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“Human Relations at the Workplace”.
The purpose of this report is to reflect on the learned experiences from the subject “Human Relations at the Workplace”.
Human Relations are very important in our life as they influence our social and professional lives. When we talk about Human Relations, there are so many relationships we generally see i.e. Family, Friendship, Social, Diplomatic, Professional etc. But one thing is common in all relations is that people do behave or act differently as they really are. And our tendency should be to learn the positive points/act/behaviour from others and neglect all negative ones.
During the trimester, Prof. Chris Green had taught us about Human Relations from the book Effective Human Relations and covered topics like motivation, stress-management, work-life balance, developing yourself, time management and so many other topics related to workplace environment.
I am very glad that I have got a chance to discuss my experience with Human Relations at Workplace. In the past, I also read some material regarding Human Relations when I was doing my Bachelors in Commerce in third year from Guru Nanak Dev University in India. After covering these topics again in James Cook University Brisbane, now I understand all these topics much more clearly and their direct impacts on me. Through this course and the subject matter, I have been able to develop and enhance my management and motivational skills.
An additional skill that I have gained is to accept beliefs from other cultures and points of view of different people. In the past most of my friends, colleagues and relatives had similar opinions about different aspects of life. This limited me in sharing my ideas and beliefs. After working within multicultural groups, I am now able to understand better, the importance of self disclosure and personal identity. Sharing your ideas and beliefs creates trust and is the key for an effective collaboration. Now I can understand and relate these two points in a way that these could help me to improve my work and life balance.
One of the reputed companies in field of sales and marketing gave me an opportunity to work for them as a sales representative. We were a team of 10 people from different social, religious and financial backgrounds. There we all learnt the power of TEAMWORK. The true value, as I see it, is that people work better collaboratively rather than competitively. It had been a very different and challenging experience for me as, personally, I was not permitted to motivate my team members with cash bonuses, nor could fire them or release them out of the project. I read motivational books/stories, and learnt that there were several strategies and ways one could try to motivate the team members. These books and articles helped me in improving my understanding regarding the ways one can motivate his/her team members within the authority given to him. My supervisor, who is one of the greatest motivators in my business life, also taught me some invaluable lessons for teamwork, as he always pushed me and motivated all my team members. This will help me in future too, as I will be able to tackle situations with other team members, managers or supervisors in a more delicate, effective and constructive way.
Few lessons that I learnt from my work experience was -Gracefully admit your mistake, Motivate others by saying that “You did a good job”, Ask for others opinion. Remember these two most important words “Please” and “Thank you”. Reward in Public and Criticize in person.
From my past experiences, I have also learned, that how to become leaders and how good leaders develop through a never ending process of self-study, education, training, and experience. The power of the high position does not make anybody a leader; it only makes you a boss. A leader should have some leadership attributes such as beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge, and skills. In my belief, I will be able to do better at handling situations like motivation and team leading.
During the trimester, I got a chance to give a presentation on Human Relation Challenges in the New Economy. In that presentation, we discussed topics related to Understanding new economy, communicating effectively with new technologies, managing people in virtual environment. Here I would like to share a true story based on “Rewards to improve Motivation”.
“One of my friends is working as a Software Test Engineer in an IT company in USA. He is a contractor with that company and was doing his job well and working on one of the live projects. Then he was presented with an opportunity to work for a critical project that had high visibility in the organization. His manager asked him “Will you be able to work on two different projects side-by-side and give 24 hour support for 7 days a week?” My friend replied:”Ok”, but from inside he was not happy because there was no motivation for him for the extra work he had to do. After two-three days, his manager told him that for all this extra workload he will be paid $500 per week additionally from his normal salary and he will be given one week of vacation after the 2nd project goes live.
In the above scenario Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of needs were present. His needs were of creativity and fulfilment which we refer to as Self-Actualisation needs. In this case five major areas affected his motivation- Variance of skills, Identification of task, Significance of task, autonomy and feedback. This motivated my friend and now he was more happy and efficient in his work than before.”
Further, while preparing this presentation, I had given nice colours and effects to slides. But when I saw these slides from audience's point of view, I found so many mistakes and also recognized that colour and effects do not help too much in making a good presentation. Good presentation includes proper arrangement of the good material with bold heading, underlining important tasks, diagrams, graphs etc. to make it more interesting for the audience as well as the presenter. I hope this presentation is going to improve my speaking, presentation and communication skills.
Overall, in future, I should be able to work as a good team member, leader and able to understand the organizational structure thoroughly. Further, I can more effectively understand behavioural, social and cultural dimensions of my team members and subordinates. This will help me in providing and promoting healthy, effective and comfortable work environment.