Consequences of Group Cohesiveness
1. The group's capacity in retaining members increases.
2. The members conform to the norms.
3. Members communicate frequently, take greatest participation in group activities and the rate of absences low.
4. High cohesiveness affect production in a positive way depending on the goals of the group. Group cohesiveness has only positive consequences. These positive outcomes are explained in detail as follows :
1. More Participation : Higher the degree of group cohesiveness, closer will be the interpersonal relationship among the members. As a result members will participate actively in group affairs and activities. As the members consider the group as their own, just like a family, they will help other members of the group in times of need which will further strengthen their bonds. The turnover of members will be very low. If possible, all the members attend the group meetings and group activities and take active part in discussions relating to preparing of strategies for achieving group goals.
2. More Conformity : One of the factors which influences cohesiveness is similarity of attitudes and value. As a result, members tend to like each other and perceive themselves as similar. These characteristics lead members to be relatively dependent on the group for satisfaction and thus, they are susceptible to being influenced. For example, if any member is getting involved in organizational politics for enhancing his personal goals, the group might put social pressure on him and make him comply with the group norms.
3. More Success : Cohesiveness and success are mutually dependent upon each other. Cohesiveness makes the goal achievement easier and goal achievement adds to success.
The reason for this relationship is that higher degree of cohesiveness leads to high degree of communication, participation and conformity to group norms. Such co-ordinated efforts result in agreement about the goals to be achieved, the methods of achieving them and finally achieving the final goals.
4. More Communication : Members of cohesive groups communicate with each other more than the members of non-cohesive groups. Because the members share common idealogies, goals, backgrounds or attitudes, they are inclined to greater communicativeness. Such communication is reinforcing as it tends to foster and cement positive social relation as well as depth in personal relationships.
5. More Personal Satisfaction : Members of cohesive groups are more satisfied as compared to members of non-cohesive groups. This is understandable because if members are not satisfied they will leave the group and join some other group. Members are more satisfied due to so many factors which include friendliness, respect, support, achievement, protection and a feeling of security.
6. High Productivity : Cohesiveness may contribute to increased productivity because (i) people in cohesive groups experience fewer work related anxieties and tensions (ii) highly cohesive groups tend to have lower absenteeism and turnover and (iii) cohesiveness decreases productivity differences among groups.
Studies consistently show that the relationship of cohesiveness and productivity depends on the performance related norms established by the group. If performance related norms are high, a cohesive group will be more productive than with a less cohesive group. But if cohesiveness is high and performance norms are low, productivity will be low. If cohesiveness is low and performance norms are high, productivity increases but less than in high cohesiveness-high norms situation. Where cohesiveness and performance related norms are both low, productivity will tend to fall into the low to moderate range. These conclusions are summarized in Fig. 3.2
Fig. 3.2: Relationship between Cohesiveness Performance Norms and Productivity
Fig. 3.3: Consequences of Cohesiveness.
The worst situation for the manager is a highly cohesive group with low performance norms. Here members are highly motivated to work for their personal satisfaction only not for the organizational goals. Here the success of the management will depend upon how to direct the activities of highly cohesive group towards the successful attainment of organizational goals.
The consequences of cohesiveness are now illustrated with the following diagram :