Group Cohesion - Explained
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What is Group Cohesion?
Cohesion refers to the amount of camaraderie within a group. In a highly cohesive group, the members have a high degree of connection to the other members.
The group shares a collective identity that is accompanied by a moral bond and loyalty to the group. This gives rise to a common sense of purpose and generally results in group members acting as a singular unit.
Communication is improved and the members find meaning in the collective task our cause.
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Factors believed to affect group cohesion include:
- Similarity - Commonalities or similarities between group members (such as age, sex, education, skills, attitudes, values, and beliefs) contribute to cohesion.
- Stability - The increased stability of the group increases cohesion. This is normally a by-product of long-term groups.
- Size - Smaller groups generally demonstrate higher levels of cohesion.
- Support - Personal or individual support from leaders and other group members leads to increased cohesion.
- Satisfaction - Individual satisfaction with each others performance, behavior, and conformity with group norms is related to higher levels of cohesion.
High levels of group cohesion are also associated with increased productivity. Cohesion is an important element in the development of a group. It is also an attribute that contributes to a group operating as a team.
Cohesion also has a positive effect on individual group members, such as higher levels of confidence, self-esteem, and feelings of belonging.