The following are the chief points of difference between the primary and the secondary group:
- Size: A primary group is small in size as well as area. The membership is limited to a small number and confined to defined area. At the other end, in a secondary group the membership is widespread. It may contain thousands of members scattered in different parts of the world as is the case with a corporation.
- Kind of Cooperation: In a secondary group the cooperation with the fellow members is indirect. The members cooperate to achieve some recognized goal and do assigned tasks towards a common object. In a primary group, on the other hand, the members directly cooperate with each other participating in the same process.
- Types of Structure: Every secondary group is regulated by a set of formal rules. A formal authority is set up with designated powers and a clear cut division of labour with specifirl functions. The primary group is based on an informal structure. The members participate in the same process.
- Relationship: The relationship of members with each other in a primary group is direct, intimate and personal. There is congeniality among the members. They meet face to face and develop direct contacts. A secondary group is regulated by formal rules and the relations are formal and impersonal. It does not exercise a primary influence over its members because they do not live in the presence and thought of one another. They need not meet face to face and may communicate with each other by indirect means. Primary groups are relationship directed, whereas secondary groups are goal oriented.
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