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The conflict within – Working with individual and group dynamics @ Wollongong, NSW

September 7, 2016


Processes focus on how an individual or group is operating. A useful metaphor is imagining individual/group processes include all the lifestyle issues that sit above the water and are directly observable. It involves responding to task and maintenance needs, decision making, choice of activities, the group or life structure, content and interactions. Dynamics focus on what and why certain processes occur. The dynamics are found under the water and they have a dramatic impact on how the boat is travelling. They are hidden, as they are not directly observable. They include all the emotional reactions that influence individual and group behaviour. Group dynamics usually include the way people deal with anxiety and fear.

One of the best models for understanding individual and group dynamics is the Focal Conflict Model to better understand group dynamics. The Focal Conflict Model is useful to:

  • allow a worker to better understand the connection between processes (behaviours and solutions) and dynamics (motivations)
  • allow a worker to better understand individual and group needs and possible interventions
  • focus on clients’ strengths and emerging expressions and their behaviour rather than using a static classification system for understanding change
  • link inner world feelings and experiences with outer expressions of people’s behaviour (solutions)
  • simplify the large amount of information that workers receive when working with clients
  • name central emotional themes that are tracked through a variety of sessions
  • enable workers to tune into more significant emotional issues in clients rather than staying at a surface level of expression, change and learning.

Workshop objectives

  1. Review the Focal Conflict Model and its application to working with clients
  2. Apply the Focal Conflict Model principles for working with clients individually and in groupwork
  3. Apply the Focal Conflict Model to self and others to better understand the dynamics of communication and change
  4. Practice a variety of exercises that support change using the Focal Conflict Model.



September 7, 2016
Event Category:


Pioneer Sands Hotel
19 Carters Lane
Towradgi, NSW 2518 Australia


Andrew King