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5 Cohesion and Development A group is not just a set of individuals, but a cohesive whole that joins the members in interlocking interdepen- dencies. This.

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Presentation on theme: "5 Cohesion and Development A group is not just a set of individuals, but a cohesive whole that joins the members in interlocking interdepen- dencies. This."— Presentation transcript:

1 5 Cohesion and Development A group is not just a set of individuals, but a cohesive whole that joins the members in interlocking interdepen- dencies. This solidarity or unity is called group cohesion and is a necessary, if not sufficient, condition for a group to exist. A group may begin as a collection of strangers, but, as uncertainty gives way to increasing unity, the members become bound to their group and its goals. As cohesion and commitment ebb and flow with time, the group’s influence over its members rises and falls.  What is group cohesion, and what are its sources?  How does cohesion develop over time?  What are the positive and negative consequences of cohesion?  Do initiations increase cohesion?

2 Cohesion & Development The Nature of Cohesion Sources Social Task Collective Emotional Structural Developing Cohesion Theories of development Five Stages Cycles of development Consequences of Cohesion Satisfaction and adjustment Dynamics and influence Productivity Explaining Initiations Cohesion and initiations Hazing

3 The Nature of Cohesion Sources Social Task Collective Emotional Structural “The total field of forces which act on members to remain in the group” Festinger, Schachter, & Back, 1950, p. 164 Origin From the Latin “haesus,” which means “cling to” (e.g., adhesive, inherit) Definition The solidarity, unity, integrity of a group Sources A group’s cohesiveness derives on a number of sources, such as attraction, commitment to a task, and so on. Equifinality: Potential to reach an end state through many paths Multifinality: Reaching different endings from the same starting conditions

4 Multicomponent- multilevel model Multiple Components Multiple Levels (e.g., member to member, member to group…) (e.g., attraction, shared task focus, identity… Sources of Cohesion

5 Components Levels Attraction between members Attraction to the group-as- a-whole Sources of Cohesion Social Cohesion Task Cohesion Collective Cohesion Emotional Cohesion Structural Cohesion Social Cohesion

6 Components Processes Social Cohesion Task Cohesion Collective Cohesion Emotional Cohesion Structural Cohesion Shared commitment to group goals Collective efficacy Group potency Sources of CohesionTask Cohesion

7 Group Unity: WE Belonging (part of the group): IN Sources of CohesionCollective Cohesion Social Cohesion Task Cohesion Collective Cohesion Emotional Cohesion Structural Cohesion Self-group bonding Identity fusion

8 Sources of CohesionEmotional Cohesion Social Cohesion Task Cohesion Collective Cohesion Emotional Cohesion Structural Cohesion Morale Esprit de corps Relational cohesion theory: cohesion increases as the group becomes a source of positive emotions (e.g., behavioral syncrony)

9 Components Processes Sources of CohesionStructural Cohesion Social Cohesion Task Cohesion Collective Cohesion Emotional Cohesion Structural Cohesion Open groups tend to be less cohesive than closed ones (e.g., e-groups)

10 Red Devils Bulldogs Sherif & Sherif, 1953, 1956

11 Sources

12 Developing Cohesion Theories of development Five Stages Cycles of development The Nature of Cohesion Sources Social Task Collective Emotional Structural Consequences of Cohesion Explaining Initiations Basic Idea Groups develop: over time they exhibit predictable patterns of change Stage Models Some models assume groups move through a series of separable stages as they develop Cycle Models Some models assume groups repeatedly cycle through periods or phases during their lifetimes

13 Time Performance and cohesion Formation Conflict Stabilizing Performance dealing with source of tension creating the group and setting goals structure and stability monitoring, leading, feedback Five Stage Model of Group Development

14 Stage Major ProcessesCharacteristics Orientation: Forming Members become familiar with each other and group; dependency and inclusion issues; acceptance of leader and group consensus Communications are tentative, polite; concern for ambiguity, group’s goals; leader is active; members are compliant Conflict: Storming Disagreement over procedures; dissatisfaction and tension; antagonism toward leader Criticism of ideas; poor attendance; hostility; coalition formation Structure: Norming Growth of cohesiveness and unity; roles, standards, and relationships; increased trust, communication Agreement on procedures; reduction in role ambiguity; increased “we-feeling” Work: Performing Goal achievement; performance and production Decision making; problem solving; mutual cooperation Dissolution: Adjourning Termination of roles; completion of tasks; reduction of dependency Disintegration and withdrawal; increased independence and emotionality; regret Tuckman’s Five Stage Model

15 Cyclical vs. Stage Models Tuckman: A successive stage model Bale’s Equilibrium model: a cyclical model Punctuated equilibrium model Task Orientation Relationship Orientation Cultural differences in development and time perceptions: polychronic vs. monochronic

16 The Nature of Cohesion Developing Cohesion Consequences of Cohesion Satisfaction and adjustment Dynamics and influence Productivity Explaining Initiations Most people, if asked to choose between two groups—one that is cohesive and another that is not—would likely pick the cohesive group. But cohesiveness has its drawbacks. A cohesive group is an intense group, and this intensity affects the members, the group’s dynamics, and the group’s performance in both positive and negative ways. Cohesion leads to a range of consequences—not all of them desirable.

17 Satisfaction and adjustment Explaining Initiations Donald Roy’s (1959) “banana time” case study documented the benefits of membership in a cohesive workgroup. Roy worked for two months in 12- hour shifts lasting from 8AM to 8:30PM with three other men in an isolated room in a factory. The work was tedious, menial, repetitive, and tiring, but the cohesive workgroup group filled its workday with jokes, teasing, kidding around, and horseplay that gave structure and meaning to their day. To break up the day into smaller segments, the men stopped from time to time for various refreshments and breaks. There was, of course, lunchtime, but the men added many others, such as coffee time, peach time, fish time, and banana time. These rituals and social activities, collectively called “banana time” by Roy, turned a bad job into a good one.

18 Positive Consequences Problematic Consequences Enhanced member satisfaction Reduced tension, stress Higher group engagement Reduced turnover Longer duration of membership Intensification of emotional and social processes Increased influence, pressure Hostility Groupthink What about productivity? Dynamics and influence Satisfaction and adjustment

19 Sources: Mullen & Copper, 1994; Beal et al., 2003; Gully et al., 1995 Do Cohesive Groups Outperform Less Cohesive Groups? Cohesion Social cohesion Unity (Group Pride) Task Cohesion (teamwork) Performance ,17.25 Norms are also critically important Task Interdependence.24.17

20 Studies suggest that the productivity of cohesive groups depends on the norms of that group: if the group norms do not support hard work, then cohesive groups will be strikingly unproductive! Groups with norms that stress productivity Groups with norms that stress low productivity P r o d u c t i v i t y Low Cohesion High Cohesion

21 Application: Explaining Initiations Cohesion and initiations Hazing Festinger’s theory of cognitive dissonance predicts that people who must invest in their group will become committed to it. Festinger, Schachter’s and Back’s classic study of the “Seekers” supported this predictions Aronson & Mills tested this hypothesis in an experimental study of initiation and also found evidence of increased commitment

22 Application: Explaining Initiations Cohesion and initiations Hazing Aronson & Mills tested this hypothesis in an experimental study of initiation and also found evidence of increased commitment

23 Bonding: Increases dependency on the group Dominance: Establishes hierarchy, status Commitment: Increases psychological costs and commitment Tradition: Defended as a sacred tradition Hazing Ineffective: Not as effective a means of increasing commitment as other group- level activities Dangerous: Harmful and fatal in some cases Illegal: Banded in most jurisdictions

24 Cohesion & Development The Nature of Cohesion Sources Social Task Collective Emotional Structural Developing Cohesion Theories of development Five Stages Cycles of development Consequences of Cohesion Satisfaction and adjustment Dynamics and influence Productivity Explaining Initiations Cohesion and initiations Hazing

25 Group Development Tuckman’s 5 stage model of group developlment  Forming  Storming  Norming  Performing  Adjourning Forming Storming Norming Adjourning Task Performing Source: Forsyth, 2010

26 Sports_Illustrated_Miracle_on_Ice_cover.jpg For images of the 1980 US Hockey team s see


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