Question 1: What is Corporate Social Responsibility and how could this influence the organisational behaviour of ‘Breadtalk’? Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is where corporations or organisations are obliged to inter-relate their businesses with behaving in ethical and moral ways. It is where such corporations have notions towards having responsibility to the society that upholds them. Examples of ethical and moral ways varies from giving back to needy groups in terms of monetary funding and healthcare, to integrating CSR strategies directly into the business tactic of an organisation. By means of integrating is having “employee-friendly human resource policy where safety in workplace, social security benefit, flexible office hour, recreation and other benefits are included” (cited in The Financial Express, 2010).
‘Breadtalk’, well-known for its commitment in providing the best for its customers in different countries, have given back to the society and providing internal support throughout its company. ‘Breadtalk’ continuously provides on-the-job training and supervision for its employees, awarding opportunities for head departments to hold higher positions abroad; such as overseeing business processes. Having close human relations have forged strong ties into branching out its brand even more till ‘Breadtalk’ now operates across 17 countries and all of which are carefully chosen locations. Overseas operations are guarded by key players who are chosen with good qualifications and competent ones that work well with other key players in the company.
In commemorating its 10th birthday, ‘Breadtalk’ donated $50,000 to needy school children of The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund in Singapore from 5 cents from the sale of each Floss bun. Organisational behaviour is the study of understanding the behaviour of individuals and to see them so that organisations can relate to such behaviours that come in a variety and find solutions for them. For ‘Breadtalk’, there are many positive reviews about the company and none is seen to lead to any pitfall that might occur. On the other hand, having an uncertain future does not mean that constant learning is stopped; upgrading oneself is key for future success.
Organisational behaviour for ‘Breadtalk’ have moved from traditional to re-engineered values of which have cause a more globalised mindset for the company, changing nature of work due to upgrading technology, improved knowledge management, understanding different cultures, improving employee-employer relations, having work-life balance, and all these due to an ethical managerial behaviour called Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). The efforts to find solutions for a good Organisational Behaviour have allowed proper group dynamics and a sense of motivation within the company, a few examples of such solutions, which have been evaluated from CSR. (412 words)
Questions 2: Why is an understanding of cultural differences important to the Business Managers at ‘Breadtalk’? To assist the Managers of ‘Breadtalk’ to decide if they should expand to Australia, briefly describe the Australian culture? Understanding cultural differences can help avoid acts of ethnocentrism, being aware of a country’s elements of culture – language, religion, values and attributes, customs and manners, material goods, aesthetics, education; complying to cultural dimensions – power distance, uncertainty avoidance, individualism, masculinity; and preserving social structure. Understanding the elements of culture can avoid ethnocentrism. These elements help the understanding of cultural differences by relating to the country’s way of life. Cultural dimensions help the understanding of how people from various cultures behave and its uniqueness. In business, managers must understand the culture of other countries and learn to accept them. In this process, managers have to fight against ethnocentrism and understand the social structure of the host countries.
The Aussie culture is a fast-paced, self-absorbed society, typical in the urbanized world. The influences of aborigines’ culture give the outlook of Australia as casual and friendly. It’s a fair country allowing its people to make their own decisions at a young age. Both men and women gain equal rights in education and work. At young ages of 18 can one enter into a full-time profession of their choice. Retirement has no obligatory age. In terms of time and punctuality for business engagements, Aussies are deemed acceptable. In business, it’s generally “expected that production and service deadlines will be met whilst long delays are considered unacceptable” (cited in Australia Society and Culture Complete Report, 2010). Social engagements are equally important to be on time.
The pros of expansion will be tapping on a wider consumer experience, increasing benefits in many areas, increased popularity, increased chances of joint-ventures and opportunities. The cons of expansion will be on-going competition if unresolved at lower stages of expansion, increased capital costs, reduced performance from foreign agents, conflicts of interests and objectives. Thoughts of expansion can be pondered on. From an interview with ‘BreadTalk’s’ management personnel, the brand would not branch abroad to a country unqualified in meeting the standards and demands required.
Looking at the consumer size, it is rewarding if outlets branch into Australia. Although, looking at the needs and demands of the Australian community for food sources, specifically bread, competition is highly foreseeable. ‘Breadtalk’ having its many successes as of now is seen sufficient for the company. Its culture of branching out in Asia is seen a lot. Many hope to see the company’s success diverts into that direction. If it is for the best of ‘Breadtalk’, expansion into Australia can be a future food for thought. (410 words)
(Total: 822 words)
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