Factors influencing group cohesiveness:
Cohesiveness refers to how much a group is united. It shows the closeness of the members of the group with each other while working towards the objectives or to satisfy the social and emotional needs of its members.
When the cohesiveness is high the group members respect each other and help each other whenever required.
There are several factors that can influence the group cohesiveness. These are discussed below.
Nature of the group: Nature of group is an important factor that affects the group cohesiveness. Those groups that are heterogeneous are not effective in encouraging their own interests than groups that are homogeneous. Homogeneous groups are those whose members having same age, education, status, experience, background, etc. These groups are better when mutual cooperation is required to complete the tasks.
Size of the group: A small size group is more effective usually. Small group have close interpersonal relations than the large ones. Face to face interaction is easier in small groups it is important to have better understanding.
Location of the group: Location of the group has significant role in shaping cohesiveness. Predominantly remoteness from other groups results in high cohesiveness. Cohesion is harder to achieve when groups are not isolated because a sequence of communication happens, but group isolated from other groups, they will have bigger cohesiveness because of regular face to face contact.
Communication: When group members interact easily it can develop more cohesiveness. Such groups can develop their own language and codes to communication for interaction with the group members. If the group members communicate with each other frequently it will be easy for them to work for the group objectives.
Status of the group: Status of the group is a vital determinant of the degree of group cohesiveness. A group receives greater loyalty if it has a high status that makes the group stronger.
Outside pressures: When a group provides protection to the members from outside pressures or other group pressure the cohesiveness increases. The group member help each other work together when they face a common danger even they can forget their personal differences.
Inter-dependency: When the group activities are not interdependent then the cohesiveness may not develop among the group members. Such group will have less cohesiveness when the activities are independent than the groups having interdependent activities. Mutual dependency can lead to higher cohesiveness.
Leadership of the group: Leadership style of a group influences the group cohesiveness in great extent. A dynamic and energetic leader will motivate the group members to work together for the attainment of group objectives.
Management Behavior: When the group members are being pushed in competition deliberately the cohesiveness may get decreased. It depends upon manager if he wants to take benefit of the group cohesiveness or not. Positive thinking of management can always work for the better cohesiveness of the group.