Let's examine this question through the lens of an example. A group forms in your company to work on a particular project that must be accomplished in a month. The group meets for the first time and decides that it is necessary to set a few rules to make sure...
Let's examine this question through the lens of an example. A group forms in your company to work on a particular project that must be accomplished in a month. The group meets for the first time and decides that it is necessary to set a few rules to make sure that meetings move along smoothly and to assign individual tasks and deadlines to each person so the project can be finished on time. The group also selects one member to act as leader and another to lead in event of the first member's absence. The group has now developed a set of social norms to govern interactions between members and a set of performance norms to keep its work progressing smoothly. It has also created a system of status where some members are leaders and some are not.
Think about how these norms affect your behavior. You want to perform well in your job, and that means performing well in this group, so you strive to meet the deadlines and complete your assigned tasks to the best of your ability. Other group members will critique your work, and you know that since everyone has a vested interest in this project, they will set a high standard. You want to meet it. On your own, you may not have been quite so motivated to perform at this level. The group encourages you and enforces its expectations of you.
You also find yourself acting in a certain way during group meetings so that you conform to the group's social norms. You wait your turn to speak, for instance, rather than interrupting, for that is what the group has agreed to do in order to keep meetings orderly. You defer to the leader's requests and questions, and you address the leader with respect and courtesy. You also behave courteously toward your fellow group members, knowing that you all have to work together to accomplish this project. When conflicts arise, you discuss the matter calmly and agree to the leader's judgments.
From this example, then, we can see that group norms and statuses significantly affect individual behavior in both social and performance aspects as group members seek to conform to group expectations.