Scope of Organisational Behaviour – OB

The nature and scope of organisational behaviour are very vast. It is a social science as it is the scientific study of human behaviour. The main elements of organisational behaviour may be summarised below.

The scope of organizational Behaviour is explained as:

1) Skill Development

Entering and surviving in the new-age organization requires a certain set of skills i.e. work-related skills and generic skills such as problem-solving and communication skills. Organizational behaviour deals directly with generic skills. Skills related to organizational behaviour are gaining momentum in the current work scenario. For example, CIOs (Chief Information Officers) today work hand in hand with information technology professionals so that they can get a better insight into the business, communicate effectively with colleagues, and interact with other departments in a better manner. Soft skills like leadership, business knowledge, and communication have started playing a very crucial role in the overall running of the business.

2) Personal Growth through Insight into Human Behaviour

As per Robert P. Vecchio, people study organizational behaviour to attain the self-accomplishment that one gets while learning about others’ behaviour and attitudes. This ultimately results in improved self-knowledge and self-insight. For example, when people study the factors which drive other people, they also come to know the factors which encourage them.

3) Improvement of Organisational and Individual Effectiveness

The study of organizational behaviour provides information that can be used to solve organizational issues. It also improves organization effectiveness, i.e., the potential of an organization to be efficient and to meet the requirements of the parties involved. 

OB improves organizational effectiveness by revealing factors such as employee motivation communication hurdles and personality factors that enhance or obstruct effective performance. 

Along with organizational effectiveness OB also provides approaches and competencies that improve the effectiveness of a person. A person with knowledge of conflict resolution, interpersonal communication, and teamwork would prove to be more efficient for the organization.

4) Sharpening and Refining of Common Sense

Gaining knowledge and information about organizational behaviour is crucial for manageras it teaches them how to deal with their subordinates which cannot b taught through any book. Common sense without the knowledge of OB is not enough to manage the workforce. 

Knowledge of OB sharpens and widens the sphere of common sense. It decreases the time one might need to attain important behavioural knowledge and skills. Common sense tells us that rewarding employees based on performance are an effective way to motivate them for better performance. 

But the study of organizational behaviour teaches that rewards should be given seldom and not every day. It also teaches that the kind of reward given to different employees should be modified as per their personalities and priorities. 

For example, some people prefer loud appraisals while others might prefer appreciation based on the quality of the outcome.

5) Social Environment

Social environment means the association with other organisations in the society which influence each other. OB studies the effect and interaction of different social environments and disciplines.   

6) Attitudes and Situation

The system of controls influences the two principal factors of particular motivation i.e., attitudes of workers and situation factors. An ideal mix of three will yield desirable results. All these three-control, attitudes, and situations affect each other and a slight change in one factor may differ the motivational pattern and working situation.

7) Philosophy and Goals

The philosophy and goals of management and workers create the climate of an organization. The philosophy of organisational behaviour of a man or things in common. It is a universally accepted fact just like the law of gravitation, the law of demand and supply, etc. Value premises represent the desirability of certain goals. 

Value premises control human activities and behaviour to a large extent. The goal of an organisation is to produce more for the benefit of society, i.e, workers, investors, and the common public, and to satisfy their needs to a maximum extent in a befitting manner. OB attempts to harmonize individual motives with organisational goals.

8) Control System

Control is a must to get the best results. It intermingles formal organisations, informal organisations, and social environments, and such intermingling becomes possible only through communication, group process, effective interaction behavioural aspects, etc.

9) Inter-disciplinary Approach

Organizational behaviour, OB is an interdisciplinary science. It makes effective use of psychology, sociology, social psychology, Anthropology, Political Science, Economics, History, etc. All these social sciences contribute a lot to the theory and practice of organisational behaviour.

10) Formal and Informal Organisations

Philosophy and goals can be achieved through formal and informal organisations. A formal organisation interprets the philosophy and goals of the organisation and strictly implements them. Informal organisations, on the other hand, are opposite to formal organisations and are not implemented very rigidly.       

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Organizational behaviour has emerged as a separate discipline of study. Nature has acquired it:

  • A separate field of study and not just a discipline.
  • An interdisciplinary approach.
  • Applied science.
  • General Science.
  • A humanistic and optimistic outlook, and.
  • A total systems approach.

Elements of Organisational Behaviour

Elements of organisational behaviour: Organizational behaviour relies on scientific methods to develop, evaluate and modify theories about human behaviour in organizations. This discipline is influenced by many behavioural sciences and social sciences. Important among them are sociology, psychology, and anthropology. Psychology focuses on what determines a person’s behaviour.

Various subdisciplines such as industrial psychology, clinical psychology, and experimental psychology have been developed in an attempt to answer this question. Sociology deals with groups, organizations, and societies rather than individuals. In addition, it considers the actual pattern of interaction, the effect of different social statuses on the interaction, and the effect of different roles on the interaction.

Therefore, sociology is the basis for trying to understand social behaviour or the dynamics of two or more individuals. Similarly, anthropology is a broad discipline that studies the origin and development of human culture, how those cultures have functioned in the past, and how they function in the present. This information is very useful in understanding human behaviour.

Management creates organizations to achieve certain goals. In an organization, the efforts of the people are coordinated by the structure of the authority-responsibility relationship. The organization uses three elements known people, structure, and technology to achieve performance.

These elements interact with the external environment and they are affected by it. This is aptly remarked by Keith Davis in the following words. Organizational behaviour is the study and application of knowledge about human behaviour in an organization as it relates to other elements such as technology, structure, and external social systems.

(i) People:

All organizations are made up of both individuals and groups of people. Groups can be formal/informal, large/small. They are interrelated and complex in nature. People are dynamic in nature, they interact and also influence each other. They can bring organisational change and break the organization.

Organizations exist to serve people. Therefore the basic problem of management is to understand human behaviour so that they are better motivated to contribute to maximum performance.

(ii) Structure:

Structure refers to the organizational design that defines the roles and relationships of people in the organization. Different people are given different roles and they have to play certain roles in the organisation. Organizational structure leads to the division of work which facilitates the employees in performing their duties to achieve organizational objectives.

Performance is expected from different levels in different sectors. Organizational structure deals with authority relationship relations and it coordinates the performance of the employees. The structure designed should be appropriate and should also suit the organizational members.

(iii) Technology:

Technology provides the physical and economic conditions with which people perform in the organisation. Employees are provided with the help of machines, tools, methods, and resources. The nature of technology depends on the scale of organizational activities and operations. Technology affects the working conditions in the organisation. It places restrictions on the freedom of individuals.

(iv) Environment:

Environment refers to the external environment provided by socio-cultural factors, economic factors, political conditions, and geographical forces. These factors affect the attitudes, objectives, and working conditions of the people in the organisation. The organization also has an impact on the environment. This type of interface continues as long as the organization is alive.

elements of organisational behaviour

 Organisational Behaviour

Everybody brings to an organization a unique set of experiences from other organizations, personal characteristics, and the environment around the organization and they also possess an individual background. Looking at the people who work in an organization, organizational behaviour has to be viewed from the unique perspective that each individual brings to the work environment.

But individuals do not work in isolation. They come in contact with other individuals and organizations in various ways. Points of contact include managers, directors, co-workers, management, policies, procedures of the organization, and various changes implemented by the organization. Over time, an individual, too, changes as a function of both personal experiences and organization.

The organization is also affected by the appearance and ultimate absence of the individual. The study of organizational behaviour must ponder how individuals and organizations interact. An organization, of character, exists before a specific person joins it and continues to exist after he leaves. Thus, the organization itself represents an important third perspective from which to look at organizational behaviour.

Concept of Organisational Behaviour

The concept of organizational behaviour revolves around two basic elements.

They are:

(i) Nature of the people and
(ii) Nature of the organisation

(i) Nature of People:

The nature of people in an organization can be well understood with the help of basic factors such as individual differences, individual as a whole, behaviour, and human dignity.

(a) Individual Differences:

The basic assumption in behavioural science is that each individual is different from others. There are differences in physical characteristics and mental abilities. Research studies have established that these differences affect their performance at work and behaviour. Mental differences may be related to intelligence, aptitude, attitude, skill, etc.
Scientific techniques are to be developed to identify and measure the differences in psychological factors so that they can be used effectively in the selection and appointment of the right people for different jobs. Can be tuned according to selection and training. The theory of individual difference has wide applications in selection and placement and designing, training programs.

It will facilitate the organization to know the objectives and behaviour of the employees so that supervision can be done effectively. An appropriate style of leadership and supervision can be developed and the right kind of motivation can be provided to get maximum cooperation from the employees. Hence individual differences form the nerve centre of organizational behaviour.

(b) A complete person:

Some organizations generally believe that they only employ the brain or skills of the individual. But they are wrong in their approach. Although we can study each characteristic separately, in the final analysis, they are a part of a system that makes up a whole person. We cannot separate each other. Skills cannot be separated from knowledge or experience. Homelife cannot be separated from work life.

The concept of the whole person implies that an individual’s behaviour at work cannot be studied in isolation. An individual is a complete system in itself. It is not possible to separate the mind and skills of a human being. In the workplace, a person keeps the problems of his personal life with him. His performance is influenced by his personal environment and vice versa. Hence their behaviour at home and office are mutually influenced.

(c) Causal Behaviour:

Industrial psychologists believe that human behaviour occurs. It is a condition that provokes a person to behave and perform in a particular way. It is therefore essential to understand the causes of the behaviour before attempting to improve upon it.

Human behaviour is caused by needs that can be directed and controlled to obtain desired results from human beings. This can be achieved through inspiration. It turns on steam to keep the organization going.

(d) Human Dignity:

Unlike other factors of production, employees should be treated differently because they are of higher order in the universe. The organization should respect his feelings, emotions, and aspirations. He should be treated with respect and dignity. Then only the employees will cooperate with the organization.

Otherwise, they feel unsatisfied and it affects their performance. Moral philosophy is concerned with the consequences of our actions on ourselves and others. It believes that life has an overall purpose and acknowledges the inner integrity of each individual. As people are involved in organizational behaviour, moral philosophy is involved in every action in one way or another.

(ii) Nature of Organization:

There are two basic assumptions about the organization.
They are:
(a) Organizations are social systems.
(b) They are formed based on mutual interest.
(a) Social System:
An organization is a social system that coordinates the activities of its members to achieve common goals. It is a part of society and includes people who are social animals. In every organization, two types of social systems are related to each other. One is called the formal social system and the other is called the informal social system. The interaction of these two is responsible for their behaviour and performance.
Therefore, the behaviour of the organization is dynamic. All parts of the system are interdependent on one other and influence each other. The idea of ​​social order makes the complexity of human behaviour in organizations conceptually manageable. It provides a framework for considering and analyzing the many variables involved in any given organizational situation.
(b) Mutual Interest:
It is the root factor of all relationships. Employees need organization and organization needs employees. The organization as a whole requires employees to reach its goals whereas organizations need employees to achieve their objectives. In fact, without people, there is no organization. Both the people and the organization benefit from their union.

Qualities of Organisational Behaviour

(i) It facilitates a manager in predicting individual behaviour and group behaviour. The manager can develop a more retiring and realistic set of beliefs about people and create a plan of action.

(ii) This study helps to explain the causes of human behaviour. It explains why people behave in a particular way. Some causes of behaviour are controllable and others are beyond control. Manager if he knows the controllable factors then he can put in better policies and practices to get the desired behaviour from his subordinates.

(iii) It helps to improve the organizational behaviour and smooth the relations between the employees and the organisation. Employees can be motivated to work as a team to meet their needs and achieve organizational objectives.

(iv) Application of organizational behaviour may not solve all the behavioural problems, but it facilitates the manager to consider all the underlying assumptions and important variables underlying the situation.

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