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Groupthink and Business

What are the positives of "groupthink" in business? What are the symptoms of groupthink and ways to avoid it from occurring?

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Please see response attached (also presented below). I hope this helps and take care.


1. What are the positives of "Group Think" in business?

It seems that, by definition, "Group think" is NOT beneficial to a business, and should be avoided. Groupthink is a term coined by psychologist Irving Janis in 1972 to describe a process by which a group can make bad or irrational decisions. In a
groupthink situation, each member of the group attempts to conform his or her opinions to what they believe to be the consensus of the group. In a general sense this seems to be a very rationalistic way to approach the situation. However this results in a situation in which the group ultimately agrees upon an action which each member might individually consider to be unwise (the risky shift) ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groupthink).

Finally, the seven symptoms of decision affected by groupthink are:

1. Incomplete survey of alternatives
2. Incomplete survey of objectives
3. Failure to examine risks of preferred choice
4. Failure to re-appraise initially rejected alternatives
5. Poor information search
6. Selective bias in processing information at hand (see also confirmation bias)
7. Failure to work out contingency plans (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groupthink).

Let's look at the most common reported symptoms of 'Group Think' to see ...

Solution Summary

This solution explains groupthink in terms of symptoms and of ways to avoid it from occurring in business. Any potential positive effects of groupthink in business are also explored.