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Essay on Sociology: How Reference Groups Influence Our Lives

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Reference groups are the groups that people identify psychologically and in which it serves as the sources of self-evaluation. Reference groups also influence the way people become, the way the think and act, as well as what people believe. There are two types of reference groups positive and negative reference groups. Positive reference groups refer to groups that people aspire to become and negative reference groups refer to groups that we do not want to be identified with. Having the knowledge of a reference group will help people understand why some groups behave as they do. The way to clarify the way a person behaves is through the knowledge about what kind of reference group that the person looks upon and does not. My reference groups are executives, top students, uneducated people, and criminal.
The first reference groups serve as positive reference group because I would wish to belong in the executives groups. Being an executive and manage a company has been my aspiration since I watch the way they work and act from news and movies. Their intelligence and hard work has motivated me to study harder to achieve my goal, which is to be one of them. Looking upon their way of talking to client, managing company efficiently, and negotiating trade, I self-evaluated my performance and imitate their working style. I took negotiation class and managing corporation class to evaluate my knowledge and my performance. I read books about managing a company and the decision making process. Participating in seminar and career fair is one of the ways I checked my performance and compare it to the successful executives. Interview training showed how much my skills have improved and my current knowledge compare to the competition in the mark...


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...lained why a non-smoking student could become a smoker once it enters a school with high smoking rate for students.
In conclusion, reference groups are very important in shaping an individual’s identity and behavior whether it is positive or negative reference groups. Even though the primary groups such as family and peer groups are very important, reference group motivate people to achieve their goal and also served as self-evaluation. A person who wants to be a teacher will begin to identify with those groups and socialized to have particular expectations associated with the groups. Having knowledge of people’s reference groups may help in the decision making process and understanding those people’s behavior pattern. The goal for people to have reference groups is to please and to conform the expectations and behaviors of the groups that are important to them.


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