1. Identify the major issues/problems of the case. What theories, research, or concepts from the class support your identification of the problem or major issue?
2. Present at least two alternative courses of action that can occur to address the issues that you identified in the case study. Evaluate each of these possible courses of action.
3. Make a recommendation as to what you think should be done. Be specific, not vague or general. Why do you think that is the best course of action? Make sure that your suggestions are doable by the company.
Identifying Major Issues and Problems
1. The major issues and problems of this case include the employees of the organization Harrah’s Corporation, not feeling valued enough and the need to make employees feel valued and cared for. Welfare of employees is at the heart of the strategies at Harrah’s Corporation but in spite of that, in the previous quarter ending of August 2001, raising customer service among the employees had been hard work with very little result. Marilyn Winn, as the head of human resources had helped to execute an inducement plan in collaboration with Gary Loveman, the President, and the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Harrah’s Corporation. The incentive plan was intended to inculcate competitive spirit in the employees, both in contending with casinos who were their competitors, as well as comparing with their own records of previous performance. The second motivation was to let the subordinates know that they were the heart and soul of the strategies implemented by Harrah’s Corporation, that even though the company placed a great importance on customer satisfaction, the company also rewarded and respected its employees. The challenge was to devise a plan, which would evaluate comprehensively and recommend ways to inspire employees either through the present inducement plan or by the devise of other plans and newly designed programs. The problem was that the incentive plan had cost $16 million in the preceding year and now that revenues were plummeting due to bigger financial conditions, the number seemed very high and the incentive plan very expensive and so Marilyn Winn was wondering if these customer service payouts the most professional way to make Harrah’s a customer-driven and service-driven company. Harrah’s Corporation gave collective, team-focused incentives or bonuses to its employees which was an unique idea in the gaming industry. A gain-sharing program was also introduced at Harrah’s Corporation, which rewarded employees of the organization for improving customer service and customer satisfaction.
Marilyn Winn was aware of the fact that some employees got tired of working tirelessly and getting close to reward levels and then not being rewarded. The worry was that at what stage would an employee say, “Forget it”. Thus, the challenge was to keep the incentive plan fresh in order that employees remain motivated, focused, and deliver their very best.
2. The two alternative courses of action that can occur to address the issues that have been identified in the case study includes feeding the employees in order to make them feel valued and cared for. One could bring in donuts or have a pizza party in the office by using the money of the company. Apart from bringing people together, it will also promote and strengthen interpersonal relationships (Roy 2017). This will also give the employees the feeling of being appreciated and make them feel valued. Catering lunch for all the employees would also help to boost the morale of the team and make them feel valued and cared for (Atmojo 2015).
The strength of this course of action lies in the fact that it will bring all the employees of an organization together, and strengthen and promote interpersonal relationships. This would lead to a feeling of appreciation among employees and make them feel cared for and valued (Atmojo 2015). It would also boost the morale of the team. The weakness of this course of action lies in the fact that if an employer is planning to show appreciation to one particular person or a specific group of individuals, it can get lost in these types of celebrations. For example, a top salesperson who has met the sales target, and a new intern who has just joined the organization are both rewarded with the same thing. This will lead to the top employee feeling less valued (Atmojo 2015).
Alternative Courses of Action
The second course of action that can be taken by employers, is challenging their subordinates and employees. Every job requires some responsibilities that are mundane in nature. It is the duty of an employer to balance the mundane work with exciting assignments. One should balance out mundane assignments with assignments that are challenging in nature. When an employer only assigns mundane tasks or tasks that are beneath the skill level of employees, an employer tends to convey the feeling and thought that he or she does not really require the true and real talent of the employees (Raziq & Maulabakhsh 2015). On the contrary, if an employer assigns an employee with a challenging task, the message that the employer gives out is that he or she trusts the employee and has faith in the abilities of an employee. The message that is sent out by the employer to the employee is the fact that the employer trusts the employee to do a great job and the employer is assured of the fact that the employee will do a great job (Raziq & Maulabakhsh 2015).
To make employees feel valued and cared for, it is all right to single them out and reward them for their achievements and accomplishments but this should be done with something that will not be given to the rest of the team. For example, the employer could grant an early leave to the employee or grant the employee a whole day’s leave (Ngirande &Timothy 2014).
The strength of this course of action includes the fact that employees will feel valued cherished. They will be motivated, focused and deliver to the best of their ability.
The weakness of this course of action includes the fact that there could be a tendency for employers to end up playing favourites. Thus, an employer should be extremely careful and ensure that he or she does not end up playing favourites as this could lead to animosity and the feelings of jealousy in the workplace.
3. It is pertinent to recognize the contribution of employees individually as they truly create a difference to the employer and the organization. It is also pertinent to recognize the employees as individuals (Terera & Ngirande 2014). By recognizing the specific achievements and accomplishments of employees, the message conveyed is that the employees truly make a difference to the employer and the organization.
The second recommendation would be that the employer of an organization constantly finds unique and new ways to challenge employees, even if that means creating new projects tailored to suit their talents or getting to know what each employee does best and assigning and allocating tasks accordingly (Terera & Ngirande 2014). Employees can also be given the task of training those people who have recently joined the office (Atmojo 2015). Giving employees the responsibility of training the new people who have recently joined office conveys the message that the employer not only feels that the employee is doing a great job but the employer wants the new employees who have recently joined the office to inculcate the same values, habits, qualities, skills that the employee training them possess. This motivates employees to perform better while at the same time making them feel cherished and valued at the workplace (Terera & Ngirande 2014). Thus, the employer of an organization can implement each of these suggestions.
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