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Organizational Behaviour Ch 1.doc

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Management (MGH)
Anna Nagy

Organizational Behaviour - Chapter 1 Organizational Behaviour and Management → Organizations: Social inventions for accomplishing common goals through group effort Social Inventions → An organization’s essential characteristic is the coordinated presence of people → Understanding and managing people effectively Goal Accomplishment → Virtually all organizations have survival as a goal → To survive and adapt, organization members must:  Join and remain in the organization  Carry out their basic work reliably, in terms of productivity, quality and service  Be willing to continuously learn and upgrade their knowledge and skills  Be flexible and innovative → Concerned with how organizations can survive and adapt to change → Innovation and flexibility = adaptation to change are important Group Effort → Depend on interaction and coordination among people to accomplish goals → Much of the work is done by groups, permanent or short-term project teams → Informal groups = friendships develop and individuals form informal → Concerned with getting people to practice effective teamwork → Organizational Behaviour: attitudes and behaviours of individuals and groups in organizations → Studies how (to): o provide insight on managing and changing attitudes/behaviours o structure organizations more effectively o external environment events affect organizations Organizational Behaviour is Interesting → OB is about people and human nature → Includes interesting examples of success as well as failure Organizational Behaviour is important → What happens in organizations often has a profound impact on people; affects everyone → Concerned with organizational effectiveness and efficiency Organizational Behaviour makes a difference → Today the main factor that differentiates organizations is their workforce → Most successful organizations are those that effectively manage their employees → Management practices and OB = sustained competitive advantage → Managerial practice should be based on informed opinion and systematic study about organizational behaviour G OALS OO RGANIZATIONABEHAVIOUR 1. Predicting Organizational Behaviour o Ability to anticipate = Good o Interested in predicting when people will make ethical decisions, create innovative products ... o The regular behaviour in organizations permits the prediction of its future occurrence o OB provides a scientific foundation to improve predictions of organizational events o But doesn’t always guarantee ability to explain the reason for the behaviour and develop strategies to manage it 2. Explaining Organizational Behaviour o Prediction and explanation are not synonymous (Ancient societies could only predict) o Interested in determining why people are more/less motivated, satisfied, or prone to resign o Explaining events more complicated than predicting: o A particular behaviour could have multiple causes (People retire for reasons of dissatisfaction, discrimination etc) and each require a specific solution o Underlying causes of some event/behaviour can change over time (Depending on the overall economy and unemployment rates) o Understanding behaviour is necessary to effectively manage it 3. Managing Organizational Behaviour o Management: the art of getting things accomplished in organizations through others o Managers acquire, allocate and utilize physical and human resources to accomplish goals – it does not include how to accomplish them o Predictable and Explainable Behaviour (Analysis) = Can often be controlled (Action) o Evidence-based Management: Approach a problem with a systematic understanding of behavioural science (don’t over-analyze situation) The Classical View of Bureaucracy → Occurred in the early 1900s, by classical writers acquiring their experience in military settings, mining and factories → Classical viewpoint: management that advocated high specialization of labour, intensive coordination and centralized decision making → Each department attended to own affairs, centralized decision making from upper management → To maintain control, suggested that managers have fairly few workers → Scientific Management: Frederick Taylor’s system for using research to determine the optimum degree of specialization and standardization of work tasks → Supported: o development of written instructions clearly defining work processes o standardize workers’ movements and breaks for max efficiency → Max Weber (German social theorist) made the term ‘bureaucracy’ famous → Bureaucracy: Max Weber’s ideal type of organization that included: o strict chain of command: each member reports to a single supervisor o detailed rules: ensuring the job gets done regardless of who the specific worker is o high specialization: match duties with technical competence o centralized power: top of the organization o selection and promotion based on technical competence: based on technical skills rather than favouritism → Ideal or theoretical model does the following: o standardizes behaviour / conformity is exchanged with promotion o rules, regulations and clear chain of command provides workers with a sense of security The Human Relations Movement and a Critique of Bureaucracy → Hawthorne Studies: research conducted at the Hawthorne plant of Western Electric in the 20s and 30s that illustrated how psychological and social processes affect productivity and work adjustment → Concerned with impact of fatigue, rest pauses and lighting on productivity → Began to notice effects of psychological and social processes on productivity and work adjustment → Suggested that there could be problems to how work was organized – one sign was resistance to management through norms that limited productivity than what management wanted → Academics like Argyris, Gouldner and Likert continued the research after WWII → Human Relations Movement: advocated management styles that were more participative and oriented towards employee needs (a critique of classical management and bureaucracy) → Critique of bureaucracy: o Strict specialization: incompatible with human needs for growth = leads to employee alienation o Strong centralization and formal authority: fail to take advantage of ideas/knowledge from lower level members (don’t learn from mistakes) which threatens innovation and adaptation = Resistance to change o Strict, impersonal rules: members adopt a minimum level of performance, when higher levels are possible o Red-tape: Forms, procedures and required signatures that must be carried out = Lose sight of the overall goals of the organization → After: more open communication, employee participation in decision making, decentralization THE CONTINGENCYA PPROACH 1. Scholars and managers recognize merits of both approaches o Classical Approach: role of control and coordination to achieve organizational goals o Human Relations Approach: need for flexibility and adaptability 2. Management approaches need to be tailored to fit the situation → Contingency Approach: recognizes there is no one best way to manage; an appropriate style depends on the situation → Eg: effectiveness of leadership style is contingent on the abilities of the followers W HAT DO MANAGERS D? → OB is also concerned with what really happens in organizations – what managers do do Managerial Roles → Henry Mintzberg: conducted an in-depth behaviour of several managers → Discovery of a complex set of roles (behaviours) played by the managers: Decisional Informational Interpersonal Roles: Roles: Roles: Entrepreneur Monitor Figurehead Disturbance Disseminator Leader Handler Spokesperson Liaison Resource
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