Textbook Notes (362,879)
Canada (158,081)
Business (2,364)
BU288 (264)

Organizational Behaviour Ch 1.doc

6 Pages
Unlock Document

Wilfrid Laurier University
Amy Christie

Organizational Behaviour - Chapter 1 → 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 alliance to accomplish work → 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 Goals of Organizational Behaviour 1. Predicting Organizational Behaviour o Ability to anticipate = Good o Interested in predicting when people will make ethical decisions, create innovative products, or engage in sexual harassment 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 is 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 Prerequisite: 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 Contingency Approach 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 What do managers do? → 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: Informational Interpersonal Decisional Roles: Roles: Roles: Monitor Figurehead Entrepreneur Disseminator Leader Disturbance Spokesperson Liaison Handler Resource Allocator → Interpersonal roles: establish and maintain interpersoNegotiatorons o Figurehead: serves as a symbol of his/her organization vs being an active decision maker Eg: speech-making, sign legal documents o Leadership role: manager selects, rewards and disciplines employees o Liaison role: manager maintains horizontal contact inside and outside the organization Eg: communicating with colleagues in other departments → Informational Roles: receive and transmit information o Monitor: manager scans the internal and external environments of the firm to follow current per
More Less

Related notes for BU288

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.