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Communications Theory: Group Thinking Essay

746 words - 3 pages

Groupthink is the communications theory that addresses, “ defective decision making on the part of a cohesive decision-making group in which loyalty to real or perceived group norms take precedence over independent, critical judgment” (Redd & Mintz, 2013). The main idea behind the theory of groupthink is that when participants in a group discussion do not want to disrupt the group, they will in turn reframe from suggesting other solutions to a problem. By not contributing other suggestions, better solutions may be overlooked and this leads to poor decision making in general. In order for the best possible solution to be found, participants in the group need to feel like they can ask ...view middle of the document...

More research needs to take place on how exactly how the environment affects one’s susceptibility to groupthink, which coincides completely with my discussion of the gap in the theory groupthink.
There have been certain characteristics of a group that have been studied and have been stated to cause groupthink to take place within a group. Heinemann, Farrell, and Schmitt (1994), discussed how high cohesion, structural properties, and situation properties are huge factors contributing to groupthink. To expand on this, high cohesion means that members are excited to be part of the group and they do not want to disrupt the harmony by adding their own thoughts and opinions. Structural properties stand for the structure of the group (leaders, followers, etc.), the social backgrounds of all the members, and the process of norms within the group. Lastly, structural properties discuss how high stress or low self-esteem within the groups can lead to groupthink as well (Heinemann, Farrell, and Schmitt (1994). All of these characteristics if present within a group setting can lead to groupthink taking place and the most accurate solution to the issue cannot be found.
Another area researched was how one’s personality affected their...

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