Rise of the new groupthink

Rise of the new groupthink

by Nalini Haynes

‘Rise of the new groupthink’ was first published in Dark Matter issue 7 in response to this article on groupthink and creativity that talks about the need for individual endeavour coupled with group effort.  Remind me 😉 and I’ll follow up with another blog about the dangers of groupthink and how destructive it can be.

Creative people need time alone in order to create. There is much to be gained from teamwork as a team can provide the opportunity for one’s weaknesses to be balanced by another’s strengths or simply providing external feedback. However many teams suffer from groupthink. When I first heard about groupthink the classic example used to illustrate groupthink was Watergate. On a post-election high a group of men got off on their own egos with disastrous results; what they needed was a naysayer, someone with commonsense to ground them in reality. Sadly many teams suffer from this mentality these days, often punishing, excluding or even removing anyone with a differing opinion who could bring balance to the team.

As a creator working alone, engaging an independent editor or even being part of a group of like-minded but freethinking equals giving one another feedback, can bring a richness and maturity to one’s work. wRiters on the Rise is one such group that springs to mind; I have yet to read any of their work I didn’t like, and I’m collecting the set – this morning I’m interviewing Trent Jamieson, another author who is a member of RoR. Previously interviewed authors from that ‘set’ include Marianne de Pierres, Rowena Cory Daniells and Richard Harland. Other members of that set include the award-winning Margo Lanagan; she’s next in my sights!