A wireless sensor network (WSN) consists of autonomous devices equipped with sensors to cooperatively monitor certain physical or environmental phenomena, such as temperature, vibration, pressure, or pollutants, at different locations. These devices called sensor nodes (SNs) have sensing, computation and wireless communication capabilities. One of the significant features of SNs is their limited battery power and it is sometimes not feasible to recharge or replace the batteries. Thus, efforts must be employed at all layers to minimize the power consumption so that the network lifetime is increased. In this paper we present, design and implementation of a Group aware network management (GANM) protocol for WSNs. GANM optimally utilizes the closeness of nodes falling within a predefined diameter, called the grouping diameter (gD). The set of nodes which mutually fall within this diameter with respect to each other can be allowed to form a group. The members of a group can be made to go to a low energy sleep mode, while one of the members remaining awake to represent its group. This protocol also enables a fault tolerant scheduling scheme among the group members such that there is always one member awake to listen to the surrounding, i.e., to sense and to transmit. This group is a "black box" for rest of the network and can be treated as a single node for any routing protocol applied at the abstract level.