Analysis of organizational behavior critique

The author begins by using a research undertaken by Stanford University professors to prove that diverse groups in organizations are actually beneficial rather than detrimental to them. She further explains that diverse groupings in organizations enhance group problem solving skills or creativity including innovation and dispute resolution. However, visible diversity including gender, race or age may have adverse effects on organizations although this may be exploited to positively impact the organization. The author explains that effective management of diversity in organizations enhances teamwork since groups are more likely to solve conflicts effectively and embrace diverse viewpoints which foster creativity within organizations (Hastings, 2006). Managers should therefore strive to periodically rotate composition of employees to take advantage of diversity in the workforce. Another study by Phillips, a Northwestern University professor revealed that newcomers in groups function more smoothly when they have similar attributes with the group although on the overall the group develops least effective problem solving skills. However, newcomers who are different from the team may initially develop conflicts but in the long run the group develops the most effective problem solving skills. The author concludes by explaining that managers should embrace diversity among their workforce if they are to function effectively. They should also take advantage of the various benefits which employee diversity bring to the organization as far as achievement of goals is concerned.

Article critique

The author uses different studies performed by different universities to prove that diversity is actually favorable to organizations. Most of these studies are undertaken by credible institutions although the research methodology is not given. The failure to give the research methodology makes it difficult to know the validity and accuracy of the research. However, academic articles and books on research hold a similar view which implies that the findings are accurate (Drucker, 2000). Although the author discusses the relationship between group diversity and organization dynamics, she does not discuss other dynamics of the organization which may affect group effectiveness. These include motivation, leadership and communication. The author does not also discuss instances where diversity among groups is actually detrimental to effectiveness of organizations. Future research should focus on these two perspectives ignored by the author. The article is useful for business managers who are keen on using diversity to exploit the opportunities available through problem developing solving skills amongst employees. The article is also useful for business students who are keen on understanding the dynamics of modern organizational practices and how to embrace diversity.

The use of power in an organization

“The use of power in organizations” by Pfeffer, J.

Article summary

This article discusses the success story of Esserman, the Carol Franc Breast Clinic CEO in successfully implementing changes in her organization. The author explains that implementing plans in large organizations is challenging due to resistance at different levels. Although Essernam had feasible and realistic plans to improve service delivery at Franc Buck Breast Care facility, there were several challenges she encountered in implementing change. Most of these challenges emanated from the differences in objectives of different departments which made it difficult to align organizational objectives to departmental objectives. For instance, although had objectives of making it easier to detect and treat breast conditions, the financial department had challenges raising income needed to support these objectives. However, through use of power, she was able to achieve these objectives and increase patient numbers handled per day as well as efficiency of treatment (Pfeffer, 2010). The use of power also enabled the organization develop a website where patient needs are linked to healthcare services needed. The clinical trials also increased and data management was made easier and effective. The author concludes by emphasizing the role power plays in implementing organizational plans.

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Article critique

The author discusses the role of power in implementing decisions within the organization. She effectively uses a case study to support her views, which is a practical approach to teaching challenges in modern business environments. Developing plans is seen to be different from implementing them since there is always opposition to changes in organizations (Maier, 2007). However power is seen to be an effective toll used to counter this resistance. This is a challenge facing many modern businesses where managers have to implement change but are met with resistance (Bateman, 2010). In such instances, although managers wield power, it does not effectively handle the resistance which they experience from employees. The author shows that power can be used to encourage employees to be part of change and to meet the objectives of change. However, the author does not discuss the exact strategies which Essernam implemented to ensure the success of her plans. As a result, it is not clear how power can be used to influence change in organizations. The author should consider giving examples of how power can be manipulated to achieve the goals of the organization in future in order to make the readers more informed on the issue. Although this is an effective practical example of how power can be used to influence change, the inability of the author to provide exact strategies used creates ambiguity and confusion on the issue. This article is useful to all managers who are keen on implementing change but face resistance from employees or other stakeholders since it shows how power can counter resistance. The article is also effective for business students since it discusses an important issue in modern organizational practice.

Organizational culture

“Leadership is a simple concept” by Kroeger, L.

Article summary

The author introduces the article by explaining that leaders usually change their strategies depending on the context and that change is essential if they have to motivate and attract followers. In the current society, followers are seen to be well informed or even over-informed and unless leaders engage these followers closely. They are likely to change their loyalty. Leaders are seen to facilitate achievement of goals and mission of organizations through facilitating success of teams and individuals (Kroeger, 2010). They also encourage idea sharing and clarify goals set and the significance of the same. Over time, generations have changed and with development of technology, younger workers have embraced information and technology but have little experience engaging and socializing with other workers. It is the responsibility of leaders to motivate, develop and engage skills and knowledge of younger workers as well as mentor them. In order for leaders to be successful, they should debate, negotiate and communicate with teams and individuals about values, vision and organizational goals. They should use integrity when making decisions and directions and they should allow employees to participate in decision making. Leaders should also facilitate communication since every person has an area where they have weak expertise. Leaders should learn from experiences and this too should be encouraged for employees since increase of competencies and knowledge is useful for the organization as a whole. Finally, leaders should motivate employees to meet individual goals. This will enable the organization to meet its objectives and goals.

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Article critique

The author discusses different aspects of leadership and attributes of a successful leader. Different aspects of leadership including mentorship, motivation, communication and decision making are discussed by the author in detail. Successful leaders are seen to be those who mentor younger employees, encourage communication within the organizations and those who involve employees in decision making. Leaders should also be willing to adapt to change through changing strategies depending on the context and issues at hand (Bratton et. al., 2004). The issues discussed by the author are similar to those expressed by many other secondary research sources which discuss leadership. The role of motivation and communication in organizations has been widely discussed before and the author’s opinions are similar to those developed by experts on these issues (Beach, 2007). However, the author may have used a study, research or case study to validate the findings. The study or research used would have proven that these leadership strategies actually work. He may have preferably used an organization which has successfully implemented these strategies and achieved its objectives. This would have provided students with a clear and practical approach in implementing different aspects of leadership which have been discussed. Future research on the subject should discuss in detail the relationship between motivation, communication and leadership with organizational performance. The article is useful for leaders, and not only business leaders, but leaders in all spheres of life. The issues discussed are not only applied in modern organizations but they are also applicable in the political scene. However, business students and business leaders will find the article most useful since it discusses ways of motivating employees to achieve the organizational objectives.

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Job satisfaction

“Engaged, but not always satisfied” by Davis, N. M.

Article summary

The author begins by explaining that employee engagement and satisfaction has a major impact on satisfaction of customers. Employee engagement is defined as intense feelings and focus on activities which employees perform. This definition was developed by Schneider, Society for Human Resource Management award recipient. He explains employee engagement as focus with concentration and urgency by employees in their activities (Davis, 2010). There are different effects which high engagement and satisfaction by employees have on organizations. These range from lower substance abuse, turnover and employee absenteeism. Three researches form the basis of his discussions and different components determine the definition of engagement and satisfaction in different companies. These include meaningful work, fairness and trust. The researchers then compared the engagement and satisfaction scores among different companies with surveys on customer satisfaction and the scores revealed that customer satisfaction scores were high for companies with high engagement and satisfaction scores. This shows that where employees perceive their employer as fair and trustworthy, this creates an environment where corporate results and engagement is achieved. Managers are therefore advised to develop jobs which provide meaningfulness, capture hearts and minds of workers, provide personal development and growth, and which are a challenge to employees. In addition, employers should reward employees, involve them in decisions making and offer them new opportunities. This will promote employee engagement and increase customer satisfaction levels.

Article critique

The author discusses the relationship between employee engagement and satisfaction and customer satisfaction level. Different researches are used to develop findings on the issue and they reveal that customer satisfaction scores were high for companies with high engagement and satisfaction scores and vice verse. These findings form the basis of recommendations that employers should develop jobs which provide meaningfulness, capture hearts and minds of workers, provide personal development and growth, and which are a challenge to employees (Chaudhury & Jean, 2002). Although these findings are as a result of credible research, the methodology used is not given and it is impossible to ascertain the accuracy of results. The sample size used, sampling method, data research methods and others are helpful in determining validity and accuracy of findings. Since these are unavailable, it is difficult to ascertain whether there were issues which would have undermined the research findings. The definitions of employee satisfaction and employee engagement are also not clear and this may affect the message understood by readers. Future research should provide methodology and it should focus on discussion of why high customer satisfaction scores are positively influenced by employee engagement and satisfaction levels and vice verse. This article is useful for business managers who are keen to improve customer relations and satisfaction levels since this will provide a competitive edge to their products. It is also useful for business students who are keen to become managers in future.

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