analyses the current practices in an organisation and evaluates them against two topic areas
Final Guidelines for Completion of the Report
Course Objectives covered by this assignment: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6
This task is designed to provide you with the opportunity to apply theoretical concepts you have learned so far in this course.
You are to prepare a report set out in a grid format that analyses the current practices in an organisation and evaluates them against two topic areas which you have studied in the course to date, Employee Stress and Teamwork.
There are two topic statements that you are asked to address – both need to be answered. There is also a number of sub-questions or comments for each statement – these will guide you towards the details you will develop in writing your assignment – you could use each one as a new point on your grid as you move down your grid structure. You can also include additional points, which you consider appropriate, in your report.
- Topic Statement 1, Employee Stress
How the organisation perceives the management of employee stress within the organisation.
- Sub-Questions for Topic 1:
- Is there a stress management plan in action – what does it consist of?
- If there is a stress management plan in action has it been effective and by what measures?
- If there is no formal stress management plan what do management do regarding managing employee stress in the organisation? Is it recognised? Discuss and provide comments in the Actual
- Is employee stress essentially created by work practices, by management practices or by other factors? Discuss these.
- What is the level of support for recognition of stress in the organisation? If it is minimal, then what should be the level of support? This second part of the question would be included in your Recommendations
- Topic Statement 2, Effective Teamwork
How the organisation implements effective teamwork.
- Sub-Questions for Topic 2:
- Is this a team based organisation?
- What is an effective team?
- If team based, how has this concept succeeded in the organisation – what are the strengths and what have been the weaknesses?
- What is the relationship between teams and management?
- What support is provided by management? What should the level of support be?
- What effect have teams had, or are having, on the organisation – advantages and disadvantages.
- If the teams have failed, or are failing, what are the reasons why there is failure?
- If teams do not operate in the organisation you can make points about effective teams, referring to teams and teamwork from both the course and literature sources.
- Use the Actual column to explain that teams are not used. In the final column use the theory again to make recommendations for how teams could operate in the organisation. Or, if you think that teams would not be appropriate for this organisation explain why, with reference to the literature.
In general terms, you will consider how the two ‘Topic Statements’ and the associated ‘Sub-Questions’ apply in the organisation, noting the differences between the Expected – theories explained in the OB course and from literature sources you have found – and how they apply in practice in the organisation, the Actual. Then you consider those differences and make some recommendations in the final column.
SUGGESTED PROCEDURE FOR UNDERTAKING THE ASSIGNMENT:
- Choose an organisation and explain your connection with it e.g. employee. Include in an appendix the organisation chart, or part of the organisation chart, indicating your position in the structure. The organisation may be one in which you or someone you know is employed or one that you know well. If you do not have a connection with an organisation you may choose a well-known organisation and use information about it published on the web.
- Set up the page in Landscape orientation. Begin the report with a title and introduction which names the two topics, the organisation, and your position in it.
- Draw up a 4 column table with the headings: Expected; Actual; Differences; and Recommendations.
- Review the topics of stress reduction and effective teamwork in the course material and note key points from the literature which apply to these topics and which apply to your chosen organisation. Detail these briefly in full sentences in the first column: Expected. Make sure you cite sources whenever you use ideas from the literature.
- Relate these points to the organisation and how it perceives or applies these theories in practice. Provide this information in the second column: Actual.
- Line up points in the first column with the associated points in the other columns across the page by adding rows to the table.
- Consider how the theories align with the practice, indicating differences and similarities in the third column: Difference. Include reasons for the differences. Again if you include ideas from sources in this discussion remember to cite them.
- In the fourth column state some specific Recommendations for change in the organisation. They must be developed in relation to the discussion in the other three columns. For example you might suggest strategies, policy implementation, training programs or revised practices that would be relevant to the organisation. Use references to the literature to support these recommendations where relevant.
A minimum of 5 academic references is required, post the year 2000.
FEEDBACK ON YOUR REPORT:
The Report will be assessed according to the following criteria:
- Body of knowledge – Demonstration of your understanding of course concepts.
- Problem solving – Application of theories from the literature to the chosen organisation.
- Problem solving – Development of realistic specific recommendations supported by the literature.
- Autonomy – Identifying the company and making judgements about the topics.
- Referencing and range of sources and their relevance to topics.
- Written communication skills.