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ORGANISATIONAL BEHAVIOUR

MBA –HUMAN RESOURCES MANGEMENT

GROUP PRESENTATION

ON

ORGANISATIONAL BEHAVIOUR

CASE STUDY ON CONSUMER MATERIALS ENTERPRISES INC.

Course Module: MCP 2134

By

Alpha Group
Roycelan Sallay - 409081906
Rohana Wijesooriiya - 109081718
Ruwan Kannangara - 109081802
Anura Pieris - 509081929
Gamini Rajapakse - 609081924

This group assignment was submitted to the Open University of


Sri Lanka in partial fulfillment of requirement for the MBA in
Human Resource Management
Table of Contents

ORGANISATIONAL BEHAVIOUR..............................................................................i
CASE STUDY ON CONSUMER MATERIALS ENTERPRISES INC.........................i
Course Module: MCP 2134..............................................................................................i
1.0 Introduction..........................................................................................................................1
2.0 Q1 - The main problem identified ...................................................................................2
3.0 Q2 - Casual Factors contributed to the core problem.........................................................3
4.0 Q3 - Proposed solutions to improve the prevailing culture...............................................5

11
5.0 Recommendations.............................................................................................................12
6.0 References..........................................................................................................................13

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1.0 Introduction

Consummate Material Enterprises Inc (Consummate Corporation) is a large manufacturing


organization consists of different departments. They are two major depts. have been identified as
manufacturing unit and refilling unit.

Manufacturing Unit Refill Packaging Unit (RPU)


• Manufacturing of the product • Performs packaging operations
• Need high skill levels • Involved manual work
• Sophisticated operation • No big impact on profits
• Has carrier prospects • Unskilled entry level positions
• Accommodate promising employees • Comparatively high turnover
from RPU • Less carrier prospects
• Profit generating unit • Considered as one of the units
with lowest importance & status

Refill Packaging Unit was run by David Gold & he was under the impression that his staff is a
happy family. But to his much dismay, a new entrant has revealed him that tension among
employees is high & disagreements / misunderstandings / conflicts prevail among them.

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2.0 Q1 - The main problem identified

The main problem observed is that there is no dominant culture infiltrated throughout the
organization and consequently members are confined to different sub cultures.
Due to this, employee satisfaction was noted low, especially in refill & packaging dept.
Following factors were considered as contributory factors.

2.1 Lack of commitment from the top management to create a core culture.
Early in his career David Gold was in an attempt to shape things up in their unit with the help of
other supervisors, forwarded a 14 - point proposal to the higher management. These were turned
down and he was asked to become more understanding of the people. So, David Gold never had
the opportunity to improve the existing culture. This clearly highlights the fact that higher
management did not encouraged to develop a dominant culture across the organization.

2.2 Lack of recognition


Refill packaging unit was looked upon by other depts and their recognition within the
organization was low. This was substantiated with the use of unskilled labour in the dept, no
career path for the operatives, low importance of the nature of work carried out, low contribution
to the profit margin made by the refilling dept etc. This wouldn’t have been prevailed, had the
higher management maintained a dominant culture across the whole organization. Presently all
employees treat this as a less important department & consider only as an entry point to the other
high ranking departments.

2.3 Lack of communication


In the RPU, it was clearly visible that poor communication prevailed among supervisors, inter-
shifts and even among crew chiefs. Huge amount of memos were circulated between different
shifts/groups which wouldn’t have communicated the actual message. This could have led to
different individual perceptions rather than the core of the communication. It is evident that face
to face communication was poorly practiced, hope fully between first shift and second shift.
Consequently groups tend to perform independently on their own with out paying any attention
to organizational requirements/goals/objectives.

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3.0 Q2 - Casual Factors contributed to the core
problem

In search of contributory factors to the core problem following points can be highlighted.
• Supervisors felt that they are powerless. This was prominent when they perceive
Company`s reluctance to get rid of low-performing employees. Employee Association
seems to be dominating on certain managerial decisions.

• It was found that Supervisors were frustrated due to the fact that operators used to
receive the monthly earnings much more than supervisors. In fact operators used to
perform huge amount of overtime in order to cover absenteeism and other operational
lapses. This shows that the dept is poorly organized and absenteeism was not duly
addressed.

• It was identified that supervisors have their own supervisory, leadership styles. Since
they had different leadership styles, employees tend to over look the organizational
requirements/ rules or the culture.

• There was no rotation in the working shift rosters. Employees are permanently tied to a
particular shift. This would lead to health issues and creation of sub cultures. Propinquity
would lead to formation of informal groups which influence/undercut the productivity.

• There was no inter-dependency among depts. and shifts. Therefore this will lead to a
decline in the productivity. As an example, it was observed that the general supervisors
are present for more than two hours on each day of the second shift in order to over lap
production process. But in the case of third shift, overlapping between the shifts had not
occurred. As per the case study there had been a problem in coordination between
maintenance and the production supervisors. They were not communicating with each
other what they were doing and what they had done in their respective shifts and across
the shifts.

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• Supervisors could not take any disciplinary action when employees indulge in
misconducts. Typical example was that Kathy Flamme could not proceed with any
disciplinary action when an employee found stealing refills. It is evident that there is no
mechanism in proving such misconducts causing much dissatisfaction among
supervisors.

• Most of the supervisors are tunnel versioned. – Supervisors were not encouraged to take
initiatives; they were doing only the assigned jobs. It was apparently a circular-self-
defeating cycle.

• Planning seems to be poor as production stoppages can be found during the shifts to
conduct meetings. No proper time table was available with scheduled breaks or intervals.
This could directly affect the production targets. Different practices by different groups
of supervisors would lead to employee dissatisfaction. These practices implies that the
lack of accepted culture among employees.

• No induction or orientation was available for new recruits. – Refill unit was considered
as an entry point for employees including supervisors. No proper induction on company
policies, procedures, practices, management requirements imparted to them. Because of
this new entrants do not perceive the organization’s objectives, mission and vision. They
will automatically entertain their own perceptions regarding work practices within the
department.

• Refill dept was filled with assumptions & perceptions. - It was noted that lots of
uncontested assumptions circulating about people on different shifts. These were never
tested & observations confirmed prejudices about one another. This situation led to
misunderstanding, unfriendly atmosphere & friction between shifts / production lines
within the working environment. This was evident from the discussions referring to the
‘early departure of some people in certain shifts’.

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4.0 Q3 - Proposed solutions to improve the prevailing culture

What is a culture?
“A pattern of basic assumptions- invented, discovered or developed by a given group as it learns
to cope with its problems of external adaptation and internal integration that has worked well
enough to be considered valid, and therefore, to be taught to new members as the correct way to
perceive, think and feel in relation to those problems” (Edgar Schein)

“A set of values, often taken for granted, that help people in an organization understand which
actions are considered acceptable and which are considered unacceptable. Often these values
are communicated through stories and other symbolic means” (Moorhead and Griffin)

Above two definitions would help to identify the conceptual frame work to address the solutions
to the prevailing situation within the refill dept and the overall organization.

Why we need a Culture?


As per the definition it is a set of values maintained by all the members, who are a happy family,
in achieving the goals of the organization. Therefore, the existence of a core culture for the
survival of an organization in the present day market place is of paramount importance.
This is true for the ‘Consummate Corporation’ as well.

A Change in Culture is required


After evaluating the existing situation, it is felt that a culture change is required in the
organization. Present culture is not up to the satisfaction of the employees & the goals of the
organization. A culture change is only possible with the commitment of the top management of
the organization. As guidelines following points can be followed in considering a culture change.
• Assess the current culture
• Set realistic goals that impact on the bottom line
• Recruit new with work experience, so that they will be able to interact well with the
organizational personnel

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• Make changes from Top to Bottom, to deliver a consistent massage
• Include employees in culture change process
• Take them out of the previous culture by all relevant previous trappings
• Expect problems
• Move quickly & decisively. Diffuse resistance to new culture.
• Stay the course by being persistent.
Source: Fred Luthans – 11th Edition-2008

Determinants of Organization Culture

Societal
Culture

Organizational Organization
Leadership Culture

Technology
Organization
Structure

What Organization Design can be considered?


Modern organizations are discouraging the old day, traditional, vertical structures. New concepts
such as Horizontal, Network & Virtual Organizations are coming into picture now-a-days.
Horizontal structure seems to be more suitable for ‘Consummate Corporation’ with following
benefits.

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• Assess the current culture
• Organization revolves around the process not the task.
• Flatter Hierarchy.
• Teams manage every thing
• Teams’ performances were rewarded
• Employees need to be trained.
Although, the existing structure of the refill packaging dept seems to be horizontal, still the
characteristics of the horizontal design is not apparently practiced. Further it was noted that
below the level of supervisors, the existence of ‘crew chief layer’ is questioned.
The latest information technology and the globalization promote the horizontal structure as it
would facilitate corporation and team work.
Source: Fred Luthans – 11th Edition-2008

As identified earlier, the communication across the dept is low. As an example, they have taken
memos as a remedy to address lack of communication. Still the inter-departmental dependency
is questionable. A particular shift employee may not know what happened in the previous shift
and they may have to purely depend on the memos from the earlier shift. If the above
highlighted characteristics of horizontal structure can be introduced, it is positive that total
organizational culture can be changed accordingly. This would help to improve the
communication gap.

With the implementation of horizontal organizational structure, it will create a path to establish
an approach towards ‘achievement culture’. It will assist the organization to drive the business
towards the mission through the set objectives.
• Mission driven
• Low power distance
• Flexible roles
• High change and adaptation.
• Open communication.

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Though the approach of achievement culture, the dominant values like customer orientation,
shared vision, mutual cooperation, merit – based rewarding, team work, collective learning,
experimentation and innovation have been addressed on priority and create the interest of the
employees to achieve sustainable competitive capability.

How Learning Organization Theory can help ‘Consummate Corporation’


‘Generative learning’ now encompasses ‘Adaptive learning’ which involves the creativity &
innovation and goes beyond the adaptation to the environment. Three main characteristics can be
identified in Learning Organizations.
• Presence of Tension to learn, by identifying the ‘gap between the vision & the actual’.
This can be done by continually questioning, challenging the status quo
• Systems thinking in ‘shared vision of employees’ & maintaining ‘openness to new ideas
and to the external environment’.
• A culture conducive to Learning. Organization place more emphasis on learning &
move forward by setting mechanisms for suggestions, teams, empowerment & most
importantly the empathy.

With above Consummate Corporation can look into below aspects in their system changes.
• Develop a systematic thinking among supervisors / group leaders so that to see the
connection among issues, events, and data as a whole, not as individual events.
• This will help to identify the source of the conflict & redirect employee energies towards
solving the root causes rather that finding personal disagreements or clashes. Use of
collaborative learning & diverse viewpoints of personnel can be used in resolving
conflicts.
• Supervisors / Managers can look for inter-functional team work removing artificial
barriers between function areas and between lines & staff.
• The role of the manager / supervisor / leader, as applicable, is to build shared vision,
empowering of the people & allowing making effective decisions.

How Cognitive Theory helps the Consummate Corporation

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When the incentives are paid as an appreciation of the services or the performances, productivity
of the organization goes up. As per the cognitive theory of learning organizations, we can
propose that even in ‘Refill Unit’ how they can frame an incentive scheme based on the
productivity. This will enable the refill dept to implement the sectional targets. An incentive
scheme can then be developed on this.

How to address ‘Lack of recognition’ in Consummate Corporation.


Job empowerment – This is one of the concepts that can be adapted to empower the supervisors
those who are with tunnel vision. All the employees can be provided with job descriptions. This
will help to create a base for performance evaluation system. Based on their job descriptions,
they can be evaluated against their performance. This helps to identify the best performers and
system can be framed to reward them. This will open a door for new rewarding culture and
employees tend to feel that they have been recognized. This would be a turning point of the
organization culture.

In addition to above, re- group the shifts and the operators those who have been in the same shift
for long run. This shuffling can equally be applicable for the Senior Supervisors. It is proposed
to re-designate the existing senior supervisors, as Shift Executives so that that they will feel as
recognized.

Participative Culture - It is proposed to consult & get participation of senior supervisors in


formulation of disciplinary procedures, policies & grievance handling. This will make them feel
that they are a part & parcel of the organization & felt as recognized. This will ease the
implementation of policies & expected participative culture. Further in floor level employees can
be encouraged to participative approach by introducing ‘suggestion schemes’ – Eg: suggestion
boxes, Kyzen etc.

In fact the rewarding system can be introduced based on the scores of the suggestions forwarded
by the employees. Successor’s names and photographs can be displayed for the publicity across
the company. Welfare events, such as staff trips, sports activities will help a lot to improve the
inter-departmental and inter-shift understanding and the relationship.

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Proper socialization program. - It is noted that RPU has been considered as a place for all new
entrants and ‘unskilled’ sort of a work environment. All the non performers and new entrants
have been pumping in to this dept, and the best will be transferred to other depts. The total
culture of the department ( ‘losers’), cultivated around this assumption and the perception . They
have been neglected and no proper guide lines of employments were identified. As a remedy to
enhance the awareness and the adoptability to expected participative culture, it is proposed to
arrange a proper socialization process.

Initially all the employees must be given induction training which include , awareness of
disciplinary procedure, the grievance handling procedures, rules & regulations which govern the
employment and the norms and values which govern the expected organization culture. The
vision, mission and the objectives of the organization need to be conveyed with clearly. All the
new employees need to be distributed with job descriptions, specifying the task. Basically this
socialization process will give some recognition for the new comers.

Further, organization will find it easy to approach the expected cultural change across the
organization.
• The possible approaches identified through types of cultures.
Power culture - Which have few rules and little bureaucracy. Swift decision can be
ensured. It was highlighted that supervisors were powerless and shop floor employees
were doing whatever they like. In power Culture this could be avoided.

Task culture – Teams are formed to solve particular problem. Power derives from
expertise as long as a team requires expertise. It is mostly the small team approach, where
highly skilled and specialist in their own markets of experience is involved. In RPC the
team work is happened to be seriously neglected. In this sense task culture can be helped
a lot, if it can be implemented gradually across the dept.

Leadership enriched culture – It is seen that most of the employees of refill packaging
unit were frustrated with the employment and unsatisfied with existing values. With the

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new approach people view the organization as an extension of themselves; they may feel
good about what they personally achieve through the organization and contribute
exceptional cooperation. Individual goals are aligned with the goals of the organization
and people will carry out what it takes to make things happen. As a group, the
organization is more like a family providing personal fulfillment which often transcends
ego, so people are consistently bringing out the best in each other.

In this culture there are few disadvantages as well. Especially leaders do not tend to
develop followers, but develop others. This needs to be addressed effectively. With this
cultural approach, RPC can develop their crew chiefs to the level of supervisors and
supervisors can be developed to an Executive level.

Finally in the absence of departmental-in-charge and leaders, others will automatically


get trained to take the responsibility & the owner ship. In the organizational context it
will be an open path for succession planning process.

Maintaining the Culture

It is also important how Consummate Corporation will maintain its new culture. ‘Socialization’
is a well recognized concept in this arena. Several important elements are in socialization & it
has proved to be successful in many successful organizations.
• Careful selection process for entry level
• Place entrants in wok verify they answer positively to the norms of the organization
• Intense training in various depts., preferably as job training
• Measuring & Rewarding process
• Sticking to important values of the organization
• Confidence building through the stories & folklore
• Recognition & Promotion.

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5.0 Recommendations
Considering the above theoretical review on RPU’s organizational practices, few proposals can
be forwarded for the consideration of the management.

• Introduction of Cross Functional Teams to RPU, in increase the productivity. Teams


have to be selected carefully, so that it consists of a good blend of knowledge & skills.

• As long term solutions, in addition to the culture changes or improvements,


Automation of the Refill & Packaging Unit can be considered. It is possible to review
the process & automate certain activities so that ‘low-spirit activities’ are omitted.
Employees may also feel that they carry out an important role in the process & consider
them as a part of the organization. They may feel that they are recognized.

• It is also prudent to review the possibility of out-sourcing all the activities which are
considered to be ‘low skilled operations’. So that nobody would feel they belong to a
lower grade, with less work reputation in comparison to others.

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6.0 References
Fred Luthans (2008), Organizational Behavior, 11th Edition by McGrawHill, New Delhi.

Stephen P. Robins, (2003) Organisational Behaviour, Tenth Edition, Prentice Hall of India
Private Ltd.

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