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PHRI 2019 Preparation Course (for Arabs) – HRCI Certification

PHRI 2019 Preparation Course (for Arabs)
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PHRI 2019 – Professional In Human Resource International

PHRI Preparation Course Content :

  1. Talent Acquisition
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  5. Employee Relations & Risk Management
  6. HR Information Management

PHRI Preparation Course Details : 

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The objective of strategic resourcing

The objective of strategic resourcing

Strategic resourcing aims to ensure that the organization has the people it needs to achieve its business goals. Like strategic HRM, strategic resourcing is essentially about the integration of business and employee resourcing strategies so that the latter contribute to the achievement of the former.

The concept that the strategic capability of a firm depends on its resource capability in the shape of people (the resource-based view) provides the rationale for strategic resourcing. The objective is therefore to ensure that a firm achieves competitive advantage by recruiting, retaining and developing more capable people than its rivals. The organization attracts such people by being ‘the employer of choice’. It retains them by providing better opportunities, rewards and conditions of employment than others and by developing a positive psychological contract (the set of reciprocal but unwritten expectations that exist between individual employees and their employers), which increases engagement and commitment and creates mutual trust. Furthermore, the organization deploys its people in ways that maximize the added value they supply and develops their talents and skills.

The strategic HRM approach to resourcing

The philosophy behind the strategic approach to resourcing is that it is people who implement the strategic plan. As Quinn Mills (1983) put it, the process is one of ‘planning with people in mind’.

The integration of business and resourcing strategies is based on an understanding of the direction in which the organization is going and the determination of:

  • the numbers of people required to meet business needs;
  • the skills and behaviour required to support the achievement of business strategies;
  • the impact of organizational restructuring as a result of rationalization, decentralization, delayering, acquisitions, mergers, product or market development, or the introduction of new technology – for example, cellular manufacturing;
  • plans for changing the culture of the organization in such areas as ability to deliver, performance standards, quality, customer service, teamworking and flexibility, which indicate the need for people with different attitudes, beliefs and personal characteristics.

These factors will be strongly influenced by the type of business strategies adopted by the organization and the sort of business it is in. These may be expressed in such terms as Miles and Snow’s (1978) typology of defender, prospector and analyser organizations.

Strategic HRM places more emphasis than traditional personnel management on finding people whose attitudes and behaviour are likely to fit what management believes to be appropriate and conducive to success. Townley (1989) commented that organizations are concentrating more on the attitudinal and behavioural characteristics of employees. This tendency has its dangers. Innovative and adaptive organizations need non-conformists, even mavericks, who can ‘buck the system’. If managers recruit people ‘in their own image’ there is the risk of staffing the organization with conformist clones and of perpetuating a dysfunctional culture – one that may have been successful in the past but is no longer appropriate in the face of new challenges.

The resourcing strategies that emerge from the process of strategic resourcing exist to provide the people and skills required to support the business strategy, but they should also contribute to the formulation of that strategy. HR directors have an obligation to point out to their colleagues the human resource opportunities and constraints that will affect the achievement of strategic plans. In mergers or acquisitions, for example, the ability of management within the company to handle the new situation and the quality of management in the new business will be important considerations.

Strategic fit in resourcing

Strategic resourcing places more emphasis than traditional personnel management on finding people whose attitudes and behaviour are likely to fit what management believes to be appropriate and conducive to success. As mentioned above, Townley (1989) felt that organizations are concentrating more on the attitudinal and behavioural characteristics of employees, a tendency that has its dangers.

Bundling resourcing strategies and activities

Employee resourcing is not just about recruitment and selection. It is concerned with any means available to meet the firm’s need for certain skills and behaviours. A strategy to ensure the organization has the talented people it needs (a talent management strategy) may start with recruitment and selection but would extend into learning and development to enhance abilities and skills and modify behaviours and succession planning. Performance management processes can be used to identify development needs (skills and behaviours) and motivate people to make the most effective use of their abilities. Competency frameworks and profiles can be prepared to define the skills and behaviours required and can be used in selection, employee development and employee reward processes. The aim should be to develop a reinforcing bundle of strategies along these lines.

The components of strategic employee resourcing

The overarching component of strategic resourcing is the integration of resourcing and business plans. Within this framework strategic resourcing includes specific strategies for:

  • Workforce planning, alternatively called human resource planning – assessing future business needs and deciding on the numbers and types of people required.
  • Developing the organization’s employee value proposition and its employer brand– the employee value proposition is what an organization offers that prospective or existing employees would value and which would help to persuade them to join or remain with the business; employer brand is the image presented by an organization as a good employer.
  • Resourcing plans– preparing plans for finding people from within the organization and/or for learning and development programmes to help people learn new skills. If needs cannot be satisfied from within the organization, it involves preparing longer-term plans for ensuring that recruitment and selection processes will satisfy them.
  • Retention plans– preparing plans for retaining the people the organization needs.
  • Flexibility plans– planning for increased flexibility in the use of human resources to enable the organization to make the best use of people and adapt swiftly to changing circumstances.
  • Talent management– ensuring that the organization has the talented people it requires to provide for management succession and meet present and future business needs.

Commitment and engagement

Commitment and engagement

The notion of commitment as described above appears to be very similar if not identical to that of organizational engagement that,  focuses on attachment to, or identification with, the organization as a whole. Are there any differences?

Some commentators have asserted that commitment is a distinct although closely linked entity. As cited by Buchanan (2004: 19), the US Corporate Executive Board divides engagement into two aspects of commitment: 1) rational commitment, which occurs when a job serves employees’ financial, developmental or professional self-interest; and 2) emotional commitment, which arises when workers value, enjoy and believe in what they do and has four times the power to affect performance as its more pragmatic counterpart. The Corporate Executive Board (2004: 1) indicated that engagement is ‘the extent to which employees commit to someone or something in their organization, how hard they work, and how long they stay as a result of that commitment’. Wellins and Concelman (2005: 1) suggested that ‘to be engaged is to be actively committed’. And Macey and Schneider (2008: 8–9) observed that:

Organizational commitment is an important facet of the state of engagement when it is conceptualized as positive attachment to the larger organizational entity and measured as a willingness to exert energy in support of the organization, to feel pride as an organizational member, and to have personal identification with the organization.

Clearly organizational engagement and commitment are closely associated, and commitment was included by the Institute for Employment Studies in its model  as an element of engagement. Appelbaum et al (2000: 183) noted that: ‘The willingness to exert extra effort is the aspect of organizational commitment that has been shown to be most closely related to an employee’s job performance.’ Robinson et al (2004: 7) suggested that the closest relationship of commitment to engagement was ‘affective commitment, ie the satisfaction people get from their jobs and their colleagues and their willingness to go beyond the call of duty for the sake of the organization’. Salanova et al (2005) saw commitment as part of engagement but not equivalent to it.

The analysis of the concept of commitment as undertaken in this chapter is based on a considerable body of work exploring its nature and significance, and therefore helps to illuminate the somewhat elusive notion of engagement as discussed But there are problems with commitment, as discussed below.

Critical evaluation of the concept of commitment

A number of commentators have raised questions about the concept of commitment. These relate to three main problem areas: 1) the imprecise nature of the term, 2) its unitary frame of reference, and 3) commitment as an inhibitor of flexibility.

The imprecise nature of the term

Guest (1987: 513) raised the question of what commitment really means as follows:

The case for seeking high commitment among employees seems plausible but the burgeoning research on the topic has identified a number of problems. One of these concerns the definition of the concept. The first issue is – commitment to what? Most writers are interested in commitment to the organization, but others have examined career commitment and job commitment. Once the general concept of commitment is utilized, then union commitment, workgroup commitment and family commitment should also be considered. The possibility of multiple and perhaps competing commitments creates a more complex set of issues.

Unitary frame of reference

The concept of commitment, especially as put forward by Walton (1985a), can be criticized as being simplistic, even misguided, in adopting a unitary frame of reference that assumes that organizations consist of people with shared interests. It has been suggested by people such as Cyert and March (1963), Mangham (1979) and Mintzberg (1983) that an organization is really a coalition of interest groups where political processes are an inevitable part of everyday life.

Legge (1989: 38) also raised this question in her discussion of strong culture as a key requirement of HRM, which she criticized because it implies ‘a shared set of managerially sanctioned values… that assumes an identification of employee and employer interests’. As Coopey and Hartley (1991: 21) put it: ‘Commitment is not an all-or-nothing affair (though many managers might like it to be) but a question of multiple or competing commitments for the individual.’ A pluralist perspective recognizes the legitimacy of different interests and is more realistic.

It could be argued that values concerned with performance, quality, service, equal opportunity and innovation are not necessarily wrong because they are managerial values. But pursuing a value such as innovation could work against the interests of employees by, for example, resulting in redundancies. And flexibility may sound a good idea but, beyond the rhetoric, as Sisson (1994: 5) observed, the reality may mean that management can do what it wants. It would be quite reasonable for any employee encouraged to behave in accordance with a value supported by management to ask, ‘What’s in it for me?’ It can also be argued that the imposition from above of management’s values on employees without their having any part to play in discussing and agreeing them is a form of coercion.

Commitment and flexibility

It was pointed out by Coopey and Hartley (1991: 22) that: ‘The problem for a unitarist notion of organizational commitment is that it fosters a conformist approach which not only fails to reflect organizational reality, but can be narrowing and limiting for the organization.’ They argued that if employees are expected and encouraged to commit themselves tightly to a single set of values and goals they will not be able to cope with the ambiguities and uncertainties that are endemic in organizational life in times of change. Conformity to ‘imposed’ values will inhibit creative problem solving, and high commitment to present courses of action will increase both resistance to change and the stress that invariably occurs when change takes place.

If commitment is related to tightly defined plans, this will become a real problem. To avoid it, the emphasis should be on overall strategic directions. These would be communicated to employees with the proviso that changing circumstances will require their amendment. In the meantime, however, everyone can at least be informed in general terms where the organization is heading and, more specifically, the part they are expected to play in helping the organization to get there and, if they can be involved in the decision-making processes on matters that affect them (including management’s values for performance, quality and customer service), so much the better.

Values need not necessarily be restrictive. They can be defined in ways that allow for freedom of choice within broad guidelines. In fact, the values themselves can refer to such processes as flexibility, innovation and responsiveness to change. Thus, far from inhibiting creative problem solving, they can encourage it. But they will not do so if they are imposed from above. Employees need to have a say in defining the values they are expected to support.

Factors affecting commitment

Kochan and Dyer (1993) indicated that the factors affecting the level of commitment in what they called ‘mutual commitment firms’ were as follows:

  • Strategic level: supportive business strategies, top management value commitment and effective voice for HR in strategy making and governance.
  • Functional (human resource policy) level: staffing based on employment stabilization, investment in training and development and contingent compensation that reinforces cooperation, participation and contribution.
  • Workplace level: selection based on high standards, broad task design and teamwork, employee involvement in problem solving and a climate of cooperation and trust.

The research conducted by Purcell et al (2003) identified the following key policy and practice factors that influence levels of commitment:

  • received training last year;
  • satisfied with career opportunities;
  • satisfied with the performance appraisal system;
  • think managers are good in people management (leadership);
  • find their work challenging;
  • think their firm helps them achieve a work–life balance;
  • satisfied with communication or company performance.

Developing a commitment strategy

A commitment strategy can be based on the high-commitment model incorporating policies and practices in areas of HR such as job design, learning and development, career planning, performance management, reward management, participation, communication and employee well-being. HR should play a major part in developing a high-commitment organization. The 10 steps it can take are:

  1. Advise on methods of communicating the values and aims of management and the achievements of the organization so that employees are more likely to identify with the organization as one they are proud to work for.
  2. Emphasize to management that commitment is a two-way process; employees cannot be expected to be committed to the organization unless management demonstrates that it is committed to them and recognizes their contribution as stakeholders.
  3. Impress on management the need to develop a climate of trust by being honest with people, treating them fairly, justly and consistently, keeping its word, and showing willingness to listen to the comments and suggestions made by employees during processes of consultation and participation.
  4. Develop a positive psychological contract (the set of reciprocal but unwritten expectations that exist between individual employees and their employers) by treating people as stakeholders, relying on consensus and cooperation rather than control and coercion, and focusing on the provision of opportunities for learning, development and career progression.
  5. Advise on the establishment of partnership agreements with trade unions that emphasize unity of purpose, common approaches to working together and the importance of giving employees a voice in matters that concern them.
  6. Recommend and take part in the achievement of single status for all employees (often included in a partnership agreement) so that there is no longer an ‘us and them’ culture.
  7. Encourage management to declare a policy of employment security and ensure that steps are taken to avoid involuntary redundancies.
  8. Develop performance management processes that provide for the alignment of organizational and individual objectives.
  9. Advise on means of increasing employee identification with the company through rewards related to organizational performance (profit sharing or gainsharing) or employee share ownership schemes.
  10. Enhance employee job engagement, ie identification of employees with the job they are doing, through job design processes that aim to create higher levels of job satisfaction (job enrichment).

Motivation and job satisfaction

Motivation and job satisfaction

Job satisfaction can be defined as the attitudes and feelings people have about their work. Positive and favourable attitudes towards the job indicate job satisfaction. Negative and unfavourable attitudes towards the job indicate job dissatisfaction. It can be distinguished from morale, which is a group rather than individual variable, related to the degree to which group members feel attracted to their group and want to remain a member of it.

The factors that affect job satisfaction

Levels of job satisfaction or dissatisfaction are influenced by:

  • The intrinsic motivating factors. These relate to job content, especially the five dimensions of jobs identified by Hackman and Oldham (1974): skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy and feedback (the job characteristics model).
  • The quality of supervision. The Hawthorne studies (Roethlisberger and Dixon, 1939) resulted in the claim that supervision is the most important determinant of worker attitudes. Elton Mayo (1933) believed that a man’s desire to be continuously associated in work with his fellows is a strong, if not the strongest human characteristic.
  • Success or failure. Success obviously creates satisfaction, especially if it enables individuals to prove to themselves that they are using their abilities to the full. And it is equally obvious that the reverse is true of failure.

Job satisfaction and performance

It is a commonly held and not unreasonable belief that an increase in job satisfaction results in improved performance. The whole human relations movement led by Mayo (1933) and supported by the Roethlisberger and Dixon (1939) research was based on the belief that productivity could be increased by making workers more satisfied, primarily through pleasant and supportive supervision and by meeting their social needs. But research by Katz et al (1950) and Katzet al (1951) found that the levels of satisfaction with pay, job status or fellow workers in high productivity units were no different to those in low productivity units.

Meta-analysis by Brayfield and Crocket (1955) of a number of studies concluded that there was little evidence of any simple or appreciable relationship between satisfaction and performance. A later review of research by Vroom (1964) found that the median correlation between job satisfaction and job performance for all these studies was only 0.14, which is not high enough to suggest any marked relationship between them. Spector (1997) came to the same conclusion. Indeed, it can be argued that it is not increases in satisfaction that produce improved performance but improved performance that increases satisfaction. This was confirmed by data on the link between job satisfaction and performance for 177 store managers, analysed by Christen et al (2006). It was established that store managers’ performance increased their job satisfaction but that job satisfaction had no impact on job performance.

The meaning of motivation

The meaning of motivation

The term ‘motivation’ derives from the Latin word for movement (movere). A motive is a reason for doing something. Motivation is the strength and direction of  behaviour and the factors that influence people to behave in certain ways. People are motivated when they expect that a course of action is likely to lead to the attainment of a goal and a valued reward – one that satisfies their needs and wants. The term ‘motivation’ can refer variously to the goals that individuals have, the ways in which individuals chose their goals and the ways in which others try to change their behaviour. Locke and Latham (2004: 388) observed that: ‘The concept of motivation refers to internal factors that impel action and to external factors that can act as inducements to action.’

As described by Arnold et al (1991) the three components of motivation are:

  1. Direction– what a person is trying to do.
  2. Effort– how hard a person is trying.
  3. Persistence– how long a person keeps on trying.

Well-motivated people engage in positive discretionary behaviour – they decide to make an effort. Such people may be self-motivated, and as long as this means they are going in the right direction to attain what they are there to achieve, then this is the best form of motivation. But additional motivation provided by the work itself, the quality of leadership, and various forms of recognition and reward, builds on self-motivation and helps people to make the best use of their abilities and to perform well.

There are two types of motivation and a number of theories explaining how it works, as discussed below.

Types of motivation

Intrinsic motivation

Intrinsic motivation takes place when individuals feel that their work is important, interesting and challenging and that it provides them with a reasonable degree of autonomy (freedom to act), opportunities to achieve and advance, and scope to use and develop their skills and abilities. It can be described as motivation by the work itself. It is not created by external incentives. Deci and Ryan (1985) suggested that intrinsic motivation is based on the need to be competent and self-determining (that is, to have a choice). Michael Sandel (2012: 122) remarked that: ‘When people are engaged in an activity they consider intrinsically worthwhile, offering money may weaken their motivation by “crowding out” their intrinsic interest or commitment’.

Intrinsic motivation can be enhanced by job design. Katz (1964) suggested that jobs should in themselves provide sufficient variety, complexity, challenge and skill to engage the abilities of the worker. Hackman and Oldham (1974) in their job characteristics model identified the five core characteristics of jobs that result in intrinsic motivation, namely: skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy and feedback. Pink (2009) stated that there are three steps that managers can take to improve motivation:

  1. Autonomy– encourage people to set their own schedule and focus on getting work done not how it is done.
  2. Mastery– help people to identify the steps they can take to improve and ask them to identify how they will know they are making progress.
  3. Purpose– when giving instructions explain the why as well as the how.

 

Extrinsic motivation

Extrinsic motivation occurs when things are done to or for people in order to motivate them. These include rewards such as incentives, increased pay, praise or promotion; and punishments such as disciplinary action, withholding pay, or criticism.

Extrinsic motivators can have an immediate and powerful effect, but it will not necessarily last long. The intrinsic motivators, which are concerned with the ‘quality of working life’ (a phrase and movement that emerged from this concept), are likely to have a deeper and longer-term effect because they are inherent in individuals and the work – and are not imposed from outside in such forms as incentive pay.

Motivation theory as described below explains the ways in which intrinsic and extrinsic motivation take place.

Organization development strategy

Organization development strategy

Organization development strategy is founded on the aspiration to improve organizational capability, which is broadly the capacity of an organization to function effectively in order to achieve desired results. It has been defined more specifically by Ulrich and Lake (1990: 40) as ‘the ability to manage people for competitive advantage’. It is concerned with mapping out intentions on how the work system should be developed in line with the concept of smart working, on how the organization should be structured to meet new demands, on system-wide change in fields such as reward and performance management, on how change should be managed, on what needs to be done to improve organizationalprocesses involving people such as teamwork, communications and participation, and how the organization can acquire, retain, develop and engage the talent it needs. These intentions will be converted into actions on work systems development, structure design, the redesign of jobs and, possibly, OD-type interventions. The latter could take the form of action research, survey feedback and programmes for improving group processes and interpersonal skills, as described earlier in this chapter. The strategy can involve processes of integrated strategic change, as described below, and will be based on organizational diagnosis leading to the design of an organization development programme, as considered in the following sections.

Integrated strategic change

The process of integrated strategic change as conceived by Worley et al (1996) can be used to formulate and implement organization development strategies. The steps required are:

  • Strategic analysis, a review of the organization’s strategic orientation (its strategic intentions within its competitive environment) and a diagnosis of the organization’s readiness for change.
  • Develop strategic capability – the ability to implement the strategic plan quickly and effectively.
  • Integrate individuals and groups throughout the organization into the processes of analysis, planning and implementation to maintain the firm’s strategic focus, direct attention and resources to the organization’s key competencies, improve coordination and integration within the organization and create higher levels of shared ownership and commitment.
  • Create the strategy, gain commitment and support for it and plan its implementation.
  • Implement the strategic change plan, drawing on knowledge of motivation, group dynamics and change processes, dealing with issues such as alignment, adaptability, teamwork and organizational and individual learning.
  • Allocate resources, provide feedback and solve problems as they arise.

Organizational diagnosis

The practice of organization development is based on an analysis and diagnosis of the circumstances of the organization, the strategic, operational or process issues that are affecting the organization and its ability to perform well. As defined by Manzini (1988: ix): ‘An organizational diagnosis is a systematic process of gathering data about a business organization – its problems, challenges, strengths and limitations – and analysing how such factors influence its ability to interact effectively and profitably with its business environment.’ This involves the use of the diagnostic cycle with associated analytical and diagnostic tools, which enable those concerned with development to identify areas of concern that can be dealt with in an organization development programme.

The diagnostic cycle

The diagnostic cycle as described by Manzini (1988: 11) consists of:

  • data gathering;
  • analysis;
  • feedback;
  • action planning;
  • implementation;

Analytical tools

The two most used analytical tools are SWOT analysis and PESTLE analysis. A SWOT analysis is a ‘looking in’ and ‘looking out’ approach that covers the internal organizational factors of strengths and weaknesses and the external factors of opportunities and threats. PESTLE analysis is an environmental scanning tool that covers the following factors: political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental.

Diagnostics

Diagnostics are tools such as questionnaires or checklists that gather information about a business or on the opinions and attitudes of employees in order to identify issues and problems that can be dealt with in an organization development programme. They enable those concerned with organization development to understand what is happening and why it is happening so that they can do something about it. Diagnostics can be used to assess overall organizational effectiveness in the shape of general strategic, business and operational issues, or they can deal with more specific areas of concern such as a review of the organization’s ideology, culture or climate, or a survey of levels of engagement or commitment. Examples of the approach used by various diagnostic instruments are given below.

Organizational ideology questionnaire (Harrison, 1972)

This questionnaire deals with the four orientations defined by Harrison (power, role, task and self). The questionnaire is completed by ranking statements according to views on what is closest to the organization’s actual position. The following are examples of statements:

  • a good boss is strong, decisive and firm but fair;
  • a good subordinate is compliant, hard-working and loyal;
  • people who do well in the organization are shrewd and competitive, with a strong need for power;
  • the basis of task assignment is the personal needs and judgements of those in authority;
  • decisions are made by people with the most knowledge and expertise about the problem.

Organizational culture inventory (Cooke and Lafferty, 1989)

This instrument assesses organizational culture under 12 headings:

  1. Humanistic-helpful– organizations managed in a participative and person-centred way.
  2. Affiliative– organizations that place a high priority on constructive relationships.
  3. Approval– organizations in which conflicts are avoided and interpersonal relationships are pleasant – at least superficially.
  4. Conventional– conservative, traditional and bureaucratically controlled organizations.
  5. Dependent– hierarchically controlled and non-participative organizations.
  6. Avoidance– organizations that fail to reward success but punish mistakes.
  7. Oppositional– organizations in which confrontation prevails and negativism is rewarded.
  8. Power– organizations structured on the basis of the authority inherent in members’ positions.
  9. Competitive– a culture in which winning is valued and members are rewarded for out-performing one another.
  10. Competence/perfectionist– organizations in which perfectionism, persistence and hard work are valued.
  11. Achievement– organizations that do things well and value members who set and accomplish challenging but realistic goals.
  12. Self-actualization– organizations that value creativity, quality over quantity, and both task accomplishment and individual growth.

Typical dimensions of organizational climate questionnaires (Koys and De Cotiis, 1991)

  • Autonomy– the perception of self-determination with respect to work procedures, goals and priorities.
  • Cohesion– the perception of togetherness or sharing within the organization setting.
  • Trust– the perception of freedom to communicate openly with members at higher organizational levels about sensitive or personal issues with the expectation that the integrity of such communications will not be violated.
  • Resource– the perception of time demands with respect to task completion and performance standards.
  • Support– the perception of the degree to which superiors tolerate members’ behaviour, including willingness to let members learn from their mistakes without fear of reprisal.
  • Recognition– the perception that members’ contributions to the organization are acknowledged.
  • Fairness – the perception that organizational policies are non-arbitrary or capricious.
  • Innovation– the perception that change and creativity are encouraged, including risk-taking into new areas where the member has little or no prior experience.

The story of organization development

The story of organization development

There are three chapters in the story of organizational development: the original version of the 1960s and 70s, the extensions and modifications to the original approach in the 1980s and 90s, and the new look at organization development of the 2000s.

The first chapter – the original version

Organization development emerged as the ‘OD’ movement in the 1960s. It was based on the strong humanistic values of its early founders, who wanted to improve the conditions of people’s lives in organizations by applying behavioural science knowledge. Its origins can be traced to the writings of behavioural scientists such as Lewin (1947, 1951) on group dynamics (the improvement of group processes through various forms of training, eg team building, interactive skills training, T-groups) and change management. Other behavioural scientists included Maslow (1954) who produced his needs theory of motivation, Herzberg et al (1957) who wrote about the motivation to work, and Argyris (1957) who emphasized the need to plan for integration and involvement. McGregor (1960) produced his ‘Theory Y’, which advocates the recognition of the needs of both the organization and the individual on the basis that, given the chance, people will not only accept but seek responsibility. Likert (1961) added his theory of supportive relationships.

The two founders of the organization development movement were Beckhard (1969) who probably coined the term, and Bennis (1969) who, according to Buchanan and Huczynski (2007: 575), described OD as a ‘truth, trust, love and collaboration approach’. Ruona and Gibson (2004: 53) explained that:

Early OD interventions can be categorized as primarily focusing on individuals and interpersonal relations. OD was established as a social philosophy that emphasized a long-term orientation, the applied behavioural sciences, external and process-oriented consultation, change managed from the top, a strong emphasis on action research and a focus on creating change in collaboration with managers.

The objectives, assumptions and values of the original version of OD

As originally conceived, OD programmes aimed to increase the effectiveness of the various processes that take place in organizations, especially those relating to the ways in which people work together. It was also concerned with improving the quality of people’s working lives. The original OD philosophy was that of humanism – the belief that human factors are paramount in the study of organizational behaviour. This had its roots in the conclusions reached from the Hawthorne studies of 1924 to 1932 (Mayo, 1933; Roethlisberger and Dickson, 1939) that the productivity of workers increases when someone they respect takes an interest in them. The focus then turned to the needs of people as individuals and in groups with an emphasis on process – how people worked together and how this could be improved. The assumptions and values of OD were that:

  • Most individuals are driven by the need for personal growth and development as long as their environment is both supportive and challenging.
  • The work team, especially at the informal level, has great significance for feelings of satisfaction, and the dynamics of such teams have a powerful effect on the behaviour of their members.
  • Organizations can be more effective if they learn to diagnose their own strengths and weaknesses.
  • Managers often do not know what is wrong and need special help in diagnosing problems, although the outside ‘process consultant’ ensures that decision-making remains in the hands of the client.

Traditional OD programmes

OD during this time was practised predominantly by external consultants working with senior managers. Personnel specialists were not involved to any great extent. OD programmes consisted then of ‘interventions’ such as those listed below. In OD jargon an intervention is a planned activity designed to improve organizational effectiveness or manage change. The following are the traditional OD interventions; they still feature in current programmes:

  • Process consultation– helping clients to generate and analyse information that they can understand and, following a thorough diagnosis, act upon. The information relates to organizational processes such as inter-group relations, interpersonal relations and communications.
  • Change management– often using the techniques advocated by Lewin (1951), which consisted of processes of managing change by unfreezing, changing and freezing, and force-field analysis (analysing and dealing with the driving forces that affect transition to a future state).
  • Action research– collecting data from people about process issues and feeding it back in order to identify problems and their likely causes as a basis for an action plan to deal with the problem.
  • Appreciative enquiry– a methodology that does not focus entirely on finding out what is wrong in order to solve problems. Instead it adopts the more positive approach of identifying ‘best practices’ – what is working well – and using that information as a basis for planning change. It can be associated with action research.
  • Survey feedback– a variety of action research in which data is systematically collected about the system through attitude surveys and workshops leading to action plans.
  • Group dynamics– improving the ways in which people work together by means of programmes that aim to increase the effectiveness of groups through various forms of training, eg team building, interactive skills training and T-groups (‘training groups’, which aim to increase sensitivity, diagnostic ability and action skills).
  • Personal interventions– developing interpersonal skills through such processes as transactional analysis (an approach to understanding how people behave and express themselves through transactions with others), behaviour modelling (the use of positive reinforcement and corrective feedback to change behaviour) and neurolinguistic programming or NLP (teaching people to programme their reactions to others and develop unconscious strategies for interacting with them).

The second chapter – criticisms of the original version of OD and new approaches

The OD movement as originally conceived and practised was characterized by what Buchanan and Huczynski (2007: 559) called ‘quasi-religious values’ with some of the features of a religious movement, which, they claimed, is one reason why it has survived as a concept in spite of the criticisms that began to be levelled at it in the 1980s. Weidner (2004: 39) wrote that: ‘OD was something that practitioners felt and lived as much as they believed’ (original emphasis).

Criticisms of OD

One of the earliest critics was McLean (1981: 4) who noted ‘the moral and ethical misgivings concerned with the development of what might be regarded as a sophisticated science of manipulation’. He cited a comment by Strauss (1976) that at times OD is little more than abstract moralization and asserted that:

It is becoming increasingly apparent that there exists a considerable discrepancy between OD as practised and the prescriptive stances taken by many OD writers… The theory of change and change management which is the foundation of most OD programmes is based on over-simplistic generalizations which offer little specific guidance to practitioners faced with the confusing complexity of a real change situation. (ibid: 13)

Armstrong (1984: 113) commented that: ‘Organization development has lost a degree of credibility in recent years because the messianic zeal displayed by some practitioners has been at variance with the circumstances and real needs of the organization.’ Burke (1995: 8) stated that ‘in the mid-1970s, OD was still associated with T-groups, participative management and consensus, Theory Y, and self-actualization – the soft human, touchy-feely kinds of activities’.

An even more powerful critic was Legge (1995: 212), who observed that the OD rhetoric fitted the era of ‘flower power’ and that: ‘OD was seen, on the one hand as a form of devious manipulation, and on the other as “wishy-washy” and ineffectual.’ She noted ‘the relative lack of success of OD initiatives in effecting major and lasting cultural change, with the aim of generating commitment to new values in the relatively small number of organizations in which it was tried’ (ibid: 213), and produced the following devastating critique.

The third chapter – changing the focus

The most significant change in the 2000s was the shift to a strategic perspective. As noted by Cummins and Worley (2005: 12): ‘Change agents have proposed a variety of large-scale or strategic-change models; each of these models recognizes that strategic change involves multiple layers levels of the organization and a change in its culture, is driven from the top by powerful executives, and has important effects on performance.’ They also commented that the practice of organization development therefore went far beyond its humanistic origins. Another development was the emergence of the concept of ‘smart working’. This could be described as an OD intervention because it involves taking a fundamental look at methods of improving organizational effectiveness.

There was also more emphasis on associating organization design with organization development. Marsh et al (2010) suggested that organization design and organization development need to be merged into one HR capability, with organization design taking precedence. They considered that this should all be brought in-house as a necessary part of the business model innovation process. But as they observed: ‘We do not believe that the field of organization development has passed its sell-by date. Far from it. It just needs to be repositioned as an HR capability’ (ibid: 143).

However, Weidner (2004: 37) made the following more pessimistic comment about OD: ‘Unfortunately, after sixty years – despite the best efforts and intentions of many talented people – OD finds itself increasingly at the margins of business, academe, and practice. The field continues to affirm its values, yet has no identifiable voice.’ OD ‘interventions’ still have a role to play in improving performance but as part of an integrated business and HR strategy planned and implemented by HR in conjunction with senior management, with or without outside help.

The main change that has taken place in the move from traditional OD to organizational development as practised currently is the focus on improving organizational performance and results through organization-wide initiatives. These do encompass the behaviour of people, especially when this relates to their levels of engagement (the degree to which people are committed to their work and the organization and motivated to achieve high levels of performance). But they are also concerned with the organizational processes that affect behaviour and engagement, namely, strategic HRM, work system design, smart working, high-performance working, organization design and job design.

Analytical and critical skills for HR Professionals

Analytical and critical skills for HR Professionals

Analytical and critical skills for HR Professionals. The effectiveness of HR initiatives and the processes of problem solving and decision-making in which HR practitioners are constantly involved. The basis of all these is provided by evidence-based management

Evidence-based management

Evidence-based management is a method of informing decision-making by making use of appropriate information derived from the analysis of policy and practices and surveys of employee opinion within the organization, systematic benchmarking, and the messages delivered by relevant research.

It was defined as:‘A decision-making process combining critical thinking with the use of the best available scientific evidence and business information.’

  • The need for evidence-based management

  • The approach to evidence-based management

The need for evidence-based management:

Evidence-based HR is motivated by a basic fact: faulty practices and decision-making abound in HR. Companies persist in using unstructured interviews to assess a job candidate’s fit even though there is little evidence to support that.

HR departments often pursue one-size-fits-all standardization in their policies, despite considerable evidence that programs promoting flexibility benefit. In all honesty, can you answer ‘yes’ to the question, ‘Do you know the scientific evidence for ANY of the HR practices your company uses?

Recent surveys of HR practitioners lead us to suspect that the frank response from many readers is ‘no’.

The approach to evidence-based management :

There is four fundamental features in everyday management practice and decision-making:

  1. use of the best-available evidence from peer-reviewed sources

  2. systematic gathering of organizational facts, indicators and metrics to better act on the evidence

  3. practitioner judgement assisted by procedures, practices and framework that reduce bias, improve decision quality and create more vivid learning over time

  4. ethical considerations weighing the short- and long-term impacts of decisions on stakeholders and society

five-step approach was recommended by Briner:

  1. Practitioners or managers gain understanding of the problem or issue

  2. Internal evidence is gathered about the issue or problem leading, possibly, to a reformulation of the problem to make it more specific

  3. External evidence is gathered from published research

  4. The views of stakeholders are obtained

  5. All the sources of information are examined and critically appraised

What is done in organizations with the evidence depends largely on the context in which it is done. Cultural, social and political factors influence perceptions and judgements, and the extent to which people behave rationally is limited by their capacity to understand the complexities of the situation they are in and by their emotional reactions to it – the concept of bounded rationality

We need to understand the context – its impact on what is happening and how things are done. We need then to understand what actions can be taken to deal with the issues emerging from the situation

We need evidence that tells us what is going on within the organization, what has worked well elsewhere that might fit our requirements, and what research has revealed about policies and practices that will guide us in making our decisions. In other words, we need to practice evidence-based management using the analytical, logical reasoning and critical thinking skills

Analytical skills

Analysis is the process of breaking down a condition or state of affairs into its constituent parts and establishing the relationships between them. It involves discerning the particular features of a situation.

Analytical skills are used to gain a better understanding of a complex situation or problem. They involve the ability to visualize, articulate and solve complex problems and concepts and make decisions based on available information.

Analytical skills include the capacity to evaluate that information to assess its significance, and the ability to apply logical and critical thinking to the situation. They provide the basis for a diagnosis of the cause or causes of a problem

Logical reasoning

If you say that people are logical, you mean that they draw reasonable inferences – their conclusions can be proved by reference to the facts used to support them – and they avoid ill-founded and tendentious arguments, generalizations and irrelevancies.

Logical reasoning is the basis of critical thinking and evaluation. It takes place when there is a clear relationship (a line of reasoning) between the premise (the original proposition) and the conclusion, which is supported by valid and reliable evidence and does not rely on fallacious or misleading argument.

It is necessary to question assumptions, especially when a belief is expressed as a fact. You need to ask yourself – and others – ‘what’s the evidence for that?

The most common form of fallacies that need to be discerned in other people’s arguments, or avoided in one’s own, are summarized below :

  • Affirming the consequent – leaping to the conclusion that a hypothesis is true because a single cause of the consequence has been observed.

  • Begging the question – taking for granted what has yet to be proved.

  • Chop logic – ‘Contrarywise’, said Tweedledee, ‘if it was so, it might be, and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn’t it ain’t. Chop logic may not always be as bad as that, but it is about drawing false conclusions and using dubious methods of argument.

  • Confusing correlation with causation – assuming that because A is associated with B it has caused B. It may or may not.

  • False choice – a situation in which only two alternatives are considered, when in fact there are additional options.

  • Potted thinking – using slogans and catchphrases to extend an assertion in an unwarrantable fashion.

  • Reaching false conclusions – forming the view that because some are, then all are. An assertion about several cases is twisted into an assertion about all cases. The conclusion does not follow the premise. This is what logicians call the ‘undistributed middle’.

  • Selective reasoning – selecting instances favorable to a contention while ignoring those that conflict with it.

Critical thinking

Critical thinking is the process of analyzing and evaluating the quality of ideas, theories and concepts to establish the degree to which they are valid and supported by the evidence, and the extent to which they are biased.

It involves reflecting on and interpreting data, drawing warranted conclusions and recognizing ill-defined assumptions.

‘Critical’ in this context does not mean disapproval or being negative. There are many positive uses of critical thinking, for example testing a hypothesis, proving a proposition or evaluating a concept, theory or argument

Critical thinking can occur whenever people weigh up evidence and make a judgement, solve a problem or reach a decision

Critical thinking calls for the ability to:

  • recognize problems and establish ways of dealing with them;

  • gather and marshal pertinent (relevant) information;

  • identify unstated assumptions and values;

  • interpret data, to appraise evidence and to evaluate arguments;

  • recognize the existence (or non-existence) of logical relationships between propositions;

  • draw warranted conclusions and make valid generalizations;

  • test assertions, conclusions and generalizations;

  • reconstruct ideas or beliefs by examining and analyzing relevant evidence.

Critical evaluation

Critical evaluation is the process of making informed judgments about the validity, relevance and usefulness of ideas and arguments. Critical evaluation means not taking anything for granted and, where necessary, challenging propositions.

Critical evaluation is required when testing propositions and evaluating the outcomes of research.

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Approaches to job design

Approaches to job design

Job design starts with an analysis of task requirements, using the job analysis techniques . These requirements will be a function of the system of work and the organization structure. As described by Robertson and Smith (1985), the method can be based on the job characteristics model as follows:

  • Influence skill variety by providing opportunities for people to do several tasks and by combining tasks.
  • Influence task identity by combining tasks to form natural work units.
  • Influence task significance by forming natural work units and informing people of the importance of their work.
  • Influence autonomy by giving people responsibility for determining their own working systems.
  • Influence feedback by establishing good relationships and opening feedback channels.

These methods influence the four approaches to job design described below.

Job rotation

This is the movement of employees from one task to another to reduce monotony by increasing variety.

Job enlargement

This means combining previously fragmented tasks into one job, again to increase the variety and meaning of repetitive work.

Job enrichment

This goes beyond job enlargement to add greater autonomy and responsibility to a job. Job enrichment aims to maximize the interest and challenge of work by providing the employee with a job that has these characteristics:

  • it is a complete piece of work in the sense that the worker can identify a series of tasks or activities that end in a recognizable and definable product;
  • it affords the employee as much variety, decision-making responsibility and control as possible in carrying out the work;
  • it provides direct feedback through the work itself on how well the employee is doing his or her job.

As described by Herzberg (1968), job enrichment is not just increasing the number or variety of tasks, nor is it the provision of opportunities for job rotation. These approaches may relieve boredom, but they do not result in positive increases in motivation.

Self-managing teams (autonomous work groups)

These are self-regulating teams who work largely without direct supervision. The philosophy on which this approach is founded is that of job enrichment but it is also influenced by socio-technical systems theory, which suggests that because the technical aspects of work are interrelated with the social aspects both should be considered when designing jobs.

A self-managing team enlarges individual jobs to include a wider range of operative skills (multiskilling); decides on methods of work and the planning, scheduling and control of work; distributes tasks itself among its members; and monitors its own performance, taking corrective action when required.

The advocates of self-managing teams or autonomous work groups claim that they represent a more comprehensive view of organizations than the rather simplistic individual motivation theories that underpin job rotation, enlargement and enrichment. Be that as it may, the strength of this system is that in line with socio-technical theory it takes account of the social or group factors and the technology, as well as the individual motivators.

In a study of customer service representatives in a telecommunications company, Batt (1999) found that work organized into self-managed teams led to better service and sales performance (an increase of 9.2 per cent per employee) than traditional work designs, and that the interactive effect of self-managed teams and new technology raised sales by an additional 17.4 per cent.

Choice of approach

Of the four approaches described above, it is generally recognized that, although job rotation and job enlargement have their uses in developing skills and relieving monotony, they do not go to the root of the requirements for intrinsic motivation and for meeting the various motivating characteristics of jobs. These are best satisfied by using, as appropriate, job enrichment, autonomous work groups, or high-performance work design.

High-performance work design

This concentrates on setting up working groups in environments where high levels of performance can be achieved. As described by Buchanan (1987), this requires management to define what it needs in the form of methods of production and the results expected from its introduction. It involves multi skilling – job demarcation lines are eliminated as far as possible and encouragement and training are provided for employees to acquire new skills. Self-managed teams are set up with full responsibility for planning, controlling and monitoring the work.

Role development

Role development is the continuous process through which roles are defined or modified as work proceeds and evolves. Job design as described above takes place when a new job is created or an existing job is changed, often following a reorganization or the introduction of a new work system. But the part that people play in carrying out their roles can evolve over time as people grow into their roles and grow with them, and as incremental changes take place in the scope of the work and the degree to which individuals have freedom to act (their autonomy). Roles will be developed as people develop in them – responding to opportunities and changing demands, acquiring new skills and developing competencies.

Role development takes place in the context of day-to-day work and is therefore a matter between managers and the members of their teams. It means agreeing definitions of account abilities, objectives and competency requirements as the roles evolve. When these change – as they probably will in all except the most routine jobs – it is desirable to achieve mutual understanding of new expectations.

The process of understanding how roles are developing, and agreeing the implications, can take place through performance management in which the regularly updated performance agreement spells out agreed outcomes (key result areas) and competency requirements. It is necessary to ensure that managers and team leaders define roles within the performance management framework, taking into account the principles of job design set out above.

الفرق بين خطة تطوير مستوى الاداء و خطة التطوير الشخصية

الفرق بين خطة تطوير مستوى الاداء و خطة التطوير الشخصية

Performance Improvement Plan VS

Individual Development Plan

ان العديد من المؤسسات تقوم بتعريف مراجعة مستويات الاداء فيها بأنها فرصة جيدة لتطوير اداء و كفاءات الموظفين و فى هذا الخصوص لدينا مصطلحين نحتاج ان نفهم الفرق بينهما جيدا :

Performance Improvement Plan و Individual Development Plan و هذا هو محور حديثنا اليوم الفرق بين خطة تطوير مستوى الاداء و خطة التطوير الشخصية

Performance Improvement Plan ( PIPs ) :

من وقت الى اخر ربما يتضح ان شخص ما فى ادارة معينة لم يصل مستوى اداءه الى مستوى الاداء المتوقع او المطلوب فمثلا فنفترض ان احد الموظفين و ليكن اسمه فرانك و ان مستوى اداءه لم يكن مؤثر فى تحقيق اهداف الادارة التى يعمل بها فانه يحتاج الى اجراء PIP لمساعدته فى استعادة التركيز و براعة التنفيذ اللازمة حتى يكون ناجحا فى عمله و يستطيع الوصول الى مستوى الاداء المتوقع منه

ان معرفة مستوى الاداء السىء او الضعيف لا يجب ان يكون مفاجأة لانه من الامور الاساسية ان يكون هناك حوار او تواصل دائم مع كل موظف فيما يتعلق بمستوى اداءه فى العمل . فان كنت انت و موظفك ليس على علم جيد بمستوى اداءه فذلك يعنى انك فشلت فى قيادة فريق عملك

و لذلك فان PIPs يجب ان يتم تصميمها لتصحيح مستويات الاداء الضعيفة ووضع الموظفين اصحاب هذه المستويات على المسار الصحيح لتحقيق النجاح فهى لا يجب ان تستخدم لفصل موظف معين من المؤسسة

Individual Development Plan ( IDPs )

IDP هى مجرد اداه للمساعدة على تسهيل تطوير الموظفين فهى التزام من الطرفين بين الموظف و مديره عما الذى يقومون باتخاذه من اجراءات بهدف التحسين و التطوير. لذلك فان IDP تتطلب اجراء عدد من الخطوات الجادة من المتلقى و مناقشتها و التعاون مع المدير او Mentor

و هذه الخطوات تمثل مجهودات تفاعلية تتطلب الالتزام و الارتباط الكامل من الموظفين و المديرين و هذه الخطوات هى :

  1. اجراء Skill-Assessment

  2. الانتهاء من اجراء IDP

  3. تنفيذ IDP

اولا :Conduct a Skill-Assessment   :

هو اجراء لتقييم نقاط القوة و الضعف و مهارات الموظف على ان يستتبع مراجعة هذا التقييم مع مدير هذا الموظف

ثانيا : Completing The IDP :

و ذلك يتم عن طريق عمل و توثيق اهداف الـ Career الخاص بالموظف و تكملة اجراءات IDP على ان يكون متوافق مع المبدأ الذى يقول ان تكون تلك الاهداف Smart Goal المعروفة

ثالثا : Implementing IDP :

يتم هذا التنفيذ بعملكون الهدف منها متا ترتيبات لعقد اجتماعات بين الموظف و المدير يكون الهدف منها :

  • مناقشة تحسين IDP الخاص بالموظف مع مديره

  • تنفيذ الخطوات التى تم تحديدها فى IDP

  • مراجعة الـ Progress المستمرة و تعديلها عند الاحتياج الى ذلك

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