The Importance of Studying Organizational Behavior

1. Introduction

Organizational Behavior is a field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups, and structure have on behavior within organizations, for the purpose of applying such knowledge toward improving an organization’s effectiveness.
It is an interdisciplinary field that includes sociology, psychology, communication, and management. Organizational behavior has become one of the most popular areas of study within business schools across the globe.

2. What is Organizational Behavior?

Organizational behavior (OB) can be defined as the study of human behavior in organizational settings, the interface between human behavior and the organization, and the organization itself.
OB research can be categorized in at least three ways: individuals in organizations (micro-level), work groups (meso-level), and finally, organizations as a whole system (macro-level).
At its core, the study of OB involves understanding how people behave within organizations, how organizations affect people’s behavior, and how to use this knowledge to improve organizational effectiveness.

3. Importance of Organizational Behavior

The importance of studying organizational behavior is twofold: first, to build better organizations and second, to help people adapt to changing organizations. In other words, organizational behavior has both a normative and a descriptive focus. The normative focus is concerned with how things should be – in other words, with what constitutes effective or efficient organizational behavior. TheDescriptive focus is concerned with how things actually are – that is, with describing and understanding actual organizational behavior.
While both of these foci are important, the descriptive focus is arguably more important in today’s rapidly changing business environment. In a world where businesses must constantly adapt to new challenges and opportunities, it is essential to have a good understanding of how people actually behave within organizations. Only then can we hope to effectively manage and change organizational behavior.

4. Theories of Organizational Behavior

A variety of different theoretical approaches have been used to explain organizational behavior. These include classical theories, human relations theories, cognitive theories, socio-technical systems theory, contingency theories, and chaos theory. While each of these theoretical approaches has its own strengths and weaknesses, they all share a common goal: to improve our understanding of how people behave in organizations.
Classical theories of organization date back to the early days of industrialization in the 19th century. These theories were developed primarily in response to the problems associated with managing large-scale industrial operations. The two most influential classical theorists were Henri Fayol and Frederick Winslow Taylor. Fayol’s workfocused on general principles of management that could be applied in any organization; Taylor’s work focused on increasing efficiency through scientific management techniques.
Human relations theories emerged in the 1930s as a reaction to the classical approach to management; they emphasized interpersonal relationships and group dynamics rather than individual performance or tasks. The most influential human relations theorists were Elton Mayo and Abraham Maslow. Mayo’s work focused on the idea that workers’ satisfaction was directly linked to their level of productivity; Maslow’s work focused on identifying different types of needs that motivate people to behave in certain ways.
Cognitive theories emerged in the 1950s as a reaction to the emotional focus of human relations theories; they emphasize mental processes such as perception, decision making, learning, and motivation. The most influential cognitive theorists were Jean Piaget and George A. Miller. Piaget’s work focused on how people learn; Miller’s work focused on the limitations of human memory and how this affects decision making.
Socio-technical systems theory emerged in the 1960s as a reaction to the increasing complexity of organizations; it emphasizes the need to consider both social and technical factors in organizational design. The most influential socio-technical systems theorists were Chris Argyris and Scott Morton. Argyris’s work focused on organizational learning; Morton’s work focused on the use of computers in organizations.
Contingency theories emerged in the 1970s as a reaction to the overly deterministic nature of classical, human relations, and cognitive theories; they emphasize the need to consider the specific situation or context in which an organization operates when trying to explain organizational behavior. The most influential contingency theorists were Jay Galbraith and Jerald Hage. Galbraith’s workfocused on the role of structure in organizations; Hage’s work emphasized the importance of technology.
Chaos theory emerged in the 1980s as a reaction to the overly simplified view of organizations implied by contingency theory; it emphasizes the need to consider the complex, nonlinear, and unpredictable nature of organizations. The most influential chaos theorists were Edgar Morin and John Gage. Morin’s workfocused on the role of uncertainty in organizations; Gage’s work emphasized the importance of self-organization.

5. Managing Emotions in the Workplace

One of the challenges faced by organizations is managing emotions in the workplace. Emotions are important because they can have a significant impact on job performance, decision making, and interpersonal relationships. The ability to effectively manage emotions is therefore essential for organizational success.
There are a variety of different approaches that can be used to manage emotions in the workplace. The most common approach is to try to control or suppress emotions that are considered to be negative (e.g., anger, anxiety, fear). While this may be effective in some cases, it can also lead to emotional labor – that is, employees may become excessively stressed or burnt out from constantly having to repress their emotions.
Another approach is to encourage employees to express their emotions in a constructive way. This can be done through emotional intelligence training, which teaches employees how to Recognize, understand, and manage their own emotions and the emotions of others. This approach has been shown to be more effective than emotional suppression in terms of both job performance and employee well-being.

6. Stress and Coping in Organizations

Stress is a common experience in today’s workplace. It can have a negative impact on job performance, decision making, interpersonal relationships, and physical health. As such, it is important for organizations to understand what stress is and how it can be managed effectively.
The most common definition of stress is “the body’s response to any demand placed upon it” ( Selye, 1956). This definition suggests that stress is a natural part of life and that it can be caused by a variety of different things (e.g., work deadlines, family problems, financial worries).
While some amount of stress is inevitable, too much stress can be harmful. When people are under too much stress, they may experience physical problems (e.g., headaches, stomach problems), psychological problems (e.g., anxiety, depression), or behavioral problems (e.g., irritability, difficulty concentrating).
There are a variety of different approaches that can be used to cope with stress. The most common approach is to try to remove the source of stress (e.g., by quitting a job or getting a divorce). While this may be effective in some cases, it is not always possible or desirable.
Another approach is to use coping strategies to manage stress in a more constructive way. Coping strategies are specific actions that people can take to deal with stressful situations. Some common coping strategies include problem-solving, positive thinking, relaxation, and exercise.

7. Organizational Culture

Organizational culture is the shared values, beliefs, and norms of behavior that characterize an organization. It is the “glue” that holds an organization together, and it affects the way that people behave within the organization.
There are a variety of different approaches that can be used to define organizational culture. The most common approach is to think of culture as a set of values that guide employee behavior. Values are beliefs about what is important or desirable, and they serve as a filter for decision making.
Another approach is to think of culture as a set of norms that dictate how employees should behave in certain situations. Norms are informal rules that define acceptable and unacceptable behavior. They are often unwritten and unspoken, but they can have a powerful influence on employee behavior.

8. Organizational Change and Development

Organizational change is the process by which organizations adapt to their environments. It is a response to external forces such as new technology, changes in the market, or new government regulations. Change can also be internal, such as a change in strategy or leadership.
Organizational development (OD) is the field of study that deals with organizational change. It is concerned with the planned development of organizations in order to improve their effectiveness. OD practitioners use a variety of techniques, such as problem solving, action research, andinsk assessment, to help organizations achieve their goals.

9. Organizational Communication

Organizational communication is the process by which information is exchanged between individuals within an organization. It can be either formal or informal, and it can occur at any level of the organization (e.g., between two employees, between an employee and a manager, or between two managers).
Formal communication occurs when information is exchanged through an established channels, such as memos, reports, or email. Formal communication is typically more controlled and less personal than informal communication.
Informal communication occurs when information is exchanged outside of established channels, such as gossip or water cooler talk. Informal communication is typically more personal and less controlled than formal communication.

10. Conclusion

Organizational behavior is a field of study that investigates the impact that individuals, groups, and structure have on behavior within organizations, for the purpose of applying such knowledge toward improving an organization’s effectiveness.
It is an interdisciplinary field that includes sociology, psychology, communication, and management. Organizational behavior has become one of the most popular areas of study within business schools across the globe.
The importance of studying organizational behavior is twofold: first

FAQ

Organizational behavior is the study of how humans behave within organizations. It helps explain human behavior within organizations by looking at factors such as individual differences, motivation, leadership, and team dynamics.

Theories of organizational behavior can be used to improve organization effectiveness by providing a framework for understanding and predicting human behavior. They can also be used to develop interventions that aim to improve employee satisfaction, motivation, and performance.

Different types of reinforcement (positive or negative) can affect employee motivation and performance in different ways. Positive reinforcement typically leads to increased motivation and improved performance, while negative reinforcement may lead to decreased motivation and poorer performance.

The main antecedents of job satisfaction are pay, benefits, working conditions, and relationships with co-workers and supervisors. Job satisfaction can impact employees' attitudes (e.g., job satisfaction) and behaviors (e.g., absenteeism, turnover).

work groups develop over time through a process of socialization where members learn group norms and roles. Factors that contribute to their success or failure include group size, composition, structure, task interdependence, and external support from the organization.

Leadership is the process of influencing others to achieve goals. Effective leaders use a variety of styles and methods to influence followers in positive ways.

Some common workplace stressors include workload, job insecurity, and interpersonal conflict. Employees can cope with these stressors effectively by using coping strategies such as problem-solving, social support, and relaxation techniques.