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Features of a Group

A group is characterized by the following features:

1.    Interaction:

A group is an interaction of two or more people.

2. Influence:

The group members have reciprocal influence on each other. Each member influences and is influenced by others in the group.

3. Mutuality:

People develop mutual perceptions and emotional ties with one another.

4. Informal leadership:

Every group has a has a formal leader elected by the members. However, informal leaders are also elected by them. Informal leader is “a person who engages in leadership activities but who’s tight to do so have not been formally recognized by the organization or group.” Two basic roles performed by leaders are-

(a)    task remand
(b)    group building and maintenance role.

In task role, leader makes the group members conform to organizational standards and as maintenance role; he fulfils their social needs of interaction and influence. If formal leader cannot fulfils these roles, informal leader has referent and expert power over group members. Informal leaders, thus, can be strong group of influence on group activities. They can promote organizational efficiency far beyond the corrective range of formal leaders.

5. Role structure:

Role is a part that each individual plays in helping the group attain the group goals. While some members of the group help other members attain the formal goals, others provide social and emotional support to them. Role structure is “the set of defined roles and inter-relationships among those roles that the group or team members define and accept.” Every individual performs a specific role which influences and enhances expectations of the group members from each others.

6. Group norms:

Every group functions on the basis of certain norms. A norm is “a standard of behavior that the group accepts and expects of its members. “Group norms maintain predictable standards of work promote teamwork and defend individual and group interests. Any group member, therefore, who violates the norms, will be rejected by other group members. This ensures conformity to group norms.

7. Group cohesiveness:

Cohesion is the power to stick together. Group cohesiveness is the power of the group to remain attached to each other. When members join a group, they stat liking other members of the group and develop identification with the. This increases cohesiveness of the group. A highly cohesive group has greater influence on the group members and increased adherence to the group norms.

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