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Foundations of Organizational Structure Essay

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 1

General Introduction
1. Ice-breaking session.
2. Self-introduction by tutor and students.
3. Briefing on course requirements.
4. Tutorial expectations and participation.
5. Briefing on Group Report & Oral Presentation (requirements and expectations). 6. Team formation for Group Report. (4 members per group)
7. Tutor assigns question and time for oral presentation & group report ** Oral presentation and group report submission will starts from Week 3 to 5**

**Important note**
Students are required to sit for one (1) online test
on Week 3. Please make sure that you are
registered under this course and be able to access
to CEL to take the test.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 2
Topic 1
: Foundations of Organizational Structure

Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) The ________ refers to the number of subordinates that a manager directs. A) span of control
B) unity of command
C) chain of command
D) decentralization principle
E) leadership web

2) A task that is subdivided into many separate jobs is considered to have
________. A) a high degree of departmentalization
B) a low degree of decentralization
C) a high degree of work specialization
D) a low degree of structure
E) a high degree of matrix structuring

3) Aeronautics Inc., a parts supplier, has departments for government aircraft and contracts, large commercial aircraft clients, and small personal aircraft clients. This is an example of ________ departmentalization.

A) product
B) function
C) geography
D) customer
E) service

4) Stalsberry Company has employees in personnel, sales, and accounting. This division of an organization into groups according to work functions is an example of ________, the second element of structural organization.

A) social clustering
B) bureaucracy
C) specialization
D) centralization
E) departmentalization

5) The unbroken line of authority that extends from the top of the organization to the lowest echelon and clarifies who reports to whom is termed ________. A) chain of command
B) authority
C) span of control.
D) unity of command
E) web of authority
6) Which one of the following is consistent with a simple structure? A) high
centralization
B) high horizontal differentiation
C) high employee discretion
D) standardization
E) bureaucracy

7) Which of the following is a drawback of a narrow span of control? It ________. A) reduces effectiveness
B) is more efficient
C) encourages overly tight supervision and discourages employee autonomy D) empowers employees
E) increases participatory decision-making

8) In an organization that has high centralization, ________. A) the corporate headquarters is located centrally to branch offices B) all top level officials are located within the same geographic area C) action can be taken more quickly to solve problems

D) new employees have a great deal of legitimate authority
E) top managers make all the decisions and lower level managers merely carry out directions

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 3
Topic 2 : Organizational Culture
Part A: Discussion Question
1) Explain the primary methods of maintaining an organization’s culture. Once a culture is in place, there are practices within the organization that act to maintain it by giving employees a set of similar experiences. Three forces play a particularly important part in sustaining a culture: selection practices, the actions of top management, and socialization methods.

a) First, the explicit goal of the selection process is to identify and hire individuals who have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform the jobs within the organization successfully. It would be naive to ignore that the final decision as to who is hired will be significantly influenced by the decision maker’s judgment of how well the candidates will fit into the organization. This attempt to ensure a proper match, whether purposely or inadvertently, results in the hiring of people who have values essentially consistent with those of the organization, or at least a good portion of those values. In addition, the selection process provides information to applicants about the organization.  Candidates learn about the organization and, if they perceive a conflict between their values and those of the organization, they can self-select themselves out of the applicant pool.

b) In addition to selection, the actions of top management also have a major impact on the organization’s culture. Through what they say and how they behave, senior executives establish norms that filter down through the organization as to whether risk taking is desirable; how much freedom managers should give their employees; what is appropriate dress; what actions will pay off in terms of pay raises, promotions, and other rewards; and the like.

c) Finally, no matter how good a job the organization does in recruiting and selection, new employees are not fully indoctrinated in the organization’s culture. Because they are unfamiliar with the organization’s culture, new employees are potentially likely to disturb the beliefs and customs that are in place. The organization will, therefore, want to help new employees adapt to its culture. This adaptation process is called socialization. This is when the organization seeks to mold the outsider into an employee “in good standing.” Employees who fail to learn the essential or pivotal role behaviors risk being labeled “nonconformists” or “rebels,” which often leads to expulsion. But the organization will be socializing every employee, though maybe not as explicitly, throughout his or her entire career in the organization. This further contributes to sustaining the culture.

2) Explain how an institutionalized culture can be a barrier to diversity. Describe how an organization could utilize the three forces at play in sustaining a culture to help create a diverse workforce.

By limiting the range of acceptable values and styles, strong cultures put considerable pressure on employees to conform. In some instances, a strong culture that condones prejudice can even undermine formal corporate diversity policies. Strong cultures can also be liabilities when they support institutional bias or become insensitive to people who are different.

Hiring new employees who differ from the majority in race, age, gender, disability, or other characteristics creates a paradox: management wants to demonstrate support for the differences these employees bring to the workplace, but newcomers who wish to fit in must accept the organization’s core cultural values. Because diverse behaviors and unique strengths are likely to diminish as people attempt to assimilate, strong cultures can become liabilities when they effectively eliminate these advantages. The explicit goal of the selection process is to identify and hire individuals with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform successfully. Taking diversity into consideration at this phase does not have to be antagonistic to the culture.

The final decision, because it’s significantly influenced by the decision maker’s judgment of how well the candidates will fit into the organization, identifies people whose values are essentially consistent with at least a good portion of the organization’s. Looking beyond surface level differences at the selection phase will help create a diverse workforce. Through words and behavior, senior executives establish norms that filter through the organization about, for instance, whether risk taking is desirable, how much freedom managers should give employees, what is appropriate dress, and what actions pay off in terms of pay raises, promotions, and other rewards. Management actions should be inclusive and non-prejudicial to create a diverse and functional culture. During the metamorphosis stage of socialization management should use institutional practices to encourage person–organization fit and high levels of commitment.

3) What are the three stages of socialization through which employees become indoctrinated into an organization’s culture?

The three stages of socialization are prearrival, encounter, and metamorphosis. a) The prearrival stage recognizes that each individual arrives with a set of values, attitudes, and expectations. These cover both
the work to be done and the organization. b) Upon entry into the organization, the new member enters the encounter stage. Here the individual confronts the possible dichotomy between her expectations and reality. c) Finally, the new member must work out any problems discovered during the encounter stage. This may mean going through changes – hence, this is called the metamorphosis stage.

4) Discuss the difference between strong and weak organizational cultures and discuss the effect that a strong culture can have on an acquisition or merger. Strong cultures have a greater impact on employee behavior and are more directly related to reduced turnover. In a strong culture, the organization’s core values are both intensely held and widely shared. The more members who accept the core values and the greater their commitment to those values is, the stronger the culture is. A strong culture will have a great influence on the behavior of its members because the high degree of sharedness and intensity creates an internal climate of high behavioral control.

One specific result of a strong culture should be lower employee turnover. A strong culture demonstrates high agreement among members about what the organization stands for. Such unanimity of purpose builds cohesiveness, loyalty, and organizational commitment. These qualities, in turn, lessen employees’ propensity to leave the organization. In recent years, cultural compatibility has become the primary concern. All things being equal, whether the acquisition actually works seems to have more to do with how well the two organizations’ cultures match up. The primary cause of failure is conflicting organizational cultures, when people simply don’t match up. Therefore, when considering an acquisition or merger, management would need to carefully evaluate the cultures of each organization.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 4
Topic 3: Foundations of Group Behavior & Understanding Work Teams

Part A: Discussion Question
1) List and briefly describe the stages in the five-stage model of group development. The five-stage group development model characterizes groups as proceeding through five distinct stages: forming, storming, norming, performing, and adjourning. a) Forming is characterized by a great deal of uncertainty about the group’s purpose, structure, and leadership. Members are testing the waters to determine what types of behavior are acceptable.

b) In the storming stage, members accept the existence of the group, but there is resistance to the constraints that the group imposes on individuality. There is conflict over who will control the group.

c) The third stage is one in which close relationships develop and the group demonstrates cohesiveness. There is now a strong sense of group identify and camaraderie. This norming stage is complete when the group structure solidifies and the group has assimilated a common set of expectations of what defines correct member behavior. d) The fourth stage is performing. The structure at this point is fully functional and accepted. Group energy has moved from getting to know and understand each other to performing the task at hand.

e) In the adjourning stage, the group prepares for its disbandment. High task performance is no longer the group’s top priority. Instead, attention is directed toward wrapping up activities.

2) Design the most effective team to figure out ways to reduce the number of preparation hours for shipping products overseas for your company. Choose the type of team from one of the four principal team types. Describe your team’s context, composition, and process parameters.

Answers will vary. A problem-solving team is probably the best type of team for this task. In a problem-solving team members share ideas or suggest how work processes and methods can be
improved. The problem-solving team will offer ideas to management. Together they discuss ways of improving quality, efficiency, and the work environment.

The team will need information on what products are being shipped and how long each of them takes, as well as details on the current procedures. Adequate information is essential. A firm goal of reducing the hours spent must be established by a leader. The group should be comprised of workers and management with expertise in the shipping department procedures. The team should have five members, three management and two people from shipping and packaging. The process parameters should be clearly outlined, with goals of exactly how much time needs to be shaved off of packaging processes.

3) Explain the difference between groupthink and group shift. Give an example to support your answer.
Groupthink is related to norms. It describes situations in which group pressures for conformity deter the group from critically appraising unusual, minority, or unpopular views. Groupthink is a disease that attacks many groups and can dramatically hinder their performance. Group shift indicates that in discussing a given set of alternatives and arriving at a solution, group members tend to exaggerate the initial positions that they hold. In some situations, caution dominates, and there is a conservative shift. More often, however, the evidence indicates that groups tend toward a risky shift. Students answers may vary.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 5
Topic 4: Motivation Concepts

Part A: Discussion Questions
1) Compare and contrast a manager that implements Theory Y and one that adheres to the expectancy theory. How would each choose to motivate their employees?

Theory Y managers assume that employees can view work as being as natural as rest or play, and therefore the average person can learn to accept, even seek, responsibility. Theory Y assumes that higher-order needs dominate individuals. Theory Y managers would contend that ideas such as participative decision making, responsible and challenging jobs, and good group relations are approaches that would maximize an employee’s job motivation. A Theory Y manager believes that the employee is inherently motivated as long as the conditions respect his intellect and character. A Theory Y manager would work hard to include the employee in decision making concerning his job, to satisfy work environment preferences, and to make sure the work is stimulating.

Expectancy theory proposes that employees will be motivated to exert a high level of effort when they believe it will lead to a good performance appraisal; that a good appraisal will lead to organizational rewards such as bonuses, salary increases, or promotions; and that the rewards will satisfy the employees’ personal goals. An expectancy theory manager would focus much more on the reward expectations of the employee, versus the psychologic expectations. It would be important for the manager to understand the personal goals that the employee strives to achieve so that he can be appropriately rewarded and praised.

2) Describe Maslow’s hierarchy of needs including the types of needs and how they become dominant.
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs hypothesized that within every human being there exists a hierarchy of five needs.
a) The physiological needs include hunger, thirst, shelter, sex, and other bodily needs. b) Safety includes security and protection from physical and emotional harm. c) Social includes affection, belongingness, acceptance, and friendship. d) Esteem includes internal esteem factors such as self-respect, autonomy, and achievement; and external esteem factors such as status, recognition, and attention. e) Self-actualization is the drive to become what one is capable of becoming; includes growth, achieving one’s potential, and self-fulfillment.

As each of these needs becomes substantially satisfied, the next need becomes dominant. So if you want to motivate someone, according to Maslow, you need to understand what

level of the hierarchy that person is currently on and focus on satisfying those needs at or above that level

3) According to Two-Factor Theory, how might a manager motivate employees?

According to Herzberg, the factors leading to job satisfaction are separate and distinct from those that lead to job dissatisfaction. Therefore, managers who seek to eliminate factors that can create job dissatisfaction may bring about peace but not necessarily result in motivation. Conditions surrounding the job such as quality of supervision, pay, company policies, physical working conditions, relations with others, and job security were characterized by Herzberg as hygiene factors. When they are adequate, people will not be dissatisfied; neither will they be satisfied. If we want to motivate people on their jobs, Herzberg suggested emphasizing factors associated with the work itself or to outcomes directly derived from it, such as promotional opportunities, opportunities for personal growth, recognition, responsibility, and achievement. These are the characteristics that people find intrinsically rewarding.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 6
Topic 5: Motivation: From Concepts to Applications

Part A: Discussion Questions
1) List and describe THREE (3) different variable-pay programs. Be sure to include piece-rate plans, profit-sharing plans, and gainsharing.
a) Piece-rate plans. In piece-rate pay plans, workers are paid a fixed sum for each unit of production completed. When an employee gets no base salary and is paid only for what he or she produces, this is a pure piece-rate plan.

b) Merit-based pay. Merit-based pay plans also pay for individual performance. However, unlike piece-rate plans, which pay based on objective output, merit-based pay plans are based on performance appraisal ratings.

c) Profit-sharing. Profit-sharing plans are organization-wide programs that distribute compensation based on some established formula designed around a company’s profitably.
d) Bonuses. Bonuses can be paid exclusively to executives or to all employees. Many companies now routinely reward production employees with
bonuses in the thousands of dollars when company profits improve.

e) Skill-Based Pay. Skill-based pay (also called competency-based or knowledge-based pay) sets pay levels on the basis of how many skills employees have or how many jobs they can do.
f) ESOPs. Employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) are company-established benefit plans in which employees acquire stock, often at below-market prices, as part of their benefits.
g) Gainsharing. Gainsharing is a formula-based group incentive plan. Improvements in group productivity determine the total amount of money that is to be allocated. By focusing on productivity gains rather than profits, gainsharing rewards specific behaviors that are less influenced by external factors. Employees in a gainsharing plan can receive incentive awards even when the organization isn’t profitable. 2) Compare and contrast the benefits of intrinsic rewards such as recognition and extrinsic rewards such as pay as forms of motivation.

Organizations are increasingly recognizing that both intrinsic and extrinsic rewards are important. Rewards are intrinsic in the form of employee recognition programs and extrinsic in the form of compensation systems. Intrinsic rewards range from a spontaneous and private thank-you to widely publicized formal programs in which specific types of behavior are encouraged and the procedures for attaining recognition are clearly identified.

Pay, an extrinsic reward, is not the primary factor driving job satisfaction, however, it

does motivate people, and companies often underestimate its importance in keeping top talent. No matter how much recognition a top performer gets, he will be tempted to leave if the pay scale is much lower than the market and another offer arrives. Recent survey data indicate most employees don’t see a strong connection between pay and performance. Variable pay structures, such as bonuses are often the best production motivators. When pay is tied to performance, the employee’s earnings also recognize contribution rather than being a form of entitlement. Over time, low performers’ pay stagnates, while high performers enjoy pay increases commensurate with their contributions.

An obvious advantage of intrinsic rewards like recognition programs is that they are inexpensive since praise is free. However, they are highly susceptible to political manipulation by management. When applied to jobs for which performance factors are relatively objective, such as sales, recognition programs are likely to be perceived by employees as fair. However, in most jobs, the criteria for good performance aren’t self evident, which allows managers to manipulate the system and recognize their favorites. Abuse can undermine the value of recognition programs and demoralize employees. Research suggests financial incentives may be more motivating in the short term, but in the long run intrinsic incentives will retain good employees if the extrinsic incentives are competitive.

3) What is employee involvement and why is it important. Give two examples. Employee involvement is defined as a participative process that uses the entire capacity of employees and is designed to encourage increased commitment to the organization’s success. The underlying logic is that by involving workers in those decisions that affect them and by increasing their autonomy and control over their work lives, employees will become more motivated, more committed to the organization, more productive, and more satisfied with their jobs. Examples of employee involvement include a) Participative management. Participative management programs use joint decision making. Subordinates actually share a significant degree of decision-making power with their immediate superiors.

b) Representative participation. Representative participation refers to worker representation by a small group of employees who actually participate on the board. The goal is to redistribute power within an organization, putting labor on a more equal footing with the interests of management and stockholders.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 7
Topic 6: What do Managers Do & Leadership
Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Which of the following is most likely to be a belief held by a successful manager? A) Technical knowledge is all that is needed for success.
B) It is not essential to have sound interpersonal skills.
C) Technical skills are necessary, but insufficient alone for success. D) Effectiveness is not impacted by human behavior.
E) Technical skills do not influence efficiency.
2) Which of a manager’s primary functions requires the manager to define an organization’s goals, establish an overall strategy for achieving these goals and develop a comprehensive hierarchy of plans to integrate and coordinate activities? A) controlling

B) planning
C) staffing
D) coordinating
E) leading
3) As a manager, one of Joe’s duties is to present awards to outstanding employees within his department. Which Mintzberg managerial role is Joe acting in when he does this? A) leadership role
B) liaison role
C) monitor role
D) figurehead role
E) spokesperson role
4) Jill is valued by her colleagues for her ability to perform effective break-even analysis on upcoming ventures. In this case, her colleagues value her for competencies that fall within which essential management skills categories?

A) technical
B) communication
C) human
D) conceptual
E) education
5) Leadership is best defined as ________.
A) the ability to influence a group in goal achievement
B) keeping order and consistency in the midst of change
C) implementing the vision and strategy provided by management D) coordinating and staffing the organization and handling day-to-day problems E) not a relevant variable in modern organizations

6) The two dimensions of leadership behavior identified in the University of Michigan studies are ________.
A) coercion and motivation
B) emotional and rational
C) employee-oriented and production-oriented
D) initiating structure and consideration
E) initiation and completion

Part B: Discussion Questions
1) Describe the three essential management skills that differentiate effective managers from ineffective ones. Provide a workplace example of how these skills could be used when dealing with the challenge of a workplace recession. The three essential management skills identified by researchers are technical, human, and conceptual.

Technical skills are defined by the ability to apply specialized knowledge or expertise. Human skills are defined by the ability to work with, understand, and motivate other people. Finally, conceptual skills are defined by the ability to analyze and diagnose complex situations.

In a time of recession human skills are essential to motivate fearful employees and to create a positive work environment. They would also be necessary in the event of workplace staff reduction. Technical skills could be applied in the area of expertise to raise production and, combined with conceptual skills, can be used to look for small market niches and ways to analyze the industry to continue to make a profit until times are better.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 8
Topic 7: Leadership
Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Hersey and Blanchard developed which of the following?
A) situational leadership theory
B) cognitive resource theory
C) managerial grid model
D) path-goal theory
E) cognitive orientation model
2) Hersey and Blanchard’s leadership theory differs from other leadership theories primarily because it ________.
A) explores the role of the expectations of the leader for the follower B) focuses on the followers
C) holds that leadership style should be dependent on the situation D) is normative
E) deals strictly and exclusively with contingencies
3) What is the main principle of path-goal theory?
A) Successful leadership is achieved by selecting the right leadership style. B) Stress is a form of situational unfavorableness and a leader’s reaction to it depends on his or her intelligence and experience.

C) Effective group performance depends on the proper match between the leader’s style and the degree to which the situation gives control to the leader. D) Leaders establish a special relationship with a small group of their followers because of time pressures.

E) The leader is responsible for providing followers with the information, support, or other resources necessary for them to do their jobs.
4) Which of the following is not a key characteristic of a charismatic leader? A) sensitivity to follower needs
B) unconventional behavior
C) vision and articulation
D) task orientation
E) willingness to take risks

5) Researchers are conducting a study of a company called Acme Corp, which they believe to be led by a transformational leader. Which of the following, if true, would most support the conclusion that Acme’s leader is a transformational leader? A) Acme’s top managers often conflict over defining the organization’s goals. B) Acme’s goals tend to be very ambitious and to hold personal value for employees.

C) Creativity is discouraged among Acme employees.
D) Acme managers are cautious and rarely take risks.
E) Acme’s compensation plans are designed to reward short-term results. 6) Leaders who clarify role and task requirements to accomplish established goals exhibit a _________ style of leadership.
A) transformational
B) transactional
C) charismatic
D) self-initiating
E) situational
7) Richard is a transactional leader who has just assigned a series of tasks to a project team. Which of the following is most likely to be true about the team’s performance under Richard’s guidance?

A) They will set new standards of productivity for the department, exceeding Richard’s expectations.
B) They will meet the goals set for them but are unlikely to go beyond those goals. C) They will tend to be unclear about the roles assigned to each team member. D) They will be highly motivated by what they view as Richard’s heroic or extraordinary qualities.

E) They will tend to put their individual self-interest above the interests of the company. Part B: Discussion Questions
1)Compare and contrast Hersey and Blanchard’s situational leadership theory with House’s path-goal theory.
Hersey and Blanchard’s situation leadership theory is a contingency theory that focuses on the followers. Successful leadership is achieved by selecting the right leadership style, which Hersey and Blanchard argue is contingent on the level of the followers’ readiness. The emphasis on the followers in leadership effectiveness reflects the reality that it is the followers who accept or reject the leaders. The term readiness refers to the extent to which people have the ability and willingness to accomplish a specific task. SLT says if a follower is unable and unwilling to do a task, the leader needs to give clear and specific directions; if followers are unable and willing, the leader needs to display high task orientation to compensate for the followers’ lack of ability and high relationship orientation to get the follower to “buy into” the leader’s desires; if followers are able and unwilling, the leader needs to use a supportive and participative style; and if the employee is both able and willing, the leader doesn’t need to do much. Path-goal theory was developed by Robert House.

The essence of the theory is that it’s the leader’s job to assist followers in attaining their goals and to provide the necessary direction and/or support to ensure that their goals are compatible with the overall objectives of the group or organization. The term path-goal is derived from the belief that effective leaders clarify the path to help their followers get from where they are to the  achievement of their work goals and make the journey along the path easier by reducing roadblocks. House identified four leadership behaviors.

The directive leader lets followers know what is expected of them, schedules work to be done, and gives specific guidance as to how to accomplish tasks. The supportive leader is friendly and shows concern for the needs of followers. The participative leader consults with followers and uses their suggestions before making a decision. The achievement-oriented leader sets challenging goals and expects followers to perform at their highest level. House assumes that leaders are flexible and that the same leader can display any or all of these behaviors depending on the situation.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 9
Topic 8: Communication
Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Communication serves all of the following functions within a group or organization except ________.
A) motivation
B) planning
C) emotional expression
D) control
E) conveying information
2) Alejandro is annoyed that the new recruit, Ben, is working faster than anyone else in the group, making the rest of the group look bad. In the company cafeteria Alejandro teases Ben and calls him the ‘super recruit’ and imitates his style of working so rapidly. Alejandro wants to intimidate Ben so that he will work slower. Which function of communication is Alejandro using by making fun of Ben?

A) motivation
B) control
C) expression
D) information
E) formal
3) Helena and Laura were talking on the phone. Laura’s two year old son fell and started crying and Laura could no longer hear what Helena said. This is an example of ________.
A) transmitting
B) decoding
C) noise
D) understanding
E) analysis
4) The communication used by managers to provide job instructions is ________ communication.
A) downward
B) lateral
C) formal
D) directional
E) diagonal

Part B: Discussion Questions
1)Describe the communication process. Include the communication process model and explain the eight parts of this model.
Before communication can take place, a purpose, expressed as a message to be conveyed, is needed. It passes between a sender and a receiver. The message is encoded (converted to a symbolic form) and passed by way of some medium (channel) to the receiver, who retranslates (decodes) the message initiated by the sender. The result is a transfer of meaning from one person to another.

The key parts of the communication process are
1)
the sender
2)
encoding
3)
the message
4)
the channel
5)
decoding
6)
the receiver
7)
noise
8)
feedback
The source initiates a message by encoding a thought. The message is the actual physical product from the source encoding. The channel is the medium through which the message travels. The receiver is the object to whom the message is directed. The symbols must be translated into a form that can be understood by the receiver. This is the decoding. Noise represents communication barriers that distort the clarity of the message. The final
link is a feedback loop.

2) Explain how the grapevine functions and why it exists in organizational communication. Describe the general direction of communication and the form of communication most commonly used in the grapevine. What can a manager do to limit the negative effects of the grapevine?

The informal communication system is the grapevine. While it is informal it is still an important source of information. A survey found that 75 percent of employees hear about matters first through rumors on the grapevine. The grapevine has three main characteristics. First, it is not controlled by management. Second, most employees perceive it as more believable and reliable than formal communiqués issued by top management. Finally, it is largely used to serve the interests of the people within it. Rumors emerge as a response to situations that are important to us, when there is ambiguity, and under conditions that arouse anxiety.

The fact that work situations frequently contain these three elements explains why rumors flourish in organizations. The secrecy and competition that typically prevail in large organizations, encourage and sustain rumors on the grapevine. A rumor will persist either until the wants and expectations creating the uncertainty are fulfilled or the anxiety has been reduced.

The grapevine generally follows lateral communication in which persons from the same hierarchical levels begin to relay messages. Very rarely does management participate in the grapevine. In fact, one study reported that management only relayed messages to the grapevine ten percent of the time. Generally oral communication is used to relay grapevine information, although written e-mail can be used as well, but is considered less safe for accountability reasons.

Managers can not entirely eliminate rumors. What they should do is minimize the negative consequences of rumors by limiting their range and impact. The best way to reduce the negative consequences of rumors is to: 1) Provide information; 2) Explain actions and decisions that may appear inconsistent, unfair, or secretive; 3) Refrain from shooting the messenger; and 4)
Maintain open communication channels.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 10
Topic 9: Conflict Management
Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) The traditional view of conflict is the belief that conflict is ________. A) harmful
B) natural
C) necessary
D) situationally-dependent
E) neutral
2) Which of the following is not a cause of conflict, according to the traditionalist view? A) general poor communication between people
B) lack of openness in the organization
C) trust between people in the organization
D) management failure to be responsive to employee needs
E) management failure to be responsive to employee aspirations 3) The ________ view of conflict argues that conflict is necessary for a group to perform effectively.
A) human relations
B) interactionist
C) traditional
D) functional
E) reactive
4) ________ conflicts are almost always dysfunctional.
A) Task
B) Job
C) Relationship
D) Process
E) Functional
5) The first stage of the conflict process is termed ________. A) cognition and personalization
B) behavioral manifestation
C) potential opposition or incompatibility
D) intention
E) habituation

6) High job specialization can lead to ________ conflict.
A) communication

B) structural
C) personal-variable
D) job-related
E) team
7) In which stage are conflict issues defined?
A) potential opposition
B) cognition and personalization
C) intuitions
D) behavior
E) reaction and transference
8) The conflict-handling intention of collaborating is ________. A) assertive and uncooperative
B) assertive and cooperative
C) unassertive and uncooperative
D) unassertive and cooperative
E) affective and reflective
9) Angelina feels that her cubicle neighbor talks too loudly on the phone, but in other ways she is a great neighbor. Angelina gets annoyed every time her neighbor’s phone rings, but she has decided it’s simply not worth the trouble to talk to her neighbor. Angelina’s conflict intention is called ________.

A) competing
B) avoiding
C) accommodating
D) compromising
E) collaborating
10) Which of the following is not a conflict-resolution technique? A)
creating superordinate goals
B) appointing a devil’s advocate
C) avoiding the conflict
D) exercising authoritative command
E) generating additional resources
11) Stage II of the conflict process deals with conflict being ________. A) perceived and felt
B) apparent and experienced
C) expressed and perceived
D) overt and covert
E) internalized

12) Irma does not like a few of the standard operating procedures adapted for the new project. However, she discussed the items with the team and told them that she realized

she was in the minority and that she would adapt the new procedures to maintain smooth operations within the team. This type of intention is called ________. A) sacrificing
B) accommodating
C) collaborating
D) compromising
E) competing

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 11
Topic 10: Power and Politics
Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Power can be defined as ________.
A) the ability to influence the behavior of others
B) the actualization of the dependency of others
C) congruence between the goals of the leader and those being led D) downward influence on one’s followers
E) upward influence on one’s leaders
2) One reacts to ________ power out of fear of the negative ramifications that might result if one fails to comply.
A) legitimate
B) coercive
C) punitive
D) referent
E) abusive
3) The power that the College Dean has been granted by the University over the faculty is termed ________ power.
A) academic
B) positional
C) legitimate
D) organizational
E) balanced
4) Power tactics can be defined as ________.
A) the only legitimate sources of power
B) techniques for translating power bases into specific action C) strategies for gathering and maintain support
D) organizational structural characteristics
E) approaches for winning arguments
5) Vivian has not been handling one portion of her duties in a satisfactory manner. As a result, her manager threatens to withhold her promotion. Which power tactic is being used?
A) exchange
B) ingratiation
C) pressure
D) personal appeals
E) inspirational appeals

Part B: Discussion Questions
1) Contrast leadership and power.
Power does not require goal compatibility, merely dependence. Leadership, on the other hand, requires some congruence between the goals of the leader and those being led. A second difference relates to the direction of influence. Leadership focuses on the downward influence on one’s followers. It
minimizes the importance of lateral and upward influence patterns. Power does not.

Still another difference deals with research emphasis. Leadership research, for the most part, emphasizes style. It seeks answers to such questions as: How supportive should a leader be? How much decision making should be shared with followers? The research on power encompasses a broader area and focus on tactics for gaining compliance. Power can be used by groups as well as by individuals to control other individuals or groups. 2) List and discuss the bases of personal power.

Personal power comes from an individual’s unique characteristics. Two bases of personal power are expertise, the respect and admiration of others.
a) Expert power is influence wielded as a result of expertise, special skill, or knowledge. Expertise has become one of the most powerful sources of influence as the world has become more technologically oriented.

b) Referent power is based on identification with a person who has desirable resources or personal traits. If I like, respect, and admire you, you can exercise power over me because I want to please you.

3) Distinguish between legitimate political behavior and illegitimate political behavior.
Legitimate political behavior refers to normal everyday politics – complaining to your supervisor, bypassing the chain of command, forming coalitions, obstructing organizational policies or decisions through inaction or excessive adherence to rules, and developing contacts outside the organization through one’s professional activities.

On the other hand, there are also illegitimate political behaviors that violate the implied rules of the game. Those who pursue such extreme activities are often described as individuals who “play hardball.” Illegitimate activities include sabotage, whistleblowing, and symbolic protests such as wearing unorthodox dress or protest buttons, and groups of employees simultaneously calling in sick.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 12
Topic 11: Human Resource Policies and Practices (Human Resource Planning& Forecasting, Recruitment)
Part A: Discussion Questions
1) Define human resource planning. Describe the TWO (2) components in human resource planning.

Human resource planning is the systematic process of matching the internal and external supply of people with job openings anticipated in the organization over a specific period of time. Human resource planning has 2 components: requirements and availability. A requirements forecast involves determining the number, skill, and location of employees the organization will need at future dates in order to meet its goals. The determination of whether the firm will be able to secure employees with the necessary skills, and from what sources, is called an availability forecast. 2) Describe human resource databases and how databases can assist in matching internal employees to positions.

A human resource database contains employee information that permits management to make HR decisions. Information that might appear in such databases, includes, but is not limited to, the following: work history and experience, specific skills and knowledge, licenses or certifications held, organizational training completed, educational background, previous performance appraisal evaluations, assessment of strengths and weaknesses, development needs, promotion potential at present, and with further development, current job performance, field of specialization, job preferences, geographic preferences, career goals and aspirations, anticipated retirement date, and personal history, including psychological assessments. Databases are being used by organizations to enable human resources to match people with positions.

3) List TWO (2) methods are available to firms when either a shortage or surplus of workers is forecasted?
Firms faced with a shortage of workers may use:
1)
2)
3)
4)

innovative recruiting,
compensation incentives, and
training programs to fill positions.
Lowering of employment standards

Firms faced with a surplus of workers may use:

1)
2)
3)
4)
5)

layoffs, restricted hours, hiring freezes may be necessary, and encourage early retirement and the use of vacation time.

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 13
Topic 12: Human Resource Policies and Practices (Selection)

Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Which of the following is the most common method of initial selection? A) written tests
B) background check
C) performance test
D) application form
E) work-sample test
2) More than ________ percent of employers conduct some type of background check on potential employees during some point in the hiring process, usually either in the initial phase or the contingent phase.

A) 25
B) 50
C) 65
D) 80
E) 95
3) The best way for an employer to find out if a potential employee can do a job is by ________.
A) using the interview process
B) using a written test
C) having them spend a day in the office
D) administering an IQ test
E) using a performance simulation test
4) Work sample tests are widely used in hiring ________.
A) unskilled labor
B) skilled workers
C) professional workers
D) managers
E) knowledge workers

5) The results of which of the following tend to have a disproportionate amount of influence on employee selection decisions?
A) interviews
B) written tests
C) performance simulation tests
D) work sampling methods

E) personality tests

6) The behavioral structured interview is built on the assumption that
________. A) past behavior is the best predictor of future behavior
B) technical knowledge and skills are the best predictor of job performance C) personality is the best predictor of job performance
D) personality and mood are highly correlated
E) technical knowledge and mood are highly correlated

Part B: TRUE /FALSE Questions
1) As a selection device, written tests have decreased in usage during the past 20 years. (TRUE /FALSE)

2) A test that measures factors such as dependability, carefulness, responsibility, and honesty is referred to as a performance factor test.
(TRUE /FALSE)

3) Work samples yield validities almost consistently superior to written aptitude tests. (TRUE /FALSE)

4) In assessment centers, job candidates are evaluated as they go through several days of exercises that simulate real problems they would confront on the job. (TRUE /FALSE)

TUNKU ABDUL RAHMAN COLLEGE
ABDM2083 ORGANIZATION & HUMAN RESOURCE
TUTORIAL 14
Topic 13 & 14: Human Resource Policies and Practices (Performance Evaluation)

Part A: Multiple Choice Questions
1) Performance evaluations today are generally based on which three types of behavior? A) task performance, productivity, tenure
B) productivity, efficiency, absenteeism
C) task performance, citizenship, counterproductivity
D) citizenship, counterproductivity, personality
E) leadership, training, efficiency

2) Performance evaluations are used as a mechanism for all of the following
except ________.
A) monitoring the success of marketing strategies
B) determining promotions
C) pinpointing employees skills
D) identifying training and development needs
E) providing feedback to employees

3) Which of the following is not a weakness of the 360-degree evaluation system? A) artificially inflated feedback from peers
B) insufficient training for performance evaluators
C) discrepancies between evaluating groups
D) provides a wide performance perspective
E) difficulties in reconciling differing evaluations
4) Performance evaluations are used to ________.
A) improve group cohesiveness
B) define departmental structure
C) help management make HR decisions
D) identify how jobs are completed
E) decrease conformity within organizations
5) Which of the following is the least predictive set of criteria used to evaluate employees?
A) traits
B) task outcomes
C) behaviors
D) personality
E) mood

Part B: Discussion Questions
1) What are the three most popular sets of criteria for evaluating employee performance?
The three most popular sets of criteria for evaluating employee performance are individual task outcomes, behaviors, and traits.
a) If ends count, rather than means, then management should evaluate an employee’s task outcomes. In many cases, it’s difficult to identify specific outcomes that can be directly attributable to an employee’s actions.

b) It’s not unusual for management to evaluate the employee’s behavior. c) The weakest set of criteria, yet one that is widely used by organizations is individual traits. They are weaker because they are farthest removed from the actual performance of the job itself.

2) Who should perform employee evaluations?

With many of today’s organizations using self-managed teams, telecommuting, and other organizing devices that distance bosses from their employees, an employee’s immediate superior may not be the most reliable judge of that employee’s performance. Thus, in more and more cases, peers and even subordinates are being asked to participate in the performance evaluation process. Also, increasingly, employees are participating in their own performance evaluation. In most situations, in fact, it is highly advisable to use multiple sources of ratings. Any individual performance rating may say as much about the rater as about the person being evaluated. By averaging across raters, we can obtain a more reliable, unbiased, and accurate performance evaluation.


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