You do realize that whatever you do towards a group project will be a collective effort. It’s not easy to get to know all your co-workers well while juggling the innumerous projects that lie on your table.
However, there are tricks to everything. For starters, you can begin by making friends. It is important to know a little more about the people you share your work with, this would reduce anxiety. Knowing your colleagues will allow you to share views and ideas in a better way; in a way that you know they’ll be convinced.
If you are new to the group, it may get awkward at first to mingle with your co-workers. So observe what others have to say at the first meeting you attend. Based on the notes you jot down, pen a few questions that you could read out in the next meeting. This way even if you’re an introvert or scared of voicing your opinions, people will still know about your interest in the project. In a way your questions would increase others productivity and presentation skills, which works as an advantage for the group.
At some point you may come across that someone who always tries to get under your skin. The best you can do at such times is identify the problem. Every time you share an idea that person has something negative and nasty to say. Y can start your analysis of what makes you an easy target for him/her to bully or vent on. Passing a good comment on his/her idea without giving away how difficult it is to do so will put their negative comments at bay for a while. Though this may not help you make truce with the person, but it will help you get rid of the problem in the first place.
Walkingis good for your health as well as for your project in this case. Simply walk around your class / office with a smile and see the effect it eventually has on people. As every project requires different sets of people to work on, you will never know whom you get to share your workspace with. Repeated exposure to things makes people to like things they otherwise wouldn’t like, eg. music, faces, syllables etc.
Group projects will also mean spending more time with co-workers. That will definitely lead to sharing more than business ideas, may be after the group meet or during the break. This will obviously mean cracking jokes and having fun. The tack is to cut slack when it gets personal. See the funny side of it, laugh and put it behind you as quickly as possible, so as to hint the person making the statement of your non-appreciative attitude and by not making a scene of out it.