University of Hawaii-West Oahu
Organizational behavior can offer solutions to organizations that are experiencingeconomic pressures, globalization, workforce diversity, “temporariness”, and balancing work-life conflicts.It can also make more effective managers for any organization whether they are hurting or flourishing. Keywords: organizational behavior, organizational culture, workforce diversity, communication, effectiveness, efficiency, learning.
Organizational Behavior Terminology and Concepts
To be an effective manager one must possess “people skills”. The term that is used to describe these “people skills” is organizational behavior. Organizational behavior is the study of the impact that the individuals, groups, and structure have on behavior within an organization (Robins & Judge, 2010). The knowledge gained is then applied to making the organization more effective. In organizational behavior, researchers ask questions regarding how and why individuals connect psychologically to their organizations, and the ways in which this influences their behavior at work (Hornung, 2010). Understanding organizational behavior is very important especially during times of recession and change. The typical employee is getting older; more women and people of color are in the workplace; corporate downsizing and the heavy use of temporary workers are severing the bonds of loyalty that tied many employees to their employers; and global competition requires employees to become more flexible and cope with rapid change. (Robins & Judge, 2010, p. 48-49) Organizational behavior concepts can offer solutions for managers confronted with critical issues that arise in the workplace. Problems that call for managers to use organizational behavior concepts include, but are not limited to, economic pressures, globalization, workforce diversity, “temporariness”, and balancing work-life conflicts. When an economy is experiencing a recession or depression layoffs and job losses can be widespread. During times such as these, effective management is a top priority for organizations. When the United States went in to recession in 2008, many organizations were forced to lay off employees. Since the 2008 recession, organizations that have prided itself on never having to lay off employees for several years have had to enforce layoffs (Robins & Judge, 2010). Understanding organizational behavior can help determine how effective a manager is. Skilled managers possess technical, human, and conceptual skills. In an organization with skilled managers there is usually lower turnover rates, more competent applicants, and better financial performance (Robins & Judge, 2010). Fisher Hawaii, a local office supply store has high turnover rates, less competent applicants, and poor financial performance. According to organizational behavior this could be due to ineffective managers. Managers with interpersonal skills help organizations appeal to and keep high-performing employees. The managers at Fisher Hawaii lack interpersonal skills. They rarely motivate the employees; they do not discipline the employees consistently; and training for new employees is unorganized and unsupervised. These are important interpersonal roles that managers should perform. Responding to globalization can be difficult for managers. Different workforces have different needs, objectives, and attitudes than from the ones adopted at home. William Greider (2010) wrote an article in The Nation about the end of globalization. “Beijing is accused of playing dirty, stealing jobs, production and wealth” (Greider, 2010, p. 20). So the United States imposes a penalty tariff on certain Chinese products. In return China imposes a penalty tariff on United States poultry. President Obama asks China to stop manipulating its currency to underprice Chinese exports. But China refuses. It seems free-trade...