Organisational Behaviour Assignment
Why do some groups function effectively whilst others are
dysfunctional? In your answer, draw on theories and concepts from
across the module, and illustrate your views with examples from
organisation(s) you are familiar with or have researched.
The use of groups within organisations has increased on a global scale in
This fact alone suggests that a group demographic confers many tangible
benefits to an organisation. A ‘group’ in this instance is a set of employees
brought together with the aim that their individual skills will lead to higher
productivity when combined, than if they were each working as a separate
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Why does the organisation of individuals into
goal orientated groups yield such rewards and what are the possible
downsides to this organisation strategy? These are the questions this essay
intends to address.
Factors and Processes which Influence Group Effectiveness and Dysfunction
An Effective Group
Task orientation – an effective group is more likely to stay focused on
its aims and targets than any one individual alone and will be much
more focused than a dysfunctional group. This could be achieved
through organisation of goals and targets for the group as they
progress through a task.
Motivation through hierarchical flattening – the introduction of equality
by the integration of management within the group structure. The
breakdown of barriers between support staff and management can
lead to a more relaxed working environment. Also management
within the group can maintain the focus and orientation of the group.
Groups act as a form of social control – norms and protocols are learned
more quickly by new employees if they have to associate closely with
others. An effective group will be trained to introduce a new member to the
ethos of the organisation quickly so the new member wastes no time
Group norms can serve to facilitate goal achievement – if each group
member knows how he/she is to behave and what is expected of
them, then greater productivity is sure to ensue
If appropriate rewards are strategically offered to the highest
performing group then competition will increase and therefore overall
productivity will increase.
In an effective group the aims and targets are made clear to all
members, no one is confused or left without a task, nor are tasks
Based upon Social Identity Theory and the natural desire to maintain
positive self concept; people like to identify with high status groups
and subsequently will work hard to stay associated with them.
The stereotyping of out-group factors can facilitate in-group unity
High expectations placed upon a group can lead its members to
o Independence and trust
o Increased responsibility
o Room for creativity
Seek comments / opinions
o Overlook minor setbacks
A group working effectively will facilitate cultural differences, for
example, Americans and French tend to prefer not to work in a group
whereas the Japanese do.
The creation of an effective group may be due to its members living
and socialising together, for example; the Disneyland case –
employees live together in apartment style accommodation; this
creates a sense of group harmony and also defines each member’s
role in the strict hierarchy within the organisation.
A Dysfunctional Group