We all live in a social environment because we are humans and humans are not capable of living in an isolated environment. The social environment around us is vast, extremely vast! It has so many things that are being followed for ages. Some of these can be described while some cannot. The social environment around us is composed of many characteristics and here we are going to discuss them along with examples of social characteristics. Here, we are going to talk about the social environment in detail. We will also look at an example of a social pattern and why it is important. So, let’s go!
1. What’s a Social Characteristic?
The social characteristics of a person are the characteristics that they exhibit in their community or with people to whom they belong. These characteristics define who they are and set their unique identity in their group. These characteristics define the person’s identity in the group. Some physical, social, and mental characteristics of individuals are something by which the social identity groups are usually defined. Social characteristics can be individuals or a group of characteristics that can be used to define a person’s identity. Examples of social characteristics are race/ethnicity, social class/socioeconomic status, gender, sexual orientation, (dis)abilities, and religion/religious beliefs. (See What is the Purpose of Society?)
2. What are Examples of Social Characteristics?Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash
The examples of social characteristics of a person are the characteristics that they exhibit in their community or society. These characteristics set them apart from society and help in establishing their unique identity in a group. They define the person and make a base for how they are unique in that community among other people. So, what are examples of social characteristics? Let’s find out here:
- Culture: Culture is the set of beliefs and practices that is followed by a group or community of people. These examples of social characteristics are incorporated with beliefs shaped by similar experiences and heritage, which are common to everyone in the group.
- Gender: Gender is the socially constructed category wherein a person is categorized into male, female, or others. It is not biologically determined but is largely shaped by cultural and social differences.
- Religion: Religion is a belief in and worship of a superhuman. It is a set of organized beliefs and practices that are collectively followed by all those who follow that religion.
- Sexual orientation: Sexual orientation of the person is their identity in relation to the gender or genders to which they are sexually attracted. It is a natural feeling and cannot be enforced on someone.
- Ethnicity: Ethnicity is the state of belonging to a particular group that is deeply associated with the cultural or national tradition. Being of the same ethnicity means sharing the same history and heritage.
3. What are the Characteristics of Social Environment?Photo by Barbara Zandoval on Unsplash
Let’s talk about the characteristics of social environment here. The social environment is the environment around us. Everything that we have, the things we do, and the things that are a part of us, are part of the social environment. The social environment is developed by humans. It is the place where a man works to earn a living. It is the society that we are a part of.
The environment is influenced by humans and without us, it wouldn’t be the same. Everything that is developed and created by us, is part of the social environment. We shape the environment every day and the environment shapes us as well. The environment consists of our personal and societal relationships, our institutions, our cultures, our societal groups, and our physical surroundings. The characteristics of the social environment are the defining traits of people in that environment. Some examples of social characteristics and their corresponding environments are:
- Social values: Social values are followed by people who live in a social environment. These values have been passed down from many generations and everyone is supposed to follow them. They form a base or the structure of society.
- Culture and tradition: Every society follows culture and proper tradition. These examples of social characteristics is a set of beliefs and norms that are followed by everyone. These are considered sacred and one is supposed to follow them with utmost sincerity.
- Social institutions: The social environment has some institutions that define its people. These institutions can be educational, health-related, cultural institutions, the business sectors of the environment, etc. These institutions are important for the residents of the environment.
- Social trends: People get highly influenced by the trends around them, be it clothing, food, health, home décor, or any other. These trends can be helpful and aware people of good practices. So, when they see a large number of people around them following such trends, they hop on too.
4. What is an Example of a Social Pattern?
The social pattern is an undefined term used in sociology. Although it is being used frequently, this term does not have any specific or direct meaning. Robert K. Merton has called this a proto-concept. He quoted social pattern to be an early, rudimentary, particularized, and largely unexplicated idea. This term is sometimes used to designate what sociology should study as a science.
The different and interconnected social actions that a pattern is typically made up of, create a form. The form is caused by social actions and expresses itself in different ways according to social actions. So basically, social patterns are behaviors or forms of social actions that are usually repeated and have a probability of recurring again. The forms are created by social actions, which means invested behavior. Examples of social roles and an example of a social patterns can be the collapse of the government and the emergence of a new one. (See What are the elements of culture in sociology?)
5. What are Characteristics of Social Change?
Social change can be any change that happens in the social environment, from human attitudes and beliefs to physical and biological changes in nature. Social changes are changes that happen in any human society. Every society is subjected to changes over time. No society or social environment can remain static forever. The changes in interactions and interrelations among humans indicate social change. Must see How does Society Shape the Lives of People inside It?
In a society, everyone is related to one another and there is a network of social relationships. The characteristics of social change are:
- The changes that happen are social. This means that social institutions get affected in the process of social change. The change affects a large number of people who are associated with that environment.
- Social change is universal because every society or social environment has to go through changes over time. Changes are always inevitable and no society can remain static. Although the rate and degree of change can vary from one society to another, changes are some things that are always present in any society.
- Societal changes are continuous and inevitable. The changes are continuous and happen over a long period of time. They do not stop at any point in time. Also, changes are inevitable. No one can stop these changes from happening and one has to accept them as they happen.
- The degree of change in any society is not uniform. Changes happen over a period of time in every society but the degree and rate of changes vary from one society to another.
- Social changes are of two types, planned and unplanned. Planned changes happen over a lot of discussions and proper plans are laid out to implement them. They are well-researched. The unplanned changes happen naturally and can be sudden as well. They are spontaneous and accidental.
6. Which is a Characteristic of Social Development?Photo by Hannah Busing on Unsplash
Social development is the phenomenon that helps in improving the well-being of every individual in a society. It happens so that people can reach their full potential and grow in society. Social development happens to every individual at every stage of life. These are important for the growth and well-being of the individual. Some of the characteristics of social development are:
- Social development is linked with cognitive and emotional development.
- It is important for the overall growth and well-being of the person throughout their life.
- It makes the person aware.
- It increases self-confidence and develops a personality.
- When people stay in a social environment, they develop new bonds and make new friends.
- When people interact with others, they learn to be empathetic.
7. What are the Social Personality Types?
People with social personality types are those who love to interact with others. They enjoy being a part of social groups and have a community of friends. They like to express themselves and communicate with others. These kinds of people are dedicated, responsible, supportive, and humanistic. They like to communicate through ideas, words, and feelings instead of doing some physical activity. They are friendly with others and like to help other people.
Moreover, people with social personality types can solve the problems of other people through empathy and understanding nature. They can pull people together and generate good bonds with others. They have a positive aura too and their presence makes others happy. Because they are careful and sensitive to other people’s feelings and sentiments, they are better able to make friends. (See Study: How Human Society Think?)
8. What are Examples of Social Roles?
A social role is the behavior of the person that they are supposed to portray in a given situation, setting, or group. These roles are portrayed by individuals in a particular setting or at a particular time. These roles are expected of them by others. These roles are followed by people in order to be deemed socially acceptable in society. The status of the person also defines the role that they are supposed to portray.
Any individual has more than one role to play in their daily lives, depending upon the situation they are in. Each role demands something different from the other. These social roles are important in everyone’s life because they make us social beings. Some examples of social roles are the role of a teacher, a priest, a parent, a friend, a doctor, a spouse, a son, a shopkeeper, and so on. (See What are Some Values and Norms Examples?)
9. What are the Unique Attributes Characteristics as a Social Person?
Social people have some unique attributes and characteristics that make them different from others. Some examples of social characteristics which are unique are:
- A social person is understanding and empathetic toward other people.
- They respect everyone irrespective of their status, beliefs, and practices.
- They are genuinely happy and interested to know about other people.
- They like to help others and solve others’ problems.
- They are flexible and adjusting. They cooperate well with others.
- They have an open mind and are always flexible and ready to accept change.
- They have the ability to express themselves clearly. They put forward their feelings, ideas, opinions, and information to other people openly.
- They are socially active and like to participate in events and activities that happen.
- They have good problem solving and are able to negotiate and resolve problems with ease.
10. What are the Characteristics of Social Environment in Business?By author Amy Hirschi on Unsplash
The social environment consists of some group of people and their beliefs, values, desires, and attitudes. In business, it relates to the attitude of the consumers and public members. The social environment in business is also associated with the consumption patterns, desires, and behaviors of the market. There are various examples of social characteristics. The environment is shaped by the demographic factors of the market such as occupation, income, age, gender, consumption patterns, etc.
The social environment of the business also depends upon the social construct of the target society. The social construct consists of ideas, practices, and beliefs that are generally accepted by people. It is a set of already accepted norms and values that people believe in. This social construct is important in the business because it contributes to the success or failure of the business. The business has to recognize the opportunities, identify the strategies and challenges and take decisions accordingly. Hence, the environment plays a major role in shaping and developing the framework of the business or any organization.
Our social environment is too complicated to understand in a single day. But whatever we have talked about here isn’t new to us. We have been following these for so long. It’s just the terminologies that we learned today. We talked about the characteristics of social environment along with some examples of social characteristics, an example of a social pattern, and examples of social roles. I believe this was helpful to you. Hoping to see you here again! (Also read What are the Similarities between Sociology and Anthropology?)