administration led to grounding of production in the company for two days.

Moreover, the employee was never reinstated and three more employees were charged with incitation. Thus, the consequence of the groupthink fueled strike had its consequences in costing more employees their jobs as well as compromising production in the company, a factor that negated the company’s policy on reliability in serving its customers. The situation of influencing unwarranted violent employee strike could have been prevented by engaging in concerted efforts by union leadership to identify the core reason behind the dismissal of the employee from job.

Such could have sufficiently brought out the question of misconduct by the employee as a viable subject for his discharge. On the other hand, drug problems are legally not a reason for dismissal from job. The laws, combined with the provisions of ethics of care dictates for taking the victim through a rehabilitation process to enable them recover from the problem. This has the implication that the union should have engaged the employer in giving the employee a job secured health care leave to enable him resolve his drug addiction problem.

Groupthink has numerous alternatives in facilitating decision making process in a group setting. The most viable alternative to the situation discussed could have been using a formal consensus driven decision making process (Moorhead, & Griffin, 2009). The aim of a group should be to promote cooperation rather than competition. This has the implication that individual members have a right to air their views heard and put into consideration (Shane, & Baron, 2007). Through this, the final decision will entail high level of rationality since it will be the outcome of compromising views from conflicting sides.

Therefore, although groupthink leads to quick decisions, the practice has no doubt high potential of leading to faulty decision making due to employment of competitive rather than cooperation influence in the process. References Moorhead, G. , & Griffin, R. (2009). Organizational Behavior: Managing People and Organizations. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning Rothwell, J. (2009). In Mixed Company: Communicating in Small Groups and Teams. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning. Shane, S. , & Baron, R. (2007). Entrepreneurship: A process Perspective. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.

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