Problem Identification and formulation will be reviewed using the team discussion from Week 2. The paper will: Summarize the issue; Identify the problem; Explain why it is the underlying problem; Reflect on the group collaboration process in defining the problem; and Explain how a clearly defined problem could help to find the solutions.
Summarize The Issue
The problem presented in article by Bouw, Mismanaged Layoffs can go ‘Horribly Wrong, is the lack of proper and well-managed policy around employee lay-offs. Most managers are trained to handle a corporate crisis. Employers should approach any job losses with caution and always be respectful. Companies should consider whether job losses are necessary and the impact on operations internally, and how clients and contractors view it externally. Companies need to make sure they are following the law when it comes to laying off staff, including paying out severance as required by each province based on an employee’s years of service. (2013)
Identify The Problem
Some reasons that a company would look at reorganization and layoffs would be that the sales of that company have dropped below what they were projecting. To help with costs they may look at laying people off and then reorganizing the employees that are left to help ensure that the internal structure remains in tact to ensure that the company continues to run smoothly. Most companies see layoffs as a way to save money, however most times this is not the case due to the things that the company has to pay out to the employees that were let go. Alternatives to job cuts include transferring staff to other departments, using fewer contract workers, or cutting wages. Whether it’s a termination, where the employee’s job is eliminated, or a layoff, where the employee loses the job for a certain period of time, a company’s handling of it can have consequences.
Explain Why This is the Underlying Problem
If sales are lower then expected there might be a bigger problem then just lying off people. However, that is definitely where you should start, but employers need to stick to the rules around termination and ensure the reasons are clear. The negative impact the event can have on employee morale, which in turn can hurt productivity. It’s traumatic to the remaining staff can create fear and resentment. To help manage the disruption, companies need to be compassionate and transparent about why the job losses occurred. If management handles it in a benevolent way it can boost their image as an employer, staff feel motivated and they don’t live in fear. Layoff plan moves forward at GE Transportation, By Jim Martin demonstrates, that after unsuccessful lobbying and failed negotiations aimed at saving jobs, the company planned for its first round of layoffs.
The pink slips were to be distributed Monday, giving employees one-week notice of their layoff. GE Transportation, said about 50 employees was expected to retire instead of taking a layoff. While each retirement had the potential to spare one layoff, Duke said he didn’t try to influence anyone’s decision. In a statement from Erickson, the company acknowledged the significance of the job cuts. “We are taking this difficult step to meet an increasingly challenging marketplace that requires us to reduce costs and improve flexibility to maintain our competitiveness,” she said. “We understand how hard this action is for everyone affected, including families and the broader community.” She said the company is working closely with the state Department of Labor & Industry’s Rapid Response team to help employees who lose their jobs. (Martin, 2013, Page 1)
Reflect On The Group Collaboration Process in Defining the Problem
Effectively managing group decision-making has three requirements: (1) an appropriate leadership style, (2) the constructive use of disagreement and conflict, and (3) the enhancement of creativity. The most constructive type of conflict is cognitive conflict, or differences in perspectives or judgments about issues. In contrast, affective conflict is emotional and directed at other people. The dialectic goes a step beyond devil’s advocacy by requiring a structured debate about two conflicting courses of action. The dialectic goes a step beyond devil’s advocacy by requiring a structured debate about two conflicting courses of action. Custom-made solutions are necessary, so the group must be creative in generating ideas. The leader of a decision-making body must attempt to minimize process-related problems.
How a Clearly Defined Problem Could Help Find The Solutions
The first stage in the decision-making process is to recognize that a problem exists and must be solved. Typically, a manager realizes some discrepancy between the current state (the way things are) and a desired state (the way things ought to be). Such discrepancies—say, in organizational or unit performance—may be detected by comparing current performance against (1) past performance, (2) the current performance of other organizations or units, or (3) future expected performance as determined by plans and forecasts. Recognizing that a problem or opportunity exists is only the beginning of this stage. The decision maker must dig in deeper and attempt to diagnose the situation. The following questions are useful to ask and answer in this stage. The “problem” may be an opportunity that needs to be exploited: a gap between what the organization is doing now and what it can do to create a more positive future. In that case, decisions involve choosing how to seize the opportunity. (Bateman, 2013, Page)
Critical thinking plays a major role in the decision making process. Problem Identification and formulation aids in management’s ability find custom solutions using a creative generation.
Bateman, T. S., & Snell, S. A. (2013). Management: Leading & collaborating in a competitive world (10th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Bouw, B. (2013, June 28). Mismanaged layoffs can go ‘horribly wrong’. The Globe and Mail, B.14. Martin, J. (2013, November 3). Layoff plan moves forward at GE Transportation. McClatchy — Tribune Business News, n/a.
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