The Team Dynamics In Remember The Titans

Team dynamics are basically invisible forces acting between different people or groups in a team. They have an impact on how a team performs or behaves. It can affect a team positively or negatively. Teams and groups are essential to the working of an organisation and play a major role in meeting business objectives. Racism and football is the backdrop for the clash in personal perspectives and leadership styles that each person must understand and learn from each other in order to win and succeed.

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The film, Remember the Titans gives a lot of importance to group dynamics, it shows how different factors like external pressures and differences can influence and affect the performance and functioning of a group. It can be negative as well as positive. The film began with racial tension (riot scene) between the whites and African-Americans. After the integration for the first time, the football team Titans, had to learn to get along and play together as a team. The new team coach, Herman Boone who was an African-American tried his best to remove racial differences between the team members. He made them realise the importance of working together as a group without which it wouldn’t have been possible for the team to win the football match. It is a deeply moving film that showed the courage of coaches and players along with the power of sports as it helped in overcoming the ingrained differences. Initially there was a struggle for power between the coaches and players. Cultural differences between players led to a lot of misunderstandings that further led to altercations. They faced a lot of difficulty on the field due to their inability to work together. On the camp, initially they couldn’t see eye to eye.There was a difference in the way both the coaches worked towards the team. Coach Yoast was not strict, he was quite lenient in dealing with them, but on the other hand, Coach Boone, whose job was at stake, followed dictatorship to quite an extent and was very demanding, he had high expectations from his team. He was the one who taught his team members that the most important thing that they had to focus on was maintaining good relationships with each other and instead of fighting with each other, they had to come together as a strong team to give competition to others and come out as a winning team. It was only after the late night run to the cemetery at the camp that the players finally realised that they had to come together. By the end of the movie we can see that it was not just on the field but also off the field that the relations between people from different races improved, some became really close friends. It all started with integration and football that played a major role in highlighting the importance of group dynamics for achieving any goal.

Two team players, Julius Campbell and Gerry Bertier, who were from different races, got along really well; their animosity changed to friendship with time. Gerry even addressed Julius as his brother to the nurse when he was admitted to the hospital after a road accident. All the team players learned to respect one another, one important aspect highlighted by Coach Boone was that whether the players liked each other or not, they had to respect each other. Even those who were adamant and firm in the beginning, let go of their hard feelings with time for everyone’s good. Initially the way team members reacted was bias as they spoke rudely to members of other race, however, with time they treated everyone equally. They sat together, ate together, practised together and would often hang out together. Thus their attitude toward each other changed in a positive manner and it was in favour of everyone- the Americans, the African-Americans, the players, the coaches, the society, and the ‘Titans’.

07 July 2022

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