BITE College Unit 3 Organization and Behaviour

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Organizations can be said to be a system or combination of systems which is dependent on the structure of the organization, the people working inside the organization and behaviour, the technology that is being used inside an organization, etc. Since, the behaviour of the people working inside the organization is highly unpredictable, it makes it difficult to manage the day to day working of an organization. Thus, it makes it important to understand the various theories and approaches that are followed by various type of organization, to get a fair idea about the behaviour of various organizations. This report is a case study of company ASDA. The report will look into how the organization is structured and what type of culture prevails in ASDA. Then it will focus on the various leadership style that are available and what type of leadership style is being followed in ASDA and why. This report, will further drill on the various organization and motivational theories and which theories are adopted inside ASDA. In the last section, the discussion will be related to the importance of group, the advantage and disadvantages of working in a team and the impact of technology on ASDA.

LO 1- Understand the relationship between organizational structure and culture

P 1.1 Compare and contrast the organization structure and culture of ASDA PLC to that of British Airlines

An organizational structure can be termed as arrangement of different groups of people according to their level of authority based on the roles and authorities of different people. An organizational structure decides how information should flow across the organizations and is dependent on the strategy and goal of an organization. Based on the span of control here are two types of organizational structure: Hierarchical and Flat organization structure. A hierarchical organization structure is the one which has many layers of management. In hierarchical type of organization structure the lower group of people does not play much role in management related activities, their tasks are assigned by their managers and they are expected to complete those tasks and report it to their managers. The main decision making tasks are handled by the people who are at the top of the hierarchy (Katz, 1978). ASDA follows hierarchical type also known as Tall organization structure as it has more layers of management and the employees provides the information to other employees who report finally report it to their boss and the chain continues till the information is shared with the top hierarchy. This kind of approach is followed in most of the companies where the population is more. On the contrary, a flat organization is one which has lesser number of management layer, hence employees in a flat organization are involved in decision making activities. There is nothing like top or bottom level and each employee is allowed to give suggestions and feedbacks which are taken into account before taking any decision. British airlines follow flat organizational structure. Another difference between ASDA and British airline organizational structure is that ASDA follows functional division where the division of group is based on the function that is performed by the employees. The people involved in account related activities are grouped in accounts group; similarly other groups are formed like human resource, marketing, etc. While, British airlines follow divisional organization structure, where group is made based on the product. All employees involved in making a particular type of product are grouped as one. This type of structure helps British airlines in quick decision making and active supervision by the managers as their common objective is customer care.

Organizational culture is means how employees inside the organization behave. The culture of any organization shows the values, beliefs, goals, visions and habits that prevail inside the organization. The organization culture of any organization can be classified based on the double S cube. The double S stands for sociability and solidarity. There are four type of organization structure: Network culture, mercenary culture, fragmented culture and communal culture. A company like ASDA whose main objective is to serve their client to the best of their ability, respect each other within the organization, integrity and excellence, clearly shows that ASDA follows communal culture inside their organization, which is high in solidarity and sociability. On the other hand, British Airlines till recent times were focused more on delivering high customer satisfaction, but there has been drastic change in their organizational structure which resulted in communal culture in British Airlines.

P1.2- Explain how the relationship between ASDA’s structure and culture impacts on its performance

The performance of any organization is dependent on the how the strucuture of organisations and behaviour is? It has been observed by many researchers that it essential to form a well structure within an organization for smooth functioning of it. An unstructured organization will only lead to confusion and chaos across the organization. Moreover, behaviour of employee also plays an important role. The satisfaction level of any employee plays an important role in improving the performance of the organization. Thus it can be seen that both organization structure and its’ culture are essential to improve company’s performance.

Any organization which is well organized and works on the same principle and values creates confidence and provides great level of security and satisfaction among its organization. Any organization which is confused and unorganized will increase uncertainty and will develop insecurity in the minds of its employees. All this plays a big role in improving the performance of the company. Moreover, customers are also driven by how well a company is organized. Customers like to look at the background of any company before assigning them their work. Thus, to improve customer satisfaction, both structure and culture of any organization plays a vital role. However, both culture and structure should not be very complex as it can adversely affect the performance by slowing down the processes that are followed inside the organization (Wilkins, 1983).

As discussed above, ASDA follows hierarchical and functional type of organizational structure. Thus, it becomes important for it to have a communal culture because functional type of structure is characterized by lack of communication between different groups, each group works separately. Similarly, in case of hierarchical structure, the lower group of people feels dissatisfied because they do not play any active role in taking decision. However, the common goal of the company and communal culture helps the company to minimize these disadvantages, so that company can aim for better results. Thus, the culture and structure of ASDA compliments each other and effectively improves company’s performance.

P1.3- Discuss the factors which influence the behaviour of ASDA’s employees at work giving relevant examples

In this section, the focus will be on various factors that affect an individual behaviour while working inside an organization. Some of the factors are discusses below:

  1. Communication: The most important factor which influences human behaviour is communication. An effective communication between a manager and its team member can lead to the individual gaining interest in the work. It is essential to share your views, ideas, and problems to be more expressive and creative in your work. This can be made possible with the help of effective communication. ASDA has been working in improving the communication so that no employee is left alone. Their policy “Your Voice” that was adopted in 2013 had a survey among all stores to know how the people feel and what do they expect and think about the company. This kind of small initiatives shows how communication has been used effectively by ASDA in influencing the behaviour of its workforce.
  2. Culture: As discussed above, any organization should have a common objective. The rules and regulations should not differ from person to person. If such thing happens, it will create insecurity in the minds of employees. As discussed, ASDA follows communal culture, which means Sociability and Solidarity. Sociability means that employees should share cordial relationship with each other at work, while solidarity means that organization should have a common goal. Thus, ASDA has been pro-active in maintaining both solidarity and sociability as part of their culture, to improve individual behaviour at work.
  3. Leadership: An effective leader is the one who not only can get the work done from the team, but also get involved with the team. A leader should know each member of his or her team not only professionally but also personally so that he can understand the problems of each individual and actively participate in solving them to bring out the best from each individual of his team. In ASDA, according to an audit, some of the positives were that employees felt they were treated alike by their managers, equal opportunities were given to each one of them and there was feeling of respect for each other. This has been made possible because of effective leadership.

Thus, it can be seen that ASDA understand the importance of individual behaviour at work in order to attain better performance, at tries hard to provide better environment to all its employees so that they feel part of the organization and should not feel left alone. These increase the interest towards work and results in better efficiency from each individual.

LO2- Understand different approaches to management and leadership

P2.1- Compare the effectiveness of the leadership styles used by the CEO in ASDA to that used by British airways CEO

In this section, the discussion will be on different types of leadership styles that are available and then the focus will be on the effectiveness of leadership style in ASDA compared to that of British Airlines.

Leadership can be considered as a quality through which the attitude and behaviour of others can be influenced. Based on various types of theories, leadership style has been classified into various types. According to Michigan and Ohio theory, leadership was classified into task oriented, relationship oriented and participative leadership style.

A task oriented leadership style is one where leaders are more focused on doing and getting the task done rather than having an effective relationship with his or her team. The leader provides its team with the necessary resources required to complete the task. British Airways use to follow task Oriented leadership style under the leadership of Willie Walsh.

Relationship-oriented leadership style is one where leaders also focus on maintaining good relationship with its employees, along with getting the work done (Graen, 1995). As discussed above, ASDA follows relationship-oriented leadership style, where it effective measures were taken by the leaders to maintain healthy relations with their subordinate members.

Participative leadership style: The main feature of this type of leadership style is it involves the whole team while taking decision and the decision is taken after complete discussion, suggestions and feedback from the whole team.

According to another theory, leadership style can be classified into transactional and transformational leadership style. These are:

A transactional leadership style is one in which the leaders used to motivate their subordinated by giving them rewards and used to punish the employees who fails to deliver quality product on time. Willie Walsh believed that Salary of an employee is sufficient to get the work done, hence British airlines used to follow transactional leadership style.

Transformational leadership: In this leadership style, as seen in ASDA, the morale and motivation of an employee was not just defined by rewards and punishments. Transformational leadership doesn’t believe in give and take business but focused on bringing the change through leadership. A leader should set an example through his belief in the work, his ability and skill. The employees will follow him eventually (Podsakoff, 1990).

P2.2– Identify any organizational theories practiced at ASDA PLC and explain how organizational theory underpins the practice of management

An organization theories are models that explains how an organization is working and how is it related to external environments. It is essential to understand the organizational theory of an organization for better management. Management related activities require theory, which can be used by managers to refer while performing these activities.

It was in 2000, when ASDA for merged with Wal-Mart, that leads to confusion in the minds of many employees working in ASDA. Since, the merger resulted in new rules and regulations, the employees of ASDA were not comfortable and felt insecure. At this point of time, the higher management took the initiative of explaining the new business activities to its workers which help them build trust and made the employees felt more secure. Though, the two organization had similar kind of structure, still the organizational theory acted as the base for the management team to take crucial decisions in favour of the employees and the company as a whole.

P2.3– Evaluate the different approaches to management used by ASDA to that used by British Airways

The difference between the approach in the management of the two companies ASDA and British Airways comes from the difference in the organizational structure. As discussed above, ASDA follows functional organizational structure while British Airways follows divisional organizational structure. Thus, in case of ASDA, the management focuses on how to maintain effective relationship with their employees and make them understand their goals and objectives so that they can perform to the best of their ability to have competitive advantage over other companies in UK. The management also focused more on maintaining good relationship with their employees during the merger process with Wal-Mart.

On the other hand, British Airways, being a divisional type of organizational structure, focuses more on training its employees so that the employees are aware of the complete process rather than just knowing what is expected from them. In case of ASDA, management expect that each employee should be best in whatever work he is doing, while in case of British Airways, which focus more on customer service, management tries to incorporate different skills to all its employees so that each one is aware of the complete process and it’s functioning.

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LO 3. Understand ways of using motivational theories in organizations

P 3.1 What type of changes could ASDA have engaged in, Discuss the impact that different leadership styles may have on motivation of ASDA’s staff in periods of changes

Any organization keeps on changing from time to time. The structure, the culture, the values, everything that is been followed inside an organization is subjected to changes. As already discussed above, ASDA follows hierarchical type of organizational structure, thus it has the top level or the senior people which takes most of the decision, while the lower level people do not contribute in any part of decision making. Their goals and objectives are defined by their manager, and they are expected to meet their targets on time.

However, it has been observed in recent times, that most of the organizations have changed their structure from hierarchical to flat. Thus, it is possible that in near future, ASDA also changes its structure to a Flat structure. The main advantage of a Flat organization structure is that it gives all the employees equal chance to give their suggestions and feedbacks are taken are considered while taking the decision.

Thus, based on changes in the structure, it will become essential for the company to change their leadership style as well. Today, the company follows relation oriented leadership style, where managers share healthy relation with his or her subordinates. With flat organization, it would become essential for the organization to follow participative leadership style, where even the lower level of people are encouraged to bring their suggestions and these suggestions are used for making better decisions for the organization.

P 3.2 Compare the application of different motivational theories with special reference to ASDA’s employees as Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, Vroom expectancy theories and McGregor’s theory X and Y.  Which theory is most applicable and why?

Motivation is the driving force which gets the work done. The main role of any developing manager in any organization is to keep his team motivated. A motivated team performs better and delivers good output consistently. The performance of any team is not only dependent on the ability of the team, but motivation plays a big role too. If people continue to do same kind of work again and again, they reach a saturation point and started losing interest in work. At this point of time, it is the manager who needs to push and motivate his subordinates.

There have been many motivational theories that are practiced in various organizations. They are: Herzberg Dual factor theory, Mayo’s human relation theory, McGregor X and Y theory, Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs theory, Taylor’s scientific theory, Vroom’s Expectancy theory, Equity theory, etc.

Some of the theories that are adopted in ASDA are: Maslow’s hierarchy theory, Vroom’s Expectancy theory and Equity theory.

According to Maslow’s hierarchy theory, an individual is motivated to achieve an objective; once that objective is achieved the individual changes his goal and is motivated to achieve the next goal. Thus, Maslow gave a hierarchy diagram in which the lowest level was the basic needs, which motivates everyone to work. Once, a person is able to meet those needs, their objective changes to the next level of requirement are they are motivated to meet the next set of objectives (Hall, 1968).

According to Vroom’s Expectancy theory, employees are motivated if they see that their efforts are getting converted into desired rewards. Expectancy theory comprises of three things. Firstly, the management should be aware of what type of rewards keeps the employees motivated. Secondly, management should be aware of expectation of each employee which differs from person to person. Thirdly, management should assure the employee that their efforts will result in better rewards (Van Eerde, 1996).

According to Equity theory of motivation, people are motivated when they see that their efforts are fairly being converted into proper output. If the company does not follow a fair process or if an employee feels that the amount of input is more compared to the rewarded output, the person can be de-motivated.

P 3.3 Evaluate the usefulness of a motivational theory for managers. How could a theory like Hertzberg’s motivational theory be useful and relevant to the managers of ASDA?

Motivational theories are useful for any organization. An organization on most occasions follows multiple theories to understand the various factors that keep the workforce of the organization motivated. Earlier, organization use to think that the reward in terms of salary is enough to keep their workforce motivated. However, with passage of time, people realize that there are other factors such as security, respect, involvement in decision making, providing responsibilities, managing financial resources etc. that also affect the performance of the employees.

In a company like ASDA, which is second largest supermarket chain in UK, it is essential that the workforce feels that they are being valued inside an organization, which keeps them motivated. As discussed above, ASDA follows Vroom’s Expectancy theory. The managers are aware that there should be a proper process of measuring the efforts of each employee, only then proper rewards can be shared with them. Thus, a proper performance review system is followed in ASDA. This system is followed in almost all the companies in UK. Thus, managers’ sets up the goals for their employees and the results are compared with the goals and based on that rewards are distributed. This kind of system keeps the employees motivated and increases their efforts in order to meet their goals and get rewarded. According to Herzberg dual factor theory, there are some factors which keep the employees motivated and there are some factors whose presence may not motivate the employees but whose absence may result in demotivation. This theory make the management realize that some factors are just essential so that employees are not demotivated to do the work (Maidani, 1991).

Thus, it can be seen that motivational theories are highly useful to the managers and the management team inside any organization as it helps them realize the importance of various factors that are needed to be taken care of in order to have better and consistent performance from their workforce.

LO 4 – Understand mechanisms for developing effective teamwork in organizations

P 4.1 Explain the nature of the various groups that may exist among ASDA’s staff and how they may influence the behaviour of staff

A group is collection of people who work together to attain a common objective. Group behaviour is how a team or group behaves with each member of the team within the team. Group inside an organization can be classified as two types: Formal and Informal Groups. Formals Groups are generally formed by the leaders keeping in mind various skills that are required to do a particular job. On the other hand informal groups are formed by the employees themselves. Formal groups are more organized and compared to informal groups. It has been observed that working in a team leads to better results when compared to the sum of output of each individual inside the group working alone. ASDA faces the issues in group behaviour during the early phase of their merger with Wal-Mart. The main reason was because; a cordial relationship in a group can only be maintained when each individual working in the group has a common objective. Since, the merger means new set of rules and new set of objectives, this lead to initial problems and conflicts in the groups. However, the management of ASDA was proactive in identifying the employees with common skills and objectives, thus formed new formal groups which solved the problem of conflict and increased the relationship between the employees.

P 4.2 Discuss the factors that may promote or inhibit the development of effective teamwork among the employees of ASDA PLC

As discussed in ASDA, communication plays a vital role. Communication is one of the most important factors that contribute to have an effective teamwork. Leaders are specially trained so that they can connect with their team members in a better way. It is important for a leader to be proactive in understanding the problems of his team members, listening and helping or giving advice, helps in building good relationship and results in effective teamwork.

Another important factor that affects the teamwork is recognition and reward. The organization provides bonuses and salary hikes to those employees who have shown great results and good performance consistently. Money and rewards, always keeps the employees interested and motivated and thus, helps in developing an effective teamwork.

Leadership can be considered as the backbone for smooth and effective functioning of any team. A team without a captain or leader cannot function on its own. The leader is someone, who a team looks forward to, the leader keeps the team motivated, and the leader defines the goals and explains what is expected from each team member. Thus it is leader who defines the structure of a team. An un-organized team will result in chaos, confusion and insecurity, while a well-organized team will function to the best of its ability. Leader also brings the belief in the work which is very important to build trust among each other. In ASDA, leadership is considered as key element within the organization. The company follows Tiny Noticeable Things, which are being followed by the leaders, which help them improving their bond with the team. For example, the polite behaviour, helping the employees at the stores and get involved in the social events makes the employees feel more valued (Dionne, 2004).

P 4.3 Evaluate the impact of technology on team functioning within ASDA PLC

The recent advancements in the field of communication and information technology has been a contributing factor in impacting the proper functioning of the team within the organization. With the introduction of mobile phones and internet, it has become easy for employees to stay connected and help other employees during emergencies. However, these advancements also have their negative affects too. Since, these days’ computers have become prime source to store data and confidential information of an organization; these are subjected to various malicious threats such as virus and Trojan. Activities like phishing can lead to stealing of data or credentials which can be misused later. Mobile phones have become an easy source to communicate with each other, but too much use can lead to burden also. A person who is on vacation or away from work would not appreciate too much phone calls (Kumar, 2003).  Thus it can be seen that these advancements have contributed a lot in smooth and proper functioning of the team as they can interact more conveniently, but at the same time these technologies should be used wisely in order to make full use of it.

As we know, ASDA is a retail company who has many supermarket and stores across UK, it is important for managers to interact and keep track of day to day activities. Thus, ASDA follows an effective communication system, since it is not possible for managers to physically visit each store. Thus, with the coming up of new and improved technologies interaction in ASDA has increased a lot, which has improved the proper functioning of the team. The nomination process which is used by managers in ASDA to nominate employees who have shown great results, so that they can be rewarded is now done through an online process. The new recruitment process in ASDA also involves an online process, which has been made possible because of the new tools and software because of the development in the field of technology.


It can be concluded from the above report, that understanding organizational behaviour is an important aspect of management. The rules and regulations, the structure and the culture should be such that they complement each other, so that the company can perform better. It is important to have effective leaders in any organization that can motivate the team and defines their goals so that the team as a whole can work effectively. The report also bring out the importance of different organizational theories and motivational theory that acts as the theoretical aspect, which the management can refer in order to take better decision within the organization. The report has studied the organizational behaviour of the two companies and have shed light on the various aspects of both and also compared them to show that each organization has different structure, different culture and follows different approaches depending upon the main objective of the company.


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