Networks and Organizations – Elements of Social Interaction (SOC)

by Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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    00:00 Now, let’s talk about Networks.

    00:03 I think that’s really relevant today because of that term we throw around social network and the social network.

    00:10 And what I’m referring to here is a web of relationships when includes direct links and indirect links.

    00:16 So let’s step away from Facebook and your smartphone, we’re talking about in the real world, we also have a social network.

    00:24 Direct links refers to “Hey, I sit next to this girl Sally at work.

    00:30 And she's a co-worker. And I have a direct link to her”.

    00:34 So if Sally sells coffee mugs on the sides, she makes her own custom coffee mugs.

    00:40 And somebody says to you,” Hey, I’m looking for a great coffee mug”.

    00:43 “You know what, I sit next to Sally. She makes coffee mugs. I can get you a coffee mug.” Okay, so there is two parts of this example: First, I have a direct to a link to a girl named Sally, who makes amazing coffee mugs.

    00:55 So that’s my part of my social network.

    00:57 If I have questions about mugs or I want to talk to her about mugs, I can reach out, I’m connected, there's a direct link.

    01:03 My friend who’s looking for a coffee mug needs to get one and he's going through me.

    01:08 So I’m his direct link. But the Sally girl is an indirect link to my friend.

    01:15 And say introduce them after the transaction they talk through email.

    01:18 Now, they have become linked.

    01:20 So this my friend has expanded his social network.

    01:23 He now knows the girl Sally who makes mugs, right? And he's increased his social network.

    01:28 And now let’s go back to the smartphone. Let’s look and say Facebook.

    01:32 And Facebook is all about that social network. And you have a friend, And that friend has another friend. In the way Facebook has set up it says, “You may also know” and it shows sort of the friends that your friend has.

    01:44 And you might say, “Hey, yeah I actually remember meeting Dave through my friend Sally.

    01:50 Maybe I’ll make Dave my friend”.

    01:52 Now is Dave a tight direct friend of yours? No, but you’ve made a link.

    01:56 And it increased your social network.

    01:57 Now, one thing to consider is that networks can range in size.

    02:01 Just like, I have illustrated here.

    02:02 And as you go farther out from the core network, it becomes weaker.

    02:07 But at the same time, it increases your power. And it can be powerful because now you have fingers and all parts of this pot.

    02:17 So to my cup example, my friend who wanted the cup before me and before we interact to Sally.

    02:25 The only we can go get a cup was to go the store and pay for cup.

    02:28 Now, he's able to get a custom cup handmade from Sally.

    02:32 And there's an increase in his network, there's an increase in the social network, and he's increase the range of his linkages, okay.

    02:42 Let’s take a look at now Organizations.

    02:45 This is sort of another form of a network. It is a type of group.

    02:50 So it’s a large, more impersonal group that comes together to pursue particular activities and meet goals.

    02:55 So I think the easiest one for us to grasp and for you and me to grasp would be say a company.

    02:59 And a company… let’s look at Apple, they make IPhone.

    03:03 Apple is a large group that whose purpose is to make phones, right? So they do things in a way in order to achieve that.

    03:12 You can have an organization like the Boys and Girls Clubs of North America.

    03:17 You can have Alcohol’s Anonymous. You can have any different group of individuals that come together to pursue a particular activity and to achieve a certain goal.

    03:27 So the problem… not a problem with groups.

    03:30 So one of the property of groups they tend to be a little bit more complex in your standard groups.

    03:34 So organizations a little bit more complicated than a group of friends.

    03:37 They tend to have a hierarchy or so hierarchal structure. And they do this for a couple of reasons.

    03:43 One, is to create that structure and to create order.

    03:47 The second is to increase and improve the efficiency.

    03:50 So if you have and you think of assembly line.

    03:55 An assembly line is probably the simplest hierarchal structure you can have.

    03:59 And that one person does something and it fits to the next and so on and so on.

    04:02 And the end result is a common goal of making a car, okay.

    04:06 Now, they did this the idea of creating an assembly line was to increase efficiency saying, “You do one job. You do one job well. You can make it go very very quickly.

    04:16 And it goes onto the next person.” Increase efficiency, you have good primaries around when your job role is.

    04:22 And there's a clear end goal.

    04:24 The other really interesting characteristic of an organization is that, kind of sad to say, but you are replaceable.

    04:32 So if your job is to put this pen in this hole and move it on to the next person.

    04:38 Doing this motion is fairly straightforward.

    04:41 If you get sick or you get fired or you quit, it’s not impossible to find somebody to come in and to do that exact role.

    04:49 as supposed to trying to find somebody who does a little bit of everything, okay.

    04:54 So we’re going to get into three different types of organizations.

    04:57 and then we’re going to get into a couple of the topics related to organizations.

    05:00 First is something as Utilitarian.

    05:03 Members get paid for the efforts and they have a shared goal.

    05:06 So business the examples I just gave you being in a university, Where they’re not getting paid but the reward for their effort let’s say a diploma.

    05:14 So when you get into medical school and you’re part of this utilitarian organization, You’re not getting money from the university.

    05:22 You get for better it’s the opposite, you’re giving them money but you’re getting this magical piece of paper that allows you to become a member for life.

    05:29 And if you have a Normative groups.

    05:31 This are we motivate membership based on morally relevant goals.

    05:37 So things like MADD which is Mothers Against Drunk Driving, religious groups.

    05:41 You’re not getting paid. You’re not getting a piece of paper but you’re getting something out of it.

    05:48 And they really want membership. And they usually tag it on at being slightly moral.

    05:54 Having a moral goals so for Mothers Against Drunk Driving it so prevents drunk driving.

    05:59 Religious groups is to follow whatever faith that’s being presented.

    06:02 And the last one which hopefully doesn’t have and the most of you as a Coercive group.

    06:06 This is what members really don’t have a choice of joining, going to prison I don’t think it get a lot of choice about wearing a handcuffs and digging ditches.

    06:13 But they're still is a type of organization with the hierarchal structure and there's a goal.

    06:18 The goal is social reform. The goal is to keep order, safety.

    06:24 And the goal I think of the prisoner is to hopefully one day get out, right.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Networks and Organizations – Elements of Social Interaction (SOC) by Tarry Ahuja, PhD is from the course Social Interactions.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. Network
    2. Group
    3. Peer group
    4. Organization
    5. Societal structure
    1. Organization
    2. Primary group
    3. Secondary group
    4. Network
    5. Out-group
    1. Normative organization
    2. Universal organization
    3. Coercive organization
    4. Primary organization
    5. Definitive organization
    1. Utilitarian
    2. Normative
    3. Coercive
    4. Formal
    5. Common

    Author of lecture Networks and Organizations – Elements of Social Interaction (SOC)

     Tarry Ahuja, PhD

    Tarry Ahuja, PhD

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