Groups may be formal & brought together for a particular purpose like a workshop, educational purposes or even a charity event. There are also informal groups, such as family groups, gatherings or get-to-together with colleagues. You may need to work with different groups.
The Groups you should join are: groups that will likely be most valuable to you as these related to your industry, passion, your job and of course; your location.
Woman’s Groups can be empowering to those who attend but it takes a great teacher to make the magic happen. If you have a great teacher then your group will feel positive, empowered and nurtured, this environment allows for all woman in that group to reach heights they never dreamt possible. In my experience, the best groups that I have been part of are those who have been organised by our greatest teachers & mentors. A teacher’s goal is to motivate her students to reach beyond their grasp. A good teacher helps a student realise their strengths and encourages and challenges the student to learn through those strengths. It is in the process of reaching this goal that the ingredients for making a good teacher come into play. It takes many qualities and skills that create an effective teacher – here are a few;
** Committed ** Knowledged ** Organised ** Compassionate ** Flexible ** Dependable ** Motivated **Patient ** Creative ** and sees every student as a unique individual.
Cohesiveness is the measure of success of a group. If all its members work together as a team or complement each other as a part of a whole collective group, they are cohesive and most likely to achieve success as a group.
The positives about bringing woman together in a group:
Groups are important for personal development as they can provide support and encouragement to help individuals to make changes in behaviour and attitude. Some groups also provide a setting to explore and discuss personal issues. A group setting can allow people to become more confident and learn new interpersonal, social and practical skills through observation as well as practice. These skills can be developed within a group setting and then effectively used in individual situations. As group membership can improve self-esteem and confidence so it can also improve self-motivation and the desire to learn and develop.
The positive aspects of being part of a group: Is that they can nurture themselves as well as others and receive mutual support from each other. Woman have the opportunity to better value themselves when in a group, by sharing. They get the opportunity to share their journeys & life experiences with each other. It offers them, as a group, support & encouragement as they progress forward. Groups allow woman to build connections and relationships with like-minded individuals who share common interests. Additionally, it allows woman to establish or develop relationship bonds in which feelings are shared, understood and there is respect for each other.
The negatives about bringing woman together in groups are:
Everyone who attends needs to be able to work in a group, as a team and display behaviour that would add value to the group and not sabotage themselves or anyone else that is there to learn. It’s like having that disruptive student who constantly pulls attention to themselves for their own gain for whatever reason and away from the classroom. Woman can segregate themselves, set apart from the rest of the group or from each other and this can cause problems within the group. They tend to isolate themselves or divide others, this can be due to their own beliefs and current behaviour, even past experiences with perhaps a person in that group with whom they have had a negative experience with or heard of, any reason. These kind of disruptive people can try and persuade others to act out in a certain manner and in doing so, take the focus away from the very reason they are there in the first place and that is to attend a specific workshop or class to learn, expand and grow. It then becomes all about the people who are attending and not the groups objective. Jealousy between women can sabotage great potential friendship if you allow others to make decisions for you or allow their insecurities to over-ride your opportunity to increase your social and friendship circle.
Why do woman join groups? In my personal experience, I have joined various groups that are majority woman because I wanted to learn a specific topic. These groups were workshops that held particular topics that I was interested in & I wanted to sit amongst like-minded people with whom I could share a common interest with. I have found these groups to be so rewarding.
Not everyone wants to be part of a group. Some people prefer to be in a situation where they are one-on-one with their mentor, teacher or friends and that’s ok.
Why do woman avoid groups? I avoid certain groups because of particular reasons;
- The topic or reason for the woman’s group, may not interest me.
- The teacher may not have the same principals, values or morals as I do.
- The location may be too far
- The topic may not be of interest to me
- I don’t agree with the value & costs (if a workshop).
Strategies for Group Success;
How do you get the most out of interacting and participating with a group of woman, who have come together for a specific purpose?
- Be Yourself – always bring the ‘YOU’ to the group, not a version of who they think should be there.
- Be as honest as possible – you are in a group to learn, develop and grow.
- Engage in Discussion – by engaging with others you help others to also engage.
- Interact & get involved –To interact is to be involved, participate, and partake.
- Share - share your experiences, knowledge and ideas with the group or individuals.
- Communicate in the NOW – living in the now is about interacting and communicating based on the groups topic in the ‘here and now’. Living in the PRESENT, will encourage you to interact and participate to what is going on right now, in this very moment – not in the past, nor in the future.
- Value each other – every person is a unique individual and will their own set of skills, expertise, beliefs, behaviours, morals and values to the group.
- Respect each other – you may admire someone in the group for the abilities, qualities or achievements.
- Stay of Task - Don’t forget the PURPOSE – always remain focussed on the purpose of why you chose to be part of a particular group?
- Cohesiveness - If all its members work together as a team & complement each other as a part of a whole collective group, they are cohesive and most likely to achieve success as a group.