Group Think

To prepare to respond to our prompt for the Week 5 discussion you review the LDR 535 Interactive Analysis: Strategies for Creating Positive Organizational Change. Slide 12 is titled “Managing Groupthink.”What is Groupthink? Manning and Curtis define Groupthink as “a mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive group, and when members striving for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action; in contrast to group strength, groupthink results in mistakes and failure. Causes of groupthink include the illusion of invulnerability, belief in the inherent morality of the group, rationalization, stereotyping of out-groups, self-censorship, direct pressure, mudguards, and the illusion of unanimity” (2019, p. 543).Manning and Curtis use the Challenger disaster as an example of groupthink. Several engineers recommended postponing the Challenger launch. However, certain group members responded to direct pressure on those engineers to alter the recommendation (2019, p. 244).Netflix recently released a four-part documentary titled “Challenger: The Final Flight.” I watched the entire series. I strongly recommend it to you as a study in management and a powerful example of the results from groupthink. In Episode 4, the comment was made, “The culture at NASA in that period of time was we can do anything” (Netflix, 2020, 36:20). Of course, the resulting disaster proved that the decision-making process at NASA was seriously flawed.What about you? What examples of groupthink have you observed?

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