Organizational Behavior




An Overview of Organizational Behavior

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An Overview of Organizational Behavior

All organizations are made up of people, who are responsible for the strategic direction, necessary resources for a new product, and successful sales of the organization. People are liable for many other organizational activities. Ultimately, the behavior of the staff within the company results in both organizational successes and failures. Thus, a manager should strive to understand people, who make up the organization.

Organizational behavior (OB) is a study of human behavior within the organization, interface between the organization and human behavior, as well as the organization itself. In terms of OB, the links between human behaviors within the organization, the organization itself, the individual-organizational interface, and the environment that surrounds the organization are obvious. When starting to work in a new organization, an individual brings a unique set of personal and organizational experiences and backgrounds. At the same time, he/she cooperates with other workers and the organization itself. As a result, a person also changes. In their turn, managers should understand and take into account the ways of interaction between the organization and the individual. Another perspective to consider an organization is the organization itself with its structure, communication and decision-making patterns, as well as evaluation and reward system.

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The understanding of OB plays a crucial role in managerial work. OB is important as it attempts to disclose the complex human organizational context, define the challenges, problems, opportunities, and accompanying issues. OB is valuable for the isolation of important aspects of the managerial work and offering special perspectives on the human side of management. To use the knowledge effectively, a manager must understand various assumptions, concepts, and premises of business. OB assists managers in understanding why some worker within the organization behaves as he does. Additionally, the sphere of OB offers valuable insights into the different processes of organizational culture. However, as for the employees needs, a manager can use OB knowledge to better understand personal feelings, behaviors, needs, and motivations, which helps to improve capabilities in decision-making, stress control, and communication.

OB offers a variety of practical insights in terms of understanding individual differences, attitudinal processes, group and intergroup dynamics, as well as organizational culture and political behavior. The processes mentioned above are important in terms of human interaction within the organization regardless of its type and goals. To conclude, effective management practice is impossible without a proper understanding and considering the numerous areas of OB.

Managerial activities comprise simultaneous planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. Similarly, organizations resort to numerous resources such as human, physical, financial, and/or informational ones. The resources are combined to efficiently and effectively reach the organizational goals.

Planning determines the desired future position and decides the best ways of obtaining it. Organizing designs jobs, groups them into manageable units, and establishes authority patterns among jobs and their groups. Leading motivates workers within the organization to cooperate for attaining the goal. Controlling monitors and corrects the organizational actions and people in order to keep them directed to the goal.

Performing the managerial functions, managers should develop a set of critical skills. Interpersonal roles are social. They presuppose that the manager acts as a figurehead, leader, and the liaison. Informational roles involve such aspects of informational processing in which a manager acts as a monitor, disseminator, and spokesperson. Decision-making roles imply that a manager acts as an entrepreneur, disturbance handler, resource allocator, and negotiator.

Critical managerial skills comprise technical, interpersonal, conceptual, and diagnostic skills. Technical skills assist in accomplishing specific organizational tasks. Interpersonal skills are helpful in communication, understanding, and motivation of individuals and groups. Conceptual skills are responsible for the managers ability to think abstractly. Diagnostic skills provide a better understanding of cause-and-effect relationships and the recognition of the optimal problem solutions.

Contemporary Organizational Behavior

COB is characterized by interdisciplinary focus and a descriptive nature. In terms of an interdisciplinary focus, OB synthesizes different fields of study including organizational psychology, sociology, anthropology, political science, economics, engineering, and medicine. A descriptive nature of OB explains the relationships between two or more behavioral variables in particular settings. OB is descriptive due to the immaturity of the discipline, the complexities concerning the study of the human behavior, and the lack of reliable, acceptable, and valid definitions and measures. There exist three categories of the central concepts of OB. They are individual processes, interpersonal processes, and organizational processes and characteristics.

Contextual Perspectives on Organizational Behavior

In terms of the systems perspective, an interrelated set of elements that function as a whole is referred to as a system. An organizational system receives human, material, informational, and financial inputs from its environment. The manager combines and transforms the inputs and then returns them as a service or product, profits or losses, employee behaviors, and extra information. At any rate, the system gets a feedback. For the manager, the systems perspective is valuable due to underscoring the value of an organizations environment and conceptualizing the flaw and interaction of different organizational elements. The situational perspective helps the manager to react effectively under any condition depending on the situation and its elements.

Interactionalism helps to understand human behavior within an organization. It explains how an individual selects, interprets, and changes different situations.

There exist individual outcomes that are important for managers, for example, individual behaviors and individual attitudes and stress. Individual behaviors comprise productivity, performance, absenteeism, and turnover. Individual attitudes and stress is a set of outcomes important in terms of OB.

In terms of group-and-team-level outcomes, managers should consider both unique and common outcomes while working with individuals or groups of individuals. Organization-level outcomes parallel with individual and group levels. However, they have unique options such as profitability. The manager should understand and balance various outcomes within the three levels of analysis.

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