Group roles: maximizing group performance

Working with others different from ourselves can be a challenge, so make sure you are prepared before you start working in a team. By assigning different roles to individuals, based on their strengths, it can benefit the performance of your team. There are four fundamental roles; leader/facilitator, arbitrator/monitor, notetaker/time keeper, and devil's advocate.

Leader/Facilitator
This person typically clarifies the aim of the group and makes sure that all group members understand the conclusions. The person starts the meeting, introduces each topic and keeps structure and focus. He/she ensures that the group completes it tasks on time.

Arbitrator/Monitor
This person is an observer and clarifies arguments during discussions. When people participate less, the arbitrator makes sure that everybody equally participate. He/she is a cheerleader for the group and praises others work.

Notetaker/Time keeper
Notes are taken by this person and ensures that tasks are assigned. He/she summarizes and keeps on track of time during meetings.

Devil's Advocate
Guard against groupthink scenarios and ensures that all arguments have been heard. Typically an open-minded person.