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David Myers Chapter Eight Group Influence ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies1
What Is a Group? Two or more people who, for longer than a few moments, interact with and influence one another and perceive one another as “us” (M. Shaw, ‘81) For Affiliation To achieve Social identity What are some groups you belong to? ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 2
Topics: Collective influence (can occur in minimal group situations): Social facilitation Social loafing Deindividuation Influence occurring with interacting groups: Polarization Groupthink Minority influence ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 3
Social Facilitation: How Are We Affected by the Presence of Others? Crowding: The Presence of Many Others Effect of others’ presence increases with their number Being in a crowd intensifies positive or negative reactions Enhances arousal ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 4
Social Facilitation: How Are We Affected by the Presence of Others? (biking with others – N. Triplett, ‘90) Why Are We Aroused in the Presence of Others? Evaluation apprehension Concern for how others are evaluating us Driven by distraction When we wonder how co-actors are doing or how an audience is reacting, we become distracted Mere presence Can be arousing even when we are not evaluated or distracted ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 5
Social facilitation (& hindrance) evaluation apprehension causes arousal R. Zajonc Dominant response theory: Group presence Boosts performance on easy tasks Hurts performance on difficult tasks If the dominant response is correct and well learned Performance increases If the dominant response is incorrect (not well-learned) Performance decreases ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 6
Crowding Evaluation apprehension Dominant response theory is enhanced With increased apprehension Distraction More difficult to pay attention to the task Mere presence Arousal occurs just with the mere presence of others -Zajonc (with all sorts of species) ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 7
Social Loafing: Do Individuals Exert Less Effort in a Group? Many Hands Make Light Work Effort decreases as group size increases Free riders People who benefit from the group but give little in return ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 8
Social Loafing: Do Individuals Exert Less Effort in a Group? Social Loafing Tendency for people to exert less effort when they pool their efforts toward a common goal than when they are individually accountable Give some personal examples of where this has happened to you. Have you ever been a ‘social loafer’? Does it happen with “tug o’ war”? (Ringlemann) ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 9
Social Loafing: Do Individuals Exert Less Effort in a Group? Social Loafing in Everyday Life People in groups loaf less when the task is Challenging Appealing Rewards are significant Involving Team spirit When held accountable / effort is visible Interdependent tasks with specific roles When the reward (output) is for self/small group Is this why communism usually doesn’t work? ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 10
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? Deindividuation Loss of self-awareness and evaluation apprehension; occurs in group situations that foster responsiveness to group norms, good or bad Looting in Iraq, London, Ferguson ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 11
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? Doing Together What We Would Not Do Alone Group size Larger the group the more its members lose self-awareness and become willing to commit atrocities Lnychings, encouraging suicidial persons to jump to their death People’s attention is focused on the situation, not on themselves “Everyone’s doing it” attitude They contribute their behavior to the situation rather than to their own choices ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 12
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? Doing Together What We Would Not Do Alone Anonymity Being anonymous makes one less self-conscious, more group-conscious, and more responsive to cues present in the situation, whether negative or positive Dressed to cover their identity delivered more electric shocks Zimbardo (‘79; ‘02) ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 13
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? “flaming” Download to MP3 Smoked car windows Incivility when driving Single or multiple checks for restaurant bill? Halloween Masked vs unmasked Which take more candy? Always bad behavior? Klan hoods v. nurse uniforms Why not? Response to situational cues Anti-social v. Pro-social ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 14
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? Doing Together What We Would Not Do Alone Arousing and distracting activities When we act in an impulsive way as a group, we are not thinking about our values; we are reacting to the immediate situation i.e. “situational cues” overwhelm “held values” Impulsive group action absorbs our attention Starting, encouraging chants in demonstrations Purposely done by protest organizers to induce disinhibited behaviors - makes us think others feel as we do (social comparison theory - and induces false consensus beliefs - and compliance with social (group) norms ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 15
Deindividuation: When Do People Lose Their Sense of Self in Groups? Self-Awareness Opposite of deindividuation Tend to increase people’s responsiveness to the immediate situation, be it negative or positive Take a mirror with you everywhere you go ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 16
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? Group Polarization Group-produced enhancement of members’ preexisting tendencies; a strengthening of the members’ average tendency, not a split within the group ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 17
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? - first comes: “Risky Shift” Phenomenon (J. Stoner, ’61) What would you advise Helen to do? Cheap westerns or a significant novel? What would you advise Roger to do? Sell or not sell his life insurance policy? Occurs not only when a group decides by consensus; after a brief discussion, individuals, too, will alter their decisions Juries Business committees Military organizations Teen drivers ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 18
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? Do Groups Intensify Opinions? Group polarization experiments Moscovici and Zavalloni (1969) After French students discussion how did initial attitudes change toward Americans and the French President? Mititoshi Isozaki (1984) Japanese judgements of “guilty” for traffic violations Were award damages from group larger or smaller that for individual awards? Markus Brauer, et al. (2001) After discussion did French students dislike certain other people more or less? Why? What effect does discussion ofmoral issues have on individuals in the group? ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 19
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? Do Groups Intensify Opinions? Group polarization in everyday life (echo chamber) Schools Accentuation effect How does this apply to gender orientation? Communities Self-segregation Internet U.S. Congress Gerrymandering phenomenon? Terrorists organizations What’s the solution to prevent radicalization of these individuals? ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 20
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? Explaining Polarization Informational influence Arguments Favor given to the initial ones Active participation “Don’t you agree….?” ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 21
Group Polarization: Do Groups Intensify Our Opinions? Explaining Polarization Normative influence (social influence) Social comparison Evaluating one’s opinions and abilities by comparing oneself with others Pluralistic ignorance A false impression of what most other people are thinking or feeling, or how they are responding When we find out what others think, we want to be unique and stand out more by taking a stronger position (“I’m not like everyone else!”) Explain the “bandwagon effect” for why songs become popular (Salganik, ‘06) ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 22
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? (Irving Janis, 71) Mode of thinking that persons engage in when concurrence-seeking becomes so dominant in a cohesive in-group that it tends to override realistic appraisal of alternative courses of action Caused by Cohesive group Isolation of the group from dissenting viewpoints Directive leader Perl Harbor Bay of Pigs Vietnam war ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 23
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Symptoms of Groupthink Following lead group members to overestimate their group’s might and right Illusion of invulnerability Admiral Kimmel’s laugh (Diamond Head) Unquestioned belief in the group’s morality Kennedy vs. William Fulbright Arthur Schlesinger ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 24
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Symptoms of Groupthink Following leads group members to become closed- minded Rationalization “Tuesday Lunch group” (explain and justify focus) Stereotyped view of opponent Castro’s military? ….much too weak! ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 25
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Symptoms of Groupthink Following leads group to feel pressure toward uniformity Conformity pressure Here comes Bill Moyers, “Mr. stop the bombing” Self-censorship What should Arthur have done? Illusion of unanimity Adolf’s team / Vietnam / Bay of Pigs / Pearl Harbor / Iraq Mindguards Bobby Kennedy / Dean Rusk ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 26
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Critiquing Groupthink Directive leadership is associated with poorer decisions Groups do prefer supporting over challenging information Groups make smart decisions by widely distributed conversation with members who take turns speaking Group acceptance, approval, and social identity, suppress disagreeable thoughts among members Diverse groups produce more creativity Groups may not always benefit from all that members know ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 27
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Preventing Groupthink Be impartial Encourage critical evaluation Occasionally subdivide the group, then reunite to air differences Welcome critiques from outside experts and associates Call a second-chance meeting ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 28
Groupthink: Do Groups Hinder or Assist Good Decisions? Group Problem Solving Combine group and solitary brainstorming Have group members interact by writing Incorporate electronic brainstorming How to evaluate the correctness of the decision? Not on the outcome/ results But on the decision process itself (I. Janis) Anyone can be a Monday morning quarter back Remember counter-factual thinking? ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 29
The Influence of the Minority: How Do Individuals Influence the Group? Consistency Minority slowness effect Self-Confidence Portrayed by consistency and persistence Defections from the Majority Minority person who defects from the majority is more persuasive than a consistent minority voice ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 30
The Influence of the Minority: How Do Individuals Influence the Group? Is Leadership Minority Influence? Leadership Process by which certain group members motivate and guide the group Formal and informal group leaders exert disproportionate influence ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 31
The Influence of the Minority: How Do Individuals Influence the Group? Is Leadership Minority Influence? Task leadership Organizes work, sets standards, and focuses on goals Social leadership Builds teamwork, mediates conflict, and offers support Transformational leadership Enabled by a leader’s vision and inspiration, exerts significant influence ©2013 McGraw-Hill Companies 32
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