Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing

All team members are new and don’t know the other team members. They don’t have a proper understanding of their roles and responsibilities and work independently. If you are in project management, you must have heard of Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing, which are known Tuckman model of team formation.

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“This is a sequence where sometimes segments happen quicker than at other times,” Sagotsky explains. “Norming might happen a year or more after a team is put together, and sometimes it never happens, simply because no one takes the time to agree on and enforce ground rules and processes.” “Well-managed storming can lead to increased trust in the relationship, competition in favor of highest quality in on-time deliverables, and effective bargaining,” he adds.

This stage arrives naturally when a project is completed and the need for a team is no longer felt. Some members also feel anxious thinking of their future roles. Ar the same time members feel content having accomplished goals. According forming storming norming and performing model to the model, teams go through each phase working their way through overcoming obstacles, learning to work together, and eventually hitting their goals. This model is known as the forming, storming, norming, and performing model .

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As mentioned, some of the stages are team development may have some conflict, disagreements, or general butting of heads. However, there are some strategies you can do to help your team advance through the five stages with minimal conflict. When each of the five stages is carried through, your group will feel more in sync and be a high-functioning unit. No one is afraid to ask a question, bring up a concern, or pose a new way of going about certain tasks. Everyone can bring their whole self to the team, play to their strengths, and will step up and help one another when it’s needed.

Creating a closing celebration that acknowledges the contributions of individuals and the accomplishments of the team and that formally ends this particular team’s existence. Rickards and Moger proposed a similar extension to the Tuckman model when a group breaks out of its norms, through a process of creative problem-solving. Please bear with us as we work through some issues in order to provide you with a better experience. One task we often help clients with is exploring the feasibility of developing an idea… I am an experienced and innovative HR professional dedicated to improving the way organizations achieve results through their people. If you are putting together a team to work on a project then it can be helpful to have an idea of what to expect.

forming storming norming and performing model

The team meets and learns about the opportunities and challenges, and then agrees on goals and begins to tackle the tasks. They may be motivated but are usually relatively uninformed of the issues and objectives of the team. Team members are usually on their best behavior but very focused on themselves.

Process Mapping

Team members are now comfortable enough to share ideas and opinions without fear of being criticized. Here, team members begin to get along better and trust each other. They’ll also have lots of questions during the storming stage about the work and rely heavily on team leaders for guidance. During this stage of team formation, there’s uncertainty and tension among team members. Business owners, managers, and entrepreneurs are often viewed as team leaders.

For the team to perform at its best, a good leader will encourage creative conflicts and help celebrate and reward achievements. This empowers the team, especially if the leader steps back once a team is performing. The high performing team is largely autonomous and a good leader will now be delegating, developing team members and maintaining a visioning role. Performing teams also get the job done with minimal supervision and conflict.

Members may express concerns about being unable to meet the team’s goals. During the Storming stage, members are trying to see how the team will respond to differences and how it will handle conflict. The principal work for the team during the Forming stage is to create a team with clear structure, goals, direction and roles so that members begin to build trust.


About 10 years after Tuckman created his original 4-stage model, he then added a fifth stage, which is Adjourning. More often in the corporate world, cross-functional teams will be formed for a project and then disperse at the end of the project. However, before moving on to the next project, it can be beneficial for the leader to overview with the team their successes and challenges , as well as celebrating their accomplishment.

  • Similarities can be seen with other models, such as Tannenbaum and Schmidt Continuum and especially with Hersey and Blanchard’s Situational Leadership model, developed about the same time.
  • Avoidance usually makes the problem grow until it blows up.
  • Despite other excellent maturity models you can find, I encourage you to analyze your teams and detect different behaviors and patterns based on Tuckman’s.
  • Similarly, the steps you can take to reduce social threats and increase trust might be helpful.
  • StreamsStreams are digital notepads to help you organize projects, share OKRs, and whatever else you dream up.
  • The project is completed, and the team is released or deputed to another project.

In the 1970s, Tuckman worked with fellow psychologist Mary Ann Jensen to add a fifth phase called adjourning. It’s important for them to celebrate what they have accomplished. They also should be recognized and rewarded for their work.

How Do Tuckman’s Stages Of Team Development Work?

Groups are so in-sync during the performing stage that it seems to happen naturally. The most effective and high-functioning teams are cultivated. As the group starts to familiarize themselves, roles and responsibilities will begin to form. It is important for team members to develop relationships and understand what part each person plays. Every group will then enter the storming stage in which different ideas compete for consideration.

Let Other Members Act As Leaders Or Facilitators

Let’s unpack the forming norming storming performing definition. Forming storming norming performing is one of the most influential ideas in the study of team development. Its less catchy title is the Tuckman framework, which studies how groups develop and deepen. The heightened interest in team development is taking place not just in the academic and research communities.

The team is formed and everyone shows their best behaviour. Strong guidance is needed by the facilitator as group tasks are not clearly defined yet. The co-creation stage, when the focus shifts towards developing group outputs.

The Coaching Tools Company is an official ICF Business Solutions Partner. At this stage people avoid conflict and “play nice” with each other because they want to be accepted into the group. The group is learning about the objectives and goals – getting a feel for the work that must be done together. People tend to focus on practical details – who, what, when and where and work reasonably independently at this stage – while they learn where they and everyone else fits into the team.

Unity is upon everyone and a consensus develops around who the leaders are, what everyone’s role is, and what comes next. There’s also a sense of bonding between the team and is more familiar with each other’s personalities and sense of humor. There should also be a sense of comfort in the norming stage when giving constructive feedback through online forms, or asking for help as you work through various tasks.

As the work continues, new standards will begin to evolve, and further roles will be identified and adopted. At the end of the day, when your team implements the five stages of team development, it sets up everyone in all roles for success. Sometimes also called the termination, mourning, or ending stage, most, if not all, of the goals of the team have been accomplished. The project as a whole is being wrapped up and final tasks and documentation are completed. As the workload becomes smaller, it’s common for team members to be taken off the assignment and delegated to a new project. The team members also usually debrief and discuss what went well and what could be improved on for projects in the future.

Think of the forming stage like the first day of school or the first day at a new job. There’s excitement in the air and everyone is ready to roll up their sleeves and get started on the project. Usually, group dynamics and roles have yet to be established, a team leader will typically emerge and take charge and direct the individual members.

The storming stage is when the initial excitement and good grace has run out. The reality and the weight of completing the project has now most likely settled in. Depending on how long the project lasted and the bond that was formed, there is sometimes a ceremonial celebration of the work that was completed and the overall success of the project. Once you’ve weathered the storm, pun intended, your team can move into norming. Here, team members have figured out how to work together and there’s no more conflict or internal competitions lingering.

The reason they don’t is that there is a risk that doing so may lead to rejection by the group. In this stage, individuals are on their best behavior and striving to learn about the social positions of their peers. They make sure they do nothing that may put them at risk of being rejected or disliked by the group.

During this phase of team building, responsibilities are clearly defined and the team begins to map out a plan to achieve its goals. The team’s leader is more engaged in team building at this stage to make sure everyone understands the plan. If the team’s objectives are not aligned, there can be mistakes and missed opportunities. Tuckman’s model explains that as the team develops maturity and ability, relationships establish, and the leader changes leadership style.

The fourth stage is the one that all groups strive to reach. They usually fail to overcome conflict and can’t work together. If you’ve reached the fourth stage, pat yourself on the back. Of course, you may still think that your tech guy’s choice in music is obnoxious. But, you also admire his knowledge of web design and coding skills, and value his opinions on anything tech-related. Once you’re aware of their flaws, you either learn to embrace them or the relationship will end quickly.