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Forming: It is the initial stage of group development.

When the group member first come in contact with others and get acquainted with each other. This stage is marked by a great deal of caution, confusion and uncertainty about the groups purpose, structure and leadership. At this point, individuals ask a number of questions as they begin to identify with other group members and with group itself. Storming: In this stage members compete for status. This stage is characterized by conflict. The conflict which rise could be a mixture of expressions of relative priorities of goals, what is to be the responsibility of each member and regarding the task related guidance and direction of the leader. Norming: At this stage of development there is a clear sense of group identity and group structure, norms, procedures, rules and structures become formally established.

Performing: In this stage, the group structure is fully operational and is

accepted by all the members. All the individual members know and accept the individual roles. This stage is marked by team work, role clarity, and task accomplishment. Group energy moves from conflict to task accomplishment. Adjourning Stage: This is the final stage, when the group after achieving the objectives for which it was created starts to gradually dissolve itself

Group cohesiveness is understood as the extent of liking each member

has towards others and how far everyone wants to remain as a member of the group. It refers to the extent to which members of a group are united and knit together. Persons in a highly cohesive group value their membership and strive to maintain positive relationships with other group members. Members also experience satisfaction from group affiliation.

Members Similarity

The more group members are similar to each other on various characteristics the easier it would be to reach cohesiveness. Following Social Identity Theory, we know that people feel closer to those whom they perceive as similar to themselves in terms of external characteristics (age, ethnicity) or internal ones (values, attitudes). In addition, similar background makes it more likely that members share similar views on various issues, including group objectives, how to communicate and the type of desired leadership. In general, higher agreement among members on group rules and norms results in greater trust and less dysfunctional conflict. This, in turn, strengthens both emotional and task cohesiveness

Group Size Since it is easier for fewer people to agree on goals and to co-ordinate their work smaller groups are more cohesive than larger groups. Task cohesiveness may suffer, though, if the group lacks enough members to perform its tasks well enough. Group Success Group success, like exclusive entry, increases the value of group membership to its members and influences members to identify more strongly with the team and to want to be actively associated with it.

External Competition and Threats When members perceive active competition with another group, they become more aware of members similarity within their group as well as seeing their group as a means to overcome the external threat or competition they are facing. Both these factors increase group cohesiveness; leaders throughout human history have been aware of this and focused the attention of their followers on conflicts with external enemies when internal cohesion was threatened. Similar effects can be brought about by facing an objective external threat or challenge (such as natural disaster).

Conflict can be defined as a process in which one party (person or group) perceives that its interests are being affected by another party.

Functional conflict: the conflicts which support the goals of the group

and improve its performance functional conflicts. Dysfunctional conflict: the conflicts that hinder group performance are called as dysfunctional conflict Functions of conflict: a) Positive implications (functional conflicts): If conflicts are handled properly, they can have the following positive consequences. i) Releasing Tension: conflict may be used for releasing tension and frustration. Conflict when expressed can reduce tension, when members express themselves, they get some psychological satisfaction.

ii) Stimulation for change: sometimes conflict stimulates change among the people. When they are faced with a conflict, they might change their attitudes and become willing to adapt themselves to change in the situation. iii) Group cohesiveness: conflict brings about group cohesiveness among the members of the group as every member co-operates to meet the pressure of the conflict situation. As a result, there is a greater loyalty to the group.

Identification of weakness: when a conflict arises, it might help in identifying the weaknesses in the system. Once the management comes to know about the weaknesses, it can always take steps to remove them. Awareness: conflict creates awareness of what problems exist, who are involved and how to solve the problem. Taking cue from this, management can take necessary action to resolve the conflicts.

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High tension: unresolved conflicts have the potential to cause high level of tension among the individuals and group and a stage may come when it becomes difficult for the management to resolve the conflict. Creation of distrust: conflicts often create a climate of distrust among the members of the group as well the organisation. They have negative feelings towards each other and try to avoid interaction with each other.

Low

productivity: conflict will result in discontentment to the losing party, who will wait for an opportunity to settle the score with the winning party. All this will result in less concentration on the job and as a result the productivity will suffer. Goal conflict: conflict may distract the attention of the members of the organisation from organizational goals. They may waste their time and energy in finding ways and tactics to come out as winners in the conflict.

Weakening

of organization: conflicts may weaken the organization as a whole if the management is not able to handle them properly.

Personality differences: some people have difficulty in getting along with others they cannot develop co-operative relations with others. Differences in perception: people coming from different backgrounds hold different perceptions. Such differences in perception may lead to interpersonal conflict. Clash of values and interests: differences in value system and ego state may create misunderstanding leading to conflicts between individuals. Power and status differences: unequal distribution of power and status may cause interpersonal differences. Scarcity of resources: interpersonal conflicts may arise when individuals compete for scarce resources

Specialisation: when jobs are highly specialized, employees become experts at certain tasks. As the highly specialised people have little awareness of the tasks that others perform, such a case leads to conflict among the specialist. Interdependence: when two or more groups depend on each other to accomplish their tasks Skills and abilities: work force in an organisation/ department is composed of people with varying levels of skills and abilities. Such diversity in skills and abilities leads to conflict, especially when the jobs are interdependent.