Your Better Self > Communal Existence > Review > Form-Storm-Norm-Perform

Form – Storm – Norm – Perform

During the final reviews of this framework, I realized that it parallels a well-known model of group development generated by Bruce Tuckman. His 1965 model synthesized findings from several traditions of group work. However, it was oriented to groups pursuing a challenging project that required leadership, planning and cooperation.

The present framework is also built around a project, but it is a one person (or «first person») project: you have to enable a better social world for yourself and others. It seems likely that this framework is the deep source of Tuckman's model. A comparison of his four Stages below provides some evidence for this view.

Elaborations:Closed Like many practical and non-academic THEE-based frameworks, Tuckman's model has become lore. It is so obvious and natural. As a result, few reference him, and many elaborate and add further stages.


Group Characteristic: The requirement here is a general orientation, with unification of members based on commitment to the mission of the group. All members are expected to accept each other. Typically they do: it is a honeymoon period of good feelings.

Taxonomic CorrespondenceUnite with others. See image at right.

Difference: As it is about my life in my social milieu, there is no special leadership role, no defined end result, and no possibility to exit—except for another milieu where identical issues apply.


Group Characteristic: The requirement here is to cope with the differences amongst members. These differences of perspectives, abilities and attitudes are essential to maximize success. However, in the early stages they create heated disputes, confrontations, and resistance to all efforts towards constructive progress. It is essential to recognize that all members have a part to play in a successful outcome. Members often feel dissatisfied, confused and frustrated until they sense their role.

Taxonomic CorrespondenceStabilize myself. See image at left.

Difference: In my social milieu, there is never a definitive resolution. I have to continuously deal with my work issues, get private comfort, and handle public interactions and moral issues. Continuous change means a degree of turmoil is unavoidable and regular readjustments are required using the relevant Precepts.


Group Characteristic: Intense involvement develops. Implicit and explicit plans, rules and values emerge and are adopted. Everybody recognizes what tasks are required and how they are to be pursued as a group. Feedback and collaboration support cohesion and morale. There is a willingness to contribute positively and work diligently.

Taxonomic CorrespondenceThrive with others. See image at right.

Difference: The undirected social world, of which I am a part, develops values, ideologies, institutions and projects that are both unifying and differentiating. The only goal that can unite all is the flourishing of each member and the betterment of the social world generally. To pursue this, I must adhere to Precepts that emerge from Injunctions combining a focus on «getting a grip» with those based on «paying attention».


Group Characteristic: There is an established interdependence between the members and the group. The group generates a flow of achievements based on collaborative work of members to meet existing and emerging challenges.

Taxonomic CorrespondenceAssert myself. See image at left.

Difference: The focus is back on me because the social milieu is subject to collective forces that are not always rational and compassionate. The challenge is then evident and I must «rise to the occasion» and play a small part in producing change in myself &/or my surroundings.

If any world is to improve, then every person must be ready individually, on occasion, to do three things. You must use personal principles and confront group customs and laws that are unjust or inhuman; use imagination to make your mark on social life; and face things squarely when you, others, or the collective are self-deceiving.

Originally posted: 15-Feb-2013

All posted material is part of a scientific project and should be regarded as provisional. Visitors are encouraged to think through the topics and propositions for themselves. Copyright © Warren Kinston 2009-2016.
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