Organizational Wellness

What Is the GRPI Model of Team Effectiveness? An HR Guide

May 11, 2023
Last Updated May 20, 2024

Teams need structure. Without it, how can people at your organization understand what’s expected of them and work efficiently toward the company’s goals?

GRPI (or goals, roles, procedures, and interpersonal relationships) is a versatile method for building a team structure that can be applied in various contexts to improve team effectiveness and increase productivity. The GRPI framework helps teams to clearly define goals, roles, and procedures and helps them figure out how they effectively can work together.

By understanding and using the four components of GRPI, you can ensure teams are set up to successfully achieve their objectives.


What is the GRPI Model of Team Effectiveness?

The GRPI model is a diagnostic framework used to assess and enhance the performance of teams. It stands for Goals, Roles, Processes, and Interpersonal Relationships, each of which are critical components that contribute to the overall effectiveness of a team. It helps employees identify the causes of team dysfunction, from collaboration issues to performance issues. Teams can use GRPI as the foundation for developing an action plan to resolve a problem. 

One of this tool’s greatest assets is providing clarity. When author and educator Noel Tichy analyzed team conflicts within the GRPI framework, he observed that 80% of team conflicts come from unclear goals. Of the remaining 20%, four out of five conflicts come from unclear roles. Unclear processes caused 80% of the remaining conflicts. Lack of clarity tends to compound — if one part of a project is unclear, it can make other aspects of the project confusing as well. For example, when a project’s goals are unclear, it is hard for people to know what their responsibilities are. On the flip side, clear goals make it easier for people to understand their roles and responsibilities within their team.

Essentially, GRPI gives teams structure. It helps foster better communication and cooperation, leading to less hostility and a more harmonious working environment with increased trust between team members.

Elements of the GRPI Model — And Why They’re Helpful

The elements of a GRPI model provide teams with a framework for setting clear objectives, assigning tasks to each individual, developing strong communication and collaboration, and fostering trust.


The goals component of GRPI involves identifying and clarifying the team's overall purpose and the specific objectives that your team needs to achieve. 

Goal-setting is the foundation for effective team performance and sets the direction for the team's work. Striving toward a common goal can help teams work together more effectively — employees who know how their individual goals connect to larger company goals are 10 times more likely to feel motivated at work.

Goal-setting within the GRPI framework can include:

  • Determining the desired outcomes of your team's work.
  • Setting measurable targets for success.
  • Ensuring that all team members have a clear understanding of what is expected of them.

By establishing clear and well-defined goals, teams can focus their efforts and align their work toward a common purpose.


Assigning responsibility is key to setting expectations and meeting goals. The roles component of GRPI involves clarifying each team member's job responsibilities, level of authority, and decision-making power. It allows teams to allocate specific tasks to each individual and considers everyone's strengths and weaknesses.

Within the roles component of GRPI, teams can:

  • Establish accountability for individual and collective success.
  • Identify who will carry out specific tasks.
  • Ensure all team members have a clear understanding of their responsibilities.

By defining clear roles and responsibilities, teams can minimize conflicts or confusion over who is responsible for what. This can ensure that each team member is held accountable for their part in achieving the team's goals.


Within the GRPI model, procedures refer to the specific approaches and processes that a team will use to accomplish their goals. Defining procedures can help teams outline how they will work together to achieve their objectives. 

This component involves identifying and clarifying the steps or methods that team members will use as they work towards their goals. Teams can work together to establish processes for communication, decision-making, problem-solving, and the delegation of tasks. When teams work through the procedures component, they can also identify any potential obstacles and develop a contingency plan to address them.

By establishing effective procedures, teams can minimize confusion, errors, and misunderstandings.

Interpersonal Relationships

For teams to work effectively together, it’s important for members to establish strong interpersonal working relationships. Within the GRPI model, the component of interpersonal relationships refers to:

This component of the GRPI model represents a crucial aspect of team effectiveness. Positive relationships among team members can lead to higher levels of employee engagement, leading to more productivity.

The interpersonal relationships component allows teams to identify and address any communication barriers, conflicts, or personal issues that may be affecting team dynamics. It also promotes open and honest communication and developing strategies for building trust and respect.

By fostering positive interpersonal relationships, teams can improve collaboration and create a supportive environment that encourages individual and collective performance.

When To Use the GRPI Model

Common use cases for the GRPI model include project management, organizational change, team building and development, and conflict resolution.

Project Management

By leveraging the GRPI model for project management, teams can create a clear plan for each project including assigning responsibilities and establishing a timeline. With a plan in place, coworkers can effectively coordinate with one another. Through established procedures, they can ensure tasks are completed according to a timeline and the quality of the work is maintained.

Organizational Change

When organizations undergo changes, teams may need to adapt to new circumstances and work together more effectively to achieve new goals. The GRPI model can be used as a foundation for establishing how employees will work together under a new organizational structure. 

Team Development

The GRPI model can help teams build strong relationships by fostering transparency, open communication, and trust between members. It allows teammates to explore how they work with each other and set expectations for working styles and habits. Once they understand how they work together, teams can develop strategies for addressing any potential issues before they become major problems.

Conflict Resolution

The GRPI model can be used as a framework for resolving employee conflicts. GRPI provides teams with a structured way to identify conflicting goals, unclear roles, inefficient processes, or negative relationships that may be causing the conflict. Once these conflicts are identified, teams can work together to establish better procedures and build more harmony among members. 

How to Use the GRPI Model to Identify (And Fix) Dysfunctional Teams

The GRPI provides the framework for managing various goals and responsibilities. It offers a reliable glimpse into how well your organization functions at any moment. 

With long-term implementation, you'll likely notice changes in the model and your team's functionality. These often highlight the most significant factors impairing employee engagement and wellbeing, enabling you to correct them. 

That said, there are countless ways to introduce the GRPI model to your workforce. Your best approach depends on your specific team’s needs. 

Strengthen Communication for Projects and Responsibilities

Communication is essential for any team's functionality, especially in hybrid and remote work environments. As an employer or supervisor, it's often your responsibility to communicate goals, roles, procedures, and other details to your team. 

The GRPI model encourages you to rethink your approach. When crafting your model, start by assessing the priorities, responsibilities, practices, and procedures essential to your organization. In other words, what information and resources do employees need to complete their jobs? Then, double-check all employees can access this information. After all, employees won't meet all their productivity goals if they don't know what they are. 

You can communicate details of your GRMI model by:

  • Sending regular emails
  • Pinning messages in your company chat
  • Hanging printed goals and responsibilities in the workspace
  • Asking employees to bookmark essential documents and procedures
  • Holding frequent training sessions to reacquaint teams with complex procedures
  • Encouraging employees to share information

Once you have a reliable communication process, give it time to work. Monitor your communication channels and consider investing in software to track and analyze productivity. If your teams still struggle or make frequent mistakes, the issues could be with your delivery or the teams themselves. 

Consider reworking your communication as you go, but don't overlook genuine issues. For example, if everyone understands a procedure except for one or two employees, you'll need to work with them more closely. On the other hand, if everyone understands all but one of your procedures, revise how you communicate those specific steps. 

Hone in on Interpersonal Relationships

Employee conflict can make or break a team. The best professionals have reliable emotional intelligence, empathy, and interpersonal skills. As such, they can differentiate conflicts and stress from their responsibilities at hand. 

There’s no universal strategy for analyzing interpersonal relationships. Instead, your best approach is to watch your teams’ operations and get involved. In doing so, you can better gauge which employees need help and which aspects of their jobs need more work. 

Many high-stakes workplaces, such as healthcare facilities, have introduced non-violent communication into their best practices. This GRPI approach trains employees to address each other politely and sensitively, being aware of how certain words may impact others. 

For example, the communication style discourages statements beginning with "you," such as, "You filed this incorrectly." This can automatically make the listener feel defensive. Instead, you could say, "I noticed this paperwork was filed in the wrong folder. Would you mind taking a look at that?" This invites the employee to address and learn from the mistake.

Good interpersonal relationships and communication take time but are essential for employee wellbeing. Researching and highlighting better communication styles encourages your employees to rethink how they share information. As you go, you'll likely discover other communication issues to address, as well.

Support Your Teams Further with a Wellness Program

Team effectiveness is essential for organizations to reach their goals. The GRPI model provides a framework that HR can use to ensure all teams are set up for success. 

wellness program goes a long way in furthering team effectiveness. An astounding 85% of employees said they would be more likely to stay with an organization if they prioritized their wellbeing. With a strong team effectiveness framework and wellness program in place, you’ll be well on your way to creating high-performing teams that drive organizational growth.

If you're ready to learn more about how a wellness program can support your teams, reach out to a Wellbeing Specialist today!

Company healthcare costs drop by up to 35% with Wellhub! (* Based on proprietary research comparing healthcare costs of active Wellhub users to non-users.) Talk to a Wellbeing Specialist to see how we can help reduce your healthcare spending!

You May Also Like:



Wellhub Editorial Team

The Wellhub Editorial Team empowers HR leaders to support worker wellbeing. Our original research, trend analyses, and helpful how-tos provide the tools they need to improve workforce wellness in today's fast-shifting professional landscape.


Our weekly newsletter is your source of education and inspiration to help you create a corporate wellness program that actually matters.

By subscribing you agree Wellhub may use the information to contact you regarding relevant products and services. Questions? See our Privacy Policy.