Groupthink Theory Essay

3501 Words Jul 8th, 2010 15 Pages

As people, when confronted with a problem where a solution must be found, our ideal situation is to come up with the best possible one. To do this, we ideally gather the most knowledgeable, intelligent individuals into a group and attempt to derive the best solution to the problem. With the collection of these people, one would think that finding the best possible answer to the problem would be a rather simple task. However, what has happened in many situations is the complete opposite. Rather than finding the best possible solutions, many ideal, cohesive groups arrive at the worst possible answer largely due to problems in communication within the group. This is what we call the radical theory of
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The fourth symptom is stereotyped views of out-groups. Members within the group tend to have negative stereotypes of people and groups that are not part of their assembly. This causes the in-group members to disregard what the out-groups have to say which usually causes a lack of creativity. Next we have direct pressure on dissenters, or, direct pressure for conformity. With this symptom, members are discouraged to express any argument about the group’s stereotype and/or commitments, or else this is seen as disloyalty on the part of that particular member’s. The sixth symptom is known as self-censorship. Because groups who experience groupthink are very judgmental and discourage any argument about what the group does, group members will not share their ideas because of the fear of being rejected. These members censor themselves and withhold any criticism or opinion that they may have. Following self-censorship comes illusion of unanimity. In groups, members look to each other to confirm their ideas. This symptom occurs when a member falsely believes that silence in a meeting means that everyone agrees with the decision. Lastly we have self-appointed ‘mind guards’. Sometimes, certain members will appoint themselves as protectors of the group and even the leader from the outside that could potentially ruin the group’s

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