Belbins Roles In Learning Education Essay

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This report is all about our group work. How we formed the group and completed the work. What problems we faced and how we overcome them. Theories we used and the learning's.

My report is divided into 2 parts: A and B.

Part A - how we did it - process

Part B - what we did - content

Part - A

Whilst working in the group we experienced so many things, we also learn how important group work is. We also learnt how to work in the group as a team player. We also noticed as a group we had gone through all the stages which are said by B W Tuckman, which is as follows:


This is the stage where we formed our group. We were in group "D" which was formed by our professor randomly and I got the opportunity to lead the group with the mutual consent of all group members. Our group consist of 6 members and their descriptions are follows:


Belbin roles




Shatrughna ( raj )

team leader

Team worker

Cares for individuals and the team. Good listener and works to resolve social problems. Can have problems making difficult decisions.

Co-operative, mild, perceptive and diplomatic

Listens, builds, averts friction

Indecisive in crunch situations

Vijay Singh



Reliably sees things through to the end, ironing out the wrinkles and ensuring everything works well. Can worry too much and not trust others.

Painstaking, careful and anxious

Searches out mistakes and omissions

Delivers on time

Inclined to worry excessively

Unwilling to delegate


Co -ordinator

Respected leader who helps everyone focus on their task. Can be seen as excessively controlling.

Mature, confident, a good chairperson

Explains goals, promotes decision-making, delegates well

Can often be seen as manipulative

Off loads personal work



Has expert knowledge/skills in key areas and will solve many problems here. Can be disinterested in all other areas.

Single-minded, self-starting, dedicated

Provides knowledge and skills in rare supply

Contributes only on a narrow front

Dwells on technicalities



Lots of energy and action, challenging others to move forwards. Can be insensitive.

Challenging, dynamic and thrives on pressure

The drive and courage to overcome obstacles

Prone to provocation

Offends people's feelings





Explores new ideas and possibilities with energy and with others. Good networker. Can be too optimistic and lose energy after the initial flush.

Extrovert, enthusiastic, communicative

Explores opportunities

Develops contacts


Loses interest once initial enthusiasm has passed

From the above table we can understand that we had every possible Belbin's characters in our group. Being the leader of the group I had the responsibility of our success and failure.

My biggest challenge was to keep unity within the group and at the same time I had to focus on our project: things like topic, research and all.

First thing I did was the introduction session, where we all sat together in the canteen and introduced ourselves to each other. In that time we didnt talk anything about our topic and project. The main idea was to know each other very well so that everyone feels comfortable in working together.

Next step was how we will communicate with each other so I made a private website for our team where we all can come any time and live chat, blog, comment and exchange our ideas.


High dependence on leader for guidance and direction. Little agreement on team aims other than received from leader. Individual roles and responsibilities are unclear. Leader must be prepared to answer lots of questions about the team's purpose, objectives and external relationships. Processes are often ignored. Members test tolerance of system and leader. Leader directs (similar to Situational Leadership® 'Telling' mode).


This is the stage where I realised the importance of Belbin's theory.

Before starting the project we had to choose a topic so I came up with several topics. When I put my ideas in front of everyone, I got different responses from different people, as said in belbin's theory people started showing their characters. We all were confused, tensed and started kind of fighting. Things were looking really bad and I was really worried about the unity in the group. I also saw a kind of group formation within our group.

Then I personally approached everyone. I spoke to them individually about what's wrong. What is the problem? I tried my best to convince them about the importance of unity and fortunately I got a positive response. Actually there was no problem; it's just the clash of different personalities. And later on everyone realised that.

So finally we decided on one topic and consulted our tutor about our idea. We got very good response from our tutor and again we were happy and united.


Decisions don't come easily within group. Team members vie for position as they attempt to establish themselves in relation to other team members and the leader, who might receive challenges from team members. Clarity of purpose increases but plenty of uncertainties persist. Cliques and factions form and there may be power struggles. The team needs to be focused on its goals to avoid becoming distracted by relationships and emotional issues. Compromises may be required to enable progress. Leader coaches (similar to Situational Leadership® 'Selling' mode).


Now everything was clear, there was no misunderstanding and most importantly we knew our topic of research. This is the stage where people started sharing their problems with each other and recognised my role as a team leader.

Now I wanted to organise everything properly so that we don't stop in the middle. I distributed the work and gave them the option for any changes. I asked everyone individually if they are happy or not. Again I had to make some changes in our plans for their convenience.

Now, we knew exactly what everyone had to do. Everyone knew their roles , their area of research and work. We all started concentrating on our part of research.


(Research, data gathering, coordinating, explanations, introduction and conclusion, helping everyone)


(Problems, types, examples, impact, designing,)


(Psychological problems, impact)


(Solutions and recommendations)


Helping hands


Helping hands


Agreement and consensus is largely formed amongst team, who respond well to facilitation by leader. Roles and responsibilities are clear and accepted. Big decisions are made by group agreement. Smaller decisions may be delegated to individuals or small teams within group. Commitment and unity is strong. The team may engage in fun and social activities. The team discusses and develops its processes and working style. There is general respect for the leader and some of leadership is more shared by the team. Leader facilitates and enables (similar to the Situational Leadership® 'Participating' mode).


Tasks were given now the time was to perform and everyone had to show their calibre. Result was shocking. We all shared our work and we all were very happy to see that we were on the right track. Personally, I was very happy to see the quality of our work. Everyone had done lots of hard work which was showing in the research material. I had great difficulty while finalising the presentation. I was confused about what to consider in the presentation and what should leave. Fortunately everyone were cooperating and thinking about what is best for the group. We finished our presentation and were eagerly waiting for presenting it in front of everyone.


The team is more strategically aware; the team knows clearly what it is doing and why it is doing. The team has a shared vision and is able to stand on its own feet with no interference or participation from the leader. There is a focus on over-achieving goals, and the team makes most of the decisions against criteria agreed with the leader. The team has a high degree of autonomy. Disagreements occur but now they are resolved within the team positively and necessary changes to processes and structure are made by the team. The team is able to work towards achieving the goal, and also to attend to relationship, style and process issues along the way. Team members look after each other. The team requires delegated tasks and projects from the leader. The team does not need to be instructed or assisted. Team members might ask for assistance from the leader with personal and interpersonal development. Leader delegates and oversees (similar to the Situational Leadership® 'Delegating' mode).



Tuckman's fifth stage, Adjourning, is the break-up of the group, hopefully when the task is completed successfully, its purpose fulfilled; everyone can move on to new things, feeling good about what's been achieved. From an organizational perspective, recognition of and sensitivity to people's vulnerabilities in Tuckman's fifth stage is helpful, particularly if members of the group have been closely bonded and feel a sense of insecurity or threat from this change. Feelings of insecurity would be natural for people with high 'steadiness' attributes (as regards the 'four temperaments' or DISC model) and with strong routine and empathy style (as regards the Benziger thinking styles model, right and left basal brain dominance).

Part - B

What is our topic?

Our topic of presentation and research was "employee discrimination"

Why we chose this topic?

While studying human resources we noticed that we didn't discuss about diversity and discrimination and this is the biggest problem faced by all organisations because of globalisation. We thought this is a unique topic and everyone will get the chance to learn how discrimination impacts and what is the solution. After all today or tomorrow we all are going to face this problem.

My contribution:

As a team leader I had to take the initiative and inspire others from my work.

I started posting my work on our website. I did research on -

Diversity and discrimination, Meaning and definitions London as a diverse city

Problems and impact Solutions and recommendations Laws and ethics

My total work was around 10,000 words.

(Can be viewed on our website)

My work methodology:


• define the task

• make the plan

• allocate work and resources

• control quality and rate of work

• check performance against plan

• adjust the plan


• maintain discipline

• build team spirit

• encourage, motivate, give a sense of purpose

• appoint sub-leaders

• ensure communication within group

• develop the group


Size of the group

Compatibility of members



• attend to personal problems

• praise individuals

• give status

• recognize and use individual abilities

• develop the individual

Key Drivers:

Group cohesiveness + performance

Structure and style

Management and leadership


External threat

Work environment

Nature of

the task





Group development and maturity





Learning as Team leader:

Learning as team leader:

Ideal leading style

Asking questions instead of giving answers

By asking such questions such as "What do you think we should do?" or "How do you suggest we proceed?" you take a step behind another person. Whether you stay behind, of course, depends on your intention to actually follow the suggestion or answer of that other person.

Providing opportunities for others to lead you

This goes beyond the traditional notion of looking for growth opportunities for other people. Unless the opportunity in question bears a real risk for your personal performance outcome, you are not actually positioning yourself as a follower.

Doing real work in support of others instead of only the reverse

Rolling up your sleeves and contributing "sweat equity" to the efforts and outcomes of other people earns you their appreciation as someone upon whom they can depend, regardless of the relative hierarchical or functional position each of you holds.

Leader must follow are:

Individual performance

As a leader, you must follow another individual, regardless of hierarchy, if:

• That individual, through experience, skill, and judgement, knows best.

• That individual's growth demands that you invest more in his or her skill and self-confidence than in your own.

• Only that individual, not you, has the capacity (the time and opportunity) to "get it done"

Team performance

As a leader, you must follow the team if:

• The team's purpose and performance goals demand it

• The team, not you, must develop skills and self-confidence

• The team's agreed-upon working approach requires you, like all the others, to do real work

Organizational performance

As a leader, you must follow others, regardless of hierarchy, if:

• The organization's purpose and performance goals demand it

• The need for expanding the leadership capacity of others in the organization requires it

• "Living" the vision and values enjoins you to do so

Five transformational styles:

Transformational Style

Leader Behaviour

1) Idealized Behaviors: living one's ideals

• Talk about their most important values and beliefs

• Specify the importance of having a strong sense of purpose

• Consider the moral and ethical consequences of decisions

• Champion exciting new possibilities

• Talk about the importance of trusting each other

2) Inspirational Motivation:

inspiring others

• Talk optimistically about the future

• Talk enthusiastically about what needs to be accomplished

• Articulate a compelling vision of the future

• Express confidence that goals will be achieved

• Provide an exciting image of what is essential to consider

• Take a stand on controversial issues

3) Intellectual Stimulation:

stimulating others

• Re-examine critical assumptions to question whether they are appropriate

• Seek differing perspectives when solving problems

• Get others to look at problems from many different angles

• Suggest new ways of looking at how to complete assignments

• Encourage non-traditional thinking to deal with traditional problems

• Encourage rethinking those ideas which have never been questioned before

4) Individualized Consideration: coaching and development

• Spend time teaching and coaching

• Treat others as individuals rather than just as members of the group

• Consider individuals as having different needs, abilities, and aspirations from others

• Help others to develop their strengths

• Listen attentively to others' concerns

• Promote self development

5) Idealized Attributes:

Respect, trust, and faith

• Instill pride in others for being associated with them

• Go beyond their self-interests for the good of the group

• Act in ways that build others' respect

• Display a sense of power and competence

• Make personal sacrifices for others' benefit

• Reassure others that obstacles will be overcome


Although not every group got to the harmonic performance stage, I felt very lucky to be part of a cohesive group. Our group went through all five stages described by Tuckman. As we were classmates in the same course, we went through stage one very quickly. The storming stage mostly evolved in the first week when we discussed which kind of topic we should choose. However, every conflict was dealt with quickly and smoothly, this was partly because we knew each other very well already, and also because no one of us had a dominating personality, and I would like to say everyone in our group was very nice, helpful and hard working. So as long as we decided to do the project, we soon engaged to norming stage and set up the rules each one should follow. We did support each other, and our communication had always been very good. Based on the successful previous stages, our group performed very well, successfully developed the presentation. Finally, although our task had finished, all five of us became very good friends, and keep in good touch till now.

After reviewing the theories together with my own experience, I would conclude that, in practice, many groups can work well even without awareness of this model. However, with these models' help, we can better understand what is happening and going to happen during group development, and this awareness can help us to better resolve any possible problems and get to the perform stage more quickly.