This is a case of a company, which is operating in Malaysia by the name of Alpha Plantations Sdn Bhd. The company has its origin in Britain and has been operational for over forty years now. This subsidiary located in Malaysia consists of one palm oil mill and one oil palm estate. According to the owners of the company, the main purpose of opening this subsidiary is to supply the mother company with crude palm oil. The mother company is involved in production of detergents. The subsidiary in Malaysia operates in three shifts and each shift has about 25 people manned by one supervisor. In addition, majority of the top management persons working at the Malaysian subsidiary come from the United Kingdom where the mother company is.
Issues This organization has been in operation for decades and it has perfectly performed. With the changes that are taking place within the company because of the new manager, workers will also experience some new changes in the way they will execute their duties. Issues arise from the fact that this new management wants to change even the structure of the organization.
These changes bring conflict in the way the workers used to perform and in the process affect their team performance and rapport. (McShane, S. et al, 2006) This frustrates Mr. Ang who has worked with the company for over four decades. The results are his firing after a confrontation. The reason for his firing stated as misconduct. However, this misconduct resulted from the mixed up duties and responsibilities that he experiences on his line of duty. As McShane, S. et al, (2006), says it is necessary to have a clearly spelled out duties and responsibilities.
This is the only way that the workers will be able to avoid conflict and confrontation. This does not happen in this company. In addition, the managerial team executes these changes so quickly such that the workers do not have time to adjust thereby resulting to frustrations. Analysis Over the years, the company has faced many problems. However, the recent one was the massive loss that the company was undergoing. The main cause of this loss is the current low prices of gases that were experience at that time, then in 1999. During this time, Captain Chubb was the manager of the company.
He claimed that he had done all that he could but the prices were the one which pulled the company down. The top management of the company sort to hire a new manager the following year by the name of Ian Davison. They thought that the previous manager failed to perform. Even though he did not have any experience in management of an agricultural company, he had worked and succeeded in the detergent company and therefore the management expected much from him. To achieve this, he had to lower the cost of production and the only way was to make some recommendation.
He therefore made recommendations some of which were beyond the company’s control. For instance, he claimed that the company allowed too much machine breakdown. It is advisable to note that wear and tear is normal processes and we can do absolutely nothing to prevent it. However, he offered a practical solution of reducing the workforce and introducing new machines. This is the point where issues cropped up. With the introduction of new machines and reduction of the number of workers per shift, the workers first adapted to the process but later moved back to their old habits.
However, this time, the problem was bigger in that there were fewer workers. They no longer worked in a team and this created a big problem, as the workload was now bigger. In addition, with the new introduced structure in the organization, workers were now able to have a direct access to the manager. This reduced the powers that Mr. Ang had who has always been the supervisor for the company. He was not in a position to control the works anymore and this frustrated him. Furthermore, the workers would not fully respect his directions, as they knew they could still get directions directly from the manager.
As McShane, S. et al, (2006) in their book says, poor communication will always affect our behavior towards each other at our places of work. They go ahead and say that leaders will tend to vent their frustration to their subordinate. This communication breakdown affected the relationship between Mr. Ang and the workers and at the end resulted to dictatorship type of ruling where Mr. Ang would make all the decision for the workers. The worst is that Mr. Ang was to blame for all this. The result is that Mr. Ang was devastated and become silent, unproductive to the company and the company fires him.
Drive theory explains the reason why Mr. Ang feels frustrated by the actions of the manager. He was highly valued by the workers and after he goes home, the company somehow collapses. Solutions The current problems that are experienced are a serious loss and this is not due to local company structure but global factors that are beyond the company control. We can therefore argue that the methods that used to deal with this problem are way out of track. It is a good idea though to look for machines that are using new technology and to downsize the number of workers in the company.
However, it is not a good idea to change the company structure, as this has nothing to do with the workers’ performance. (McShane, S. et al, 2006) The best solution for this problem therefore would have been the purchase of the machines using new technology, downsizing the firm and then leaving the workers to report to the supervisor who they have reported to all these years. This would have prevented the confrontation that Mr. Ang had with the top officials at the head office and the other confrontation that he had with the manager and therefore prevent the company from collapsing.
Recommendation However, now that Mr. Ang has already gone home and things are not working well at all at the company, it is a clear indication that even though during the last days, Mr. Ang seemed quiet, he was important and his presence was recognized by all the workers. In addition, Mr. Ang was never given time to explain what was happening. It would be recommendable to try to summon Mr. Ang, give him a chance to explain his point of view and give him back his job. He is the only one who can mobilize the team and make them work. Drive theory explains the reason why the company collapses because the workers are not motivated. They have nothing to drive them to work harder.