Group decision making

There are three kinds of talk used in group decision-making:

Promotive: Talk that moves the group along by calling attention to the task at hand. (“What do you think about the third option?”)

Disruptive: Talk that takes the group away from the goal. (“I can’t deal with this anymore, I’m going out for a smoke!”)

Counteractive: Talk used to get the group on track. (“Look, I know we’re all tired, but we’ve got a job to do here.”)

In addition, according to Hirokawa and Gouran’s theory, there are four components of group problem-solving:

Problem analysis: Understanding the problem at hand

Goal setting: How will you decide which solution is best? What are the criteria?

Identification of alternatives: What are the options available to solve the problem?

Evaluation of positive and negative consequences: evaluate different options.


*Please watch a few minutes of a remake of a famous film called “Twelve Angry Men.” The men in the film are on a jury and they are trying to decide if the defendant is guilty or not. This is a great example of group communication at its most intense. It isn’t necessary to see the entire film. Just watch the part where the men are talking in the jury room, especially when it gets very heated:

Use the numbers and questions below as labels:

1. Restate and define at least FOUR of the seven concepts listed above AND provide examples from the film of each of the four concepts. Be sure to explain why the examples fit the definition of the concepts. (300 words minimum). Label each concept (a,b,c,d) in your response.

2: Consider the three kinds of talk listed above (promotive, disruptive, counteractive). Describe a personal experience you had where these kinds of talk were used (communication in a group or with another person). Describe the situation and give examples of at least TWO of the three types of talk. Be sure to highlight each of the types so it’s clear to the reader. What happened as a result? Please provide LOTS of details. (Word count minimum: 300 words).


*For all discussions, you must do an initial AND a follow-up post. In your first post, follow the instructions provided in my post. The follow up post will be your comments regarding a particular classmate’s post and must refer to this individual by name. The follow up post should show that you read your classmate’s post and gave it a lot of thought.

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