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Group norms are the set of informal and formal ground rules that specify how people interact. The rules help members of the group determine how to behave. Advantages of clear ground rules within teams:
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It's normal to expect that these rules will be bent or broken. The transition from unspoken to written norms can be smoother when it is decided in advance how to deal with the offense.
Google researchers found that the ability to take risks in a safe environment was at the top of the list of group norms and made for happier, high-performing teams.
Group norms are most effective when everyone follows them. If everyone agrees to the norms laid out, it will be easier to hold each other accountable.
Every team has rules, but few are intentionally crafted. This could have a negative impact. For example:
When managers don't provide clear direction, employees will fill in the details with assumptions. However, what managers require may differ greatly from what the employees think their managers expect.
Setting up norms is easiest when the team is first created. It may take a special meeting at the start, but it saves time and diminish problems down the road.
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