Project on Management and organizational Behaviour
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Published: Mon, 5 Dec 2016
This project is not only done for the sake of submitting as we are asked to but also to gain knowledge by a lot of means in both practical and theoretical ways. Text books and study guides cannot give complete knowledge to any student. And I believe that the assignments are given for students to gain extra practical knowledge from the wide world around. In the study of organizational behavior we mainly focus on the knowledge of people, individuals, and groups act in organization and interprets the people to organization relationship in terms of whole person, whole group, whole organization and whole social system. Its purpose is to build better relationships by achieving human objectives, organizational objectives, and social objectives. This project report is under the wide topic organization. I have taken two organization and have discussed and have discussed it’s Organizational structure, its theories, management styles, behavior of individual which can affect the organization, leadership styles, management approach, motivational theories, nature of groups within the organizations, factors for successful teamwork influences threaten the success and finally the impact of modern technology . This report helped us to apply the theoretical knowledge into these two organizations and analyses the advantage and disadvantage.
An organization can be defined as a group of individuals working together to achieve a common goal or objective. In the business environment various types of organization can be observed, i.e. profit making vs. non – profit making, product based vs. service based, localized vs. international and etc. The goals and objectives of an organization would vary according to the type of organization.
Since the capability of the organization depends on the ability or the performance of the individuals who works in an organization, ability of the employees can be enhanced through various factors and also through better structure and culture of the organization.
For the purpose of this report the organizations which were selected are Virgin Rail Group of company and British Airways.
Virgin Rail Group
Virgin Trains is a UK based company which is jointly owned by virgin management and Stagecoach plc, where virgin management holds 51% and Stagecoach plc 49%. The two shareholders manage virgin trains under a joint board called Virgin Rail Group. It operates as West Coast Trains Ltd under the brand name Virgin Trains. And this was awarded to Virgin Rail Group (VRG) on 19th February 1997. They have 550 drivers, 873 station staff, 1261 on-board staff and 616 other staff. They believe that their major resource and contributors are the customers. Virgin Trains achieved Investor in People accreditation in 2007.
To continue to be the best among all the other. To keep the foundations such as safety, security and consistent delivery strong in everything they do. And focusing on the business and leisure markets and driving efficiently and effectiveness.
To be a world-class organization that works with integrity and honesty, building lasting business relationships, continuously seeking opportunities for growth and creating an environment that develops, motivates and rewards all employees by providing consistent returns for all its stakeholders
British Airways can trace its origins back to the birth of civil aviation, the pioneering days following World War I. In the 90 years that have passed since the world’s first schedule air service on 25 August 1919, air travel has changed beyond all recognition. The British Airways Concorde fleet was finally retired, bringing with it the end of the world’s only supersonic passenger services, which has yet to be replaced. British Airways’ fleet of seven Concorde’s was dispersed for preservation to different worldwide locations.
To give the best service in affordable prices. To keep performing as the best and comfortable service provider. And to provide even the rural areas with the services.
To be a world-class organization that works with integrity and honesty, building lasting business relationships, continuously seeking opportunities for growth and creating an environment that develops.
Organizational Structure and Culture
The selected organizations, which are Virgin Rail Group and British airways, provide transport service. However, Virgin Rail Group and British airways can be categorized as national and multinational respectively; it was possible to arrive at the following conclusion after considering the geographic area in which these organizations operate.
1.1 Organizational Structure
The main purpose of organizational structure can be identified as the division of work among member of the organization, and the co-ordination of their activities so they are directed towards the goals and objectives of the organization. There are mainly three types of organizational structures.
1) Functional Structure: In such a structure groups of people who hold similar skills or perform similar tasks are clustered together and usually departments are formed.
2) Divisional Structure: Divisional structures can be of three types. They are,
Division based on Product: Each product division contains the functions necessary to that service the specific goods or services it produces
Division based on Market: Group functions into divisions that can be responsive to the needs of particular types of customers
Division based on Geography: In such a structure regional divisions are set up to service customers in different geographic areas
3) Matrix Structure: In a matrix structure specialists from functional departments would be assigned to work on one or more projects that are lead by a project manager.
Other structures are
4) Flat structure
5) Pre-bureaucratic structures
As Virgin Rail Group and British airways are public limited companies and specially the latter being a very large organization, these organizations need to follow a formal organizational structure where they would be able to monitor the activities, assign responsibility for groups and individual members and co-ordinate different parts of the organization.
Virgin Rail Group- Flat management structure
Each of Virgin group of companies are individually managed and operated, unlike other large organization that have centralized service companies such as Shell. Employees of each company are closely tied to the rise and fall of the company, giving them more control and freedom, and allow them to enjoy the sense of achievement. Due to its status as private company, the complex group structure, and the unavailability of the consolidated accounts
British Airways- Flat management structure
British Airways has a more formalized structure with precise rules and procedures, due to its size and the global scope of its activity. A major change in the last years has been the reduction of its management layers, between the chief executive and the front line who interface with customers, from nine to five. It now has small ad hoc groups working in parallel with the formal structure, with responsibilities that cut across different functions, or in some case duplicated these functions.
Here we are mainly focusing on one of the main structures which both our chosen organizations come under which is Flat structure. The flat structure is common in entrepreneurial start-ups, university spin offs or small companies in general. In contrast to a tall organisation, a flat organisation will have relatively few layers or just one layer of management. This means that the “Chain of Command” from top to bottom is short and the “span of control is wide”. Certain financial responsibilities may also require a more conventional structure.
Advantages of flat management structure
More/greater communication between management and workers.
Better team split.
Less bureaucracy and easier decision making.
Fewer levels of management which includes benefits such as lower costs as managers are generally paid more than workers.
Disadvantages of flat management structure
Workers may have more than one manager/boss.
May limit/hinder the growth of organization
Structure limited to small organization such as partnerships, co-operatives and some private limited companies.
Functions of each department/person could be blurred and merge into the job roles of other.
Organizational Networks and Linkages
Virgin Rail Group has a network which covers only uk. Due to this network the company has been able to expand itself throughout the island in such a manner that customers would be able to carry out transactions easily from any part of the island It has been identified the availability of flexible working programs within Virgin Rail Group is low. Part time employment can be identified as the only significant flexible working program at Virgin Rail Group.
British airways covers a wide range of countries unlike Virgin Rail Group of company. The company uses computer software in order to maintain a global scale network. Especially the company would use Sun Microsystems platform or UNIX platform software in order to maintain the data base. It gives more facilities to customers to attract easily them. Then only hey will feel as good service which this company provides for them.
Each organization will have its own unique organizational culture and most of the time large organizations would tend to have a mix of these cultures.
Within a power culture, control is the key element. Power cultures are typically found within a small or medium size organization. Decisions in an organization that display a power culture are centralized around one key individual. That person likes control and the power behind it. As group work is not evident in a power culture, the organization can react quickly to dangers around it as no consultation is involved. On the other hand this culture has its problems, lack of consultation can lead to staff feeling undervalued and de-motivated, which can also lead to high staff turnover.
Common in most organizations today is a role culture. In a role culture, organizations are split into various functions and each individual within the function is assigned a particular role. The role culture has the benefit of specialization. Employees focus on their particular role as assigned to them by their job description and this should increase productivity for the company. This culture is quite logical to organize in a large organization.
A task culture refers to a team based approach to complete a particular task. They are popular in today’s modern business society where the organization will establish particular ‘project teams’ to complete a task to date. A task culture clearly offers some benefits. Staff feels motivated because they are empowered to make decisions within their team, they will also feel valued because they may have been selected within that team and given the responsibility to bring the task to a successful end.
Person cultures are commonly found in charities or nonprofit organizations. The focus of the organization is the individual or a particular aim..
Forward and Backward Looking Cultures
Forward looking organizations are risk takers and perform well due to this risk taking ability. Whereas backward looking organizations are organizations which do not embrace change and are led by systems and procedures.
Virgin Rail Group- Organizational Culture
Virgin is a Virgin is a flat and participative organization with an open, enterprising and flexible culture, staffs are friendly, fun and courteous, the organizational climate is informal, encouraging, and cheerful, morale is high and they enjoy their work. The culture at Virgin can best be described as a power culture, frequently found in small entrepreneurial organizations. The power source is namely Richard Branson with rays of power and influence spreading out from the central figure (see Illustration 5.3). The organization depends on trust and empathy for its effectiveness as well as personal interactions for communications. There are few rules and procedures, little bureaucracy and the organization is proud and strong. A power culture such as Virgin has the ability to move quickly, innovate and react well to threats. The culture at Virgin is certainly a major contributor to its success.
Virgin culture is probably unique in the airline industry. It was built on the vision of an airline dedicated to premium customers who could do anything to satisfy them. Virgin is very much customer focused and the major difference with BA is that this orientation pervades the total organization. Virgin Atlantic is also dedicated to the long-term; it has always sought growth in the long term and acted accordingly.
British airways- Organizational Culture
British Airways could be defined as a role culture reflecting functional differentiation in its structure, but it’s not easy. There are two cultures playing role in Middle management, which is key to the implementation of any strategy and the outcome of cultural change, is still ruled by separate functions and at the top all the weight still goes on the individualist functions of high finance and take-over.
Advantage and Disadvantage of organizational culture
An organizational culture can be either weak or strong. A strong organizational culture could be one were the majority of the participants hold the same basic beliefs and values as applies to the organization. The people in this group may follow the perceived rules and ethical procedures that are basic to the organization, even if those values are not publicly stated by the organization. This could also be detrimental to the company if the rules and regulations become more important to the participants than the actual goals of the company.
Relationship between organization structure and culture
The relationship between organizational culture and organizational structure is a very common theme that is often overlooked. These two can be difficult to be clearly distinguished from one another, and even more so to clearly define within an institution. Organizational structure works within an organizational culture, but it is not completely separate. The two are very much intertwined. The structure refers to the infrastructure, and the various methods and practices within that infrastructure, that helps an organizational culture run with the efficiency and consistency that should be the hallmark of any healthy organizational structure, whether it is in a corporation, sports team, or any other set up that is large enough to create its own organizational culture. The first is the pre-bureaucratic structure, which is mainly known for lacking a structure that standardizes tasks.
The Human Resource Function
Stakeholder Perspective: It is clear that stakeholders would have objectives and would expect organizations to achieve these objectives. The organizations should always consider their stakeholder’s point of view before making any decisions as this will help to minimize conflicts and avoid a purely instrumental or theoretical approach to Human Resource Management. Nations Trust Bank considers the impact of its activities on various stakeholder groups, carries out activities which will develop a good relationship with stakeholders and also abides by the rules, regulations and carries out business in an ethical manner for the above mentioned purposes.
Human Resource Roles: The role of Human Resource Management (Personal Management) is taking care and handling the organizations most important resource which is the people resource or the employees. Human Resource Management would help the organization to maintain a balance and efficiently coordinate with the employees so they can work more efficiently and effectively.
The HR department of Virgin Rail Group carries out an immense number of activities for the above mentioned purposes; these activities range from arranging functions such as Christmas Eve get-togethers to New Year celebrations where management and employees from various departments can interact with each other. Beyond this career guidance programs, training .
British airways too carries out an immense number of activities like other companies to ensure that they stand by their HR roles. Further, British airways provides lot of facilities to customers. And it gives a safely journey and it gives maximum support to protect he passengers from all disaster and other accidents.
Personnel Policies: An organization’s personnel policy means a plan, a course of action or guiding principles which that business will use to influence and determine decisions, actions and other matters. Virgin Rail Group and British airways would have various personnel policies.
Strategies, Operating Plans and Strategic Goals for Personnel: An organization’s strategy is about what the organization wants to achieve in the long term. There would be various techniques followed by an organization to achieve these goals and objectives. For example British airways provides online booking and cancellation services.
Finally it was possible to arrive at the conclusion that carrying out Human Resources Functions would help any organization to be successful. For these purposes various elements such as stakeholder perspective, HR roles, personal policies, strategies and operating plans, and strategic goals for personnel have to be considered.
Individual Behavior at Work
Factors which influence individual behavior at work
There are many factors which influence behavior at work. workers should share the same goals as those of the organization, and the way to achieve this was through the application of organizational management principles. All the workers should cooperate to accomplish the best result. Basic factors influencing individual behavior at work are Planning: Many problems of employees are arise because their work is not properly planned for them and workers do not know the best way in which their jobs should be done. We can see that this could give rise to anomie – the confusion of the individual in relation to his job. This in turn can generate excessive stress.
Time and motion study: Many work related problems arise because workers do not realize the one best way of performing task. Management should use time and motion study to establish best practices.
Incentives: Bonus payments and incentive schemes give good workers a sense of making progress, even if it’s not promote them.
Working conditions: Management has a responsibility to provide good working conditions so that workers can achieve their full production potential.
Training: Good trainings not only improves production performance but also build up the confidence of the employees.
Approaches to Management and Theories of Organization
Management approaches and organizational theories deal with how an organization achieves its management objectives through the organizational structure, its design and other elements. The management theories can be classified as five major schools of management thought. They are,
Classical School of Management (Includes Scientific Management and Bureaucratic management) – here the emphasis was on managing workers and organizations more efficiently
Behavioral School of Management (Includes Human Relations) – here the emphasis was on understanding human behavior in the organization
Quantitative School of Management – here the emphasis was on increasing quality of managerial decision-making through the application of mathematical and statistical methods
Systems School of Management – here the emphasis was on understanding the organization as a system that transforms inputs into outputs while in constant interaction with its’ environment
Contingency School of Management (Includes Contingency approaches) – here the emphasis was on applying management principles and processes as dictated by the unique characteristics of each situation
It was understood that Virgin rail group follows a flat structure and British airways also follows a flat structure.
Based on the above information it is important to understand the management theories which the organization follows.
Classical School of Management
Even though scientific management was introduced many years before, organizations still use these principles or theories with minor adjustments. When scientific management is considered, Henry Fayol would be the significant character which would emerge. Today’s organizations follow what Henry Fayol introduced with minor adjustments. Bureaucracy means the usage of rules, regulations, policies, procedures and standardization of activities. This concept was introduced by Max Weber. This type of management would be used in the military and not in a bank usually. This could be understood through the way in which both banks operate.
Behavioral School of Management
According to research which was carried out it has been possible to identify that human interaction or group relationships have a direct impact on productivity and would help to increase the motivation of employees. Therefore, the behavioral management school principles are more focused to understand individual employee’s behavior, their interaction and also motivational factors. When Nations Trust Bank has been considered it was possible to understand that the organization carries out many activities which would encourage employee communication. Further, the employee exchange program which is carried out by Standard Chartered Bank can be considered as another example.
Systems School of Management and Contingency School of Management
As it was mentioned before both the organizations, Nations Trust Bank and Standard Chartered Bank, follow a centralized structure. However, in the case of Standard Chartered Bank centralization is less prominent as the bank believes that empowerment of employees would bring out the best from the employees. In a systems approach the organization as a whole would be considered as one system and hence in these type of systems integration, communication and independence plays a vital role. Whereas in contingency approach it is believed that there is no best way to arrange an organization and this has to be decided based on the nature of the organization.
Finally, it could be understood that even though organizations still follow scientific management they try to move more towards the usage of human relations approach and a contingency approach.
4.1 Functions of Management
There are mainly four functions of management. These functions are,
1) Planning: Determines the broad lines for carrying out operations, preparing methods by which they are carried out and setting standards of performance.
When planning is done the management of the organizations would need to gather information from the environment in which they operate. For this purpose the organizations would use the macroeconomic factors and would use the PEST tool. Virgin Rail group and British airways would both use the PEST tool so that they would be able to analyze the macroeconomic factors which would affect their organization. The constant changes in the environment should be regularly noted through the PEST tool and based on that the organizations should be able to respond. Further, planning would have the following aspects; forecasting, utilization and also action decision.
2) Control: Checking actual performance against standards to ensure satisfactory progress and performance, and recording as a guide to possible future operations.
Control is a vital element for both, British airways and also Virgin rail group of company, as it is the only way by which the managers can find out if the organization is achieving the goals and objectives. Controlling can be carried out by standards, measurements and comparisons.
Further, organizational performance could be measured based on productivity measures, through financial rations which could be compared against benchmarked companies, by setting standards and having key performance indicators.
3) Co – ordination: Balancing and marinating the team by ensuring a suitable division of work and seeing that tasks are performed in harmony.
Both companies have been able to co – ordinate their activities through suitable divisions. In the case of Nations Trust Bank the bank has ensured that its range of diverse employees would better understand each other through various activities so that ultimately they would be able to work together as a team to achieve the goals of the organization whereas in British airways organization would also have to consider the international market within which they operate so that they would be able to better co – ordinate activities.
4) Motivation: Getting members of the teams to work effectively, to give loyalty to the group and to the task, to carry out their tasks properly, and to play an effective part in the activities of the organization.
It is understood that the main task of a manager is to get things done through employees. But in order to get employees to perform some task they would need motivation. British airways provides motivation for its employees through various methods ranging from provision of a safe and a healthy working environment to empowerment of employees, to provision of rewards and awards. This would help to uplift the employee morale and in turn motivate the employees to work for the organization.
Virgin Rail group
The management style can be defined as informal without being casual, but Virgin’s approach to business is totally serious. Branson has a particularly individual style of informal, risk taking, entrepreneurial management. He manages by empowerment and mega-parties for his staff. Within the business units, Branson adopted his own personal style of management, priding himself on actively involving employees and seeking their ideas on ways of further adding value to his customers
The role of the Board is to provide entrepreneurial leadership of the Company within a framework of prudent and effective controls, which enables risk to be assessed and managed. The Board sets the Company’s strategic aims, ensures that the necessary financial and human resources are in place for the Company to meet its objectives and reviews management performance. The Board sets the Company’s values and standards and ensures that its obligations to its shareholders and others are understood and met.
Importance of organization theory and the effects
It is an assembly of people working together to achieve common objectives through a division of labor. As Jeffrey Pfeffer summarized in New Directions for Organization Theory.
Organizational theory studies provide an interdisciplinary focus on
The effect of social organizations on the behavior and attitudes of individuals within them,
The effects of individual characteristics and action on organization,
The performance, success, and survival of organizations,
The meaning of leadership now should be simply the successful promotion of new directions. Leadership and management that are based on different assumptions and theories. The style that individuals use will be based on a combination of their beliefs, values and preferences, as well as the organizational culture and norms which will encourage some styles and discourage others.
The Quiet Leader
Interpersonal Roles (Figurehead, Leader, and Liaison): Interpersonal roles can be defined as relations with other people arising from the manager’s status and authority.
1) Figurehead Role: A Figurehead role can be defined as the most basic and simple of managerial roles. Here the manager would be considered as a symbol which represents the organization in matters of formality. The manager would be involved in matters of a ceremonial nature such as signing of documents, participation as a social necessity, and being available to those who demand access to top authority.
2) Leader Role: A Leader role is among the most significant of roles and it spreads through all activities of a manager. They would have a responsibility for staffing, and for the motivation of subordinates and guidance of subordinates.
3) Liaison Roles: A Liaison role involves the manager in horizontal relationships with individuals and groups outside their own unit, or outside the organization. An important part of the manager’s job is the linking between the organization and the environment.
Informational Roles (Monitor, Disseminator, and Spokesperson): The informational roles relate to the sources and communication of information arising from the manager’s interpersonal roles.
4) Monitor Role: Identifies the manager in seeking and receiving information. This information enables the manager to develop an understanding of the working of the organization and its environment. Information may be received from internal or external sources, and may be formal or informal.
5) Disseminator Role: Involves the manager in transmitting external information through the liaison role into the organization, and internal information through leader role between the subordinates. The information maybe largely factual and may contain value judgments. The manager is most important person here; he may refuse to provide information. This can bring about difficulties for delegation.
6) Spokesperson Role: Involves the manager as formal authority in transmitting information to people outside the unit, such as the board of directors or other superiors, and the general public such as suppliers, customers, government departments and the press.
Decisional Roles (Entrepreneur, Disturbance Handler, Resource Allocator, and Negotiator): The decisional roles involve the making of strategic organizational decisions on the basis of the manager’s status and authority, and access to information.
7) Entrepreneurial Role: Is the manager’s function to initiate and plan controlled (i.e. voluntary) change through exploiting opportunities or solving problems, and taking action to improve the existing situation. The manager may play a major part, personally seeking improvements, or may delegate responsibility to subordinates.
8) Disturbance Handler Role: Involves the manager in reacting to involuntary situations and unpredictable events. When an unexpected disturbance occurs the manager must take action to correct the situation.
9) Resource Allocator Role: Involves the manager in using formal authority to decide where effort will be expended, and making choices on the allocation of resources such as money, time, materials and staff, The manager decides the programming of work and maintains control by authorizing important d
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