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Tool: "Multiple-Sequences Model (by Marshall Scott Poole)" Composite Text View Page

Title String Multiple-Sequences Model (by Marshall Scott Poole)
Abbreviation Acronym MSM
Category String Model - Group Development Behavioral Model
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Description String Poole's model places decision-making at the center of group dynamics. His decision-making model is based on several variables: task structure, group composition and conflict management. Poole then provides three activity tracks: test, relation and topic, each noting a different state of group development or interaction. Unlike other models, these tracks may occur at any time during the group's operation.
Understanding these communication styles can help break from the rigid definitions of other models and even help interpret them.
  • Task track: This track is focused on group goal and process setting. Like other Group Development methodologies, this is the track where groups discover what they are doing and how they are doing it.
  • Relation track: This track is focused specifically on interpersonal relationships. Groups may, at any time, stop work and just talk to each other as friends, share information about themselves, or go out for dinner. These are important times for any group.
  • Topic track: This track is focused on issues or concerns the group may encounter. These can be collaborative or combative conversations.
  • Breakpoints: Breakpoints are the points where groups switch between tracks. Conversation shifts from one type to another. Breakpoints occur when a group switches from one track to another.
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