Individual Integrative Paper

Topics: United States Army, Posttraumatic stress disorder, Soldier Pages: 9 (3770 words) Published: March 24, 2013
Every organization has an organizational behavior that varies from industry to industry. The United States Army is a unique organization that requires a closer look to determine how traditional organizational behavior is applicable. This paper provides an integrative approach to tying three organizational topics to the Army work environment. The first topic discussed is the consequences of distress. Each individual responds to stressful situations differently and the result is either eustress or distress. Individuals in the Army face three major types of distress and this paper examines how the Army overcomes them. The next topic of organizational behavior is changing organizational culture. As the world constantly evolves by becoming more culturally diverse, the workplace must evolve at the same place. This is a challenge for managers everywhere. This paper takes a look into the most recent culture change experienced by the Army, which is the repeal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The last topic covered in this paper is the withdrawal stage of the career model. The withdrawal stage is very important for managers because employees expect their employer to contribute somehow to their future in the form of retirement or even unemployment between jobs. To integrate this topic with the Army, this paper describes how the Army plans to change the current retirement plan and transition assistance programs. Consequences of Distress

Each person handles stress differently. Some people thrive under stress and perform well, while others crumble under the pressure. Positive responses to stress are termed eustress, which is a combination of the words euphoria and stress. Conversely, distress is used to describe the negative aspects of stress. When it comes to distress, it can come in the form of individual distress or organizational distress (Nelson & Quick, 2011). Individual distress is categorized by psychological disorders, medical illnesses and behavioral problems. Psychological disorders vary from depression to burnout to emotional exhaustion. Common medical illnesses include heart disease, ulcers, headaches, and backaches. Lastly, behavioral problems could include workplace aggression and substance abuse (Nelson & Quick, 2011). Research shows that individuals with high emotional intelligence handle distress better than individuals with low emotional intelligence (Bhullar, 2012). Emotional intelligence is an individual’s capacity to “adaptively perceive, understand, manage, and harness emotions in the self and others” (Bhullar, 2012, 19). Individuals with high emotional intelligence have a greater life satisfaction. Stress and anxiety, common distress emotions, are inversely related with life satisfaction (Bhullar, 2012). If too many individuals in an organization have individual distress, this could create a high level of organizational distress that can become financially costly for any organization. Participation problems, performance decrements, and compensation awards characterize organizational distress (Nelson & Quick, 2011). Increased absenteeism, tardiness and poor job performance are all examples of organizational distress. Of these examples lead create a financial burden such as costs to replace employees. Consequences of Distress in the Army

There are three common forms of individual distress in the Army: depression, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and suicide. Fighting the Global War on Terrorism on multiple fronts for the past 10 years has pushed troops to sustain combat operations through multiple deployments. Such extreme combat operations have placed so much pressure on troops that an estimated 20 percent military service members that returned from Afghanistan or Iraq in 2008 reported symptoms of PTSD and major depression (RAND, 2008). Depression is not a behavioral health disorder restricted to the military. Some new mothers experience postpartum depression in response to...
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