Organizational Development: Job Design and Motivation

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Describe the motivational approach to job design. What are the key dimensions that lead to high work quality and internal motivation?

In organizational management, work design is concerned with the creation of jobs and teams that can lead to high levels of employee satisfaction and productivity. To achieve the objectives of work design, various approaches have been put forward to guide organizations into designing jobs. The motivational approach to job design is one of the approaches to work design. The approach is applied in organizational development strategies. Under this approach, the job design is as important as fair remuneration in motivating employees in an organization. According to Benn, Dunphy, and Griffiths (2014), job design has a profound influence on employee job satisfaction, motivation, and commitment to an organization. Several recommendations and dimensions for creating jobs have been suggested in the field of organizational development to guarantee a motivated workforce (Stringer & Didham, 2011).

Firstly, the early result-oriented approach to job design, namely job specialization, focused on job efficiency. In job specialization, the focus is on the breakdown of jobs into simple components and tasks, which are then assigned to different employees such that a different person handles each task in a repetitive manner (Hiriayappa, 2009). Job specialization offers several merits to an organization. For instance, splitting roles into straightforward works minimizes the expertise necessities, labor, and staffing expenses. The training for shorter and repetitive jobs takes a minimal duration. However, repetitive and specialized tasks are boring. Besides leading to low levels of motivation, they are linked to negative outcomes such as absenteeism. Employees are only dedicated to finishing their tasks and less concerned about the overall success of the organization. As such, job specialization is no longer recommended as a job design approach that is geared towards employee motivation.

A substitute to work specialization is occupational replacement, which is one of the concepts of the motivational approach to job design. Job design advocates the moving of employees from one role to another at regular intervals within the organization (Hiriayappa, 2009). When employees are rotated from one role to another, the monotonous aspects of job specialization are eliminated (Benn et al., 2014). Job rotation ensures that employees are continually challenged. Such a job environment ensures that employees are motivated and satisfied with their work. The only shortcoming of job rotation is that there are increased training costs since employees require more skills to ensure that they can perform in different roles in the organization. The other concept in the motivational approach to job design is job enlargement. In this approach, the focus is on the expansion of tasks performed by employees to add more varieties (Hiriayappa, 2009).

Lastly, job enrichment is another approach under the motivational approach of job design. Job enrichment is focused on the addition of a few motivators in the tasks performed by an employee in an organization. Such enrichment can be achieved through direct feedback where employees are informed of the outcomes and progress in their work, new learning where employees are given opportunities to advance their skills, and improved client relationship where employees can interact with customers and gain satisfaction from such engagement (Benn et al., 2014).

Contrast the effects of various reward systems. Which are the most effective?

Reward systems in an organization are very important in ensuring a highly motivated and satisfied workforce. Effective reward systems address four areas in an organization, which include compensation, benefits, recognition, and appreciation. Therefore, the compensation systems can be categorized into intrinsic and extrinsic rewards, financial and non-financial rewards, and performance-based and membership-based rewards (Aguinis, 2009). Each of the reward systems in an organization has its effects and effectiveness in an organization.

Firstly, the intrinsic and extrinsic rewards are very common approaches in organizations. The intrinsic rewards comprise benefits that accrue from within an individual (Chen, Williamson, & Zhou, 2012). For instance, the satisfaction from performing a given role or accomplishing a goal is an intrinsic reward. To ensure intrinsic rewards among employees, some of the strategies that an organization can use include job designs that consider employee skills and qualifications, provision of meaningful work, opportunities for employees to reward themselves, and self-monitoring and accountability (Aguinis, 2009). On the other hand, extrinsic rewards are external from an individual. They are mainly tangible such as financial rewards in terms of bonuses, higher salaries, and paid time off among others. However, other forms of extrinsic rewards are not financial. They include recognition, verbal praise, promotions, awards, and additional responsibility. Although the two reward approaches in this category are important, intrinsic rewards are more effective since the employees drive them, as opposed to the management in the organization (Kooij et al., 2013). Therefore, an organization should create an environment where employees are satisfied and interested in the roles that they perform.

The second reward system focuses on financial and non-financial rewards. In this case, financial rewards relate to the benefits that organizations offer their employees for good performance. Such rewards include salaries, wages, and bonuses. On the other hand, nonfinancial rewards do not increase an individual’s financial payoff. Instead, they focus on ensuring a better working environment for the employees (Aguinis, 2009). Such rewards include better office furnishings and enough parking spaces among others. Although the nonfinancial rewards in an organization benefit the employees financially, they are costly. Organizations should apply both reward systems because each of them has their motivational value on employees.

The last reward system is performance-based and membership-based rewards. Under the performance-based rewards, employees are rewarded for their achievement or surpassing of goals and set targets (Chen et al., 2012). On the other hand, membership-based rewards are offered to individuals for their membership in a given department or rank in the organization. In these reward systems, the performance-based reward system is more effective since it ensures that employees are recognized for their individual and group efforts.

The discussion of the various reward systems shows that each system has its benefits in the organization. However, the use of intrinsic and performance-based rewards is highly effective in organizations (Aguinis, 2009). Firstly, intrinsic rewards allow an employee to be self-driven towards the achievement of the task or organization’s goals, thus leading to high productivity and job satisfaction (Kooij et al., 2013). On the other hand, performance-based rewards allow employees to be recognized for their efforts in an organization, thus ensuring motivation and job contentment.

Compare and contrast leadership development interventions and career development interventions? In what areas and activities might they overlap?

Various interventions are focused on an organization’s employees. These interventions are very important since they provide an opportunity for an organization’s human resources to have better skills and motivation to guarantee excellent employee performance (Schroeder, 2012). Two interventions in organizational development are very popular. These interventions include leadership development interventions and career development interventions. Each of the interventions offers important advantages to organizations.

Leadership development interventions are focused on the development of leadership skills in an organization’s employees. Leadership development has been proven to increase individual employee self-awareness and confidence, which lead to higher performance (Bargal & Schmid, 2012). Leadership development programs are not only focused on employees in leadership positions but also on subordinates. The employee programs ensure that they have important skills such as self-drive, teamwork, communication skills, conflict resolution skills, and management tactics that allow them to perform well in their respective roles (Schroeder, 2012).

On the other hand, career development interventions are focused on ensuring that employees are growing in their positions and responsibilities in the organization. In career development interventions, organizations dedicate resources to ensuring that employees have learning opportunities both within and outside the organization (Chang & Hsieh, 2011). The organizations also provide opportunities for career growth through promotions and job rotation among other interventions.

The above intervention approaches are important to the organizations. The leadership development interventions allow the organization and departments to be led in the right manner that maximizes the overall outcomes for the respective areas where the leadership skills are applied (Bargal & Schmid, 2012). The career development interventions ensure that employees are continually challenged and/or offered growth opportunities, which lead to higher motivation. In this case, an organization should ensure that it dedicates adequate resources for the implementation of the interventions (Chang & Hsieh, 2011).

Although the interventions are different in terms of their focus in an organization, some of their concepts overlap. For example, promoting career development ensures that employees have the necessary skills to take up more leadership responsibilities in the organization (Schroeder, 2012). Further, the two interventions are geared towards ensuring high levels of motivation and job satisfaction, which are important drivers of high organizational performance

Describe the major diversity trends facing organizations. How do organizations use various OD interventions to respond to these trends?

In the present-day organizational environment, various diversity trends are emerging and driving change and review of how organizations are managed. To remain relevant in their respective business segments, organizations must adapt accordingly (Shore et al., 2009). These diversity trends are driven by major changes such as globalization, technological advancements, and demands for equality among other factors. How organizations respond to these trends is very crucial in terms of how they remain focused and competitive in their respective environments.

Firstly, one of the major drivers of diversity is globalization. Globalization has been driven by technology, developments in transport, and immigration among other factors. In this case, organizations must be prepared for a work environment with diverse people who must work together to guarantee success (Rainey, 2009). Globalization has also pushed organizations to operate in an environment with greater and intense competition while at the same time demanding increased interdependence and collaboration between people within and outside an organization (Cummings & Worley, 2014). To ensure that the benefits of globalization accrue to all, the organization needs to embrace diversity.

The second trend that is driving diversity in organizations is economics. In the 21st century, diverse customers exist in each society. Such clients are earning adequately to demand the kind of services and products they want (Cummings & Worley, 2014). Therefore, organizations are forced to adapt to the changes in the diversity of customers by ensuring that they are ready to respond accordingly to provide services and products to a dissimilar customer base (Shore et al., 2009). One of the ways that organizations can adapt is by ensuring that the workforce is equally prepared to serve the needs of the different customers.

Another important trend of multiplicity in the organizational environment involves similar job prospects and confirmatory action plan. In this case, the law requires organizations to ensure equality in terms of the people they employ (Rainey, 2009). Therefore, organizations are recruiting and hiring diverse groups to ensure that they meet the demands of the law (Shore et al., 2009). Due to the demands for diverse workgroups, organizations are focused on not only recruiting and retaining diverse people but also ensuring that such people work harmoniously (Rainey, 2009). As such, organizations are increasingly investing in programs that promote diversity-accepting environments that will guarantee better outcomes.

Technology is also a major driver of diversity in the organizational environment. Technology has ensured efficiency and effective organizational processes. However, it has opened doors for doing previously non-existent businesses. For example, the use of the internet means that organizations can sell their products and services remotely to diverse people and groups across the world (Shore et al., 2009). Such diversity requires organizations to be prepared to serve a global customer base while remaining culturally sensitive and responsive to the variety of people and customers that technology offers (Cummings & Worley, 2014). Therefore, organizations must embrace diversity to ensure that they accrue the benefits that technology provides in the 21st century.

To respond to the emerging diversity issues, various organizational development approaches can be used to respond accordingly to the matters. Firstly, the organizational policy in place must be considered, as it is important to the success of diversity programs (Shore et al., 2009). Secondly, there is a need for an organization to implement mentoring programs, which will ensure all employees acquire a culture of appreciating diversity. There is a need for organizations to put in place diversity training programs where employees can accommodate diversity in their organizations (Cummings & Worley, 2014). Further, there is a need to uphold communication approaches that will be responsive to diversity in the workplace. Lastly, organizations must offer leadership, which appreciates the strength of diversity (Rainey, 2009). Organizations must adopt technologies that will promote the maximum benefits of diversity.

How would an OD practitioner attempt to change an organization’s culture?

The organizational environment is rapidly changing due to globalization and other competition trends that require organizations to be updated to ensure that they remain competitive. One of the targeted areas of change in organizational development is organizational culture (Weiner, 2009). However, changing organizational culture is a difficult process often faced by many hindrances and resistance. Several approaches have been put forward to guide how organizations can affect organizational culture.

Firstly, the first step towards organizational culture is a clear understanding and definition of the current organizational performance (Palmer, Dunford, & Akin, 2009). An organization must be aware of the current performance status to define future goals and performance priorities (Jones, 2010). Further, it is important to have a clear understanding of the behavioral constraints that are holding back the organization to ensure that the realignment of the organizational culture addresses the existing weaknesses (Palmer et al., 2009).

Secondly, the whole organization should have a shared vision, which will consequently drive the change of culture (Weiner, 2009). It should clarify its strategic priorities. This process requires a clear definition of actionable strategic plans that will guide the organization towards a given change direction. Further, it requires the engagement of members of the organization in defining SMART goals that will have an impact on the organization in a positive way (Jones, 2010).

The third approach to organizational culture change is a management strategy. In other words, organizations need to adopt a good approach to managing administration systems based on priorities and goals (Weiner, 2009). Such an approach ensures that the organization can monitor the status of priorities and goals. In this case, the focus must be on the results of behavioral change that is envisioned in the process. The management process must ensure that time management approaches lead to the achievement of goals within the planned timeframe (Palmer et al., 2009). Further, it is important to remove barriers and other hindrances towards the success of the change process.

The organization must also focus on communication habits and routines, which will promote transparency and a genuine focus on the change process. Without communication, it is difficult to achieve the desired outcomes in the process of changing organizational culture (Palmer et al., 2009). Open and frequent communication between team members ensures that all members are on the same level in terms of understanding the progress of the change and focusing on the overall goals of the activities (Weiner, 2009).

Lastly, ensuring motivation is an important step towards a successful change process in organizational culture (Jones, 2010). In this case, the organization must be focused on ensuring that all members are motivated and ready for the change process. Motivation will guarantee that members do not revert to the older culture because they understand the benefits of the proposed culture in the success of the organization.

Reference List

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Bargal, D., & Schmid, H. (2012). Organizational change and development in human service organizations. London, UK: Routledge.

Benn, S., Dunphy, D., & Griffiths, A. (2014). Organizational change for corporate sustainability. London, UK: Routledge.

Chang, W., & Hsieh, J. (2011). The dynamics of intellectual capital in organizational development. African Journal of Business Management, 5(6), 2345-2355.

Chen, C. X., Williamson, M. G., & Zhou, F. H. (2012). Reward system design and group creativity: An experimental investigation. The Accounting Review, 87(6), 1885-1911.

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Palmer, I., Dunford, R., & Akin, G. (2009). Managing organizational change: A multiple perspectives approach. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Irwin.

Rainey, H. (2009). Understanding and managing public organizations. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons.

Schroeder, C. (2012). Coming in from the margins: Faculty development’s emerging organizational development role in institutional change. Sterling, VS: Stylus Publishing, LLC.

Shore, L, Chung-Herrera, B., Dean, M., Ehrhart, K., Jung, D., Randel, A., & Singh, G. (2009). Diversity in organizations: Where are we now and where are we going? Human Resource Management Review, 19(2), 117-133.

Weiner, B. (2009). A theory of organizational readiness for change. Implementation Science, 4(1), 67-75.

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