London School Unit 3 organisations and Behaviour

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Lo 1: Understand the Relationship between Organisational Structure and Culture

Q1.1: Compare and contrast KBR’s organisational structure and culture to that of a similar organisation.

The structure followed by KBR is that of combination of functional and hierarchical structure. Matrix structure is quite complex structure, that has the traits of functional structure, where the divisions amid the teams is based on the work performed by them, and line and staff structure that has its basis in the equation of hierarchy and role and responsibility. In this structure, tasks to each member of the team are assigned by the manager with respect to their proficiency as well as the roles and responsibilities shared by the team members. (BALIGH, Helmy H., 2006)

The culture followed by KBR compliments the organisational structure followed by it, which is the hierarchical culture. In Hierarchy culture, also referred to as the control culture, the environment is controlled and structured. This organisational environment is concerned about taking correct measures at the first instance. The culture of such organizations is based on the principle of efficiency and stability achievement. Such culture is distinguished with the trait of a structured and formal place of work with working principles as well as maintaining the recognition of the thin line amid the correct and incorrect action. There are set standards in place and the employees are require to live up to these standards (PFISTER, Jan A., 2009 )

Q 1.2: Explain how KBR’s organisational structure and culture affects the performance of the business.FLR is an organization similar to that of KBR and FLR pursues a matrix structure the organizational culture of FLR is a blend of market oriented culture and hierarchical culture as compared with KBR that has the same organisational structure but more of a culture that is hierarchical.

The way that the KBR’s organisational structure and culture impact business performance are as follows: (BALIGH, Helmy H., 2006)

The company follows the matrix structure and thus permits supervisors to pay attention on their expertise area. The functional supervisors pay attention to train, hire, as well as manage employees and the supervisors of the project could focus on achievement of their goals and objectives. In this kind of structure, employee placement in functional areas helps them in specialising in a specific domain. Rather than mastering all kinds of tasks, proficient employees might gain excellence at tasks in their focus field. (Guzman, 2010) In such matrix structure, there is effective communication, and it allows for the flexibility of human resources for being shared.

The hierarchy culture that KBR represents provides the organization with clear structure and people know who they have to report to and who would report them. Decisions making by the superiors.

The structure and culture of KBR is quite strong. It leads to promotion of understanding amongst the resources of the organization. A strong culture and structure of an organisation encourages understanding among the different organisational resources in the organization. These resources might be technological resources or human resources.

Q1.3: Give examples and discuss factors that influence individual behaviour at work.

Answer: The behaviour at workplace is always required to be professional. Professionalism is a precondition in a work environment notwithstanding the kind and type of work. For demonstration of professionalism, employees should behave positively and keep away from negativity. The various behavioural traits include interpersonal behaviour, integrity, answerability, quality oriented, being fair, and being a learner.

Several diverse factors influence the individual’s behaviour at workplace. Two of these are:

Culture of Work – It is important that the work culture in an office should be convenient and comfortable for the employees. There should be standard rules and regulations, and no bias should be demonstrated for an individual or group of individuals.

Job Responsibilities – The employees should perform to the best possible extent. There should be no burden imposed by the bosses on the employees. Encouragement must be provided time and again for upgrading the skills of the employees.

Effective Communication – There should be effective communication system in the organisation. The employees must not feel that they are not considered and there must be transparency in the organisation. People should be aware of what they should know about the organization.

Relationship at Work – If the employees experience friendly and comfortable relationship with other employees a healthy environment is created, which promotes positive behaviour in the organisation. (Richards, 2010)

Lo 2: Understand Different Approaches to Management and Leadership

Q 2.1: Using the case study provided, identify which leadership style is used by KBR and compare the effectiveness of KBR’s leadership style to a similar organisation.

Answer: As demonstrated in the case, the leadership style that KBR implements is the task oriented. For example, in KBR, Jamie performs several jobs on refurbishment schemes and the job role variety and freedom in decision making attracted him to the job. Jamie has the permission of identifying and solving issues, but should just get the job right. This also shows the task oriented leadership, where all kinds of liberties are provided but tasks are to be definitely achieved. The asset manager, David Gubby gets motivation by his capability of making a job difference. “He brings not only technical competence but strong communication skills and enthusiasm to the role.”(The Times 100, 2013) Dan Webb is an experienced engineer, who has “worked in facilities management and project planning. He served with the Royal Navy. For Dan, it was the chance to help shape a young business environment and instigate change that attracted him to the job. The more challenging and stretching the task, the more Dan responds. These are personal qualities highly valued in the business.” (The Times 100, 2013)

The leadership style that is experienced In FLR is that of democratic/participative leadership. Here the members of the team are involved in the process of decision making and provide them with an opportunity of taking part in the process of decision making in the organisation. By implementing this type of leadership style, there is development in employee’s skills and there is increase in the job satisfaction in them. (Hobson, 2010)

While the task oriented leadership is directed towards achievement of task and provides the associated liberty in the job, the participative leadership is directed more on the satisfaction and motivation of the employees. The common factor in both of these kinds of leadership style is that they both are directed towards task effectiveness and people involvement, which is a requirement for organisational success.

Q 2.2: Explain how organisational theory including the work of F.W. Taylor underpins management practice.

Answer: Organizational theory is put to use in several facets of a business concern. A lot of people make attempts for abiding by the theory for helping them to enhance their job performance or turning them to be more successful. This might frequently cause sacrifice of certain personal principles owned by them. (SHELDRAKE, John, 2003)

Scientific management is also referred to as Taylorism, which is a management theory, which conducts analysis of work flows for improving the economic efficiency, particularly the productivity of labour. This theory of management has been framed by Frederick Winslow Taylor. In the 1880s and 1890s, this theory dominated the manufacturing industries. Significant elements of scientific management entail analysis, logic, synthesis, empiricism, rationality, efficiency, work ethic, and waste elimination and consistent best practices. (Crossman, 2010)

An example will help in explaining the context better. In case of  managing financial resource , there is an employee or a manager who would like to know the manner that the goals can be achieved through a set structure in place. Additionally, a human resource executive would be required to arrive at decisions in working day, which would unquestionably alter the practice and structure of all employees’ working day. In case a person keeps himself occupied in attempting to understand what should be their role in organizational theory terms, they might not pay attention to other business areas. In the same manner, the management theories give strength to the employees’ personal values. For instance, they might be in disagreement with the rule or a regulation, which are presented by the organization, nevertheless, to perform the job of a managerial post, i8n a professional manner, they are required to forego the principles and take up job execution.

It is quite difficult for putting both organizational and management theories into effect as a psychological contract amid employer and the employees. It is required to be taken into consideration the effectiveness of the organization in maintenance of the employees as well as the efficiency with which the employees behave in the organisation and check if the employees are actually putting their full effort in the work.

Q2.3: Evaluate different approaches to management used by KBR and one of its competitors.

Answer: The different management approached used by KBR are (SHELDRAKE, John, 2003)

Cultivating – The cultivation approach used by KBR is based on utilisation of existing skills that exist in the employees for successful participation by the employees. The examples of such approach can be seen in the behaviour and background of some of the people in the management. Since Jamie, who carries out a variety of jobs on refurbishment scheme is provided with the freedom to make their own judgment on the basis of knowledge and confidence possessed by him. (The Times 100, 2013)

Active Listening - The active listening approach to management is quite fundamental and is undertaken for allowing fast reactions to the issues of the present day. This kind of an approach is useful for introducing the process of engagement. They can also make the understanding models available for the existing tenor of conversation and bring in the compilation of the significant background information. In case of KBR, there is effective communication skill possessed by David Gubby is an Assets Manager, who performs the task with enthusiasm. (The Times 100, 2013)

Steering - This approach includes the elements of the participatory designs which sets into the anticipated community of the stakeholders. The approaches of the steering management have a tendency of being driven by the agency. Effective steering needs preparation for the purpose of development of the engagement processes in a well detailed manner.

The management approach of FLR is a mix. The company has also developed its own approaches, such as, accepting the change and considering it as good rather than being apprehensive about it, leading the company but avoid its over-management, hiring and developing managers who can excite, control, and energize, and being focused and consistent. The similarity between the approaches of FLR and KBR is mainly in the effective hiring of the mangers, which ultimately results in a better overall environment, as driven by these managers.

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Lo3: Understand Ways Of Using Motivational Theories In Organizations

Q3.1: Discuss the impact that different leadership styles may have on motivation in KBR and on one of its competitors during an economic depression

Answer: Different styles of leadership might impact the organizational structure in KBR in change periods. In the times of depression, the autocratic leadership and the bureaucratic would add to the de-motivation of the employees, the democratic leadership and the laissez-faire leadership will contribute towards employee motivation in the KBR.

Task-Oriented Leadership: - The main motive is the achievement of the task by the company’s management. If such leadership is used at the time of depression it may lead to de-motivation amid the employees because in those instances the employees would want to feel associated and need to feel secured in relation to the job.

Laissez-faire Leadership: - Laissez-faire leadership is also called a delegative leadership. In this kind of leadership, leaders are hands-off and permit the members of the group for making decisions. It has been found by the researchers that this style of leadership leads to the lowest productivity among group members. (NORTHOUSE, Peter G., 2012) However, if this leadership style is used at the time of depression, the motivation level of the employees would increase as they will feel empowered.

In comparing these leadership styles with FLR’s style of leadership, which is democratic or participative style of leadership, styles. FLR follows more of Democratic leadership where employees are have the liberty for taking decisions. This will also bring motivation to the employees.

Q3.2: Compare the application of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to Hertzberg’s hygiene and motivational factors within the workplace.

Answer: The application of various motivational theories in the workplace is as below: (SHELDRAKE, John, 2003)

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs - As per humanist psychologist Abraham Maslow, the actions get motivation so as to attain some needs. This theory states that motivation emerges from the diverse groups of needs that include physiological needs, self-actualization needs, esteem needs, social needs, and safety needs. (Cherry, 2014) The hierarchy of needs suggested by him signifies that people get motivation of fulfilling fundamental needs before attempting to accomplish other advanced needs. With the people progressing up the pyramid, the needs turn out to be ever more social and psychological. Shortly, the need for friendship, love, and intimacy gain significance. Moving up the pyramid, the esteem need as well as accomplishment feelings come on top. Maslow puts stress on the self-actualization’s importance that refers to the procedure of developing and growing as a person for achieving individual potential. (McLeod, 2007)

Herzberg’s two-factor theory – As per this theory, he elements motivating the people might alter in the lifespan, however, at any point in time, personal respect is among the top motivating factor. Dissatisfaction and satisfaction are not in a relationship where one diminishes, another one increases, and both of these factors are independent phenomena. For ensuring a productive and satisfied workforce, both aspects of job should be given due care. This is represented in terms of hygiene factors, which have the base on business need for avoiding work unpleasantness. In case such factors are considered by employees as improper, work dissatisfaction may be caused. Motivation factors have the base on the need of individual for personal growth. At the time that they are present, job satisfaction is created. When effective, these factors can bring motivation to an individual for achieving above-average effort and performance. (Riley, 2012)

Comparison – The Maslow’s theory is descriptive, while Herzberg’s theory is prescriptive in nature. In contrast to the Maslow’s theory, there is no hierarchy present in the Herzberg theory. In terms of similarity, both of these theories are based on the notion that behaviour is affected by special needs.

Q3.3: Evaluate how useful motivational theory is for managers in the 21st Century.

Answer: Motivational theories are quite useful for managers in the 21st century, with fast growing pace of businesses. These theories assist in defining the way that the organisational resources get motivation for performing in the manner that has been put in place for them. Motivation is an art for revitalizing the employees’ skill sets and hence augments their work effectiveness. (SHELDRAKE, John, 2003)

The usefulness of the theories can be understood with respect to the two theories

Considering Maslow’s Need Hierarchy theory, every employee in the team and in the organization has different needs and it is only one the need is satisfied that the employee gets motivated and thereby performs better. (Alfonso, 2010 Each employee stands at a different need level. The employee gets motivation, when these needs are satisfied. For example: - In case there is an employee on probation or has been hired for a temporary job, the need of the employee is that of security. If the employee is provided with confirmation on job or is provide a permanent job by the manger, the employee will be motivated.Usefulness of Maslow’s Need Hierarchy theory:-

Usefulness of Herzberg’s two factor theory for the managers

In this theory, the motivators as well as hygiene factors are considered. This theory would help the managers to identify the general factors that motivate the employees. While some factors are in control of managers, some are out of management’s control. The model presented by Herzberg can be utilized for identifying wider concerns, which are required to be mitigated or addressed in general. Taking the example of job insecurity, the management might make an attempt for mitigating the de-motivational effect through means of reassurance to employees and open communication. (Riley, 2012).

Lo4: Understand Mechanisms for Developing Effective Teamwork In Organizations

Q 4.1: Explain the nature of groups and group behaviour within KBR and one of its competitors.

Answer: A group refers to an assemblage of people that are associated or gathered together. It is the basic of life in a community. A group’s size might range from two to infinite number of people. In the business activities, groups are a faction, which come together for achieving a particular task. (GROSS, Julian, 2009) The classification of groups could be affected basis their purpose or structure. Therefore, to kinds of group exist, primary and secondary groups and planned and emergent groups.

"Group dynamics" refers to the impact of the diverse behaviours that people represent in a group, on other members of the group, as well as the group as a whole. It is easy to trace a group that has positive dynamic. In this kind of a group, the members in a tem have trust on one another, work for the achievement of collective goal, and own accountability for their work. With positive dynamic in a team the members of the group are double in creativity as compared with the members of an average group. A group that has poor group dynamics, the behaviour of people disrupts work. Consequently, the group might not arrive at any decision, or incorrect choice might be made by the group since members of the group may not have been able to explore options effectively. (Manktelow, 2013)

The group dynamics in KBR is a positive one where people have been working together with positivity and directed towards the common goal. Fluor Corporation is competing well with KBR; however, it loses out on group dynamics at times. Here have been instances of FLR representing issues amid the people in the management and the board of directors, which represent poor group dynamism.

Q 4.2: Discuss factors that may promote or inhibit effective teamwork within KBR and one of its competitors.

Some of the factors which promote or inhibit the effective teamwork are:

Training – Appropriate groundwork is required for instilling a sense of teamwork in the employees. In absence of good training, he employees would lack enthusiasm towards work and hence would be unable to work in a team effectively. The teamwork values are required to be set in the very beginning.

Delegation – Every team member should be aware of his/her responsibility. In case of improper delegation, there might emerge conflict among the members of the team. However, if there is distinction in the roles, each member contributes his share of work and present effective teamwork.

Patience – Some of the employees have more skills than others, while some input more of hard work. It is important that at no instance, a member in the team loses patience as this might lead to no teamwork.

Reinforcement – It is important that the team meetings are conducted regularly so as to understand the thoughts and ideas of the members in a team. Not having team meetings can lead to communication gap, which leads to confusions, clashes and hence bad teamwork. (Wolski, 2010)

References

GROSS, Julian. 2009. Dimensions of Organisation Development. Western Australia: Wordclay. PFISTER, Jan A. 2009. Managing Organizational Culture for Effective Internal Control: From Practice to Theory. London: SpringerBALIGH, Helmy H. 2006. Organization Structures: Theory and Design, Analysis and Prescription. USA: Springer.KBR. (2014). Available at: http://www.kbrbuildinggroup.com/kbr_overview.asp.The Times 100 (1995-2013) Roles and Responsibilities within an organisational structure.

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