The Role of the Individual in the Community

Subject: Sociology
Pages: 2
Words: 609
Reading time:
3 min
Study level: Master

Individual and Appearance of a Group

The term “individual” refers to a single person while community refers to a group of individuals who develop communications and other forms of interaction. A community is mainly structured in a specific way due to the actions and interactions of various individuals. Communities are enablers of achieving greater goals that cannot be attained by individuals alone. Every person within a community has a role to play, regardless of how little their contribution is (Atkinson et al. 2019). The assignment of roles within the society is the essence of ensuring that common goals are achieved, and progress attained. Belonging to a community is a goal humans strive to attain to feel like they belong. Individuals crave safety from other humans that are not part of their community by forming their group. The individual being the basic unit of a group is a reflection of a community.

The leadership of a community is decided by individuals, and the kind of people elected in the office are a reflection of individual community member’s values and beliefs. People rarely change their patterns of electing leaders and leaders are similar during every cycle. Communities that regularly elect mediocre leaders into office every election cycle are likely to be composed of many mediocre individuals (Aers 2019). Individuals within a community anticipate certain benefits from the group in exchange for the attainment of the various responsibilities assigned to them. Individuals expect the community to defend them should they encounter threats to their wellbeing. They also anticipate the communities to answer their call for help should they need material or financial aid.

The Role and Power of Individuals within a Group

Individuals determine the continued existence of groups through their diverse actions. Communities made up of individuals who understand that collective needs and goals precede personal targets are more stable (Atkinson et al. 2019). Societies comprised of selfish and corrupt individuals keen on personal gain are more likely to collapse and lose members. This is especially true for community leaderships that are composed of individuals with unique responsibilities to the group. The conduct of these individuals is essential to the longevity of groups and the continued achievement of common goals. Communities vary in their make-up, from formal arrangements to informal ones, and so do their members. Communities include schools and classes made up of students and their educators, nations made up of citizens, and neighborhoods with residents.

The individual is essential to a community, and deficiencies do exist within a group when one leaves. This does not, however, imply that a single individual can destroy a community by their exit. Groups can always replace the role an individual plays with other individuals already within the group or from outside. The essence of a community is having a group strong enough to withstand and prosper even after individuals abandon common goals. Informal groups such as a collection of a single sport’s enthusiast also comprise a community.

Communities demonstrate the human urge to belong to a group and the shortcomings in an individual’s abilities to exist by themselves. This proves that no single human is self-sufficient, and the need for external help will always be present (Gil et al. 2018). The power individuals have to influence community actions depend on group dynamics and individual qualities. Some communities such as nations have been in existence for centuries and cemented their power effectively. Extremely gifted and talented individuals may, however, have the capacity to transform such communities when they put exceptional work into their craft. They, however, cannot change community systems by themselves without the aid of some community members who agree with their ideals.


Aers, David. 2019. Community, gender, and individual identity: English writing 1360-1430. London: Routledge.

Atkinson, Sarah, Anne-Marie Bagnall, Rhiannon Corcoran, Jane South, and Sarah Curtis. 2019. “Being well together: individual subjective and community wellbeing.” Journal of Happiness Studies 21 (5).

Gil, Michael A., Andrew M. Hein, Orr Spiegel, Marissa L. Baskett, and Andrew Sih. 2018. “Social information links individual behavior to population and community dynamics.” Trends in Ecology & Evolution 33 (7): 535–48.