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The organization's structure concerns how people grouped and to whom they report (way of doing and managing the business). It exist two main types of organizational structure, formal (structure is constructed to fulfil specific objectives) and informal (loosely structured, spontaneous and flexible form).
While the organizational culture of a company represents the behaviour and attitude of the workforce of the organization and the meanings that those employees link to their acts. In fact, the word ''culture'' incorporate the values, norms, systems, visions, working language, beliefs and habits of the company. Consequently, it affects the way the people of the company interact and communicate with others (employees, customer, stakeholdersâ€¦).
There are different types of organizational culture as it can be influenced by internal and/or external environment. For example, the size, the history, the goals, the function, the location, etcâ€¦ of the organization could influence it. The four types of organizational culture are the power culture, the person culture, the role culture and the task culture.
The role culture is the most common one (especially in the large organizations). The employee's activities will be strongly influenced by clear and detailed job descriptions (what is expected from them). It implies that the company will be split into different departments (functions). Thus, each employee (within a department) will be assigned a particular role. The advantages of using the role culture are the fact that the employees are getting specialized as they focus only on one task (assigned by their job). Moreover, it will generally entail an augmentation of the company's productivity. When looking at the characteristics of the role culture we can affirm that it rather correspond to functional and divisional structure.
A task culture represents a team based approach. In fact, particular teams are formed to complete and achieve goals and objectives. The difference is that the employees are freer. Indeed, in a task culture, the team will be able to solve his tasks or projects by using any mean (as long as this one is legal and suited). This type of organizational culture is more frequent and popular in modern businesses. The advantages of using it are that it is easier for companies to undertake work for different customers in various domains. Also, it will bring more flexibility and motivation (as staff feel valued and empowered) to the organisation's workforce. When analysing the characteristics of task culture we understand that it is more likely linked to the matrix structure.
*A functional structure corresponds to the fact of organising people by their functions.
Some of the advantages might be: -specialisation of employees
-more efficient staff
-more operational project teams (higher productivity)
While some of the disadvantages could be: -lack of communication between departments
-slower organisation (concerning decisions making)
*A divisional structure means that you are grouping each organisational function into a division.
Some of the advantages are: -specialisation of the workforce
-better coordination between employees (and divisions)
-self-sufficiency (for the division and decentralisation)
While some of the disadvantages are: -augmentation of overhead costs
-different product departments could fail in sharing . resources and clients (too much autonomy)
*A matrix structure combines some characteristics of the divisional and the functional structure (employees are grouped by both function and division).
Some advantages may be: -more fluidity in communication (efficient information exchange)
-decentralisation decision making (quicker decisions making)
-divers skill set (improved access to perspectives and skills)
Some disadvantages can be: -internal complexity (confusion about to whom shall . employees report to)
-expensive to maintain the structure
-too much competition between departments (creating hostility)
It is very important to control and manage individual behaviour at work as it is something that will directly impact on the overall results of the company (productivity, performance). In fact, individual behaviour represents how an employee behaves at work, and how his behaviour is influenced. Indeed, it can be influenced by several factors (which may be internal or external). But, company will be able to manage only the internal factors.
For example, an external factor could be the family life. Indeed, a conflict in the family life, or happiness at home, will surely affect the employee's behaviour at work (as it affects his mood) in a positive or negative way.
The organization structure can affect the individual behaviour of employees as it corresponds to the company's procedures, expectations and policies. Applying a healthy structure will allow employees to be more efficient and to show their full potential.
Leadership styles will also influence the individual behaviours in an organisation. Thus, if the employees perceive that the leadership integrate values such as integrity, trust, honour, respect, etc... It may motivate them to work harder.
The individual performance and behaviour are highly affected by the skills and abilities. Skills concern the ability to act in a certain way that will permit him to achieve his goal. While abilities are the physical capacities of someone to do something (realise a work task). For an employee to be successful his abilities and skills need to correspond to the job requirements.
The attitude will also be a factor. Indeed, as attitude is defined as the tendency for a person to respond to certain situations or persons (positively or not) managers have to create a good work environment. If he does so, employees will be more efficient (they will have a better attitude). Unfortunately attitude is also highly influenced by external factors (family, culture, beliefs...).
The demographic factors will concern all that is linked to the socio economic background of the employee (education, nationality, age, sex...). If managers study those factors they will be able to elaborate better recruitment policy. This should end result from an improvement in individual behaviour at work as the right people are chosen from the beginning.
The personality of someone will surely affect his behaviour at work because it involves the characteristics and distinctive traits. This factor (one of the most important) will determine the way in which an employee will respond and react to someone or to a situation (affecting his relationships). Again, it is a complex aspect of individual behaviours as it is frequently influenced by external factors (heredity, society, culture, family...). The only way for a manager to improve this aspect will be to motivate the person (through trainings, rewards...).
Finally, the perception, it corresponds to the ability to hear, see, becoming aware of something and understands it. But, the way something (like environmental stimuli) will be understood and interpreted will differ depending on the person. Consequently it will be easily effectible. That's why it will be necessary for managers to create a good work environment to improve the perception of the workforce (flexibility, good salary, appropriate workload...).
Before starting to analyse the impact of Melanie's leadership style on her staff, it is important to know clearly what does leadership means and what does it implies.
Leadership is the capacity someone has got to influence the employees (by means of his personal behaviours and attributes) to be able to achieve a common objective. In this sense, it is really important to differentiate managing and leadership. For Watson, managers will mostly focus on strategy, structures and systems; while leaders will have an inclination of focus on style, staff, skills and shared goals. But, some managers are leaders as well.
The leadership style will correspond to the way in which the leadership's functions will be carried out (the way leaders behave). Because of this fact, we will be able to spot three categories of leadership styles: -autocratic style (authoritarian)
-genuine style (laissez-faire)
We can affirm Melanie Reynolds is actually performing an autocratic style of leadership. Indeed, this type of leadership implies that the manager have the power and authority over the workers. Consequently, the manager will be able to take the decisions and to determine the policies, goals, procedures, rewards, relationships, etcâ€¦ on his own (those won't be questioned). Thus, the staff works according Melanie's rules as she applies a strict control and powerful discipline (sort of dictatorship).
An autocratic leadership style can sometimes have advantages. Indeed, the decision making will be quicker as the manager won't have to consult a group or other people before deciding. In addition, this strong leadership will make the company more effective when times are stressful. Moreover, some people prefer to be told what to do (errors due to incompetency of the staff will be avoided).
But, in this actual case the impacts of Melanie's leadership style are various, but mostly negative. Thirst of all, we notice that there is a lack of communication between Melanie and her staff, as this job is being dedicated to an employee. This will have for result a pretty bad relationship between them (as she is already feared by the workforce). The main consequences of this situation is a decrease of the employee's involvement and so a higher rate of absenteeism. Also, we realise that the workforce is not motivated, what acts directly on the labour turnover (more labour turnover). In fact, what is happening is that the employees do not feel valued at all as they have no autonomy and almost no responsibilities. Moreover they understand that their efforts are not really taken in consideration as they can't affect and participate to the company's directions and decisions. Thus, they don't feel concern by the goals and objectives of the organisation.
Other disadvantages of authoritarian leadership style could be the feeling (for the staff) of being exploited; or a low skilled workforce. Finally, it could stifle creative ideas (employees will be less innovative).
Even if I am new at Innovative Prods Ltd (in the Human Resource department) I have clearly noticed that there is a problem in Melanie Reynolds's department. After diagnosing the situation I realised that there was a more or less important lack of involvement and motivation from the staff. To solve this matter we could use the "Maslow's hierarchy of needs model''.
To be able to do so, we first need to analyse and identify the ''need level'' at which the employees are existing. In fact, Maslow's theory is based on two parts, the classification of human needs, and the consideration of how are theses classes related to each other.
The motivation is simply the result of a non-satisfied need. Consequently, those needs will be used to improve the workforce's motivation and involvement. It exists five categories of needs in this model:
-esteem needs (respect by others, goals achievement, recognition, freedomâ€¦)
-social needs (friendship, family, love care, affectionâ€¦),
-self actualization needs (fulfillment, creativity, self contentment, more knowledgeâ€¦)
-physiological needs (food, water, sex, clothesâ€¦)
-safety needs (environmental and emotional safety and protection, stabilityâ€¦)
But, when a need is satisfied, frequently, another one will appear. For Maslow, it is because of this fact that we need to permit to the employees to see that the business, the organization, will be able to satisfy these emerging needs. However, this action must be controlled, because if it takes too much time, or if it is too difficult for the staff to realize that, their motivation and commitment will decrease.
In our case, there are four main problems:
-First of all, the strict control applied over the staff creates a lack of safety needs (job stability). Indeed, employees are feared, they feel they can easily be fired.
-Secondly, as it is an authoritarian leadership there is a lack of self-actualisation needs; the staff is not independent and can't take their decisions (no progression perspectives).
-Thirdly, the fact that there is not much communication between Melanie and her staff creates a lack of esteem needs, as the employees will feel that what they think is not taken in consideration.
-Finally, Melanie seems to be proud of her department's productivity and efficiency, but she never congratulates the workers which creates a lack of esteem needs again (no recognition or rewards).
Thus, the situation needs to change. I would propose to Melanie Reynolds some solutions and alternatives such as:
-encourage team work to increase communication and improve relationships (more trust between employees and manager)
-propose trainings and formations, or challenging professions in which the staff's competencies and skills fully used.
-reward and value the employees that are accomplishing and achieving their targets by recognition, higher salary or job promotion.
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