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Challenges Applying Three Areas Of Organizational Behaviour Business Essay

Consider the challenges in applying the theory and principles of three areas of Organizational behaviour covered in semester one to organisations.

In this assignment I will be looking at the challenges faced by organisations by the three theories I have learnt during the course of the first semester. I will begin by giving a brief introduction Organisational Behaviour and will then discuss my chosen topics, Personality, Motivation and Decision Making. These are important choices as these topics can make the business run smoothly and decisively.

Organisational Behaviour is involved with the way people behave, perform and adapt to the way the organisations behaves. Organisational Behaviour can be used to help a business reach a set amount of goals, for example to increase performance at work and Organisational Behaviour can help achieve the goals. “A work organisation is a socially designed unit, or collectively, that engages in activities to accomplish a goal or set of objectives” Work Organisations differ from each other in size, the purpose of the business, products or services offered.

Bratton J, Callinan M, Forshaw C and Sawcuk P, 2007

This first topic I will be talking about is Personality, I will look at the challenges offered by this topic and how it will affect organisations whilst using this. Personality will affect the workplace in many different ways, such as if a personality is very active and positive this will impact upon the way the team will act they will act in a much more positive way and so the group will work much better, and will provide much better provided work. Some people will also have a low personality which may not fit with the job requirements or the work group. Personality refers to how unique people are is and so individuals would act differently in they ways they think, act and feel. People can change their personality’s everyday, entirely depending on the environment such as in the workplace, they could be characterised as a shy person but when with friends in a more comfortable environment they can be become confident, and more sociable. This could affect hospitals as if a doctor’s personality is shy and less confident then the patient needs them to be, then the patient may begin to feel scared for their safety and could doubt the doctor’s confidence in being able to successfully treating the patient. Personalities also affect the way information is shared and how it would also affect decision making. This could make sharing difficult for people if two personalities have to work with each other even if the personalities clash with each other and then this will cause problems with the business, because both personalities will have different views on how to share the information and it will make it harder for the business to work. It could also make decision making hard as well due to the fact if the person’s personality is low then they may make the wrong decision for the company but the person’s personality is positive then they will be able to make the correct decisions in order to make the business survive, and to continue to run smoothly.

There are many different words in the dictionary that would define a person’s personality and it would be unrealistic to try to categorise people into those words, and so people join together the descriptors, in order to create blocks of personality of traits, which people display over a period of time. This would make it easier to categorise people as the blocks are bigger, with a more series of descriptors in each block.

Gordon Allport categorised the traits into three blocks which are Cardinal traits, Central Traits and Secondary Traits. Cardinal Traits are traits most define the person and what most people would recognise them by; people with these qualities are very rare as Allport has stated that these would be developed later in life. Central traits are the normal traits that people would associate with them, they are not as dominating as the cardinal traits but the person has many traits about themselves instead of one dominating the other. Secondary traits are the traits which are defined upon certain situations, for example nervous while giving a speech.

Eysenck’s three-factor model of personality talks about the fact that normal personalities can be understood in three basic factors: Introversion-extroversion, neuroticism- stability and psychoticism. Introversion involves directing attention on inner experiences, whereas extraversion would be a person focusing on other people and the environment. A person who is Introversion may be quiet and shy, and a person who is high in extraversion may be outgoing and sociable. This would be an advantage for people who are high in extraversion that work in call centres such as Virgo’s because the environment is very competitive and the other employees will also be high in extraversion as they will be competing with each other, in order to generate more sales and to make more money for themselves. People who are introverts would not be suited to this type of environment due to the fact that they may not be confident enough to talk to customers in order to make more sales. Neuroticism means that the individual is easy to get upset, and so if working at a call centre they will be making many phone calls trying to make sales and so may get hung up abruptly and this may hurt their feelings. People who have Emotional Stability will be able to keep themselves emotionally constant and so will be able to carry on with their job easily. People who are high on psychoticism are normally antisocial and hostile.

(http://psychology.about.com/od/theoriesofpersonality/a/trait-theory.htm)

Personality can also affect the workplace, such as if people interact with workers, if they are able to work on their own. Personalities can also affect the workers on how they respond to change such as the way they would have to do a certain job, would the job give them more stress and so make their personalities neurotic, or if the job is suitable for them, they will be more conscientious.

Personality can help in the workplace, in order to look for potential candidates, but sometimes during job interviews the interviewee may be able to change their personality in order for to get the job and later on, while working the candidates personality changes. Then you may realise the candidate is not right for the job. It may also be difficult to work out someone’s personality as they may be hiding it in order to get the job.

The second I will talk about is Motivation, I will look at the challenges offered by this topic and how it will affect organisations whilst using this. Motivation is the level of willingness and energy an individual gives out for voluntary behaviour. Motivation at the workplace would mean the worker would need to push themselves as hard as possible in order to motivate themselves to do the work, and the best possible standard of work that they are capable of. For Example, Employees working at Virgo’s Call Centre have to be able to make sales, and in order to motivate them, Virgo will give commission for every sale given. They will use motivation in order to make the companies sales higher, if the company does not motivate the employees enough then they will attain a lower level of calls. Motivation can also be used by organisations as it will help the business accomplish goals, and as a result the business would be running better and the employees will also be rewarded. Motivation is used to encourage employees to work harder which then helps the business to achieve higher levels of output, however the challenges which modern organizations face when using motivation at work is that it does not appeal to everyone, for example, employees working for Virgo call centre will be motivated by what the business is offering them. If the employee is being motivated correctly but not actually wanting to work and to reap the rewards, then the employee is not helping the business and would need to be fired.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs shows the levels at where people are motivated at as a lower level become’s filled, a higher need would need to be fulfilled by the person.

Bratton J, Callinan M, Forshaw C and Sawcuk P, (2007) Work and Organizational Behaviour, Hampshire, Palgrave McMillan.

Maslow’s hierarchy has the lower level needs “Physiological” and “Safety Needs” and “Social” which are the most predominant, the minor needs are easy to fulfil and so then need follow the major needs, which Maslow’s value most are “self-esteem” and “self actualisation”, these would actually lead to a behaviour change by which the employees would realise their full potential, and this would be the ultimate motivation they would need in order to succeed in the business. Companies such as Lloyds TSB would not want to employee people who would have self esteem problems due to the fact the employee would not be working to the best of their ability. This would not enable the business to perform as well as they should, if they have underperforming workers, and therefore would need to find ways in which to motivate the workers positively. Maslow’s Hierarchy is easy for business to use but the managers would need to be able to realise where their employees are located on the hierarchy and the manager would need to make sure the minor needs are fulfilled first, and followed after the major needs. This would be good for companies such as John Lewis as the whole company depends on the employees and so they need to make sure they are properly motivated, by first finding out where they are on the hierarchy and so then making sure they are fully motivated for the business in order to succeed. One of the problems with Maslow’s problems is that it is difficult to recognize which one of the needs is the most visible in the person; another problem is that will people really care about their food and water if they are in danger?

Bratton J, Callinan M, Forshaw C and Sawcuk P, 2007

A theory which is also available to businesses is Clayton Alderfer’s ERG theory, which is a revision of Maslow’s Hierarchy, such as the ERG theory which states that all the stages are equally important as each other. Maslow’s theory has the stages in a hierarchy which means they come after the other, the bottom being the lower the top being the higher needs. For Example, Safety would cover a variety of things, such as safety for yourself, family and job safety. For example, with the economy being in recession many individuals will want to know if their job is safe or not, they will be worried about how long they have a job for and if they have a steady and regular income, this will be the case for business such as the Reeds Rains who are estate agents, if employees cannot make sales such as selling houses then their jobs are not safe they will work harder in order to keep their job secure, once the employee knows their job is not at risk then they will work hard and motivate themselves because they will want to do the best they can, this is because the employee knows if they work hard they will be rewarded by the business, such as a promotion or higher income in order to motivate the employee further.

The challenges which may be faced with a business whilst using Maslow’s theory, is that the business may spend more time on developing ‘Self-Actualisation’ and ‘Self-Esteem’ and then they might not develop on the other factors of the theory and because the higher needs are important than the lower needs the business might not want to improve the lower needs, but in order to enhance the higher, the lower needs have got to dealt with first, in order to get full co-operation with all the factors.

People who have reached Self-Actualisation may be content with that and continue their lives whilst on that factor, but other people may want to go higher on the ladder and so Maslow’s Hierarchy is not enough to deal with those kind of people who have got enough motivation but still want to go higher, therefore we could say Maslow’s is not equipped enough and cannot be used by that type of business.

In order to complete the stages from Maslow’s Hierarchy, the business can help employees by setting goals for the employees to enable them to reach the next stage, when many people have got the physiological stage of the hierarchy they will then set goals for themselves in order to reach the next stage. This is called the Goal-setting theory which can help motivate employees, because every time they have completed a goal they will want to achieve more. The goals which are set are will be related to what they are able to achieve, they will be given the goal, but then within the goal they will have the tasks split up in order to complete the goal. If the employees have a set amount of goals and they need to complete them all in order to complete the overall target, but if the employees miss one goal then they have become de-motivated as they think they will have failed the overall target and will not work as hard in order to complete the goals.

Maslow’s theory is weak in the way that he has got the simple needs first and then the higher needs; whereas Alderfer’s theory says that that all the factors are all equal which would make it easier for businesses to work on.

The third topic I will be talking about is Group and Team-working, I have chosen this for the reason that because in most businesses such as Sony such as the Research and Development, it is now regular for employers to use groups and teams. A group of people are put together in order to make more money for the money, such as increasing development of products. A team is a bunch of individuals put together in order to help each other and to help the business, to make it better and to create a piece of work, which is of quality. Organisations can and will most commonly use team-work because it can help with the level of output coming form each individual, and can also help increase the services the businesses can provide, this is because a team can create a higher level of output. For Example, if a team had a challenge they needs to complete, each individual are able to contribute ideas, and are able to collate them together, and are then able to have created the best idea, in order to create the challenge. Teams are also able to contribute more to a business, but there is also a drawback of them arguing, such as some members of the team do not agree with the idea, or simply the group dynamic does not work for the individuals. They could also whilst arguing not doing the work enough as they do not agree with each other and bringing down the businesses production factor by doing low quality work.

Groups in organisations can be formal or informal. Formal groups would be the ones which are chosen by the manager’s in order to increase the production factor; the managers would make sure that they can choose the right people in order to make the best working team, to get the best work the team is capable of. Informal Work is when a team gets together themselves with their fellow employees; they can also help how communication flows in a business. For Example, two employees are working together but do not know each other as people, and so share the bare minimum work and do not communicate with each other effectively, if they were to organise themselves into teams themselves and then after the teamwork exercise then they will know much more information about each other and they will begin to pass on more information to each other and to also communicate with each other much more effectively, which will help the business better as the two workers will produce much better quality work, as they have both worked together to create the work, whereas if they did not work as a team, then they would not have shared information and would have produced a piece of work that was not of good quality. A theory which could be used is Belbin’s which organisations could use in order to establish which role an employee is suited towards. Belbin’s theory has 9 Roles which Belbin believes can make a successful team which are: Plant, Monitor Evaluator, Co-ordinators, Resource Investigators, Implementers, Completer Finishers, Team workers, and Shapers. The business can use questionnaires in order to find out which employee is suited to a particular role, this can be done by answering questions and judging upon the answers given they can discover which employee is appropriate to the role. There can be difficulties as businesses may discover that in a team that there are several employees who are well suited to the one role and just one person is allowed the role or the group will not work. This could mean the team may realise that various people would have to change themselves in order to take a different role in the team, I think Belbin’s theory can help teams to an extent as to find out which role is specific to an employee but it cannot help in the long run. Group and team working is definitely a good resource in order to help the business yield better results, but it would depend on how the team is developed and which members are in the team.

In conclusion I think businesses can use many techniques and theories including motivation and team and group work, I think motivation is a good tool for a business to use because it makes the employees work harder which will then help the business to achieve higher levels of output. Although organisations will face problems when using motivation, they organisation will think of ways to easily overcome the problems. Team and group work is also a successful tool for a business to use because this will also help a business to achieve a higher level of output too. The reasons why organisations will achieve a higher level of output is because all the employees will put their ideas together and as a team will chose and use the most effective idea. Having employees at an organisation working together as a team will motivate the employees to work harder. Personally I think having employees at an organisation will motivate employees, this is because they will want to work harder together. Combining all types of theories will help motivate employees and help a business become successful by aching higher level of out puts. Although organisations will face challenges when using theories they business will easily be able to overcome them using the appropriate strategies. Personality can also affect the business along with motivation if the right person has not got the right personality how the employee will be able to motivate anyone if he cannot motivate himself, so the business would need to choose the right employee in order to motivate others.


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