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Organisational Behaviour Case Study: Community Arts College

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Analyse the influence of culture, politics and power on the behaviour of others in an organisational context

Evaluate how to motivate individuals and teams to achieve a goal

Demonstrate an understanding of how to co-operate effectively with others

Apply the concepts and philosophies or organisational behaviour to a given business situation

Imagine that Community Arts College is a privately-run educational institute which has had a recent rapid increase in student numbers. Due to rapid growth, the management has increased staff numbers, which comprises teachers, instructors and administration staff. Unfortunately, as staff numbers increased, job satisfaction seems to have declined. A survey among staff, instigated by the principal, revealed that staff had a poor perception of the college and its management. Staff also reported a lax work ethic among both teaching and administration staff. It was suggested that problems were due to poor organisational structure, closed communication channels and a blame culture throughout the college.

After completing your HND in Business you have been offered a paid Internship with a firm of business consultants who specialise in the private education sector. In this role and to evaluate whether to offer you a full-time position as a trainee consultant, you are asked to prepare and submit a series of short reports that might be useful as part of the work for this client, and that in any case will demonstrate your understanding of organisational behaviour to the senior management.

You will need to apply your knowledge of the content of, and tools from, the “organisational behaviour” unit you studied on the HND to this situation, using your creative imagination.

For the first report, you are asked to analyse the influence of culture, politics and power on the behaviour of people in the College.

  • To achieve a high standard, you might critically analysethe existing culture of the college, the sources, bases and types of power operating in it and its organisational politics, and how these influence individuals, teams and the organisation as a whole and affect their performance.
  • As a minimum you will need to analysehow the culture, politics and power-relations in the college influence both the individuals working in or otherwise engaging with it and their performance.

One of the Senior Consultants at the firm is especially interested in motivation for success. She tasks you with writing a second report, in which you evaluate how to motivate individuals and teams in the College to achieve the goals of increased staff satisfaction and better student results.

  • If you can, you should examinemotivational theories from behavioural psychology; critically evaluating how to apply theories, concepts and models of ‘behavioural motivation’ in order to influence the behaviour of people at the college towards the above goals.
  • You are instructed that you should at least investigate‘content’ and ‘process’ theories of motivation; consider different ‘motivational techniques’; and then evaluate how these can be used to enable the effective achievement of these goals.

These first two reports will be rated even more highly and be more useful to the business if you are able to develop a more critical evaluation of the relationship between culture, politics, power and motivation; and use this as a base for making justified recommendations to enable the organisation to succeed.

Community Arts College has accepted the consultancy’s analysis and recommendations. This leads to further work. As better cooperation is considered one of the keys to success, your contribution is to prepare a third report on how to cooperate effectively with others.

  • Again, if you want a better rating, you could then analysesome of the theories of ‘team development’ and ‘group development’; demonstrate how these can be used to support the development of cooperation in more effective teams; and assess how ‘team development’ is relevant to improve the productivity and business performance of the college.
  • As a minimum you will need to explainwhat makes and effective team, as opposed to an ineffective team.

Finally, you are requested to write a fourth report in which you apply concepts and philosophies of organisational behaviour to the business situation of Community Arts College.

  • You can gain a better evaluation for this last report if you take it further; by evaluatinghow these concepts and philosophies inform and influence behaviour in the college; and how they can be made relevant to improve the productivity and business performance of the college.
  • For your work to reach the basic standard expected, you will need to apply, to the business situation of the college, your knowledge of concepts of organisational behaviour about people(e.g. perception, individual difference, empowerment), organisations (e.g. social system, mutual interest, etc.) and philosophies (e.g. autocratic, custodial, supportive, and collegial).

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