No matter what your major or concentration is, group projects will play a role in your college education at some point or another. And when that time comes, you’ll likely find that the biggest challenge of completing the project isn’t the assignment itself, but the coordination needed to combine the group’s different personalities into one productive team.
Here are 4 of the most common personalities found in project groups – knowing their strengths and weaknesses can be useful in developing a winning dynamic.
The leader Leaders are usually the first ones to rally a team together. They’ll propose an objective quickly during the group’s first meeting and may even start handing out tasks to other members. If a leader becomes too independent, however, and starts to run away with the project, it can be helpful to prompt the group to give feedback as well as their own ideas so everyone can be more involved.
The communicator The communicator may have a big voice in conversations, and may even get the group sidetracked every now and then, but they’re oftentimes the glue of the team. Let communicators do what they do best by giving them social tasks like managing email contacts, setting up shared documents, or reviewing others’ content.
The listener The listener may seem like they don’t have much to contribute at meetings, but often times they’re the ones with the best notes, the most knowledge of each team member, and ultimately the best ideas. Make it a point to encourage listeners to voice their opinions; they’ll be glad you did.
The absentee Without proper stimulation this group member may eventually seem to fall a half-step or more behind the rest of the group. Usually, this happens when a student has too big a workload to attend meetings or take on important tasks. It’s best to work with this type of teammate by assigning them several small tasks that can be moved around their schedule, and asking for updates every so often.
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