Employee Satisfaction and Managerial Attitudes

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Introduction

The main issue the report underlines is how managers engage with their employees in an organization. The attitudes displayed by managers create a positive or negative impact on the performance of employees. If supervisors display a low level of attitude, the resulting effect is job dissatisfaction and low productivity. Moreover, their attitude greatly affects the organizational outcome; a positive one means that the organization will succeed and vice versa (Rahiman & Kodikal, 2017). The key issue in this report is about the employees’ satisfaction and dissatisfaction as a result of a negative or positive attitude by the manager. The report also highlights the aspect of resistance to change, whereby if employees are encouraged to think positively, negativity is reduced and as such motivation is increased. Overall, this report gives a description of a management dilemma in which a manager’s negative attitude caused a high turnover in company XYZ.

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Background of Company XYZ and Organizational Behavior Case Scenario

Company XYZ was established in the United Arab Emirates in September of the year 1978. The company is in the banking industry where it offers a wide range of services such as property management, commercial, investment, and retail banking, and all other financial related services. Like any other organization, XYZ has its own principles and criteria for nominating its staff. A few years ago, Mr. Paul, who previously worked in another organization, was nominated as the bank’s general manager. Paul, who has around 16 years of experience, previously held a clerical position and this appointment came after he had furthered his education, showed his desire for self-improvement, and displayed punctuality and dedication in his work. Following his appointment, a high percentage of the staff never liked his attitudes as they were full of conventions. A notable number (14) resigned due to his attitude which resulted in job dissatisfaction amongst many employees. Though he has served the position for some time now, many subordinates feel tormented by his demeanor.

Lionel, who is well-educated and has over 20 years of experience, works as a staff in company XYZ. Upon his appointment, Paul became Lionel’s senior, but his attitude disappoints Lionel and this dissatisfies him. While exercising his seniority, Paul penalized Lionel by deducting his increment and bonus, leaving him to complete his duties under very high pressure and low esteem. Lionel’s job perception is that he wants a conducive work environment, and thus disregards conflicting and opposing opinions which may culminate in arguments. Company XYZ’s situation is linked with organizational behavior theories and models as discussed under the subsequent sections on literature review and results.

Literature Review

Organizational Behavior

An organization is a social entity for attaining a specific controlled performance, always working toward distinct collective goals and objectives. The aims and social arrangements reflect a common membership displayed by people in an organization. Controlled performance, on the other hand, represents the strong relationship which exists between the people in an organization as a specific functional unit (Robbins & Judge, 2018). In looking at the existence and functioning of an organization, the behavior of the group of people who make it is put into consideration. Therefore, organizational behavior involves the study of the functioning, performance, and the structure of organizations, as well as the behavior of individuals and groups involved (Taylor, 2018). The continuous dynamics reflected in the complexity of organizations and the interaction of persons with each other determine the success of an organization.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory

According to Maslow, the lowly ranked needs, which include safety and physiological needs, are linked to the culture of an organization. When it is new, it experiences considerable struggles to meet the aforementioned needs and keep the employees motivated. Social needs are ranked at level three of Maslow’s hierarchy and are linked to the establishment of structured obligations into distinct units, showcasing the human resource duty which echoes the tone set by the organizational culture. The interaction of human resources and the organization culture results in self-actualization and self-esteem needs (Ștefan, Popa, & Albu, 2020). This is better manifested by the performance of the employees which showcases the reliability and strength of their organization. It also clearly shows if the company has excelled in meeting its objectives.

Since its establishment, company XYZ might have met the lower order needs, but the current situation following the appointment of Paul has set the social situation into chaos. The interaction of the management with its subordinates is wanting and hence the realization of high order needs (self-actualization and self-esteem) is not achievable. Maslow’s theory suggests that managers should lead employees to be self-actualized since the performance of an organization is mainly based on the group. Violation of the employees’ needs will definitely lead to poor performance and production.

Psychological Empowerment

The ultimate goal of a company is to successfully complete the final product for every initiated project. It is, therefore, very important for organizations to keep their employees focused and motivated so that they can successfully complete assigned projects and realize the company’s set objectives. Psychological empowerment is basically a work-related attitude which comprises of several mental phenomena, including evaluative, cognitive, and behavioral aspects (Sun, 2016). Providing empowerment improves intrinsic motivational resources, thus, employees get the inspiration of exhibiting high levels of performance. The achievement of a company depends on the psychological empowerment received by the employees, which involves sharing of power and decision making (Tetik, 2016). Essentially, the attitudes of the employees shape the failure or the success of any given project and the overall success of an organization.

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The situation at the company XYZ drained the employees psychologically instead of empowering them. The feelings of being tormented brought about job dissatisfaction with detrimental consequences to the success of the company. Those who were not strong enough resigned and those who felt strong still remained but worked under a total state of demotivation. Demotivation, lack of appreciation, and empowerment imply that the employees no longer prioritized the objectives and goals of the company with the resulting performance being poor.

Emotional Intelligence

Emotions are among the firm competencies used to demonstrate inner feelings and expressive communication. Hate, love, aversion, sadness, and desire need to be expressed so that an individual can feel relieved and at ease. Emotional intelligence is, therefore, the ability to realize and be in a position to regulate one’s feelings. It helps in managing and understanding the emotions of other people so that they can effectively accomplish organizational needs. Further, it is the capacity to appreciate an individual’s feelings and take actions appropriately (Munir & Azam, 2017). Work culture, team learning, and effective team harmony result from an effective use of emotional intelligence. Leaders should, therefore, understand the feelings of their subordinates and engage them in decision making. Emotionally intelligent leaders enhance the morale of their employees, thereby impacting work performance positively.

Regarding company XYZ, Paul lacked emotional intelligence and did not care what other employees felt about his conventions. His personal selfishness never allowed him to understand that people’s emotions impact their work performance. He made decisions and penalized employees without giving them an opportunity of explaining themselves.

The Big Five Trait Theory

The big five personality traits, also referred to as the five-factor model (FFM), is a classification coined for clustering of personality traits. The five factors are used to offer an account of the human psyche and personality. They comprise of the openness to various experience, extraversion, neuroticism, consciousness, and agreeableness. A leader who has a deep understanding of the big five personality traits is in a better position of creating trust, relating well with his subordinates, and thus cultivating a strong workplace culture (Ghani, Yunus, & Bahry, 2016). Conscious leaders portray high levels of knowledge related to their jobs and they are ready to learn more from others. They possess aspects considered to be of a strong leader, putting work first, and always focusing on their performance.

With respect to company XYZ, Paul lacked some of the big five traits such as agreeableness which is the ability to relate well with his subordinates. In addition, he received high score on neuroticism since he could not stabilize the emotions of his employees. This led to burnout because the workers had a very tough time managing their emotions. His openness was almost zero; even sharing the rewards from the top management was impossible. As a result, the employees’ productivity and job morale decreased notably in response to the leader’s negative attitude.

Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory

This theory highlights that certain factors cause job satisfaction in a workplace, while distinct separate factors cause work dissatisfaction. They act independent of each other and are commonly referred to as motivators and hygiene factors. Motivators are known to encourage and inspire employees to work harder so as to improve performance, while hygiene factors will not motivate them to struggle, but their lack will demotivate them. Motivators include achievement, responsibility, advancement, recognition, and growth. Hygiene factors consist of company policies, supervision, security, work conditions, status, and relationships (Sanjeev & Surya, 2016). This theory thoroughly examines motivation and it is leveraged to help managers acquire the top performance from their team

Company XYZ is characterized by low hygiene and low motivation, which is directly related to dissatisfaction. As such, managers need to work hard to eliminate hygiene stressors and boost employee job satisfaction. Rectifying bureaucratic policies like the ones portrayed by Paul, ensuring support to all team members, increasing job satisfaction, and creating a supportive culture are some of the ways which can help boost job satisfaction at XYZ.

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Results and Findings

Paul’s negative attitude towards the employees has created various challenges in the company. The negative attitudes of managers to their employees are directly proportional to job dissatisfaction (Rahiman & Kodikal, 2017). Lack of direction is a key problem identified in company XYZ, which stems from Paul’s failure to engage his employees in decision making. Moreover, he did not succeed in communicating effectively to the followers about any of the strategies undertaken. The company has terribly failed to develop key behaviors and competencies, clearly portrayed by the manager. Though Paul is experienced, he has leadership shortcomings and could not help Lionel expose his expertise in the achievement of the company’s goals. Poor communication is particularly a key problem identified in company XYZ that directly contributed to the failure. The manager did not communicate with his employees even on their rewards, always preferring to keep all the incentives for himself. Lastly, there is limited knowledge and understanding in company XYZ; instead of creating awareness on what should be done, Paul focused on other things like withdrawing the benefits of employees. The company, therefore, had a very hard time in blending the prevailing multiple personalities into a unified team.

Recommendations

In order to help solve the challenges in company XYZ, a number of steps should be considered. There needs to be a two-way communication strategy to help in enhancing employee engagement and interaction. Managers should equally consider giving workers satisfactory opportunities to facilitate their growth at work. Moreover, the they need to be given appropriate motivation through training or incentives. Lastly, company XYZ needs to ensure that it has a strong communication and feedback channel to make effective communication from top to bottom management. For an organization to be successful, the leaders should appreciate positive attitudes in different conditions, employee engagement and performance. Employee appreciation is important because it shows support at the workplace, and this gives them the morale they need in the achievement of the set goals.

Conclusion

Different companies have different problems to deal with, and the way an organization’s management or leaders handle the prevailing issues affects employees and the firm’s performance as well. Since they are part of the top management, managers are supposed to encourage their subordinates and should try as much as possible not to demotivate them, but rather ensure a good working environment. The aspects of organizational behavior, including emotional intelligence, Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, big five personality traits, and Herzberg’s two-factor theory should be observed at all times in any organization.

References

Ghani, N. M. A., Yunus, N. S. N. M., & Bahry, N. S. (2016). Leader’s personality traits and employees job performance in public sector, Putrajaya. Procedia Economics and Finance, 37, 46–51. Web.

Munir, M., & Azam, R. I. (2017). Emotional intelligence and employee performance: An intervention based experimental study. Journal of Business & Economics, 9(2), 1–19.

Rahiman, H. U., & Kodikal, R. (2017). Impact of employee work related attitudes on job performance. British Journal of Economics, Finance and Management Sciences, 13(2), 93–105.

Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. (2018). Organizational behavior (18th edition). New York, NY: Pearson.

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Sanjeev, M. A., & Surya, A. V. (2016). Two factor theory of motivation and satisfaction: An empirical verification. Annals of Data Science, 3(2), 155–173.

Ștefan, S. C., Popa, S. C., & Albu, C. F. (2020). Implications of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory on healthcare employees’ performance. Transylvanian Review of Administrative Sciences, 16(59), 124–143. Web.

Sun, X. (2016). Psychological empowerment on job performance — Mediating effect of job satisfaction. Psychology, 7(04), 65844.

Taylor, S. P. (2018). Organizational behavior, leadership and change. International Journal of Housing and Human Settlement Planning, 4(1), 21–36.

Tetik, N. (2016). The effects of psychological empowerment on job satisfaction and job performance of tourist guides. International Journal of Academic Research in Business and Social Sciences, 6(2), 221–239.

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