Leadership and Organizational Behavior

Introduction

Leadership in organizations involves controlling all the aspects of the organization and ensuring that human needs are well taken care of. Adapt of Texas has, for a long time, assisted the mentally disabled individuals in the community in inculcating effective leadership in various institutions.

However, this organization is currently facing challenges thus creating a need to recommend courses of action to keep it running. As a consultant, I managed to carry out some analyses on the various problems and came up with results and coma emendations which are stated in this report.

Adapt of Texas

Adapt of Texas is an organization that helps the mentally disabled in society. It has an ACT team that comprises one supervisor and one lead case manager. There are ten managers who report to the lead case manager.

The ACT team has a tight schedule where Case managers are expected to handle at least ten clients for eight hours every month. The case managers also ensure that clients are provided with notes written on the previous day. Once all these operations are undertaken, clients’ treatment plans are expected to be complete within ninety days.

Problem statement

When dealing with people, logics should be kept in mind and more emphases laid on peoples’ emotions and how they react to their environment. Adapt of Texas made changes in the organization without considering the various needs of the people. Supervisors have been relieved of the planning duty hence creating an extra workload to t, he case managers.

High gas prices, traffic, and unsafe neighborhoods are among the concerns of the managers that were never considered while making changes. As a manger and a consultant in this field, I feel that the top managers have failed by putting their billing goals above the concerns of the team.

There are more responsibilities, but the organization does not allow for overtime. Management at Adapt of Texas has added workload to the team members thus causing low morale. There is, therefore, need to motivate the case manager. Part of the solution to the problem at Adapt of Texas is to induce a leadership approach on motivation. The question is how to do it.

Literature review

For us the organization finds effective solutions; we must understand human needs and how to satisfy them. It involves understanding organizational behavior which is simply the relationship between the organization and individuals. According to Mowen, there are five levels of needs that top managers should be aware of. These are income, physiological needs, temporary accommodation and transportation needs (Mowen, 2000).

A manager evaluates the performance of employees and ensures that they are motivated. These five needs can be satisfied at a higher level to counter other issues of concern such as security. Employee security is important because human beings are always motivated by the safety existing around them.

Fringe benefits, job security, affiliation needs, and a sense of belonging to a particular organization make an employee feel secure as he or she undertakes his/her duties. Research has shown that people feel better in an environment where there are trust and acceptance. As a result of this knowledge in motivation, managers try to incorporate employees in decision making by always allowing them to express their views.

Formation of teams and groups within organization also brings a sense of belonging. For organizations where managers can control scheduling, the value of work done is always unquestionable because it improves the morale of the employees. Value and appreciation of subordinates, therefore, plays an important role in motivation (Gardner, 2010).

The behavioral learning theories of organizations explain how managers can change the productivity of their employees through interaction with the environment despite low wages. Another self-esteem need is self actualization.

This plays an integral part in allowing one to realize their potential. Employers try to capture this by conducting regular training and ensuring that it is done at all levels to increase competence and morale (Weiner, 2005).

Analysis

I used the functional behavior assessment because it would easily allow me to identify the reason for the leadership problem in Adapt of Texas (Cooper, Heron, and Heward, 2007). This was done to identify reasons for challenging behaviors at Adopt of Texas so that interventions could be put in place to counter these behaviors and replace them with adaptive behaviors. My assessment was typical but not exclusive

As a consultant, I took my time to observe how the surveyors, top managers, and the case managers engaged in activities back in the office. I then recorded what occurred just before the challenging behaviors, what happened after that and perceptions on what caused the behaviors. This brought about a hypothesis about the functions of such behaviors (Sorrentino, and Higgins, 2001).

It was important to clarify whether it was true that the low morale was because the team felt like it was not valued.T he team members felt that management valued billing hours more than their needs. This meant that the team was not satisfied with the management decisions and the managers were, on the other hand, not satisfied with the work done by the team.

Taking some time to see how the two operated in their natural environment was the only solution to know how to handle the problem. I also wanted to know whether the managers had put in place rules that limit the team from expressing themselves freely. I analyzed the behaviors of both the managers and the team.

Apart from observations, I also conducted interviews and gave out questionnaires that were completed by the members of the organization, their clients and their family members. There was a need to know if these behaviors were only manifested in the office or even back at home. I wanted to find out from the clients if they were able to identify the causes of these challenging behaviors and make a comparison from the results in my observations.

Even though this was challenging being that they were mentally affected, I still did this to know whether working with a client under such conditions could have contributed to low morale. Engaging in talks with both the managers and their subordinates staff would make me realize why the case managers felt like they were not valued.

I was not satisfied with the two methods, so I went on and did more discoveries on the functions of these behaviors. I used functional analysis where I deliberately changed what had been happening before and after so that I could know what caused the behaviors.

I realized that some case managers submitted mandatory notes of the clients late while others could get angry and even become aggressive. By asking the case managers to improve on time, I managed to see the intended change in the managers’ actions towards their subordinates.

Findings

From my analysis, there was too much levy on the case managers. Mentally disabled individuals demanded so much attention but Adapted of Texas required that each case manager attends to ten clients. One of the case managers reported, in the closing statement of the questionnaire, that he had challenges working under this strict deadline because his clients did not get enough attention.

Time always elapsed before so much was done and the case manager moved to the next list of clients. Handing in of the mandatory notes was an important activity because it helped Adapt of Texas to bill for services. However, only few case managers were unable to do this job, and there was always need to split some of these duties.

Some notes could not be returned on time because the clients were normally visited in their homes where safety and transport posed more challenges to the case managers. From the interview, I realized that all case managers believed that their concerns were not considered before this decision was made.

This also led to another finding that the organization did not involve the employees in decision making and that the top mangers lacked motivation skills thus causing stress to the case managers and the team as a whole. Even with the work overload, the case managers suffered the cost of maintaining the mileage while on duty. There was always high labor turn over in Adapt of Texas because of low income.

Some case managers had threatened to quit if the cost of maintenance and gas was not paid by the company. These case managers felt that the organization should take care of their expenses while they are away in the field because it is in the interest of the organization that they attend to clients. From the interviews, the team reported that they had always asked for overtime, but their requests had been landing on deaf ears.

I observed that the case managers lacked morale; hence there was low productivity. Some of them even gave false information to the lead case managers about their duties because they could not reach the clients. Team work was also compromised by the new mandatory duty imposed on the case managers.

The supervisors and the case managers did not relate well. Further analysis of the leadership functions made me conclude that roles and functions were not clearly defined. This was the reason why at one time the work of supervisors was being done by the case managers.

Recommendations

Motivation and knowledge of motivation should be imparted on the supervisors, top case managers, and case mangers. Case managers also need to motivate their clients who go through various challenges in life. Frequent management training seminars on motivation should be conducted by Adapt of Texas to equip them with leadership skills.

Management appraisal is also important in the recruitment process because some of these leadership problems may be caused by incompetence. The organization needed effective leaders who would make effective decisions that take care of the needs of its employees. Training cost was not supposed to be levied on the employees because this limited them from attending such training. Some self-conceptualization skills could also be considered in selecting leaders.

The managers do not relate well with the team in the office. I recommend a quality assurance manager to evaluate the work of top managers and how they attend to their subordinates. This manager can also evaluate other levels of management when needed and give a detailed report so that these solutions are sustainable.

A quality assurance manager will help in identifying a leadership problem at an early stage before it creates an effect in the operations of the organization. If this manager is put in place, then there will be good office management and managers will practice tolerance because that is a virtue needed from them.

I recommend a review of Adapt of Texas management team. Case managers should be relieved of some duties like submission of mandatory notes. They do almost everything in Adapt of Texas. The organization might also consider recruiting more staff to assist in this work. A good work breakdown structure may help solve this problem. The supervisors should continue with their duty of completing treatment plans.

As a result of the urgent need of the mandatory notes, the case managers should provide them after meeting with the clients but should be given partners to work with. These partners can assist in handing in mandatory notes once visits have been made.

I also recommend the installation of a database system to Adapt of Texas where this information can be provided without necessarily going back to the organization. With this database system all the records of clients would be safely stored and follow up may be easy.

Formation of teams and groups within the organization, especially when visiting, clients can motivate the case managers. These groups can assist each other by delegating duties and sharing responsibilities. The supervisors would not have too much work when the teams are created. This team also creates a sense of belonging to the organization. The case managers can work together without each having to handle their clients.

At times, (presumably once in a year) the case managers may be allowed to visit their clients together and talk about their clients while sharing challenges and experiences. This unity would help improve the low self-esteem and build one another. It would also help in training each other because they would be learning from the team members’ weaknesses.

According to Sorrentino, the advancement of employees is a motivation factor. Increase in responsibility creates a sense of advancement to the employees hence improving their morale. However, responsibilities should be distributed equally among the staff. The case managers should be motivated to undertake such duties (Serrentino and Higgins, 2001).

The staff at Adopt of Texas needs salary increment because of increased responsibilities and workload. The employees need a higher compensation for the hard work they do. The case managers, for instance, should be paid according to the number of clients they attend. This kind of motivation would improve the morale of the case managers because they would then feel like they are rewarded according to the value of what they do.

The ACT team should also receive compensations for overtime because they make a lot of sacrifices to satisfy their clients during odd hours. At times, they are even forced to use their own money to reach the clients who need to be attended to.

Another form of compensation that may improve the morale of this team is a reward. Giving awards like; best case manager of the year creates competition among the staff. This is one way of showing appreciation. Human beings feel valued when people appreciate what they do, but this idea is lacking in Adopt of Texas. The work of case managers was too much, and they needed some encouragement to handle the disabled people in the community.

Communication networks in this organization must be enhanced. There must be a way of allowing communication between top management and case managers. The case managers should be involved in decision-making processes. Since their views can also impact on the organization, frequent feedback should be enhanced at all levels of management. Poor human resource management resulted in poor labor turn over in Adopt of Texas.

I, therefore, recommend a new human resource manager that can create a good relationship with the employees and improve their living standards. If the current human resource manager must remain, then he must be trained on how to be competent.

Some case managers, for instance, live in insecure places and still attend to their clients late in the night. A manager who listens to the plight of the people is all that this organization needs. The new human resource manager should also recruit more staff to help in the fieldwork. The new members can help with creating reports and submitting the mandatory notes

Vocational trips are very important in this case because they also enhance communication. It is during such vocational trips that top managers, case managers, and supervisors come together. It may create a sense of belonging and also build teams that can cooperate.

Conclusion

When dealing with employees, we must understand that human beings are not creatures of logic but creatures of emotions. Leaders must, therefore, acquire the skills to handle the behaviors of individuals in different levels of the organization. The motivation of employees must thus be based on human needs.

The case managers and the supervisors can work together for the benefit of Adapt of Texas, but they all need to be motivated by their leaders to increase their morale. They also need to feel valued in the organization and their ideas and pleas incorporated in the decision making processes. When all these are done, Adapt of Texas would have solved the leadership problems that have since affected its operations.

References

Cooper, H. (2007). Behavior analysis: Forms and methodologies. Boston: Kluwer Academic.

Gardner, R. C. (2010). Motivation and second language acquisition: The socio- educational model. New York: Peter Lang.

Mowen, J. C. (2000). The 3M model of motivation and personality: Theory and empirical applications to consumer behavior. Boston: Kluwer Academic.

Sorrentino, R. M., & Higgins, E. T. (2001). Handbook of motivation and cognition: Foundations of social behavior. New York: Guilford Press.

Weiner, B. (2005). Human motivation: Metaphors, theories, and research. Newbury Park, Calif: Sage.