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Chapter 1

Chapter 1 BU288.docx

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Ping Zhang

BU288 Chapter 1 – Organizational Behaviour & Management Week 1 What are Organizations? -Organizations – social inventions or accomplishing common goals through group effort Social Inventions -Social inventions man that their essential characteristic I the coordinated presence of people, not necessarily things -People present both opportunities and challenges -The field of organizational behaviour is about understanding people and managing them to work effectively Goal Accomplishment -Individuals are assembled into organizations for a reason -The field of organizational behaviour is concerned with how organizations can survive and adapt to change -Certain behaviours are necessary for survival and adaptation. People have to: -Be motivated to 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; and -be flexible and innovative -The field of OB is concerned with all these basic activities -Innovation and flexibility, which provide adaptation to change, are especially important for contemporary organizations Group Effort -Organizations are based on group effort -Organizations depend on interaction and coordination among people t accomplish their goals -The field of organizational behaviour is concerned with how to get people to practice effective teamwork What is Organizational Behaviour? -Organizational behaviour – the attitudes and behaviours of individuals and groups in organizations -The discipline of organizational behaviour systematically studies these attitudes and behaviours and provides insight about effectively managing and changing them -It also studies how organizations can be structured more effectively and how events in their external environments affect organizations -OB is interested in attitudes -Behaviours like cooperation, conflict, innovation, resignation, or ethical lapses are important areas of study in the field of OB Why Study Organizational Behaviour? -The most successful organizations are those that effectively manage their employees -Sustained competitive advantage and organizational effectiveness are increasingly related to the management of human capital and organizational behaviour BU288 Chapter 1 – Organizational Behaviour & Management Week 1 Goals of Organizational Behaviour Predicting Organizational Behaviour -In organizations, there is considerable interest in predicting when people will make ethical decisions, create innovative products, or engage in sexual harassment -The very regularity of behaviour n organizations permits the prediction of its future occurrence -However, being able to predict it does not guarantee we can explain the reason or the behaviour and develop an effective strategy to manage it Explaining Organizational Behaviour -Accurate prediction precedes explanation Managing Organizational Behaviour -Management – The art of getting things accomplished in organizations through others -Managers acquire, allocate, and utilize physical and human resources to accomplish goals -If behaviour can be predicted and explained, it can often be controlled or managed -If prediction and explanation constitute analysis, then management constitutes action -Approach a problem with a systematic understanding of behavioural science Early Prescriptions Concerning Management The Classical View and Bureaucracy -Most of the major advocates of the classical viewpoint were experienced managers or consultants who took the time to write down their thoughts on organizing -Classical viewpoint – an early prescription on management that advocated high specialization of labour, intensive coordination, and centralized decision making -Each department was to tend to its own affairs, with centralized decision making rom upper management providing coordination -To maintain control, the classical view suggested that managers have fairly few workers, except for lower-level jobs where machine pacing might substitute for close supervision -Scientific Management – Frederick Taylor’s system for using research to determine the optimum degree of specialization and standardization of work tasks -Taylor was mainly concerned with job design and the structure of work on the shop floor -He supported the development of written instructions that clearly defined work procedures, and he encouraged supervisors to standardize workers’ movements and breaks for maximum efficiency -Bureaucracy – Max Weber’s ideal type of organization that included a strict chain o command, detailed rules, high specialization, centralized power, and selection and promotion based on technical competence -Workers would have a fair chance of being promoted and rising in the power structure -Rules, regulations, and a clear-cut chain of command that further clarified required behaviour provided the workers with a sense of security The Human Relations Movement and a Critique of Bureaucracy -Hawthorne studies – research conducted at the Hawthorne plant at Western electric near Chicago in the 1920s and 1930s that illustrated how psychological and social processes affect productivity and work adjustment BU288 Chapter 1 – Organizational Behaviour & Management Week 1 -They were concerned with the impact of fatigue, rest pauses, and lighting on productivity -There could be dysfunctional aspects to how work was organized – one obvious sign was resistance to management through strong informal group mechanisms -Human relations movement – a critique of classical management and bureaucracy that advocated management styles that were more participative and oriented toward employee needs -This critique of bureaucracy addressed several problems: -Strict specialization is incompatible with human needs for growth and achievement -Strong centralization and reliance on formal authority often fail to take advantage of the creative ideas and knowledge of lower-level members, who are often closer to the customer -Strict, impersonal rules lead members to adopt the minimum acceptable level of performance that the rules specify -Strong specialization causes employees to lose sight of the overall goals of the organization Contemporary Management – the Contingency Approach -The classical advocates pointed out the critical tool of control and coordination in getting organizations to achieve their goals -The human relationists pointed out the dangers of certain forms of control and coordination and addressed the need for flexibility and adaptability -There is a growing body of research and management experience to help sort out the complexities of what happens in organizations. -Contingency approach – an approach to management that recognizes that there is no one best way to manage, and that an appropriate management style depends on the demands of the situation What do Managers do? Managerial Roles -Managers play the role of: figurehead, leader, liaison person, monitor, disseminator, spokesperson, entrepreneur, disturbance handler, resource allocator, and negotiator Interpersonal Roles -Expected behaviours that have to do with establishing and maintaining interpersonal relations -In the figurehead role, managers serve as symbols of their organ
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