Tuesday, August 22, 2006

US Administration Suffers from Groupthink

Groupthink is a concept that was identified by Irving Janis9 that refers to faulty decision-making in a group. Groups experiencing groupthink do not consider all alternatives and they desire unanimity at the expense of quality decisions. Learn more about groupthink and then complete the interactive exercise at the end of the discussion.

Conditions - Groupthink occurs when groups are highly cohesive and when they are under considerable pressure to make a quality decision.

Negative outcomes - Some negative outcomes of groupthink include:
  • Examining few alternatives
  • Not being critical of each other's ideas
  • Not examining early alternatives
  • Not seeking expert opinion
  • Being highly selective in gathering information
  • Not having contingency plans

Symptoms - Some symptoms of groupthink are:

  • Having an illusion of invulnerability
  • Rationalizing poor decisions
  • Believing in the group's morality
  • Sharing stereotypes which guide the decision
  • Exercising direct pressure on others
  • Not expressing your true feelings
  • Maintaining an illusion of unanimity
  • Using mindguards to protect the group from negative information

Solutions - Some solutions include:
  • Using a policy-forming group which reports to the larger group (see impartial below)
  • Having leaders remain impartial
  • Using different policy groups for different tasks (see impartial above)
  • Dividing into groups and then discuss differences (see impartial above)
  • Discussing within sub-groups and then report back (see impartial above)
  • Using outside experts (see impartial above)
  • Using a Devil's advocate to question all the group's ideas (see impartial above)
  • Holding a "second-chance meeting" to offer one last opportunity to choose another course of action (see impartial above)

If only the clowns in Washington had the sense to look for a 'solution'.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought I was the only one that thought this was true.....

You are absolutely correct about Bush Inc. they are so stuff in their own little world they have no idea how destructive they are being to their own people...

22 August, 2006 20:37  

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