Free Custom «Conformity: Social Groups in the Workplace» Essay Paper

Free Custom «Conformity: Social Groups in the Workplace» Essay Paper


The distinction between primary and secondary groups lies in the sorts of connections their members have with each other. Charles Horton Cooley characterized primary groups as the ones having private close and personal affiliation and participation (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008). They are primary in relation to a few functions, namely, being basic in framing the social nature and thoughts of each person. The consequence of personal affiliation is a certain combination of distinctions as a whole, so that someone’s self, for some reasons in any event, can influence the normal life and motivation behind the group. Maybe the least complex method for depicting this wholeness is by saying that it is “we”; it includes a kind of sensitivity and common identification, of which “we” is a characteristic interpretation. Cooley called primary groups “the nursery of personal temperament” in light of the fact that they have the quickest and the most crucial impact on one’s development and socialization, and recognized three fundamental primary groups: the family, youngsters play groups and neighboring group members (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

The Role of Social Groups

To exist legitimately, all groups, both primary and secondary, must characterize their boundaries, choose leaders, make decisions for the group, set objectives, assign tasks, and control members’ conduct (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

According to Cooley, group members must have methods for defining who belongs to their group and who does not. Now and again devices for making boundaries are evident images, for example, the regalia worn by physical groups, lapel pins worn by Rotary Club members, rings worn by Masons, and styles of clothes. Different methods based on which group boundaries are defined incorporate the use of motions (extraordinary handshakes) and dialect (language differences often mark individuals' social class and regional origin). In a few social circles, the skin color is additionally utilized to check boundaries among groups (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

All groups must think about the issue of leadership. A leader is somebody who undertakes a focal role or position of strength and impact on a group. In a few groups, for example, extensive partnerships, leadership is allocated to people possessing power. In different groups, for example, youthful associate ones, people move into positions of providing an initiative through the power of identity or through specific abilities, namely, physical capacity, battling, or debating. In political associations, leadership is granted through the vote-based procedure, including a long primary process, which presidential hopefuls must persist to accumulate enough votes to carry their party’s nomination for the November elections (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

Leadership should not be held by the same individual inside a group. It can be passed from one individual to another because of issues or circumstances that the group experiences. In a group of factory employees, the leadership position may be held by diverse members relying upon what the group plans to do, for example, grumble to the administrator, head to a bar after work, or sort out an excursion for all members and their families. Government officials and sports mentors like to discuss people who are “characteristic leaders” regularly (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

All social groups in the workplace must have a reason, objective, or a set of objectives. The objective may be extremely general, for example, spreading peace all over the world, or it may be certain, for example, playing cards on a train. Group objectives may change. For example, card players may find that they share a concern about the use of atomic vitality and choose to sort out a political issue (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

Building boundaries, defining authority, as well as deciding and setting objectives are insufficient to form a group. To persevere through, the latter must do something, and it guarantees that its members keep contact with each other. Therefore, it is important for group members to recognize what should be carried out and who is going to do it. Assigning of duties itself can be a paramount group activity and social role (similar to family discussions about sharing family tasks). By tackling group tasks, members help the group achieve its objectives as well as demonstrate their dedication to each other and to the group as a whole (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008).

In the event when a group cannot control its members’ conduct, it will stop to exist. Thus, the failure to comply with group standards is seen as threatening or dangerous, while adjusting to them is compensated only by members’ friendly attitude. Groups frequently depend for survival on the conformity of behavior.

The Right of the Workplace to “Erase” Teachings of Earlier Groups

According to Ritzer and Beagan, social groups in the workplace can “erase” teachings of earlier groups to survive (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008). Using Weber’s ideas, Ritzer focuses on rationalization in society connected with technological advancements. It leads to new demands and as a result the need to adapt to the working environment characterized by “efficiency, control, calculability, and predictability” (Macionis & Benokraitis, 2008). Ritzer refers such principles to a new concept called McDonaldization. Therefore, to reach a common purpose in the workplace, members of social groups should meet new demands. It often leads to the need to suppress teachings of earlier social groups and implement new standards. However, standards and teachings define behavior that will be tolerated within the group and introduce a certain amount of regularity and predictability in the functioning of the group, because its members feel some obligation to adhere to the expectations of others. Thus, the right to “erase” earlier standards can be justified by new demands of the technological era and rationalization.

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A social group has a purpose critical for its members, who know how to differentiate an “insider” from an “outsider”. It is a social entity that exists for its members separated from some other social connections, which some of them may share. Members of a group cooperate according to their set standards and customary statuses and members. As new members are enrolled to the group, they move into these conventional statuses and receive the normal role behavior, if not readily, then as a result of group pressure. In some working settings, members should discard teachings of earlier social groups to adapt to technological innovations and requirements of rationalization.



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