MGT 219 – Organizational Behaviour
Organizations are structured according to the symbolism of gender – that is, their culture is gendered (Gherardi, 1995). However since the sexual discrimination act 1975 and the equal opportunities act 2002, it would be easy to assume that a culture which bullies and undermines women is long gone. This is not the case at Sky Sports and we will therefore be examining the issues that are presented to us in the case study. The Sexual Discrimination Act 1975 made it illegal to discriminate against employee gender type and was designed to stop issues which are mentioned in the following article. However despite this the main issue is not about one case of misbehaviour; it comprises of the overall sexist culture which has developed at Sky Sports. There are two articles which are sourced from The Guardian and The Daily Mail. During this analysis I will refer to the articles as - Source 1 (The Guardian) and Source 2 (The Daily Mail). The issues identified in both these articles are the combined effect of bullying and sexism; and how this has lead to stress within the workplace. Therefore the three topics I will be using in this analysis are; - organizational misbehaviour (with links to sex and gender) and stress. There are many forms of organizational misbehaviour such as; resistance, lying, swindling etc. However bullying is another significant workplace problem (Hodson et al.; 2006) and we will use this element in order to materialise a greater understanding of the relevant points highlighted in the article. Bullying has been defined as a repeated and persistent destructive process of attempts by one (or several) person to torment, wear down, frustrate, get a reaction from another or exclude him or her from the work environment. It is treatment that provokes, pressures, frightens, intimidates and through its repetition leads to devastating effects. (Brodsky, 1976). Bullying can take place in several different ways for example, persistent insults or offensive remarks, teasing, ridicule, persistent criticism, or personal or even physical abuse. In relation to Sky we are concerned with verbal bullying and direct/indirect non-verbal bullying. These 3 factors will be outlined in greater detail through the analysis. A survey by the charted institute of Personnel and Development found that one in five employees have been a victim of bullying or harassment at work in the last two years, with black, Asian, women and disabled employees most likely to face the problem (Haurant, 2006). In this case it relates to female employees of Sky Sports being victimised by their male colleagues however an experiment by Leyman, 1992; Einarsen and Skogstad 1996 found that approximately equal victimizations rates for men and women which contradicts the quote made in Source 1 – ‘at sky you are always looked down on as a woman involved in sport, full stop’ so therefore this leads us to think the issues that arise here are specific to women working at sky – the problem does not exist elsewhere. The lack of equality between genders at Sky has created the impression that it is deemed okay to bully and in some cases sexually harass women. These sexual inequalities in sport could exist for a number of reasons; ‘the women’s and sports foundation found that 36% of women enjoy the competitiveness of sport as opposed to 61% of men that do’ which could explain the male dominated workforce and the ‘banter’ which comes with it. Organisations are gendered to the symbolism of gender (Gherardi, 1995) however this is not the only explanation. Richard Keys and Andy Gray were key figures at Sky Sports whom of which were very high up in the hierarchy. Their personalities and their position of power created huge power imbalances between themselves and lower levels of management (Ireland 2000). In addition to power imbalance it is said the perpetrator assesses the costs of bullying as being relatively small. Richard Keys and Andy Gray...
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