Background Note | HBS Case Collection | September 2005 (Revised March 2009)

Developing an Effective Living Group

by Michael Beer, John J. Gabarro and Michael L. Tushman


Discusses the importance of living room groups (eight participants who share a living room) in Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program developing into effective learning groups. The diversity of the groups is a strength, but only a conscious and concerted effort of group development can harness that strength. Outlines five steps in group development each team must take. Suggests that action learning, the skill the learning group must master to become effective, is also essential in their back-home organizations, given global competition and efficient markets. A rewritten version of an earlier note.

Keywords: Executive Education; Groups and Teams; Competency and Skills; Learning; Diversity; Growth and Development;


Beer, Michael, John J. Gabarro, and Michael L. Tushman. "Developing an Effective Living Group." Harvard Business School Background Note 406-051, September 2005. (Revised March 2009.)