ARM: Human Relations Approach

By: Kenzie Fischer

The Human Relationarms Approach to management is defined as “a management approach that promotes focusing on meeting the emotional needs of the worker with less focus on production.  It is based on the idea that employees are motivated not only by financial reward but also by a range of social factors (i.e. a sense of belonging, feelings of achievement). This theory holds that attitudes, relationships, and leadership styles play an important role in the performance of an organization (Human Relations Theory, 2016). The human relations approach theory began development in the early 1920’s. At that time, productivity was the primary focus of business. Elton Mayo, Fritz Roethlisberger, and William Dickson were the researchers who conducted the Hawthorne Studies.

The Hawthorne Studies is a series of experiments that were conducted to determine the effect of lighting on productivity at the Western Electric Company’s Hawthorne Plant. The plant workers were separated into either the experimental group or the control group. The experimental group assembled the coils in varied lighting situations, while the control group assembled the coils under normal lighting conditions. Manipulations during this experiment included additional work breaks, raises based on the worker’s performance, and altering work schedules. Mayo and his team conducted several variations of this experiment to figure out why workers in the experimental group were more productive than the workers in the control group. They soon found that the reason for increased production was due to the attention given to the workers by the experimenter and their supervisors. His studies found that if the company and/or managers took an interest in employees and cared for them, it had a positive effect on their motivation. When managers were interested in their employees, they felt more appreciated and valued. Mayo identified the importance of the ‘human factor’ in organizations. This meant that workers were now recognized as having social needs and interests (Human Relations Theory and People Management, 1953).

Mayo believed that an employee’s need for supportive work relationships was a result of losing close attachments they shared with family and friends. Therefore, their unfulfilled needs must be fulfilled by the organization. Because of this, Mayo believed that one of the most important function was to provide spontaneous cooperation; the fostering of relationships and teamwork (Organizational Communications: Strategies for Success, 2012). This perspective focuses on relationships as opposed to production. It was eventually found that organizations that used the human relations approach usually experienced lower productivity because the main focus was the workers’ psychological well- being. It was recently found in a re- analysis of the original data found that managerial discipline, financial incentives, and increased break times significantly predicted worker productivity.

Advanced RISC Machine (ARM) is a company of reduced instruction set computing (RISC) architectures for computer processors. ARM develops the architecture and licenses it to other companies, who design their own products that implement one of those architectures. It also designs cores that implement this instruction set and licenses these designs to different companies that incorporate those designs into their own products. ARM was founded in 1990 and now has offices around the world. ARM’s main technology is its microprocessor. Technology from ARM is used in 95% of the world’s mobile headsets, and in over a quarter of all electronic devices including computers, smart phones, digital cameras, and televisions.

ARM has a very diverse workforce. 2,050 employees work across 30 sites in 15 different countries. ARM is a business focused on innovation. This innovation comes from the entire business, not just its research team. ARM relies on its people to achieve this innovation. The business is focused on global learning and development, talent management, and appropriate rewards in order to develop and maintain the skills its employees need. Due to technological advances, the organization is constantly changing. Managing change requires effective employee engagement. ARM defines engagement as, “Commitment to the job, manager, team and organization which drives effort and intent to stay, resulting in improved performance and retention” (ARM, 2016). Collaborating with other employees allows them to develop practical solutions to problems. Research has shown that a 10% increase in employee commitment can lead to a 6% increase in employee effort. Ensuring high levels of motivation within its employees is vital to ARM’s marketing strategy. Teamwork is one of the most important factors within its innovative environment.

Motivation is the level of commitment an individual has to what they are doing. The motivation theory focuses on how individuals behave in the workplace. By understanding what motivates employees, it is possible to create a fun and efficient workplace. It is also important to ensure that employees are happy at work. This will create satisfied employees who will work with more enthusiasm and focus on the goals of the company. Research has found that about 75% of an organization’s employees are neither engaged nor disengaged. Considering ARM’s description of how engagement can drive performance, this means that, if more employees were engaged, the organization could expect improved performance. Motivating people does not only benefit the individual, but the business as well. A variety of values help to build ARM’s approach to motivation. These include respecting and involving others, being proactive, and adopting a positive attitude in order to solve problems. For example, ARM employees work in teams where they are encouraged to produce solutions to problems. This not only helps the business, but also their personal development.

ARM explained how the company gains employee engagement through various elements of its HR strategy of team working. Buying into and sharing common values supports a collaborative approach to innovation. Sharing knowledge helps to develop relationships and networks within the business and leads to the creation of new ideas. Developing talent through training to improve expertise benefits individuals but also helps to ensure ARM will have key skills despite global shortages in some areas. Providing opportunities for individuals to grow into new roles also supports succession planning for future leadership. Various reward systems recognize individual and team effort. ARM provides employees with opportunities for fulfill needs such as esteem and self- actualization through interesting and challenging work.

Teamwork within ARM provides employees the opportunity to share their knowledge and ideas across the entire organization. Open and honest communication is key to team work. ARM has an ‘open door’ policy where employees can go to managers at any time with questions or issues. This supports the spotlight on information and knowledge sharing. ARM uses employee engagement as a key factor in motivation. This is a satisfier as employees begin to develop a genuine relationship with their teammates. A number of other motivators are used at ARM, such as employees receiving shares in the company as well as bonuses based on how well the company is doing.

Mayo’s beliefs are parallel to ARM’s focus on developing its employees as part of its business strategy. Employees at ARM work best within learning and development teams. Managers at ARM have responsibility for motivating individuals and their teams. Important elements of this include: 1. Communicating and explaining the ARM goal, values, and strategy to all team members so everyone is working at the same level. 2. Providing appropriate training and induction for new employees as well as coaching for all in order to develop skills, confidence, and self- reliance. 3. Carrying out one- to- one meetings and employee reviews to assess performance and set personal and team objectives. 4. Putting in place succession planning for the team and manager roles to ensure long term performance. Personal development is crucial to the HR strategy at ARM. Employee reviews allow the individual to reflect on the contributions they made while giving feedback and support.

ARM’s strategy places great importance on employee engagement to create a motivated team. This is crucial given the innovative and highly skilled nature of the company. By emphasizing training and development, open communication, and a fun approach, ARM has created a productive and committed global workforce.

 

 

 

 

 

References

Avtgis, T. A., Rancer, A. S., & Liberman, C. J. (2012). Organizational Communication: Strategies for Success. Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt.

(2016). Human relations theory – Oxford Reference. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://www.oxfordreference.com/view/10.1093/oi/authority.20110803095949990

Human Relations Theory and People Management. (n.d.). Retrieved October 31, 2016, from https://www.corwin.com/sites/default/files/upm-binaries/9805_039184ch02.pdf

Ltd., A. (n.d.). Home – ARM. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from https://www.arm.com/

 

Organizational Socialization with AT&T

By: Torin Wetzel

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http://www.csc.com/global_alliances/alliances/112505-at_t

 

 

 

 

 

The purpose of this case study is to examine the organizational socialization within the company AT&T. This concept of organizational socialization is a factor in most companies throughout the world. AT&T has within the last couple years, had some changes that has affected the organizational socialization for the employees. This changed the ways that current employees were training as well as new employees. The goal of the case study is to examine these changes and provide examples of the effectiveness.

Organizational Socialization is the process where individuals are learning the ropes of an organizations culture because of a new or changing role. Essentially, it is how an employee learns to fit in to his or her role with the organization.  This process included an employee understanding the organization as a whole, as well as the specifics that the job will entail. There are multiple steps for organizational socialization, starting with the anticipatory stage. The anticipatory stage is all of the prior socialization efforts related to the organization that were known by the newcomer prior to entering the organization. This can also be the knowledge that a current worker has of the new programs that may be set in the future which demand for organizational socialization. Newcomers are almost always subject to this stage because prior knowledge at all falls into the anticipatory stage. Information that you may know from the internet, friends and family, or media all falls within this stage. The second stage of organizational socialization is the encounter stage. The encounter stage is where employees start to be able to learn the ropes, like corporate training. Usually, a person cannot get enough knowledge in the anticipatory stage to be able to breeze through the encounter stage. The encounter stage involves learning from coworkers, teachers, and supervisors. The third and final stage of organizational socialization, according to the book Organization Communication: Strategies for Success is the metamorphosis stage. The metamorphosis stage is in which employees begin to accept and manifest organizational norms and become organizational insiders. This is time when employees are brought into the organization just as everyone else and seen as a coworker. Employees at this point have learned the necessary training and information needed to continue as part of the organization.

Organizational socialization is very important within a company. Companies need to make sure that every employee fits in and is ready to take on the tasks of the company. An employee out of place can be very detrimental to a company, especially a company that is trying to grow and expand. New employees and current employees can both be affected by this socialization. New employees need to learn the ropes and the culture of the organization. They need to learn how to act in the business place and how to work for the best interest of the organization. Current employees are affected by the organization as a whole taking a turn to new ideas. New technology or work environments can leave a current employee with some organizational socialization to work on. Being able to adapt to new ideas and formats is part of the socialization. Employee training of most kinds also fall into this category. Employees, whether new or current, need to be open to learning more about the organization and how they want operations to run. The employees that are more socialized with their organization are typically more satisfied, committed, and make more than others. Employees that are socialized well are also less likely to quit their jobs, and are more likely to build successful careers.

Organizational socialization promotes change in the workplace. The concept promotes people to be able to adapt and to be eager to learn new ideas and concepts.  While promoting possible change, it is interesting how organizational socialization can also add stability and unity. While employees may be coming and going from time to time, the operations of socialization are implemented to make sure that the main theme in the workplace and in the environment stays the same. Newcomers learn the ropes and lay of the land as people say, before they are welcomed as a coworker. This enables the organization to continue to conserve unity.

The company being analyzed in this case study is AT&T. AT&T stands for American Telephone and Telegraph. AT&T is a telecommunications conglomerate. AT&T is the second largest provider of mobile telephone services and the largest provider of fixed telephone services, and in the United States it also provides subscription television services through DirecTV. This statement regarding the company is on the about us page of their website, “At AT&T, we’re bringing it all together. We deliver advanced mobile services, next-generation TV, high-speed internet and smart solutions for people and businesses. That’s why we’re investing to be the premier integrated communications company” (att). AT&T is a huge company out of Texas that is always working to try to become the largest prover of mobile services in the world.

In this case study examination of the organizational socialization will take place within AT&T. This involves employee training as well as employee development and mentoring. The main reason behind this case study is the recent shift of the company that has left current and new employees with the task of completing new and vigorous training. New workers are being trained differently than they once were as the company is adapting and current workers are being told to adapt, or not be a part of the company anymore. This is a trait we have seen in case studies with other companies. If someone’s skills are no longer needed and are outdated in the company, even if they are liked, there services are to be terminated. It is a harsh reality. At AT&T there are at least giving the current workers a chance to stay with their current positions as long as they complete the required training. New software and new ideas make for changes with current employees and that’s exactly what has happened at AT&T. This is unique because training was needed for over 130,000 employees at AT&T. Another reason that it is unique is because it changes the dynamics of the company. The new employees are now taking the same training as the current employees in order to learn the new software and ideas. The question is if it will make more unity between workers or less. Organizational socialization is easier when the new group of employees are coming into a “freshmen” type role where they learn from the older employees. What happens when the new employees are learning the same information as current employees for the first time? The unity within the organization has to still be kept in check. AT&T does this with asking employees to buy into training. Many new employees are having to pay for some of their training and classes. This is a way to keep a feeling of initiation for the newcomers, thus keeping somewhat of level heads for the more seasoned workers.

“By 2020, AT&T has said 75% of its network will be controlled by software. To make this happen, the company has reorganized about 130,000 employees to tear down the walls between IT and network operations to move faster to release software. The company is shifting to a DevOps mode, a software development method that emphasizes collaboration between developers and other IT professionals. DevOps was pioneered by companies such as Netflix. It’s part of a big pivot for the company that will require employees to learn new skills such as software-defined networking architecture and protocols as well as how to apply cybersecurity in a highly virtualized environment” (King, 2015). Many companies in the past have taught small groups new software of this kind, but never such a massive group. To achieve this large goal, AT&T teamed up with Georgia tech and online education company Udacity to teach these skills. Online course and classroom courses are offered by AT&T. department leaders with AT&T say that employees at AT&T have great skills to bring to the table, but the goal of the training is to get them to be able to adapt to where the company wants to be in the future. In other words, the company wants its employees to be able to evolve as the company does without slowing down production.

There are multiple organizational socialization factors involved with AT&T’s process of “retooling” over 130,000 employees. The anticipatory stage will change regarding AT&T. People from the outside have heard of the huge reform that AT&T is involved with, and word of mouth travels fast. Articles in newspapers, and on the media show people of the complexities of this reformation. This is turn will leave possible new employees with different prior knowledge of the company gin into working at AT&T. It is not for the better or worse it is just different. They will know that many current employees are having to take and some pay for training classes in order to keep their job. They will also know that the training will be given to them prior to joining the company if it applies to their job. This is affect decisions in some ways and it is not clear in which direction.

The second stage of encounter will largely change with AT&T. Workers will encounter this new training whether they are new or current. This is a fact and it will be different than it ever has been before. The demeanor of current employees may also change, either for their good or bad and that will also affect how they treat new employees. The fact that new and current employees may be in the same training sessions may also change the organizations morale and demeanor. Lastly, the metamorphosis stage will stay similar because being part of the company will stay the same. A new employee will be involved just as before and jobs will be given to the most qualified.

This new system at AT&T will push people aside who refuse to adapt and train to become more knowledgeable. It is said that workers who do not adapt will not have a future in the company. The organizational socialization in this company seems to be able to have some improvement. When employees are told to basically adapt, or leave, it can leave a very sour taste. AT&T wants their employees to be happy and work well together, but it also needs its employees to be up to date with the new software that the company is implementing. The company is taking a hit with their organizational socialization in that workers are not going to be happy to take courses and new training, and especially not happy to pay for some of them. The new employees will also have to adapt to this new software and that will also cause some sonority type issues within the socialization. AT&T could do a better job implementing organizational socialization in the recent past. They are adapting as a company, so they need to work to help the employees come along in a way that keep them happy and working with the same unity as before.

Other organizations could learn a lot by AT&T’s example of organization socialization. With the organizational socialization changing so much because of the new software, it is important for a company to keep the workers morale and the goals of the company the same. Other companies can see how AT&T chose to adapt with its employees and decide whether that way would be best for them or not. Every company is trying to evolve, so at some point there will be a time where new and current employees will have to learn futuristic and evolving ideas of the company. When this time comes the company will have to initial organizational socialization to keep the goals, and the missions of the company at hand, but also making sure the employees are satisfied and happy.

AT&T’s organizational socialization was strongly affected by the adaption the employees had to make with the new software. Changes in the company’s ideas should not change the socialization that needs to occur.

 

 

References

AT&T Asks Employees to Buy into Training. (2016). Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://www.eleapsoftware.com/att-asks-employees-to-buy-into-training/

Avtgis, T. A., & Rancer, A. S. (2012). Organizational communication: Strategies for success. Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt Pub.

Buckley, S. (2015, June 8). AT&T shifts 130K employees to focus on software networking transition. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://www.fiercetelecom.com/telecom/at-t-shifts-130k-employees-to-focus-software-networking-transition

King, R. (2015, June 5). AT&T’s Shift to DevOps and New Tech Requires a Massive Training Effort. Wall Street Journal. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://blogs.wsj.com/cio/2015/06/05/atts-shift-to-devops-and-new-tech-requires-a-massive-training-effort/

Hardy, Q. (2016, February 13). Gearing Up for the Cloud, AT&T Tells Its Workers: Adapt, or Else. New York Times. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/14/technology/gearing-up-for-the-cloud-att-tells-its-workers-adapt-or-else.html?_r=0

Numbers, B. T. (n.d.). AT&T Company Information. Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://www.att.com/gen/investor-relations?pid=5711

Organizational Socialization in Career Development – IResearchNet. (2015). Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://career.iresearchnet.com/career-development/organizational-socialization/

Time, F. (n.d.). How Does Socialization Promote Change in Organizations? Retrieved October 31, 2016, from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/socialization-promote-change-organizations-38522.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Behind the Scenes: Unilever

By: Chaise Perez

Introduction

“Unilever has a simple but clear purpose – to make sustainable living commonplace. We believe this is the best long-term way for our business to grow.” (unilever.com) Unilever owns over 400 brands, but focuses on 13 main brands. Unilever’s brands are used in daily activities. Unilever works hard with consumers and employees to make sure that consumers do have the essentials they need in their everyday lives. Their brands go from Hellmann’s condiments to Dove’s products to Klondike‘s ice cream and other fun treats. In this case study, I am going to talk about the general systems theory and how Unilever applies to this theory. Unilever follows the general systems theory in many different ways. To start I will be talking about the theory itself, then I will move onto talking about what the Unilever Sustainable Plan is and what it stands for, and furthermore I will talk about what parts of the theory I believe it follows the most.

unilever

Photo credit: Wall Street Daily, quora.com

General Systems Theory

The general systems theory, takes certain properties or characteristics of our everyday world and ways of life and apply them to organizations or companies. According to panarchy.org, is “existing models, principles, and laws that apply to generalized systems or their subclasses, irrespective of their particular kind, the nature of their component elements, and the relation or ‘forces’ between them.” The theory has many factors that make up the theory. This includes things such as inputs, outputs, throughputs, permeable boundaries, homeostasis, and equifinality. Inputs and throughputs are things that go into the system, while outputs are things that go out of the system and into the public. Permeable boundaries are where the inner system and the outside environment meet to exchange certain factors or elements. Homeostasis is the complete balancing of the system at hand. Equifinality is coming up with different ideas to achieve one common goal. The system itself also has systems that fall under the theory.

The general systems theory itself is just one giant overview that shows the systems perspective. There is a subsystem and a suprasystem. A subsystem is a subsection or smaller section that falls under a larger section. For example, at Ashland University has over 90 possible majors for students to study. These majors all belong to colleges based off the subject of the major. Each major would be a subsystem. The colleges that the majors belong to would be known as the suprasystem of the education system. In addition to these systems, there is also the open and closed systems.

Organizations have permeable boundaries which is very important to see that the customers’ needs are met. The open system is organizations consistently working with the consumers to continually improve their products and the quality of their products to fit with the surrounding environment. Feedback is very important to the organizations that do have open systems. Feedback is the data or information that a company receives from consumers that is negative or positive about their products or service. From receiving feedback, companies can either improve their systems and productivity or they can leave things the same because they see nothing wrong with what they are doing. This could lead to some problems within the organization. If they choose to do so, this means they are a closed system. Closed systems are just the opposite of open systems. When organizations do not work with customers that are immediate to them, they become entropic. Entropy is when a system verges upon dying out. Although there are organizations that are closed systems, majority are open systems which leads the companies to becoming a cybernetic system.

A cybernetic system is when companies self-regulate based on the feedback they have received from their customers. This leads to system maintenance or system adaptation. System maintenance is keeping current routines and work strategies. System adaptation is changing or adapting to the environment and the changes that are occurring while using feedback in order to do so. If a company is doing poorly, then they are more likely to system adaptation while a company that is striving, will use system maintenance. Organizations use system adaptation more to keep up with the constant changes in the world and to always better themselves.

Critical Analysis

Unilever is a company that is solely focused on not only its customers, but helping the changing world that we live in. According to their website biography, they have a quote directly from their CEO, Paul Polam. ‘“We cannot close our eyes to the challenges that the world faces. Business must make an explicit and positive contribution to addressing them. I’m convinced we can create a more equitable and sustainable world for all of us by doing so,” says Unilever CEO Paul Polman. “But this means that business has to change. The Unilever Sustainable Plan is a blueprint for sustainable growth.”’ Unilever owns over 400 brands but focuses only 13 brands due to the impact those brands have made on this world. To give a better understand of what they do, here is a description of what the Sustainable Plan is.

The Unilever Sustainable Plan is their layout for reaching their goals to vision to grow their business, while helping their environmental print from their growth. The positive social impact increases in the process of doing so. The Plan gives them certain targets, finding how consumers use their brands and showcasing what materials (that are all natural and raw) the companies that are under Unilever use. They are constantly trying to find new ways to work with other businesses, work with the government and the society as a whole. One of their focuses is on global warming what effects it has on the human race so they are in consistent search of ways for everyone to work with the environment to have safe and easy living being as natural as possible. Their main purpose to make a sustainable living place, that’s why it’s called the Unilever Sustainable Plan. Their ethical standards and work policies is what this case study will be showcasing.

The logo is a blue capital “U”. If you look closely enough at it, you can see there are 25 icons that make the shape of the U. Each icon means something. They each are representing the different companies that make up Unilever. For example, there is a lock of hair for all the shampoo brands, a hand, a palm tree, a heart, and many more. There are many different links and sections to their website that breaks down each purpose, value, principle, and more that the organization holds its companies too. You can read on their website that, “Our Corporate Purpose states that to succeed requires “the highest standards of corporate behaviour towards everyone we work with, the communities we touch, and the environment on which we have an impact.”’

Their main values and purpose are always working with integrity, positive impact and continuous improvement, setting out our aspirations and working with others. They have many principles that they live by as well. These all include, standard of conduct, obeying the law, employees, consumers, shareholders, business partners, community involvement public activities, the environment, innovation, competition, business integrity, conflicts of interest, and finally compliance, monitoring and reporting. They have five main priorities that they live by. These include, a better future for children, a healthier future, a more confident future, a future for farmers and farming, and lastly a better future for the planet.

Their first priority, a better future for children, falls under their companies, Signal and Close-Up who partnered with FDI World Dental Federation to promote better oral hygiene. Omo and Persil, just two of their laundry brands, work with parents to tell their children that dirt is good which they can get stains of their clothes with their brands. Lastly, Unilever partnered with World Food Programme to start, Together for Child Vitality to help out with the lack of nutrition in poorer countries. For a healthier future, their Flora/Becel margarine brands have figured out a way to help reduce high cholesterol levels. Vaseline has started the Vaseline Skin Care Foundation to help with research going into skin diseases. And Lifebuoy soap has promoted a healthy life style by teaching good handwashing skills to prevent sickness.

To have a more confident future, Dove started a campaign called, Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty, which insists on not using models but “real” women while advertising. This inspired them to start the Dove Self Esteem Fund. Just from their advertisements, they have already made differences in women and young girls’ lives. Their Sunsilk hair care brand and some of the world’s top hair stylist to create better and more efficient hair products. Close-Up toothpaste has helped many improve their dental care. To create a better future for farming and farmers, the companies Lipton tea and Ben & Jerry’s use all natural products in their foods to provide a more sustainable product.

Lastly, to create a better future for our planet, their website reads, “We’re aiming to grow our business while reducing our environmental footprint and working across the supply chain for every brand to do so. Our Laundry brands, including Surf, Omo, Persil and Comfort, have launched the Cleaner Planet Plan together, encouraging consumers to change their laundry habits to reduce water and energy consumption. Our Lipton tea brand backs sustainable forest management projects in Africa.” You can see that they hold their companies to very high standards to have such quality products. They have very high expectations of the way they would like their products made and what goes in them. They are constantly trying to be sustainable and efficient in all of their work and in their products that they are selling to their trusting customers.

Unilever embodies the general systems theory in a few ways. One, they fit the definition perfectly. Their main focus is on the living systems properties that apply to their organization. They make sure they help meet the wants and mainly the needs of the human population. Two, they do have an open system, along with showing the concepts of homeostasis and equifinality. All of their principles and values are very universal for others. Unilever itself is a suprasystem while all the companies that are under or that were bought are subsystems. For example, Axe and Ben & Jerry’s are both subsystems of the large suprasystem which is Unilever. The company does very well in embodying this theory. There is always room for improvement. For example, they could spend more time on their less-known or popular brands to switch the awareness of them around. Easily by more advertising and more non-profit work to get the idea of the companies out there. They are continually building up the image of not only themselves, but of others too. This is very important to their ethics and morals that the organization expects out of all of its companies.

Conclusion

 I believe that many many other organizations could easily learn from Unilever. Unilever is a very organized company and is a great influence. I believe they have made a difference on not only their customers, but people in general. They uphold such high values and morals that it is truly inspiring. They have five main priorities that they live by and they are all to benefit the people living in this world. They are concerned about their well-being, their confidence, their futures, farmers and farming, along with the planet. To me, these are things all organizations live by. Unilever does own over 400 brands, but they specialist each one to take care of all us in order to have a safer and easier life. Unilever believes in making a difference in this world, and for this I hold the upmost respect for the organization, along with everyone that works for them. For a little more inspiration, I leave you with this quote from their biography on Unilever’s website, “And by leveraging our global reach and inspiring people to take small, everyday actions, we believe we can help make a big difference to the world.”

References

  1. @. (n.d.). Purpose, values & principles. Retrieved October 27, 2016, from https://www.unilever.com/about/who-we-are/purpose-and-principles/
  2. @. (n.d.). Unilever global company website | Unilever Global. Retrieved October 27, 2016, from https://www.unilever.com/
  3. By having their products centered around improving the world – instead of just the company’s bottom line – employees at Unilever care more and accomplish more. (n.d.). Why Unilever Unites Its Portfolio of 400 Brands Around One Core Value. Retrieved October 27, 2016, from https://business.linkedin.com/talent-solutions/blog/talent-connect/2015/why-unilever-unites-its-portfolio-of-400-brands-around-one-core-value
  4. Ludwig von Bertalanffy. (n.d.). Retrieved October 27, 2016, from http://panarchy.org/vonbertalanffy/systems.1968.html
  5. Walonick, D. S. (n.d.). General Systems Theory. Retrieved October 27, 2016, from http://www.statpac.org/walonick/systems-theory.htm
  6. In search of the good business. (2014). Retrieved October 27, 2016, from http://www.economist.com/news/business/21611103-second-time-its-120-year-history-unilever-trying-redefine-what-it-means-be
  7. Collective Action, Impressive Progress in 2015 | Sustainable Living | Unilever brightFuture USA. (n.d.). Retrieved October 27, 2016, from https://brightfuture.unilever.us/stories/482680/Collective-Action–Impressive-Progress-in-2015-.aspx
  8. Avtgis, T. A., & Rancer, A. S. (2012). Organizational communication: Strategies for success. Dubuque, IA: Kendall Hunt Pub.

 

Netflix

Daivon Barrow

netflix

Growing up I can always remembering going to Block Buster to get the latest rental on the movies. The store was so beneficial for people because you can watch a movie by renting the movie. Over time as things changed, and a new & improved software was created. It allowed people to watch many of movies from their location. Netflix was the name of the new software that made a difference in people’s leisure time.  In 1997 Reed Hastings, and Mark Rudolph changed the dynamics, and culture of streaming media, video on demand online, and DVD through email. These two young men had a remarkable dream, and made it more accessible for everyone. Netflix purpose was to become the best global entertainment distribution service, licensing entertainment content around the world, and creating markets that are accessible to film makers according to Netflix Inc”.

Of course by having an impactful creation worldwide it would establish a sense of culture expectancy. Netflix has seven key culture component that they abide by. The seven things are values are what we value, high performance, freedom & responsibility, context, not control, and highly aligned loosely coupled, pay top market, promotions and development.  Those are the seven key assets that typically that makes the reputation of this successful company. First they have implemented some very important rules that they stand by. These rules makes the employee’s job more accessible, and flexible. The reasoning behind that statement is because two of the aspects are high performance, and freedom & responsibility. Netflix expects maximum effort, and assets around their company not liabilities. Netflix also states they have a certain type of skills and behavioral characteristics they have installed for their employees to follow. Showing, and teaching the employees etiquette is another reason why this company is unique. Netflix stands out with different things that they require within their employees.  This shows that the company have some intensity for being competitive. They require these different characteristics in their employees to recruit and hire the best.   It also lets you know that they have high expectations for their employees.

Also they suggest, and require you to get your freedom, but be responsible. This rule is a reminder for employees to allow them to get their freedom, but be responsible while you are doing it. The culture foster a successful organization because it allow one to be comfortable at all times. The organization employees loving working for them. The more everyone is comfortable, and enjoying it, the company will continue to be successful.

Netflix culture Is similar to my organization that I have started. Brothers in Action is an organization that was created to help with the division in conversations, and dialogues through all men on campus. It was created to allow some males to have a sense of comfortability through an organization on campus. In comparison Netflix have a sense of similar organization.   If everyone if feeling involved in the organization, and everyone is comfortable it will increase the effectiveness of the organization. After a small comparison of Netflix and Brothers In Action culturally I found another similarity. High performance is something we take deep pride in. Whenever we are preparing for an event or doing community engagement projects we urge for high performance. When you perform highly, and complete a task that you prepared yourself for you gain confidence collectively, and it’s a great feeling. In my opinion for you to have a successful organization or work well in a group everyone needs to be involved.

As shown Netflix is a company that is moving forward, and finding new ways and ideas for it to improve. Over the years it has made remarkable innovations, and as technology increases I am excited to see what Netflix has in store.

USAA: Insurance for the Military

By: Torin Wetzel

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https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.usaa.mobile.android.usaa

 

USAA is an insurance company made for military members and their families. This case study will explore the different ways USAA trains its employees to deal with the situations and unique needs of the customers while keeping the employees happy. USAA uses unique strategies in order to get their employees acclimated to the type of customers they have. Working with military members and their families is much different than the norm, so it is extremely important to USAA that their employees be fully trained to deal with every situation that may occur. “In a recent study by Forrester Research, USAA received the top rating from customers, a full 81% of whom said they believed the company does what’s best for them rather than for the bottom line” (McGregor 05). This number proves how hard USAA works in order to achieve what is best for its customers by training employees to be able to work for their best needs. USAA also finds way to gain employee trust and give them a sense of importance and recognition.

The USAA standard contains the following cores values which outline the full standard of the company; service, loyalty, honesty, and integrity. These four core values are the base for the entire standard. A big part of USAA is building trust and keeping the company first. Building trust with the company as well as the clients is very important with insurance, the employees have to be able to live up to their word. Keeping the company first aligns with this as well because an employee must be able to do what is best for the company and its clients at all times, adapting to the various needs. The other standards that are involved with USAA include, creating conditions for people to succeed, creating diverse perspectives, and innovation. Being able to help people to succeed is important with pushing ideas that will benefit the customer as well as sharing knowledge with transparency. Diverse perspectives are extremely important to have in USAA as well, because these military members come from very different backroads and it important to be able to relate to them in some ways. The last standard is innovation and that is the ability to bring new ideas forward and take smart risks for the better and possible evolution of the company.

The USAA standard aligns with the utilitarian perspective of ethical decision making. The reason being is because they USAA standard prides itself on transparency and relationships with customers. Honesty and integrity are two of the core values and they base the ethical behavior by action. The unique training of USAA definitely provides employees with ways to interact with customers ethically. The training provides the employees with experiences that show how difficult military life is every day. These eye opening experiences help the employees to relate to the customers more, and understand where they are coming from. This makes for a much better relationship between employees and customers, which in turn creates more satisfaction on both ends. It’s not hard to understand why USAA employees enjoy their work so much, while still keeping customers happy.

 

An organization in which I am a part of is the men’s basketball team at Ashland University. Ethical standards that I would include for a code of ethical would include; responsibility to the team, unity with team members and coaches, respect to the organization, and trust in the process. Responsibility to the team comes from being accountable for you actions that involve yourself, or team members. Team members have the responsibility to be to practices, games and training on time, and have the right attitude. They also have the responsibility to be the best member of the team that they can be, while representing the team in the right way. Unity with team members and coaches is extremely important for the team’s success. A team with strong chemistry and unity can often beat a more talented team. Getting along with teammates and spending time with one another is part of being in the organization. You have to have a vested interest in the coaches and the players. They are your family away from your real family, and team chemistry will help to make everyone succeed. With unity comes trusting each member has your back, a team that is fearless as a whole can accomplish great things. Respect in the organization comes with trying the best you can to represent your team and in this case school in the best way that you can. You have to respect the team members and the coaches in order to learn anything and to get better. You have to respect the whole organization in order to truly do your best to represent it in a god light. Lastly. To trust the process is very important. A member must trust that the coaches and other players have their best interest at hand and will work together to achieve the goal. The ,members have to understand that while it may not be fun to run and do conditioning at practice, it will pay off when they play games. To understand the end goal and what it takes to get there is very important.

New members of the team are trained by showing them how to abide by the ethical standards. Having leaders to take them under their wings and show them the way things are supposed to be done. Show them the respect the other players have for the organization and teach them the unity that the team has. New members often just need to wait back and watch for a little while to understand the culture of the team and the dynamics at which the team works. Once they understand the values that the team as a whole has, that is when it is easier for them to join.

 

Fleurke, B. X. (2009, January). Walking a Mile in the Shoes of your Customer. Retrieved October 17, 2016, from http://www.corporate-ethics.org/walking-a-mile-in-the-shoes-of-your-customer/

Long, N. (n.d.). What Are Ethical Standards in the Workplace? Retrieved October 17, 2016, from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/ethical-standards-workplace-11576.html

McGregor, J. (2005, October 1). Employee Innovator: USAA. Retrieved October 15, 2016, from https://www.fastcompany.com/53782/employee-innovator-usaa

Shevory, K. (2014, September 01). Boot Camp for Bankers. Retrieved October 16, 2016, from http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/09/01/boot-camp-for-bankers/?_r=0

PDF: https://www.usaajobs.com/docs/USAA-Standard.pdf

 

USAA: Working Military Style

By Kenzie Fischer

The United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a Texas- based financial services group that offers banking, investing, and insurance to people and families that serve, or who have served, in the United States military. The purpose of this case study is to look deeper into the USAA and find what their qualities are and to also describe the training USAA employees undergo.

One of the main qualities of USAA is “Keep our membership and mission first.” This means that the company aims to protect enterprise performance and prioritize and make smart adjustments to best support their membership and mission. They also want to achieve their goals with personal accountability. The second aspect of USAA is, “Live our core values: Service, Loyalty, Honesty, and Integrity.” USAA wants to embrace their values as common ground with their members, co- workers, and community. They expect their employees to be a positive representative for USAA inside and outside of the workplace (The USAA Standard, 2015).

usaa-logo

The third quality is, “Be authentic and build trust.” USAA’s employees should be aware that their words and actions should be consistent throughout all situations, communicating with honesty and empathy. In order to build trust between employees, they need to keep all of their commitments. “Create conditions for people to succeed” is the next quality of USAA. In order to make their company the best it can be, their employees need to have clear communication, and share their ideas within the team, encouraging others to problem- solve (The USAA Standard, 2015).

The fifth quality is “Purposefully include diverse perspectives for superior result.” USAA employees are divided into equally diverse teams to include different perspectives and viewpoints. The company then tests the new ideas and alternative viewpoints. The final standard is to “Innovate and build for the future.” While in their teams, the employees discuss problems and brainstorm questions that improve or simplify work, which makes it easier for co- workers and members to do business with the company (The USAA Standard, 2015).

The USAA standard incorporates aspects of all perspectives of ethical decision making. Although all of the USAA’s qualities coincide with ethical decision making, they seem to mostly align with the Relationship- Based perspective. This perspective means that ethical behavior is achieved through open and honest communication within the workplace. The long- term relationships replace the commonly competitive buyer/ seller markets with “domesticated” markets; instead of competing with one another, the companies behave like team members (Sharma, 2001).

The most unique style USAA uses to teach their standards to their employees is called the “boot camp” program. This ten week program forces employees to undergo military style exercise sessions multiple times a day and eat military meals for lunch (Fleurke, 2009). This “boot camp” program’s goal is to help employees understand what their customers go through/ went through and build respect.

For my critical analysis, I have designed a code of ethics for Pizzazz, Baton, Pom, and Dance Studio, where I work for my mom as a professional dance coach. This code is made up of seven ethical standards:

  1. The teacher must create and maintain a professional image. The creation and maintenance of a professional image imposes on the teacher a number of professional and ethical responsibilities, some of which I will explain later in this Code of Ethics.
  2. An educator’s first professional duty is to the enhancement of the quality of dance education provided to the students in his/ her charge. The educator must strive to improve his/ her techniques for teaching all types of dance, especially as modified or revised in accordance with the progress of dance education. Teachers should make a constant effort to improve professionally through continual study.
  3. The teacher shares a collective responsibility by working for Pizzazz, to uphold its goals and standards, and to abide by its policies. A teacher or group of teachers cannot make unauthorized representations to outside people or other organizations.
  4. It is the educator’s responsibility to maintain relationships with students, assistants, and employees on a professional basis. Pizzazz recognizes the unique trust placed in the student- teacher relationship. This relationship should also include the teacher’s assistants and employees.
  5. All forms of sexual behavior or harassment with students are unethical, even when students invite or consent to such behavior.
  6. Pizzazz recognizes that a higher standard of personal behavior is expected of an educator because students, assistants, and employees perceive the teacher as an example of integrity. The personal behavior of a teacher should be legal, ethical, and moral; appropriate assistance should be sought by the teacher for personal problems or conflicts. The teacher’s behavior should always reflect that the teacher is aware that he/ she is considered an example to students, assistants, and employees.
  7. Any advertising, including announcements, public statements, or promotional activities, should not misrepresent professional qualifications or contain any false, misleading, deceptive, or unfair statements.

The objective of this Code of Ethics is to enable dance educators and their students to meet for a cooperative and collective session. We aim to advance the art of dance and improve the practices. Pizzazz strives for the mutual interest and cooperation of its students.

References

Fleurke, X., (January, 2009). Walking a mile in the shoes of your customer. Business Roundtable: Institute for Corporate Ethics. Retrieved from http://www.corporate-ethics.org/walking-a-mile-in-the-shoes-of-your-customer/

McGregor, J., (1, September, 2005). Employee innovator: USAA. Fast Company Magazine. Retrieved from https://www.fastcompany.com/53782/employee-innovator-usaa

Sharma, M. V., (2001). Industrial and Organizational Salesforce Roles: A Relationship- Based Perspective. Retrieved from https://www.jstor.org/stable/40470048?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents

Shevory, K., (1, September, 2014). Boot camp for bankers. The New York Times. Retrieved from http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/09/01/boot-camp-for-bankers/?_r=0

The USAA standard (2015) [PDF Document]. Retrieved from https://www.usaajobs.com/docs/USAA-Standard.pdf

Work or Boot Camp?

By Chaise Perez

Introduction

In order to understand what their customers go through, the United Services Automobile Association (USAA) came up with boot camp that is a requirement for all their employees. USAA serves mainly military personnel and their families, providing insurance, mutual funds, and other banking services.

usaa-logo

Photo credit: bankingtech.com

Organizational Culture

USAA has many standards that they hold their employees to.  These include keeping their membership and mission first, live their core values, be authentic and build trust, create conditions for people to succeed, purposefully include diverse perspectives for superior results, and finally innovate and build for the future.  Keeping their membership and mission first I believe is definitely the most important thing that USAA can pride themselves on. In keeping their mission first, they must protect enterprise performance, brand and reputation above their personal, and unit or CoSA goals and also prioritize and make smart trade. Employees also must be versatile learners so that they can proactively deal with membership’s changing needs.

The USAA standards matches up with fits with all of the perspectives of ethical decision making. The USAA standards fits because each of the standards follow the definitions of the organizational ethics perspectives in ethical decision making. For example, foundational matches up with the USAA standards because foundational organizational ethics have an explicit code of conduct that must be followed. In order to become an employee at USAA, you must go through explicit training and you must follow every standard that they hold you to.

The training of the employees, which many are actually former soldiers, is an intense 10-week long boot camp that was designed just for them. It greatly resembles a training camp that U.S. soldiers go through. They do many of the same physical aspects, these all include the heavy uniforms, the prepackaged meals, and strict commands. The purpose of this training camp is to help USAA’s employees understand what their customers go through on an everyday basis. It allows them to become more empathetic when handling customers and issues they may be having with the company. I believe this absolutely a remarkable thing for USAA to do. It is definitely not something you hear about every day.

Critical Analysis

For this analysis, I have chosen to create a code of ethics for the place of my current employment, Ashland University’s Public Relations office, which is also in charge of Ashland’s News Center. I decided to go with only four ethical standards for the office, which include all of the following:

  1. Making sure what is being sent out is all correct: Employees working in office that are sending out press releases and news letters must have 100% correct information. In order to make sure this happens, employees must contact anyone who is involved and ask them questions involving the release. Employees must also check with other sources and other employees to make sure everything looks okay and is correct before it can be released.
  2. People outside the office must be treated with the highest amount of respect: Employees will make mistakes, it does happen. If someone complains, employees are required to respectfully talk to the person and try to solve the problem. For example, if there is a misspelling in a name in a release sent out, and a student notices and decides to take action on it, in not the nicest way. For example, if there is a misspelling in a name in a release sent out, a student finds it and takes action; however, it is not done in the nicest manner, our employees must still treat them with the upmost respect.
  3. Make sure employees’ needs are met: In order to have a good work environment, the employees must be in good health, physical and mental. The employees should not have an overwhelming work schedule, especially students. For this to happen, students and employees should have a limited amount of hours allow to work a week. This also fills their needs of break and plenty of time for other activities such as homework, family, class, sports, etc.
  4. Have a great work environment: Everyone in the office should respect each other and have good communication skills. In the office, it is a very relaxed atmosphere and we would like to keep it that way. If any problems are to occur, talk Steve Hannan, the man who runs the Public Relations office, or talk to the person directly.  Everything should be resolved within a day or two. Keep up the positive attitudes and smiling faces.

Four organizational ethics perspectives in ethical decision making that go along with the standards I have made for this company are foundational, situational, rights/justice-based, and relationship based. I chose these four because I believe they each go with the individual standards that I had created. These ethical standards are crucial because I believe these could work because it is all about the customer or person that employees and companies are trying to please and make sure they are fully satisfied.

References

 

McGregor, J. (2012). Employee Innovator: USAA. Retrieved October 14, 2016, from https://www.fastcompany.com/53782/employee-innovator-usaa

Fleurke, B. X. (n.d.). Menu. Retrieved October 14, 2016, from http://www.corporate-ethics.org/walking-a-mile-in-the-shoes-of-your-customer/

Innovation, N. R. (n.d.). Culture at USAA | USAA Career Centers. Retrieved October 14, 2016, from https://www.usaajobs.com/life-at-usaa/culture/