Concept Group Dynamics

The study of group dynamics is important in organization to predict behavior of individual members. A person behaves differently in a group than behaving individually.

Group dynamics force individual members to relate to one another. Group dynamics describe how a group should be organized and conducted. Democratic leadership, member participation and cooperation are stressed.

It consists of a set of following techniques: role play, brainstorming, focus groups, sensitivity training, team building, transactional analysis, self-managed teams, virtual teams, etc.

Group dynamics are viewed from the perspective of how groups are formed, their structure and processes, and how they function and affect individual members, other groups and the organization.

The word ‘dynamics’ comes from the Greek word meaning ‘force’. Therefore, group dynamic refers to the study of forces operating within a group.

According to Davis and Newstrom, “The social process by which people interact face-to-face in small groups called group dynamics.”

However, group can be defined as the: According to Stephen P. Robbins and other, “A group is two or more individuals, interacting and interdependent, who have come together to achieve particular objectives.”

Types of Groups

1. Formal groups:

They consists of:

  1. Command group    
  2. Task group

2. Informal groups: 

They consists of:

  1. Interest group
  2. Friendship group

1. Formal groups:

It is position-based. It is formally defined by the structure of the organization. It has formal authority. It has work assignments. It is relatively permanent. Members follow rules and procedures. It can be of two types:

a. Command group:

It consists of subordinates reporting directly to a manager. It is determined by the organization chart. It is permanent. For example, in the Ministry of Education and sports, the secretary and four joint secretaries form a command group.

b. Task group:

It is determined by organization chart. It consists of people working together to complete a task. It involves cross-command relationships. Members may not report to the same manager. It is temporary. It is formed to complete a specific work assignment. Task force is an example of such group. All command groups are task groups. But all task groups are not command groups.

2. Informal groups:

It evolves spontaneously in the work environment. It is not organizationally determined. It is not formally structured. Members have common interests and needs for social contact. The membership is voluntary. One person can be a member of several informal groups. Its focus is person. It can be subdivided into:

a. Interest group:

It is people working together to attain a specific objective of common concern. Members have common interests. An example of interest group is employee banding together to reinstate a colleague who has been fired by management.

b. Friendship group:

It is a group of people who share common characteristics. It is a social alliance of friends who do many activities together.

Examples of friendship group are:

  • Group of people speaking the same language.
  • Groups of people coming from a particular region (Sunsari sangam, Kaskeli samaj)
  • Group of people holding similar political viewpoints.