Case Study

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1. As you study Henry's problem, think about what you would advise Henry to do.

I would advise Henry to assess the reasons why the supervisors are requesting transfers to other stores. Although Henry does offer his supervisors a pay incentive plan that provides financial rewards to employees who cut cost and increases sales, he does not take the time to communicate with his employees to find out if they have the tools that they need to perform their jobs effectively. Henry should meet with his supervisors once he discovers where he missed the mark. He will then be better prepared to improve his communication methods with his staff of supervisors. Once he makes this necessary change this could mean a world of difference in regaining the trust of his supervisors as this will display to them that he is listening and recognizes that there is in fact a problem and that he intends to right his wrong.

2. What does Henry need to know about communication competency?

Henry needs a basic understanding of communication competency, at the minimum. This would be the least amount required for someone in his position. It would be preferable that a manager have an extensive amount of experience in communication competency, but at the minimum, Henry should be able to effectively communicate with his peers and subordinates, including the two managers. In this scenario, Henry has not taken any proactive stand at any time to actually communicate with the managers under his supervision.

3. Discuss the relationship between communication and motivation. There is a strong relationship between communication and motivation. In order for employees and managers to both become and stay motivated, communication is essential. When there is an active dialogue between managers and subordinates, it provides motivation because the employees/managers are aware of exactly what is expected of them, and the lines of communication are open. Employees that know that the lines of communication are open are more likely to make use of the communication process by discussing grievances and other issues with their supervisor.

4. Directly reference the theories of motivation you have learned about in this unit. The rewards theory is predominantly used in this scenario. Henry is using a pay incentive program to reward the supervisors for cutting expenses and/or for increasing sales. By doing so, he is rewarding based on the actions of the supervisors and their ability to accomplish the goals that lead to greater pay through the pay incentive program.

According to the Rewards Theory, the actions of the supervisors will continue as long as they are receiving pay incentives which act as a reward for their actions. If Henry ends the pay incentive program, the supervisors will have less motivation to reduce expenses and increase sales, which will likely lead to a decrease in supervisor performance in these areas.

The Social Information Process Theory is also predominant in this scenario. This theory is based upon the premise that people's needs and attitudes are determined by the information available to them at any given time. This can be applied in regards to Henry and the supervisors, each from their own standpoint. Henry has a lack of information as to why the supervisors are requesting transfers. Although it can be reasonably assumed that they are requesting transfers due to a complete lack of communication from Henry, he is unaware of the specific reasons.

The supervisors are not receiving information from Henry. His contact with his subordinates is very limited, or so it appears so based on the details of the case. This has created a condition where the lack of feedback and information given by Henry to the supervisors has created attitudes in the supervisors based on the lack of communication, which is a detrimental aspect of the relationship between Henry and the supervisors.

5. Relate the case to the following ten...
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