|Group is a collection of two or more individuals, interacting and interdependent who have come together to achieve particulars common objectives. A group is, thus, an aggregation of people who interact with each other, are aware of one another, have a common objective, and perceive themselves to be a group. Now, a group may be defined as a collection of people who have a common purpose or objectives,|
More collection people cannot constitute a group. For example, a crowd in front of a shop in the market watching India vs. Australia one-day cricket match on stadium will not be called as group because people do not interact with one another, do not known one another and also do not share a common purpose.
Now, based on above definitions, the following characteristics of group can be listed:
- Two or more people
- Collective identity
- Interaction and interdependence
- Common purpose
People form and become members of group for a variety of different reasons. They are as follows:
- Safety and security needs: Groups provide protection to their members from outside pressures. That is why workers join trade unions to feel safe and secure. This holds true at all walks of life. Even in the nursery class. When the teacher asks the small kids who broke the toy, he seldom gets an answer. What happens is all kids keep mum or quiet. Although young, they protected their member by not disclosing any kid's name of pointing out nay one in group.
- Relatedness or Belongingness needs: People being social belong belonging to or relating to groups satisfies a numbers of their social needs. In every organization, there are many persons who are very isolated or who prefer to be absent from work most of the times. Studies shows, such phenomena occur more where people are unable to belong to groups.
- Esteem needs: When one's member of a group and does some good piece of work, gets a praise from other. This is turn, bring a sense of recognition to the group member, on the one hand, and also a sense of fulfillment of one's need for growth towards higher achievement of work and better career prospects, on the other side.
- Power: One of the appealing aspects of groups is that they represent power and also offer power to their members. Workers enjoy much greater power by joining groups than they do as individuals. This is because of at least two reasons: (i) There is strength in numbers, and (ii) United we stand, divide we fall.
- Identity: As a member of a group, an individual gets identity who am I? Practices, we understand ourselves through the behavior of other towards us. For example, when others- praise us, we feel we are great, if other laugh at us, we see ourselves as funny ones.