Management (Robbins & Coulter) – Chapter 3

Omnipotent view of management
The view that managers are directly responsible for an organization’s success or failure.
Symbolic view of management
The view that much of an organization’s success or failure is due to external forces outside managers’ control.
External environment
Factors and forces outside the organization that affect its performance.
External environments of an organization include:
• Economic
• Demographic
• Political/Legal
• Technological
• Sociocultural
• Global
Interest rates, inflation, changes in disposable income, stock market fluctuations, and business cycle stages.
Trends in population characteristics such as age, race, gender, education level, geographic location, income and family composition.
Federal, state and local laws, and global laws.
Scientific or industrial innovations.
Societal and cultural factors such as values, attitudes, trends, traditions and lifestyles, beliefs, tastes, and patterns of behavior.
Issues associated with globalization and a world economy.
Demographic environment
Size and characteristics of a country’s population can have a significant effect on what it’s able to achieve in politics, economics, and culture.
Baby Boomers
Born between 1946 and 1964, one of the largest and most influential demographic groups in history.
Gen Y (Millennials)
Children of the Baby Boomers, born between 1978 and 1994, making an impact on technology and the workplace.
The youngest group identified age group. They have also been called the iGeneration because advances in technology have customized everything to the individual.
Environmental uncertainty
The degree of change and complexity in an organization’s environment.
Organizational complexity
The number of components in an organization’s environment and the extent of the organization’s knowledge about those components.
The first dimension of uncertainty is change as:
• Organizations are stable, minimal change
• Organizations are dynamic, frequent change
• Stable, predictable
• Few components
• Components are sort of similar and remain the same
• Minimal need for sophisticated knowledge of components
• Stable, predictable
• Many components
• Components are not similar but remain the same
• High need for sophisticated knowledge of components
• Dynamic, unpredictable
• Few components
• Components are sort of similar but continually changes
• Minimal need for sophisticated knowledge of components
• Dynamic, unpredictable
• Many components
• Components are not similar and continually changes
• High need for sophisticated knowledge of components
Organizational stakeholders
• Customers
• Social and political action groups
• Competitors
• Trade and industry associations
• Governments
• Media
• Suppliers
• Communities
• Shareholders
• Unions
• Employees
Benefits of good stakeholder relationships:
• Improved predictability of environmental changes
• Increased successful innovations
• Increased trust among stakeholders
• Greater organizational flexibility to reduce the impact of change
Organizational culture
Shared values, principles, traditions, and ways of doing things that influence the way organizational members act and that distinguish the organization from other organizations.
Cultural values and practices evolve over time
Organization culture is:
• Perception (based on employee experience within the organization)
• Descriptive (how members describe it)
• Shared (employees share perception and experiences)
Dimensions of organizational culture:
• Attention to detail (exhibiting precision and analysis)
• Outcome-orientated (focuses on results rather than how results are achieved)
• People-oriented (how decisions will affect people)
• Team-oriented (how work is organized in teams)
• Aggressiveness (how aggressive and competitive than cooperative)
• Stability (how to maintain the status quo)
• Innovation and risk taking (how employees are encouraged to be innovative and to take risks)
Strong cultures include:
• Values widely shared
• Culture’s messages are consistent
• Easy to tell about company history
• Strongly identify with culture
• Strong connection between values and behavior
Weak cultures include:
• Limited to few people but top management
• Culture’s messages are contradictory
• Little knowledge about company history
• Little identification with culture
• Little connection between values and behavior
Advantages of strong cultures:
• The more employees accept the organization’s key values and greater their commitment to those values, the stronger the culture.
• The stronger the culture becomes, the more it affects the way managers plan, organize, lead, and control.
• Strong Cultures are associated with high organizational performance.
• Reflects the vision of the founder.
• Small size of most new organizations makes it easier to establish organizational culture.
• Once culture is established, organizational practices help to maintain it.
Employees learn culture through:
• Stories (organizational stories about significant events in the life of the company help keep culture alive)
• Rituals (repetitive sequences of activities that express and reinforce important organizational values and goals)
• Material artifacts and symbols (convey to employees what is important and the kinds of expected behaviors)
• Language (many organizations or units of an organization use language to identify and unite members of a culture. New employees are frequently overwhelmed with acronyms and jargon that quickly becomes a part of their language)
Planning affected by culture:
• Degree of risk that plans should contain
• Whether plans should be developed by individuals or teams
• How management will engage in environmental scanning
Organizing affected by culture:
• How much freedom an employee’s job has
• Whether tasks should be done by individuals or teams
• How managers will interact with each other
Leading affected by culture:
• How managers are concerned with employee job satisfaction
• What leadership styles are appropriate
• What disagreements should be eliminated
Controlling affected by culture:
• Whether to allow employees to control their own actions
• What criteria should be emphasized in employee performance evaluations
• What consequences will occur from high budget
Innovation culture includes:
• Challenge and involvement
• Freedom
• Trust and openness
• Idea time
• Humor
• Conflict resolution
• Debates
• Risk taking
Characteristics of customer-responsive culture:
• Type of employee (friendly, attentive, enthusiastic, patient employee)
• Type of job environment (non-rigid rules and procedures)
• Empowerment (giving employees the discretion to make daily decisions on their jobs)
• Role clarity (reducing uncertainty on what employees should or should not do)
• Consistent desire for customer satisfaction
Workplace spiritually
Organizational values promote a sense of purpose through meaningful work that takes place in the context of community.
Organizations with a spiritual culture recognize that people:
• Have a mind and spirit
• Seek to find meaning and purpose in their work
• Desire to connect with others and be a part of a community
Five characteristics of spiritual organizations:
• Culture built around meaningful purpose
• Focus on worth and value of individuals
• Trust, honesty, and openness
• Managers trust employees to make good decisions
• Employees free to express emotions
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