Organizational Behavior Terminology and Concepts


In this paper, the following terminology and concepts are going to be explained; organization culture, organizational behavior, diversity, and communication. The observable aspects of each of the concepts are going to be described. In addition, the culture and behavior of a particular organization (Apple Inc.) are going to be briefly analyzed.

Organization Culture

BusinessDictionary.com gives the definition of ‘organizational culture’ as “the values and behaviors that contribute to the unique social and psychological environment of an organization” (BusinessDictionary.com, 2011, para. 1). Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn (2005) point out that the organizational culture stems from “the shared beliefs and values that influence the behavior of organizational members” (p.9).

Each and every organization has its own culture. The organizational culture of any organization is clearly seen in the ways it carries out its business activities, treats the employees and the clients as well as the way it treats the broader community. More so, this culture is seen in the level to which independence and liberty are allowed in the process of new idea development, decision making as well as in personal expression. In addition, the organization culture manifests in the way information and power flow through the organizational hierarchy. Last but not least, the organizational culture is also seen in how strong the employees are committed to achieving the shared goals of the organization.

The organizational culture can be regarded as strong or weak, depending on the level at which it is diffused throughout the organization under consideration. Its effects are felt on the productivity as well as the performance of the organization and offer guidelines on “customer care and service; product quality and safety; attendance and punctuality; and concern for the environment” (BusinessDictionary.com, 2011, para. 1). It as well stretches to the methods of production and marketing and to the development of new products. It is pointed out that, as on the one hand there exist a large number of “common elements” in those organizations that are large in size across the world, “organizational culture is unique for every organization and one of the hardest things to change” (BusinessDictionary.com, 2011, para, 1).

Organizational Behavior

According to Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn (2005), organizational behavior refers to “the study of human behavior in organizations” (p.3). It utilizes the scientific techniques in the testing of hypotheses. It is a “multidisciplinary study” as well, deriving knowledge from the behavioral as well as social sciences and ensuring the application of such knowledge to the real-world conditions.

The study of organizational behavior is of great significance. Since people are the most significant asset of any organization, this implies that having knowledge about the way human beings behave will serve to bring in improvement in the productivity of the organization. Having adequate knowledge about organizational behavior promotes improved employee relations, gives room for having expectations that are more reasonable, and also leads to a high level of job satisfaction.

Diversity

Diversity in organizations is on the basis of “gender, life experience, ethnic background, age, and sexual orientation and work” (Radisson.com, 2011, Para. 2). Where there is no culture in an organization that encourages diversity, such an organization is at a decided drawback. In the current world of “global business,” failing to employ an individual for a particular job as a result of discriminating the person on the basis of religion, ethnicity, gender, or race is actually unlawful on top of not being sensible.

Currently, there are those organizations that are even making great efforts to do away with all subcultures and turn out to be actually multicultural. Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn (2005) point out that “the multicultural organization is a firm that values diversity but systematically works to block the transfer of societally based subcultures into the fabric of the organization” (p.440).

Communication

There are two types of “organizational communication” in any organization, regardless of its size. These are formal and informal communication. These two types of communication are used, be it directly or indirectly in the organizations. In general terms, “the formal channel of communication follow the chain of command and are top-down” (HubPages.com, 2011, para.6). On the contrary, the informal channels of communication, “tend to be open and spontaneous” (HubPages.com, 2011, para 6).

A large number of organizations that are smaller in size have a higher dependence on informal communication. These organizations stick less on the command structures that are formal, and all the workers in these organizations “are generally more active in feedback and decision making” (HubPages.com, 2011, para. 7).

Behavior and Culture of Apple Inc.

The organizational or corporate culture of Apple Inc. has been associated with this company’s innovation. It is believed that this company’s work culture is motivated by an obsession for new products without an end to opportunities as well as challenges. The company’s corporate culture is demonstrated by its strong work ethics. Even if the work environment in the company may be seen as informal and relaxed, the workers in the company are fully and strongly committed to meeting the deadlines. It is observed that “Apple adopted a style that was not too formal or hierarchical and a more results-driven approach which worked best for them” (icmrindia.org, 2009, para.2).

This company has promoted a culture of secrecy. It is pointed out that the demand for secrecy in Apple as well as insistence on control “were infused into the company culture right from the beginning” (icmrindia.org, 2009, Para 3). Some people have appreciated the organizational culture of this company, pointing out that the culture “valued creative people” (icmrindia.org, 2009, para.4). However, there are those people who believe that, by the company maintaining the culture of secrecy, in the long run, this will hurt the company as well as its brand.

References

BusinessDictionary.com. (2011). Organizational culture. Web.

HubPages.com. (2011). Organizational behavior: Terminology and concepts. Web.

icmrindia.org. (2009). Apple Inc.’s corporate culture: The good, the bad, the ugly. Web.

Radisson.com. (2011). Diversity. Web.

Schermerhorn, J. R., Hunt, J. G., & Osborn, R. N. (2005). Organizational Behavior. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Web.