By empowering employees, a firm finds better ways to perform jobs, motivates employees by enhancing the challenges and satisfaction in their work, and frees managers from hands-on control so they can focus on other tasks. Employers empower workers by sharing information, distributing decision-making authority and responsibility, and linking rewards to company performance. Involves all employees in determining what customers require and what the employees need to do to meet those expectations
Sharing Information 1. Information about the company’s business environment can also be shared, including: a. industry trends b. competitive performance c. suppliers d. customers. 2. Technology has assisted in empowering employees by moving information throughout the organization. 3. Sharing information, especially via technology, carries risks, including: a. potential leaks to competitors b. reduction in productivity as employers utilize the Internet for non-work activities. Sharing Decision-Making Authority 1. giving employees broad authority to make decisions that implement a firm’s vision and its competitive strategy ranges from allowing employees to suggest improvements in their work to granting them full authority and resources to turn their ideas into actions 2. often involvement in decision making is extended to non-managerial employees 3. often decisions are made in teams.
Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs) benefit employees by giving them ownership stakes in their companies, leading to potential profits as the value of the firm increases employees purchase shares of the company, and the accounts grow tax free until the employee cashes the stock to assist employees in understanding the benefits to them of ESOP, the companies often share the company’s financial information if used as retirement plans, ESOPs must comply with government regulations. Stock Options a. extending to employees the rights to purchase a specified amount of the company’s stock at a given price within a given period of time b. in contract to ESOPs, in which the company holds the stock for the employees, stock option plans allow employees to hold the stock themselves.
1. the practice of organizing a group of workers to achieve a common objective 2. vital in both business, not-for-profits, and other areas 3. the ability to work effectively as a team member is more important than ever, and is an important consideration in hiring 4. Together employees can pool their talents and ideas, and achieve more than if they were working as separate individuals. What is a Team? 1. a group of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, approach or set of performance goals 2. All members hold themselves mutually responsible and accountable for accomplishing their objectives.
Work Teams a. relatively permanent groups of employees b. Self-managed teams are empowered with the authority to make decisions about how the members complete their daily tasks most effective when employees with a range of skills and functions are combined onto one team. Problem-Solving Teams a. a group who gathers to solve a specific problem and then disbands b. frequently utilize the same self-management approach of work teams c. Intrapreneurship teams are becoming more common, allowing large corporations to benefit from focused, entrepreneurial thinking. d. Cross-functional teams work on specific problems or projects, but they can also serve as permanent work teams.
Effective teams share a number of characteristics, such as: 1. an understanding and acceptance of the roles played by members 2. diversity among team members. Team Size 1. can range from as small as 2 to over 150 people-- most range around 15 2. Research suggests that the most effective size is seven - big enough to provide enough diversity, yet small enough to allow members to communicate easily and feel part of a close-knit group. 3. Smaller teams tend towards informality, and casualness, focusing on personal rather than work-related issues. 4. Larger teams slow decision making, foster disagreement, absenteeism, membership turnover, and the formation of sub-groups.
Task Specialist Role a. devote time and energy to helping the team accomplish its specific goals b. actively propose new ideas and solutions to problems c. evaluate others’ suggestions d. ask for clarification e. summarize group discussions. Socio-emotional roles a. devote their time and energy to supporting the emotional needs of team members and to maintaining the team as a social unit b. encourage others to contribute ideas c. try to reduce tensions and reconcile conflicts d. often change their own opinions to maintain team harmony.
1. Some members assume dual roles - these individuals are often selected as team leaders. 2. Some members take a nonparticipative role and contribute little towards accomplishing the task or satisfying social and emotional needs. 3. Teams should comprise an appropriate balance of both socio-emotional participants and task-focused members.
1. Reflecting various differences in team membership might be effective, including: •differences in work experiences •age •gender •cultural backgrounds •work functions represented. 2. This diversity provides benefit in serving customers represented by those diverse contingencies. 3. Cultural differences must be understood, appreciated and utilized to the team’s benefit.
1. some small firms essentially function as a team 2. diversity within the firm provides the same benefits and challenges as diversity within teams 3. teamwork in entrepreneurial arenas is also useful for managing idea generating and company growth.
1. Several key factors must be managed for teams to be effective and useful to the company, including: • the need for a team to accomplish a particular task • determining if a team is the appropriate strategy for accomplishing the tasks • caution to resist the temptation for members to work individually rather than as a team • selecting the best type of team for the goals • clearly communicating to all team members the purpose of the team. 2. Effective teams are most likely to be formed if the following steps are followed: • study other company’s teams • involved appropriate people in planning and implementing teams • seek and encourage feedback from team members • set realistic goals and distribute schedules • be prepared to slow down when necessary • regularly evaluate and adjust the original plan • keep all team members informed • be prepared to resolve conflict and confusion • prepare a plan for team compensation
A team passes through five stages of development: Forming is an orientation period during which members get to know each other and find out what behaviors are acceptable to the group. Storming is the stage during which individual personalities emerge as members clarify their roles and expectations. Norming is a stage when differences are resolved, members accept each other, and consensus emerges about the roles of the team leader and other participants. Performing is characterized by problem solving and a focus on task accomplishment. Adjourning is the final stage, with a focus on wrapping up and summarizing the team’s experiences and accomplishments.
Team cohesiveness is the extent to which team members are attracted to the team and motivated to remain in it. Team norms are standards of conduct shared by team members that guide their behavior. Highly cohesive teams, whose members share standards of conduct, tend to be more productive and effective.
Conflict can stem from many sources: competition for scarce resources personality clashes conflicting goals poor communication unclear job responsibilities team role assignments.
1. No one style is appropriate for all types of conflicts. 2. The various types of conflict resolution include: a. the competing style • decisive, assertive • does not build rapport, but is useful for unpopular, emergency, or quick decisions. b. the avoiding style • neither assertive nor cooperative • effective when the problem stems from a trivial, non-essential, or a no-win issue • also useful if more information would actually be useful to the conflict resolution or when open conflict would cause harm. c. the compromising style • blends both assertiveness and cooperation • works well when the conflict arises between two opposing and equally important goals, or when the members in conflict are equally powerful, or when an immediate outcome is desired. d. the accommodating style • active cooperation • helps to maintain team harmony • useful if a member does not have a particular need or desire regarding a specific outcome, or when maintaining team harmony is more important than the issue at hand. e. the collaborating style • combines active assertiveness and active cooperation • requires lengthy, time-consuming negotiations • can achieve a win-win situation • useful when consensus is important or when all viewpoints must be merged into a single outcome. 3. a leader may handle a conflict by encouraging negotiation, or utilizing and outside mediator.
A. The definition is a meaningful exchange of information through messages. B. An important aspect of any manager’s job - spend about 80% of day communicating. C. Important throughout the organization D. The Process of Communication • sender - composes the message and sends it through a communication carrier or channel • message - is encoded, translating its meaning into understandable teams and a form that allows transmission through a chosen channel • channel - many are available, including: written messages, face-to-face communications, electronic mail • audience - the message receiver who decodes the message to interpret its meaning • feedback - feedback is then related back to the sender to determine whether or not the communication was clearly interpreted by the receiver • context - the situational or culture framework in which the communication takes place. E. Consideration must be given to limit noise or interference that influence the transmission of messages and feedback.
cynical listening - defensive listening that occurs when the receiver believes an advantage is trying to be gained by the sender offensive listening - the receiver tries to catch the speaker in a mistake or contradiction polite listening - mechanical; the receiver, who is usually inattentive and is often rehearsing his or her response, listens to be polite rather than to communicate active listening - requires involvement with the information and empathy with the speaker’s situation; is the basis for effective communication.
Written a. when effective, reflects its audience, the channel carrying the message, and the appropriate degree of formality b. e-mail has made written communications simple and easy; however, attention needs to be paid to the fact that a record is being created even with this form of communication. Formal Communication a. carries information that flows with the organizations’ chain of command b. mostly flows downward c. some organizations have created specific upward communications channels. Informal Communication a. carried information outside formally authorized channels of an organization’s hierarchy b. the grapevine is a common example, which is often cited as the most frequent source of employee information c. These communications can diminish with increased geographic distance among employees, increased telecommuting, and flex time usage.
a. both are equally important for transmitting messages b. nonverbal communications comes in many forms, including: •gestures •posture •eye contact •tone of voice •clothing choices •personal space - the physical distance between people who are engaging in communication. c. Some research has found that nonverbal communications carried over 90% of the message being conveyed. d. Interpreting nonverbal cues is especially difficult for people from various cultures. e. Nonverbal cues are sent even when the sender is deliberately trying to avoid sending them.
1. messages sent through channels within an organization 2. becomes more complex as the organization grows and employees are added 3. to keep communications open, many organizations use a variety of methods and tools, including company newsletters and intranet systems 4. when employees speak different languages, special care must be taken.
1. centralized communication network - team members exchange messages through a single person to solve problems or make decisions 2. decentralized communication network - members communicate freely with other team members and arrive at decisions together 3. the most appropriate style of communications within teams depends on a number of factors - often centralized approaches are used with routine, simple communications, and decentralized approaches work best with complex issues.
1. a meaningful exchange of information through messages transmitted between an organization and its major audiences 2. used to keep operations functioning, to maintain their positions in the marketplace, to build customer relationships 3. two-way communication is important, especially with customers 4. increased Internet use has increased consumers’ expectations about communications 5. goodwill and increased customer satisfaction is essential in each communication.
A. While most business is conducted in English, even the same English word has different meanings around the world. B. Translations are often difficult, especially when messages have to be translated in both directions. C. The cultural context of the language affects the message, as well: 1. low-context cultures • rely on explicit written and verbal messages • Switzerland, Germany, Australia, the U.S. 2. high-context cultures • the message depends not only on the message itself, but also on the conditions that surround it, including nonverbal cues, past and present experiences and relationships • Japan, Latin America and India 3. workplace differences also influence communications.
Part 3 Management: Empowering People to Achieve Business Objectives
Chapter 10 Improving Performance through Empowerment, Teamwork, and Communication