Unit 12 Organisational Behaviour

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The aim of this unit is to develop a student’s understanding of the influence culture, politics and power have on the behaviour of others in an organisational context. Students will be in a position to apply the principles of organisational behaviour to a variety of business situations.On successful completion of this unit students will have an understanding and awareness of key influences which affect the behaviour of individuals, teams and organisations as a whole. They will be able to use this knowledge to make an immediate and positive contribution in the workplace, whether that role is as part of a team or as a team leader. This will be achieved through a strong appreciation of working in a team, having a more profound perspective of what makes people and organisations do what they do, and how to adjust one’s own behaviour to reflect the circumstances and situation.

Learning outcomes

LO1 Analyse the influence of culture, politics and power on the behaviour of others in an organisational context

Influence of culture:

  • Classifications of culture (power, role, task and person).
  • The importance of cultural-difference awareness.
  • Hofstede’s dimensions of culture theory and application.
  • The rise of globalisation and digital technology and how they have influenced and shaped organisational culture in the 21st century.
  • Principles of Network theory and Systems theory as frameworks to understand organisations.
  • Organisational psychology.

Influence of politics:

  • Organisational politics and differentiation between personal, decisional, structural and organisational change.

Influence of power:

  • Power as a property viewpoint: individual, relationships and embedded in structures.
  • Bases and types of power, power controls and power sources.

LO2 Evaluate how to motivate individuals and teams to achieve a goal

Motivational theories:

  • Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation.
  • Motivational theorists and theories: content theories (Maslow, Herzberg and Alderfer) and process theories (Vroom, Adams, Latham and Locke).
  • The implications of motivational theory on management and leadership within organisations.

Behavioural psychology:

  • Definition of emotional intelligence and the importance of soft skills for managers and teams.
  • Task vs relationship leadership and psychodynamic approach to behaviour.

LO3 Demonstrate an understanding of how to cooperate effectively with others

Different types of organisational teams:

  • Including functional, problem-solving, project teams.
  • The impact of technology on organisational teams: the role of virtual team development and networking.

Team dynamics and teamwork:

  • Definitions of the terms group and team, and the differences.
  • Tuckman’s Team Development model and the impact of development stages on individual development.
  • Belbin’s typology for managing effective teams and considering roles and skills required for effective teams.
  • Soft and hard communication, co-operation and competition.
  • Benefits and risks of teams.
  • Conflict resolution.

LO4 Apply concepts and philosophies of organisational behaviour to a given business situation

Concepts and philosophy:

  • Path-goal theory leadership styles that improve team performance and productivity.
  • Contemporary barriers to effective behaviour, situational resistance, social capital theory and contingency theory.


  • ARCHER, D. and CAMERON, A. (2013) Collaborative Leadership; Building Relationships, Handling Conflict and Sharing Control. 2nd Ed. London: Routledge.
  • BY, R.T. and BURNES, B. (2013) Organizational Change, Leadership and Ethics: Leading Organisations Towards Sustainability. London: Routledge.

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