An organization continues to evolve its strategies and approaches in order to handle the issues and challenges that hamper the growth of the organization. The organization invests its resources to seek opportunities so as to build a sustainable framework. The managers of an organization devote their significant time to identify the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. A manager is faced with several workplace issues including interpersonal conflict, discrimination, harassment, communication problems, low motivation and job satisfaction and low performance. Communication issue is one of the major issues of the organization and has a significant impact on the productivity of the organization. The organizations have been striving hard to establish an effective communication system to increase the overall performance of the employees. Communication is the root cause of several issues and therefore, companies invest huge amount of money and manpower to have transparency and accountability in their processes (Argenti, 2015). Lack of communication may lead to interpersonal conflict among the employees and foster an unfriendly environment at the workplace. This, further have an impact on the performance of the employees that ultimately lowers the overall productivity of the organization (Thomas, Zolin & Hartman, 2009).
The paper would make an attempt to identify the issues and challenges at a workplace by evaluating one of the issues that I encountered at my workplace. Problem background would highlight the details of the issue in order to analyse the different aspect of the problem that would help to generate probable solution.
I used to work as a Coordinator with one of the NGOs in Australia. My roles and responsibilities were to handle the events and activities conducted in the NGO. After working for around six months, I could identify the existing challenges of the organization that were affecting the performance of the organization.
One of the major issues at the workplace was effective communication that delayed projects and other activities. The manager of our team hired me to assist him in his responsibilities that encompassed various tasks such as checking mails, coordinating meetings and other routine activities. The manager also hired volunteers during the time I was hired for the job. My first month at the organization was invested to understand my roles and responsibilities due to which I could not contribute my best efforts towards the growth of organization. Every day started with some random event that was not planned earlier and as soon as I entered the office, my manager would be looking after me to allocate some new responsibility.
One day I entered my manager’s room after fully preparing for the event that the manager has asked me the day before. I spent all my time to consider the event from each and every aspect so that nothing goes wrong and was very much excited to discuss my plan with the manager. I was just about to demonstrate my plan to the manager that he looked at me and asked me to handle some urgent project that was due next week. I tried to tell him about my plans but he just waved his hand and got too busy with his mobile and files. I was devastated that all my hard work and efforts were for nothing. I realized that there was lack of proper communication within our team due to which volunteers would leave within few months after their joining. The manager was always busy with her own work and he would try so hard to do multiple tasks at one time that would often result in delayed projects. He never gave an attempt to distribute his work with me and volunteers due to which people left the organization out of frustration.
Communication was the core problem of the organization. During my six months tenure, I was able to recognize the major communication issues at work that affected the performance of the employees.
Authority or Hierarchy Problems
The employees often faced the challenge of discussing their problems with the team manager. The manager was always occupied with his own projects and deadlines and never bothered to listen to his team members. After investigation and analysis, I construed that it was not manager’s fault, rather, the fault was of the senior management team and directors who always expected perfection from the manager and overburdened him with too many projects. The manager was often frustrated while struggling hard to meet the project deadlines. Thus, because of intense pressure from management and directors, the manager was not able to effectively utilize his team members (Zaremba, 2015).
Undefined Roles and Responsibilities
The team was never instructed about the work in advance, rather, they were instructed at the last moment due to which they were always under intense pressure. Further, they did not receive any support from their mentor that misled them from meeting the goals and objectives of the organization (Zaremba, 2015).
Lack of Induction Program
The new employees were not given any training or induction program and had to struggle for a month to figure out their roles and responsibilities. They were not given any instructions regarding their job roles. They were scolded and mistreated a time for not being able to carry their roles and responsibilities.
Due to ineffective communication system, the entire workforce was dissatisfied with their job roles. The staff was not provided with any coaching and supervision when faced with any challenge. Further, the manager had no time to deal with their issues and challenges that often suppressed their feelings and emotions at work (Ulmer, Sellnow & Seeger, 2013).
High Attrition Rate
Due to dissatisfied employees and ineffective communication, the organization had very high attrition rate (Tofanelli, 2012). The employees were not given any instructions and motivation to carry out their job role. Thus, the employees after consistent criticism for their work used to leave the organization.
Communication is the process of transmitting of the information from one source to another source. Effective communication is an essential component of an organization. It ensures transparency and accountability in the organization (Ludden, 2007). The major problem at the workplace was that volunteers and employees found it difficult to share their problems with the manager. This was because the manager was under constant pressure. He was unable to understand that if he takes out some time to allocate the work to the volunteers, he would save a lot of time. Further, he would also be able to meet all his deadlines and increase work productivity by creating harmonious environment. Thus, with the establishment of effective communication within the system, the manager would have been able to handle the activities more efficiently.
In order to generate solution of the problem, it is important to focus on the problem and analyse each and every aspect of it. The structure of an organization plays a significant role to facilitate effective communication within an organization (Van Riel & Fombrun, 2007). The organizational structure was laid out in such a manner that the manager used to report to the senior management and directors. The manager had a team of 8 members with four volunteers and four permanent staff. The organization was expanding its operational activities due to which the horizon of manager’s roles and responsibilities also began to expand. The manager was earlier handling only few projects and events. With the expanding of the organization, the senior management overburdened the manager with numerous projects and assignments. Since the manager did not have any prior experience to handle too many tasks at the same time and now he had to handle too many projects with short deadline. The manager tried to put his best effort to meet the deadline of the projects and at times he was also found juggling with two or three projects at the same time. He was often found shouting at the employees for not delivering their best performance. The senior management also began to question him for not being able to meet the deadline. This also provoked directors as they were also questioned by the sponsors and investors.
Thus, the manager must understand his duties and responsibilities as a senior manager. He must realize that he has to work along with the team and cannot just work in isolation. He should also not overlook the fact that he recruited a team of volunteers for one of the crucial projects and cannot afford to waste the useful resources of the company. He has also ignored the fact that volunteers are fresh graduates and do not have any exposure to work and thus, need constant support and motivation from the supervisor. They need to be continuously directed through constant supervision in order to achieve organization’s goals and objectives. They need to be introduced to the protocols and policies of the organization through an induction program (Suter, 2009). The manager must also understand that fresh graduates would require some time to get accustomed to the organizational rules and regulations and should therefore, not be pressurized or scolded for their mistakes (Hallahan, 2009).
Thus, it is the manager who needs to understand the importance of effective communication within an organization. Instead of simply moving in a haphazard manner he should direct all his energy to motivate his employees by directing them towards a common goal.
If the manager is able to establish effective communication within the organization, he would be able to foster a positive work environment that would increase the productivity of the organization. The induction program would give time to the employees to accustom themselves to the culture of the organization. They would be able to get continuous support from their supervisor to stay directed towards common goal and objectives. This would motivate them to demonstrate better performance to yield better results. This would create job satisfaction among the employees and would ultimately reduce the attrition rate of the organization.
Developing Induction Program
An induction program introduces the employee to the organization. The employee is able to imbibe the work culture of the organization in order to align himself with the goals and objectives of the organization (Aguinis & Kraiger, 2009). The manager must develop an induction program for the new employees in order to brief them about company policies and their roles and responsibilities. The employee must be able to grasp goals and objectives of the organization so as to handle critical situation effectively. They must be trained on reporting methods to the authorities and the expected results so that they manage their time accordingly. Induction program instills confidence within the employees and give them a direction to pursue their goals and objectives.
Defining Roles and Responsibilities
The employees must be very clear about their roles and responsibilities in order to avoid any redundancy of work. This gives a clear message to the employees in terms of their job roles and expected performance. The employees are easily able to develop their skills as per the requirement of the organization. Thus, the manager must develop proper job descriptions of the employees.
Coaching and Mentoring
After the employees have been introduced to the organization and their job has been allocated to them, they are faced with challenges for which they require constant support from their supervisors (DeCenzo, Robbins & Verhulst, 2010). Thus, the manager must invest some of his time to coach his employees to yield better results.
The report has thus, identified the major issues and challenges of a workplace through a case study. Communication is one of the major problems of the organization and often leads to employee dissatisfaction and high turnover of the employees. A workplace must have effective communication in order to increase the overall productivity of the organization. An effective communication was evaluated to increase employee motivation and performance of the employees through induction program and constant support of the supervisor. Further, it also aligns the staff with the goals and objectives of the organization through coaching and training.
Aguinis, H., & Kraiger, K. (2009). Benefits of training and development for individuals and teams, organizations, and society. Annual review of psychology, 60, 451-474.
Argenti, P. A. (2015). Corporate communication. US: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
DeCenzo, D. A., Robbins, S. P., & Verhulst, S. L. (2010). Fundamentals of human resource management. US: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..
Hallahan, K., Holtzhausen, D., Van Ruler, B., Ver?i?, D., & Sriramesh, K. (2007). Defining strategic communication. International journal of strategic communication, 1(1), 3-35.Ludden, M. (2007). Effective Workplace Communication: Skills for Success in Life and on the Job. Minnesota: JIST Publishing.
Suter, E., Arndt, J., Arthur, N., Parboosingh, J., Taylor, E., & Deutschlander, S. (2009). Role understanding and effective communication as core competencies for collaborative practice. Journal of interprofessional care, 23(1), 41-51.
Thomas, G. F., Zolin, R., & Hartman, J. L. (2009). The central role of communication in developing trust and its effects on employee involvement. Journal of Business Communication.Tofanelli, D. (2012). Communication In Organizations. Bloomington: AuthorHouse.
Van Riel, C. B., & Fombrun, C. J. (2007). Essentials of corporate communication: Implementing practices for effective reputation management. Routledge.
Zaremba, A.J. (2015). Crisis Communication: Theory and Practice. New York: M.E. Sharpe.
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