Stephen Duku Is The Head Commerce Essay


Stephen Duku is the head of Alajo Recruiting Firm, recruiting for Dadze Moro Security Company. Alajo Recruiting Firm has been operating for about 18 years and this company has over 244 page standard operating protocol which covers procedures on everything expected of company employees.

Flexibility is out of the vocabulary of Stephen Duku and thus expects all employees to strictly adhere to all the 244-page operating policies and procedures of the company to the letter.

An analysis and evaluation of Duku's systems as well as the recommendations for appropriate and doable actions for the improvement of the existing Duku's systems have been made in the subsequent information that follows.


The structure of an organization will determine the modes in which it operates and performs. Organizational structure allows the expressed allocation of responsibilities for different functions and processes to different entities such as the branch, department, workgroup and individual Ezigbo(2012).

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Organizational structure affects organizational action in two big ways. First, it provides the foundation on which standard operating procedures and routines rest. Second, it determines which individuals get to participate in which decision-making processes, and thus to what extent their views shape the organization's actions Mohr( 1982).

Every organization has some form of hierarchy which is concerned with the lines of authority used to ensure that people know who they take information and guidance from and to whom they are accountable. The various reporting relationships combine to create a hierarchical (scalar) structure in which, as one ascends the hierarchy, managerial positions become fewer but are associated with higher levels of responsibility. At the top of the hierarchy sits a chief executive with ultimate responsibility for the whole organization (Brooks, 2006). Generically organizational structure can be grouped into mechanistic or bureaucratic and organicstructures based on orientation.

1.1.1 Bureaucratic Structure

Mechanistic structure is a traditional or classical design, common in many medium- and large-size organizations. Mechanistic organizations are somewhat rigid in that they consist of very clearly delineated jobs, have a well-defined hierarchical structure, and rely heavily on the formal chain of command for control. Bureaucratic organizations, with their emphasis on formalization, are the primary form of mechanistic structures. According to Max Weber (1864-1920), bureaucracy is a form of organization characterized by a rational, goal-directed hierarchy, impersonal decision making, formal controls, and subdivision into managerial positions and specialization of labor. Bureaucratic organizations are tall consisting of hierarchies with many levels of management. McGregor proposed that, organizations built on bureaucratic or mechanistic structures should be managed by theory X principles.

Theory X Assumptions:

The average person is lazy and has an inherent dislike for work

Most people must be coerced, controlled, directed and threatened with punishment if the organization is to achieve its objectives.

The average person avoids responsibility, prefers to be directed, lacks ambition and values security most of all.

Motivation occurs only at the physiological and security levels

Central to the theory X approach is direction and control through a centralized system of organization and exercise of authority.

1.1.2 Organic Structure

The organic structure is more flexible, more adaptable to a participative form of management, and less concerned with a clearly defined structure. The organic organization is open to the environment in order to capitalize upon new opportunities.

Organic organizations have a flat structure with only one or two levels of management. Flat organizations emphasize a decentralized approach to management that encourages high employee involvement in decisions. The purpose of this structure is to create independent small businesses or enterprises that can rapidly respond to customers' needs or changes in the business environment. The supervisor tends to have a more personal relationship with his or her employees.

Like McGregor (1960) proposition to use theory X style of management to manage organisations that are bureaucratic in structure, so did him propose theory Y to manage organisations where the structure is organic.

Theory Y

Central to theory Y is the integration of individual and organizational goals. The assumptions for this style of management are:

For most people work is as natural as play or rest

People would exercise self-direction and self-control in the service objectives they are committed to.

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Given the right conditions, the average worker can learn to accept and seek responsibility.

The capacity of creativity in solving organizational problems is distributed widely in the population.

The intellectual potentials of the average person is only partially utilized

Motivation occurs at the affiliation, esteem and self-actualization levels as well as the physiological and security levels.

McGregor favors theory Y, saying it is the best approach to elicit co-operation from members of an organization. Despite the fact that using theory Y can be time consuming with attendant mistakes and frustrations.


Lunenburg (2011): Characteristics of Mechanistic and Organic Organizational Forms

Mechanistic Organization (Bureaucratic)

Organic Organization (Professional)

Low complexity

High complexity

High centralization

Low centralization

Low job satisfaction

High job satisfaction

High formalization

Low formalization

High stratification

Low stratification

Low adaptiveness

High adaptiveness

High production

Low production

High efficiency

Low efficiency


Duku system currently has a hierarchical structure which is highly bureaucratic, where employees work eight hours in a day and five days a week inspends 2 weeks of their working life to copy standard operating protocol. There is a high degree of formalization of policies, operating procedures and instructions. Employees are expected to abide by what is stipulated in the operating protocol from procedures on how to greet customers to how to sit during lunch to hair and grooming tips to what items should and should not be on the employee's desk. Classic bureaucratic organizations have in-built mechanistic control structures where employees are given specific job descriptions delineating their roles and responsibilities to which they have to strictly follow (Dailey, 2003). Additionally, decision making and authority in Duku's system is centralized at the top hierarchy.


The purely mechanistic structure of Duku's system has led to customers' appreciation of services rendered. Customers are enticed about how employees are well trained, systematic, and able to respond to almost any question. This would invariably increase customer patronage and loyalty and hence increase the market share and profitability of Duku's system.

Despite the mechanistic nature of the organizational structure, employees who stay say that there's a comforting efficiency about the place. This confirms Lunenburg (2011) findings that mechanistic structured organizations are highly efficient.

However, the highly bureaucratic nature of Duku's system results in a high employee turnover. About 20% (representing one out of five or one fifth as indicated in the case study) of newly employed employees stay a year and over and half of the candidates interviewed for the job head to the door when told the requirements of the job. This gives a negative corporate image about the organization to the public.

This is not all, decision making and authority is centralized at the top hierarchy hindering employee participation and innovation.

1.1.5 Structural RecommendationforDuku's System

The current organizational structure of Duku's system assumes bureaucratic structure where activities are highly formalized with little or no room for employee flexibility. The organization is managed on McGregor's(1960) Theory X assumptions. To develop a good employee retentionprogramme, Duku system should adopt the organic hierarchal structure where employee innovation and creativity is supported and McGregor theory Y style of management used to manage employees. Since employees leave because of the boring and repeative nature of the job, job specification of each job holder in Duku's system should be enriched through job design methods like job rotation, job enlargement and enrichment.


Both bureaucratic and organic organization structures has its merits and demerits and is therefore proper for organizations not to be structured on one line only and hence the need for contingency approach to organizational structure. This approach indicates that the most appropriate organizational structure depends not only on the organizational objectives but also on the situation, which includes the environment, the technology employed, the rate and pace of change, the managerial style, the size of the organization,stakeholders' interest and other dynamic forces (Montana, and Charnov, 1993). The goal of contingency approach is to explain how differences in the contextual and structural dimensions are related (Vecchio 2000). Customers of Duku systems appreciate the services rendered by the organization because of its bureaucratic structure, here for Duku system to adopt an organic structure would imply customer dissatisfaction and not to adopt it means employee turnover. To reconcile this, the contingency approach would help structure the organization on both lines to meet the satisfaction of employees and customers.


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Culture is what a group learns over a period of time as that group solves its problems of survival in an external environment and its problems of internal integration. Such learning is simultaneously a behavioural, cognitive and an emotional process (Shein, H.E, 1990). Katz and Khan, (1978) referred to culture as the roles, norms and values of an organisation.

Various models have been employed in assessing organization culture and some of them includes; Manifestation of Culture, Six Dimensions of Organizational Culture, The Cultural Web and Levels of Culture.

2.1 Manifestation of Culture; Six Dimensions of Organizational Culture; the Cultural Web and Levels of Culture.

Culture is the collective programming of the mind which distinguishes the members of one group or category of people from another. It is a collective phenomenon, because it is at least partly shared with people who live or lived within the samesocial environment, which is where it was learned.Culture is learned, not inherited. It derives from one's social environment, not from one's genes.Culture should be distinguished from human nature on one side, and from an individual's personality on theother (Hofstede G., 1991)

Six Dimensions of Organizational Culture

The six dimensions of organizational culture measures the result of a study of organizational culture in Denmark and Holland and this is shown in table 2 below:

Table 2:

Dimension 1

Process Oriented vs. Results Oriented

Dimension 2

Employee Oriented vs Job Oriented

Dimension 3

Parochial vs. Professional

Dimension 4

Open System vs. Closed System

Dimension 5

Loose Control vs. Tight Control

Dimension 6

Normative vs. Pragmatic


Beshay, M and Sixsmith, A. (2008), stated in their dimensions of culture analyzes that the six dimensions of organizational culture are as follows;

Process Oriented vs. Results Oriented: A Process Oriented organization is one where each day is just as the one before, risks are avoided and not much effort is put into the job. Results Oriented on the other hand is where each day is new with great challenges, maximum effort is put in and people are comfortable with working in a challenging changing environment, where as an employee Oriented organization is one which cares for its employees and is concerned about their work-life balance and personal life whereas the Job Oriented organization is one which cares only for getting the job done and not about the happiness of its employees. It could be inferred from the case that Duku's system practices Process Oriented as oppose result orientation as each day is just as the one before and Duku's system attaches importance to avoidance of risks.

Employee Oriented vs Job Oriented: An employee oriented organization is one which cares for its employees and is concerned about their work-life balance and personal life. Whereas the job oriented organization is one which cares only for getting the job done and not about the happiness of its employees. Duku's system favors job orientation to employee orientation. This is because all Duku's system requires from its employees is to get the job done and does not consider the happiness of its employees. From the case, the 244-page standard operating protocol must be systematically followed by all employees.

Parochial vs. Professional: The parochial dimension is where employees possess a personal culture matching that of the organization. This culture is predominant in organizations which retain employees for long terms as opposed to short term contractor types. The professional dimension is usually held by contractors whose personal cultures do not match any organizations culture. In Duku's system, very few employees who possess a personal culture matching that of the organization tend to remain in the job. From the case, about one in five lasts beyond a year in Duku's system and those who are able to stay enjoy six figure incomes.

Open versus Closed system: The open and closed system dimensions relates to the ease in which new members fit in, the availability of information and the ease of its accessibility. To an extent, open systems have freedom of information, have open employees and new members can fit in painlessly, while closed systems usually have secretive management, information is hard to obtain and new members are slowly inducted. Alajo Recruitment Firm can be assume to be practicing open systems as all the procedures, processes, products and brochure totaling 45,000 pages of data have been stored on the firm's computer network and are readily available to any one and all members of the firm. Thus, new employees do not have to struggle for pieces of information that relate to their job.

Loose versus Tight controlled organisation: A loosely controlled organization is seen as a relaxed environment where meeting times and budgets are loosely kept and management is easy-going. Whereas tightly controlled organization, is seen to be a strict environment with stringent rules, tight meeting times and budgets and harsh inflexible rules. Alajo Recruitment Firm can be said to practice tightly controlled organization as employees are expected to comply with all the standard operating procedures on how to greet customers, how to sit during lunch, hair and grooming tips as well as items that should or should not be on employees desk. Besides, new employees are expected to pass 12 oral exams over the content of the procedures to ensure it is ingrained in their system.

Normative versus Pragmatic environment: A normative environment views following procedures as more important than producing results, whereas in a pragmatic environment producing results is more important than following processes and procedures. Alajo Recruitment Firm focuses on normative as they seem to attach more importance to procedures than producing results.


According to Beshay M and Sixsmith A. (2008), the Cultural Web was developed by Johnson and Scholes. The 2001 edited version of the cultural web encapsulate a "representation of the taken-for-granted assumptions or paradigm, of an organization and the physical manifestations of organizational culture" and identifies seven areas of organizational culture:

Organizational Structure outlines important relationships and emphasizes what is important in the organization.

Control Systems are the reward systems and measurement system which help uncover the organization's areas of importance and focus.

Power Structures aim to uncover the sources of power within an organization.

Stories include gossip, rumours and the grapevine and are typically based on heroes, villains, successes and failures.

Rituals and Routines are formal or informal things that are done in the organization.

Symbols include the type of language used, corporate logos, office location, company cars and job titles.

The Paradigm is the underlying theory or concept of the organization and provides a general perception of the organization.

2.2 Levels of Culture

In analyzing the culture of a particular group or organization it is desirable to distinguish three fundamental levels at which culture is manifested (Schein, 2008).

Artifacts are the highest level and include items which are visible and able to be seen. It encompasseseverything from the physical layout, the dress code, the manner in which people address each other, the smell and feel of the place, its emotional intensity and other phenomena, to the more permanent archival manifestations such as company records, products, statements of philosophy and annual reports. The 45,000 pages of data stored on the firm's computer network is a perfect artifact the company can show to new and existing employees to show how far the organisation has come.

Espoused values are usually about how things are done. Once accepted by individuals espoused values become the overall values for the organization.Some of the espoused values in Duku's system are that new employees are made to copy 244-page standard operating protocol by using long hands, three times over after which they have to pass 12 oral exams.

Basic underlying assumptions are the actions, opinions, and unquestioned basis on which people behave and are usually automatic and done without thought. Expected behavior in Duku's system has a clearly defined employee behavior from how to greet customers, to what should and should not be on employee desk and to how to sit during lunch.


Work motivation is referred to as the direction, level of effort and extent of persistence evident in the behaviour of an employee. In considering ways to motivate employees it should be noted that each individual is different and therefore everyone is motivated by different things. Within any organization, employees are motivated by intrinsic and extrinsic factors as espoused by Herzberg (1968). Indeed for an organization to reach the highest level of productivity, employees must be highly motivated which would in turn satisfy management and stakeholders. Maslow noted five needs in this pecking order: physiological, safety, social, esteem and self-actualization. He further argues that once a level of need is attained it cease to be a source of motivation to the individual.

3.1 Analysis of Motivation in Duku's System

Stephen Duku mainly motivates his employees by providing them six figure incomes, if the stay a year. To Duku all employees have one motivational need which is monetary incentive, which is built on McGregor(1960) theory X assumption that employee motivational needs only occurs at the physiological and security stage of Maslow's hierarchy of needs and once this is cater for employees would be motivated.

3.2 Evaluation of Motivation in Duku's System

The current motivational system has resulted to a high employee turnover such that only one fifth of any newly employed staff works with Duku's system for a year. However, employees at the physiological and safety levels of Maslow's hierarchy of needs and those with theory X orientation towards work finds some comforting efficiency about Alajo recruiting firm.

3.3 Recommendation for Motivation

AS indicated in the case, the trend today is away from rigid rules and procedures and that flexibility is the new gospel hence Stephen Duku must initiate measures to change his motivation if he is to attract the best and retain the best employees so as to reduce the employee turnover. Mr. Duku should do away with the classical approach to motivation that sees monetary incentive as the only source of employee motivation (extrinsic) to concentrating on designing jobs such that the provide opportunities for development, achievement, responsibility and recognition ( thus intrinsic motivation). Duku can further enhance intrinsic motivation by allowing some degree of flexibility in the company's operations. The best approach to enhance motivation stresses on intrinsic motivation (Deci, 1975). Also, Duku should employee motivational needs should be based on the affiliation, esteem, and self-actualization levels and as well as the physiological and security levels.

3.4 Criticisms of Herzberg's Motivation Model

Herzberg was subjected to criticisms for his procedures and methodology. According to Szilagyi (1984), the criticisms of the theory have been based upon five suggested weaknesses as follows:

The procedure that Herzberg used is limited by its methodology. When things are going well people tend to take credit themselves but blame failure on the extrinsic environment.

The reliability of Herzberg's methodology is questioned. The interpretation of the findings can be contaminated when one response in one manner whiles treating another response differently.

There no overall measure of satisfaction. For instance, a person may dislike part of his job, yet still think the job is acceptable.

The theory is inconsistent with previous research. The motivation maintenance theory ignores situational variables.

Herzberg assumes that there is a relationship between satisfaction and productivity. There must be high correlation between satisfaction and productivity in order to make the research relevant.

4.0 Programme for Change Management In Duku System

Having identified that Duku's system needs to switch from its current mechanistic organization orientation to a flexible organic orientation, there would be an element of change that needs be managed appropriately. Change can take place in all the areas of an organization concurrently, but it should be implemented systematically so it is met with minimal resistance and effects on the organization. Kurt Lewin(1951) formulated a model of change to summarize what he believed was the basic process of implementing change with minimal resistance. Lewin's process consisted of three steps:

Unfreezing means reducing the forces that are striving to maintain the status quo, usually by presenting a provocative problem or event to get people to recognize the need for change and search for new solutions. The first and foremost step to successfully implement change in Duku Systems is for both employees and higher level management to come to terms that the current structure, culture and the entire organizational setup requires some significant change. The more we feel that change is necessary, the more urgent it is, the more motivated we are to make the change

Transition means developing new behaviors, values and attitudes. Management may achieve this through organizational structure changes and organizational development techniques. Change is not an event but a process and so when Duku system intends to implement change, it should be done systematically. Support is really important here and can be in the form of training, coaching, and expecting mistakes as part of the process. Senior managers in Duku system with high level conceptual, human and technical skills should mentor employees and the system itself should allow employees to develop their own solutions also help to make the change. In addition, it is useful to keep communicating a clear picture of the desired change and the benefits to employees and management so they don't lose sight of where they are heading.

Refreezing means building the reinforcement to ensure the organization does not go back to its formal ways of doing things. At this stage management and employees in Duku system should accept that, the organization has moved away from the classical bureaucratic approach of mechanistic organization structure to a flexible contingency structure (that embraces both mechanistic and organic structure). The organization has also moved away from only using monetary incentives as a source of employee motivation (extrinsic motivation) to designing jobs in other to develops the jobholder and provide intrinsic satisfaction (extrinsic motivation). It is essential for senior management in the system to frequently remind higher level management, employees, customers and other stakeholders of change that is implemented and successes chalked to avoid going back to old ways of doing things.

Lewin(1951) further expanded his three step model of managing resistance to change into an eight step model:

Unfreezing Stage

i. Establish a sense of urgency: Having identified the reason for the high employee turnover in Duku systems, senior managers should help others to find the urgent need for change and reasons why it is important to immediately move away from the classical bureaucratic organizational structure and orientation towards management to a modern style of management dependent on the situation (contingency approach)

ii. Mobilize commitment: Stephen Duku should involve managers, employees and customers and stakeholders in the process of implementing change as this would help elicit their support and commitment.

Transition Stage

iii. Create a guiding coalition: The impact of the change that is to be implemented is enormous and would affect both management and employees of Duku's system and customers of the system and other. It is therefore, imperative for a strong and powerful coalition of management, employees and customers who are perceived to have influence and authority both in the formal and informal organization to help implement change without any negative repercussions.

iv. Develop and communicate a shared vision: Convincing members of the organization of the need for change is not enough to bring about actual change. The vision of the organizational moving away from its bureaucratic ways of doing things should be adequately communicated to all stakeholders with an action course of plans communicated as well. Impediments envisioned to happen should as well be communicated.

v. Help employees make the change: identify skills and empowerment gaps of current employees in Duku system and provide employees the necessary skill and empowerment to meet the structural change that is to happen.

vi. Consolidate gains and produce more change: short term realistic attainable goals such as allowing employees some degree of flexibility should be set and when it transcends to low employee turnover and improved customer satisfaction, this should be applauded and celebrated across the organization. This can further help change to be fully implemented in Duku systems.

Refreezing Stage

vii. Reinforce the new ways of doing things: employees jobs should be well designed and recognized in the organizational setup to provide employee intrinsic satisfaction and competent senior managers should mentor employees in their various departments. Robbins (2005) emphasizes the fact that some sort of reinforcement is necessary to produce changes in behavior, so management needs to be very active during change phases to institute reinforcement tactics.

viii. Monitor and assess progress: based on short term gains Duku systems achieved managers in should be able to measure how much success the organization would

Criticism of Kurt Lewin Change model

Lewin's work is only relevant to incremental and isolated change projects and is not able to incorporate radical, transformational change (Dunphy and Stace, 1992)

Lewin's stands accused of ignoring the role of power and politics in organizations and the conflictual nature of much of organizational life ( Hatch,1997).

Lewin is seen as advocating a top-down, management-driven approach to change and ignoring situations requiring bottom-up change (Wilson, 1992).


We have thoroughly reviewed and analyzed Duku's System and we can now make a number of conclusions on the system. Duku runs a highly bureaucratic management system in his company, the Alajo Recruiting Firm. His management style is characteristically a theory X model and this ties in with the bureaucratic management system he runs. We have also observed that the levels of motivation within the company are skewed towards only financial motivation which in itself is not bad, yet this is not adequate to meet the total motivation needs of every one as is the case here. This will need some attention.

Duku's current system for reviewing the competence of candidates is not the most efficient and lacks in a number of areas. It will be helpful for Duku to review and improve this system. Additionally, the manual processes at the Alajo Recruiting Firm are also outdated and in urgent need of a review

The major strengths of the system presently is that, it is able to produce personnel who are meeting the core need of the company's customers, The Dadze Moro Security Company. The extent of the recruitment and the attendant training process has also produced a batch of highly organized and very efficient personnel much to the admiration of colleague staff and customers.


After the careful analysis of Dukus System and situating it within the broader contexts of the subject of organizational behavior, we have some recommendations to make for the improvement of the system he currently runs

1. Duku needs to adapt to his system to conform to some of the modern management practices and models

2. Duku needs to review and amend the mode of examination and testing of the standard operating protocol. He can incorporate some practical examinations within the assessment module instead of the 12 oral examinations the potential employees have to go through at the moment. He could also include some written examinations to assess the competence of the candidates as well.

3. Duku needs to review the reward structure of the company as is exist today. It Is clear that the mere amount of money paid to the successful applicants who chose to stay on is not enough to keep staff. The level of limitation that exist when it comes to the way the job schedule is rudimentary is not allowing for any amount of innovation within the workforce.

4. Duku needs to leverage on the existing level of efficiency within his system and ensure that the recommended changes do not end up compromising this efficiency.

5. Although the existing bureaucratic structure of the of the organization can be credited to some extent for the level of efficiency of the system as a whole, it has also brought in its wake a lake of innovation and this may threaten the continued existence of the company. It is our recommendation that the company reviews its existing structures and procedures with the specific aim of addressing the existing bureaucracies and managing them alongside a more flexible management approach like the organic structure.

6. To develop a good employee retention programme, Duku system should adopt the organic hierarchal structure where employee innovation and creativity is supported and McGregor theory Y style of management used to manage employees. Since employees leave because of the boring and repeative nature of the job, job specification of each job holder in Duku's system should be enriched through job design methods like job rotation, job enlargement and enrichment.

7. With the level of training that Duku presently invests in the potential employees, he should be crafting out measures to reduce employee turnover. This is necessary as it will only further enhance the efficiencies he is currently enjoying with the system he is presently running. One activity that can work efficiently for him in this regard will be to improve the intrinsic value of the jobs for the employees using some of the modern tools like even the Theory Z.

8. We recommend also, that Duku should seed some of the command and control of the management of the system to others within the company whiles he maintains an oversight role and responsibility for the systems as a whole. This will create avenues for other innovative management approaches and styles to gradually trickle into the system. Duku will still have the overall oversight and maintain the standards, which is of greater significance within the broader milieu.

9. In a bid to get a more holistic picture of what can be done to improve the system, it would be instructive to have Duku interview a cross section of the past employees and some of those who were successful at the interview and yet did not take up their appointments. This will provide a wealth of information on what the challenges of the system as it stands today are. This invaluable information will be significant in addressing the most pertinent issues that have resulted in the challenges of the system.