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M.Com Previous Year Solved Papers: Organisational Behaviour' 2012 (August - Incomplete)

2012 (August)
Paper: 102
(Organisational Behaviour and Theory)
Full Marks – 80
Time – Three Hours
The figures in the margin indicate full marks for the questions.
1. (a) What are the different types of organisation? How are organisations classified on the basis of functions performed?                                                  8+8=16
Ans: TYPOLOGIES OF ORGANISATION: Some scholars based on size, ownership, legal status and the area of operation have classified organisation. Another set of scholars has classified the organisation based on function or purpose, primary beneficiary, consumer and authority. Now we will be discussing about the classification based on the latter set of scholars.

a) Typologies by Goal or Function or Purpose
Talcott Parsons has classified organisations into four types on the basis of their functions or goal served by the organisation. The four types of organisations are:
i) Production/Economic Organisation: these types of organisations produce goods or make things which are consumed by the society.
ii) Political Organisation: these types of organisations are concerned with the attainment of political goals. They generate and allocate power within the society and also maintain peace and stability in the society. Legislature and government departments are examples of such organisations.
iii) Integrative Organisations: These organisations try to settle conflicts, integrate and coordinate various segments of the society to work together and provide stability in the society. Judicial courts, police, and social agencies are examples of this type of organisation.
iv) Pattern Maintenance Organisation:  These organisations are concerned with the societal continuity with a focus on long-term issues such as of society’s values, patterns, knowledge, culture, etc. through the educational, cultural and religious institutions.
Katz and Kahn have also classified organisations into four types based on the functions or goals served by the organisation. The four types of organisations are:
(i) Production or Economic Organisation: These organisations are concerned with the manufacture of goods, provision of essential services to the people and also building up of infrastructure. Their focus is on creation of wealth.
(ii) Managerial or Political Organisation: These organisations are concerned with adjudication; coordination and control of resources; people; and sub-systems.
(iii) Adaptive Organisation: These organisations provide opportunities for creation of knowledge, testing and development of theories and also provide information and solutions to the existing problems. Universities and research institutions are examples of these organisations.
(iv) Maintenance Organisation: These organisations give space and scope and devote to the socialization of people for their roles in other organisations and in the larger society. Schools, church, and health and welfare institutions are examples of this type of organisation.
b) Typologies on the Bases of the Consumer or Primary Beneficiary Blau and Scott
They classified the organisation based on the primary recipient of the output or who benefits. The main basis for this classification is who the direct consumer of the output of the organisation is, or who the prime beneficiary is. Four types of organisation are derived on this basis:
(i) Mutual Benefit Association: In this type of organisation the primary beneficiaries are the members themselves. Political parties, trade unions, professional associations and religious bodies are examples of these organisations.
(ii) Business Organisations or Business Concerns: In this type of organisation the owners of properties are the prime beneficiaries of the organisation. They are mostly concerned about the return on investment in the organisation than with the nature of output of the organisation. The other main concern is that of operating efficiently to make the maximum profit at minimum cost. In order to survive they have to compete with other organisations.
(iii) Service Organisations: In this type of organisation the clients who are served are the prime beneficiaries. Hospitals, educational institutions, social work agencies legal aid societies, etc. are examples of these organisations.
The clients who are supposed to be the primary beneficiaries do not have usually control over these organisations.
(iv) Commonwealth Organisations: In this type of organisation the public at large is its primary beneficiary. Post office, police service, fire department, military service are examples of these types of organisations. They perform mostly protective services or serve as its administrative arm.
c) Typologies on the Basis of Compliance A. Etzioni: He differentiates organisation on the basis of compliance. Compliance involves one party telling or directing another party to do something. It refers to the manner in which the lower participants in an organisation respond to the authority system of the organisation. In this context, Etzioni identifies three types of power: coercive, utilitarian and normative. Coercive power is based on the application or the threat of physical sanction. Here compliance is alienated. Utilitarian power is based on control over material resources. Here compliance takes a calculative or utilitarian approach. Normative power based on the allocation of symbolic rewards. Here the compliance is moral. Almost all the organisations would follow the three types of authority, which combine three types of compliance.
d) Typologies on the Basis of Authority: Max Weber identifies three types of organisation on the basis of exercise of authority. They are explained below:
(i) Charismatic Authority: In this type of organisation there will be a leader and set of disciples or followers. Because of charisma or an exceptional quality of the followers accept his authority or repose their faith in the person. In this type of organisation the administrative apparatus is very loose and unstable that is a built in instability.
(ii) Traditional Authority: In this type of organisation the followers or employees accept the authority of a person who occupies the traditionally sanctioned position of authority. The administrative apparatus in this kind of domination would consist of personal servants, relatives and feudal lords.
(iii) Legal or Rational Authority: In this type of organisation people or followers accept the authority of a leader, which is based on the belief in the rightness of law. It is legal because authority is exercised by means of a system of rules and procedures by reason of the office, which an individual holds. The administrative apparatus corresponding to this kind of authority is bureaucracy.
(b) Compare and contrast the classical, neoclassical and modern approach towards organisation.            16
Ans: The practice of management is as old as human civilization. The ancient civilizations of Egypt (the great pyramids), Greece (leadership and war tactics of Alexander the great) and Rome displayed the marvelous results of good management practices. The origin of management as a discipline was developed in the late 19th century. Over time, management thinkers have sought ways to organize and classify the voluminous information about management that has been collected and disseminated. These attempts at classification have resulted in the identification of management approaches. The approaches of management are theoretical frameworks for the study of management. Each of the approaches of management are based on somewhat different assumptions about human beings and the organisations for which they work. The different approaches of management are:
a) Early management approaches represented by scientific management (Classical approach or Theories)
b) Modern management approaches represented by behavioral science movement, quantitative approach, systems approach and Contingency approach (Neo-classical approach or theories)
a) THE CLASSICAL APPROACH: The classical approach is the oldest formal approach of management thought. Its roots pre-date the twentieth century. The classical approach of thought generally concerns ways to manage work and organisations more efficiently. Three areas of study that can be grouped under the classical approach are scientific management, administrative management, and bureaucratic management.
(i) Scientific Management: Frederick Winslow Taylor is known as the father of scientific management. Scientific management (also called Taylorism or the Taylor system) is a theory of management that analyzes and synthesizes workflows, with the objective of improving labor productivity. In other words, Traditional rules of thumb are replaced by precise procedures developed after careful study of an individual at work.
(ii) Administrative Management: Administrative management focuses on the management process and principles of management. In contrast to scientific management, which deals largely with jobs and work at the individual level of analysis, administrative management provides a more general theory of management. Henri Fayol is the major contributor to this approach of management thought.
(iii) Bureaucratic Management: Bureaucratic management focuses on the ideal form of organisation. Max Weber was the major contributor to bureaucratic management. Based on observation, Weber concluded that many early organisations were inefficiently managed, with decisions based on personal relationships and loyalty. He proposed that a form of organisation, called a bureaucracy, characterized by division of labor, hierarchy, formalized rules, impersonality, and the selection and promotion of employees based on ability, would lead to more efficient management. Weber also contended that managers' authority in an organisation should be based not on tradition or charisma but on the position held by managers in the organisational hierarchy.
b) Neo-classical approach: It can be studied under the following headings:
a) THE BEHAVIORAL Or SITUATIONAL APPROACH: The behavioral approach of management thought developed, in part, because of perceived weaknesses in the assumptions of the classical approach. The classical approach emphasized efficiency, process, and principles. Some felt that this emphasis disregarded important aspects of organisational life, particularly as it related to human behavior. Thus, the behavioral approach focused on trying to understand the factors that affect human behavior at work.
(i) Human Relations: The Hawthorne Experiments began in 1924 and continued through the early 1930s. A variety of researchers participated in the studies, including Elton Mayo. One of the major conclusions of the Hawthorne studies was that workers' attitudes are associated with productivity. Another was that the workplace is a social system and informal group influence could exert a powerful effect on individual behavior. A third was that the style of supervision is an important factor in increasing workers' job satisfaction.
(ii) Behavioral Science: Behavioral science and the study of organisational behavior emerged in the 1950s and 1960s. The behavioral science approach was a natural progression of the human relations movement. It focused on applying conceptual and analytical tools to the problem of understanding and predicting behavior in the workplace. The behavioral science approach has contributed to the study of management through its focus on personality, attitudes, values, motivation, group behavior, leadership, communication, and conflict, among other issues.
b) THE QUANTITATIVE APPROACH: The quantitative approach focuses on improving decision making via the application of quantitative techniques. Its roots can be traced back to scientific management.
(i) Management Science: Management science (also called operations research) uses mathematical and statistical approaches to solve management problems. It developed during World War II as strategists tried to apply scientific knowledge and methods to the complex problems of war. Industry began to apply management science after the war. The advent of the computer made many management science tools and concepts more practical for industry
 (ii) Production And Operations Management: This approach focuses on the operation and control of the production process that transforms resources into finished goods and services. It has its roots in scientific management but became an identifiable area of management study after World War II. It uses many of the tools of management science. Operations management emphasizes productivity and quality of both manufacturing and service organisations. W. Edwards Deming exerted a tremendous influence in shaping modern ideas about improving productivity and quality. Major areas of study within operations management include capacity planning, facilities location, facilities layout, materials requirement planning, scheduling, purchasing and inventory control, quality control, computer integrated manufacturing, just-in-time inventory systems, and flexible manufacturing systems.
c) SYSTEMS APPROACH: The systems approach focuses on understanding the organisation as an open system that transforms inputs into outputs. The systems approach began to have a strong impact on management thought in the 1960s as a way of thinking about managing techniques that would allow managers to relate different specialties and parts of the company to one another, as well as to external environmental factors. The systems approach focuses on the organisation as a whole, its interaction with the environment, and its need to achieve equilibrium.
d) CONTINGENCY APPROACH: The contingency approach focuses on applying management principles and processes as dictated by the unique characteristics of each situation. It emphasizes that there is no one best way to manage and that it depends on various situational factors, such as the external environment, technology, organisational characteristics, characteristics of the manager, and characteristics of the subordinates. Contingency theorists often implicitly or explicitly criticize the classical approach for its emphasis on the universality of management principles; however, most classical writers recognized the need to consider aspects of the situation when applying management principles.
Distinction between classical neoclassical approaches:
Classical Approach
Neo Classical Approach
a) Focus
Funcitons and economic demand of worker
Emotion and human qualities of workers
b) Structure
Impersonal and mechanistic
Social system
c) Application
Autocratic amanagement and strict rule
Democratic process
d) Emphasize
Discipline and rationality
Personal security and social demand
e) Work Goal of worker
Maximum remuneration and reward
Attainment of organisation goal
f) Concept about men
Economic being
Social being
g) Content
Scientific management, administrative management and bureaucratic management
Human relation movement and organisational behaviour
h) Relation
i) Nature

2. (a) Define the term “span of management”. How would you determine the optimum span in a given situation? 6+10=16
Ans: SPAN OF MANAGEMENT: In the words of Spriegal, "Span of control means the number of people reporting directly to an authority. The principle of span of control implies that no single executive should have more people looking to him for guidance and leadership than he can reasonably be expected to serve. The span of supervision is also known as span of control, span of management, span of responsibility, span of authority and span of direction.
Factors influencing the span of Management
                There are number of factors that influence or determine the span of Management in a particular organisation, the most important of these are as follows:
a)      The capacity and ability of the executive: The characteristics and abilities such as leadership, administrative capabilities; ability to communicate, to judge, to listen, to guide and inspire, physical vigour, etc. differ from person to person. A person having better abilities can manage effectively a large number of subordinates as compared to the one who has lesser capabilities.
b)      Competence and training of subordinates: Subordinates who are skilled, efficient, knowledgeable, trained and competent require less supervision, and therefore, the supervisor may have a wider span in such cases as compared to inexperienced and untrained subordinates who requires greater supervision.
c)       Nature of Work: Nature and importance of work to be supervised is another factor that influences the span of supervision. The work involving routine, repetitive, unskilled and standardized operations will not call much attention and time on the part of the supervisor.
d)      Time available for supervision: The capacity of a person to supervise and control a large number of persons is also limited on account of time available at his disposal to supervise them. The span of control would be generally narrow at the higher level of management because top manager have to spend their major time on planning, organising, directing and controlling and the time available at their disposal for supervision will be less.
e)      Degree of Decentralization and Extent of Delegation: If a manager clearly delegates authority to undertake a well-defined task, a well trained subordinate can do it with a minimum of supervisor's time and attention.
f)       Effectiveness of communication system: Faulty communication puts a heavy burden on manager's time and reduces the span of control.
g)      Quality of Planning: Effective planning helps to reduce frequent calls on the superior for explanation, instructions and guidance and thereby saves in time available at the disposal of the superior enabling him to have a wider span.
h)      Degree of Physical Dispersion: If all persons to be supervised are located at the same place and within the direct supervision of the manager, he can supervise relatively more people as compared to the one who has to supervise people located at different places.
i)        Assistance of Experts: the span of supervision may be wide where the services of experts are available to the subordinate on various aspects of work. In case such services are not provided in the organisation, the supervisor has to spend a lot of time in providing assistance to the workers himself and a such the span of control would be narrow.
Type of span of supervision: Broadly speaking there are two types, of span of supervision:
(a)    Wider Span of Supervision: In this type of span, the supervisor controls and guides the activities of subordinates directly under his control. Wider span or supervision is favoured where workers are competent and trained.
(b)   Narrow Span of Supervision: under this type of supervision, there are many levels and more supervisors are required to perform the job of guidance and control for different activities. It increases the efficiency of supervision but the cost of supervision is very high as compared to wider span of supervision. This type of supervision is favored at higher levels of management where all the other activities of planning, organising, directing, and controlling are also to be performed. But more the levels of supervision, more difficult are the task of coordinating the activities of various groups of people.
(b) Write short notes on:                             8+8=16
1) Advantages of decentralisation:
Ans: The main advantages of decentralization are as discussed below:
1)      It reduces the burden of top management so that he can concentrate on other important functions like planning control etc.
2)      It makes growth and diversification easy.  Under decentralization each product line is treated as a separate division, hence it can respond quickly to the changes in demands of its special market.
3)      It enables the organization to survive and grow under the conditions of keen competition.
4)      It helps in promoting development of executives.  Decentralization provides opportunity to subordinate managers to take decision and take initiative so as to acquire leadership qualities.  Decentralization tends to promote autonomy, initiative and creativity on the part of subordinates.  It helps the organization to maintain stability and continuity effectively.
5)      It improves motivation and morale of subordinates.  As opportunity to take decisions is given to them, it helps in developing belongingness and satisfies the need of power, prestige, status and independence.  When motivation and morale improves, productivity increases and healthy working relationship also develops.  It helps in maximum utilization of talents of lower levels in the organization.
6)      It results in effective supervision because lower level managers are given complete authority to make changes in work assignment, to take disciplinary action, to recommend promotions and even to change production  schedule.
7)      Decentralization is useful in promoting effective control through comparative evaluation of performance and clear-cut accountability of results.
8)      It promotes democratic management and flexibility of operations.  Necessary changes can be quickly made without disturbing the organizational structure.
9)      It helps in saving time as all the paper work relating to the basic operations of business can be significantly reduced, work can be completed early without wasting time.

2) Guidelines for effective delegation:
Ans: Basic Principles of Delegation: The followings are some of the important principles of delegation of authority:
(a) Authority should commensurate with responsibility- It is not correct to say that authority should be equal to responsibility. Authority is the power to carryout an assignment and responsibility is the obligation to accomplish them. It is logical to say that authority needed to do a job should correspond to the responsibility. Though equalisation of authority and responsibility is not possible, authority should be co-extensive or commensurate with responsibility.
(b) Responsibility cannot be delegated— When authority is delegated to a subordinate by an executive, the executive does not pass on the responsibility for it. He is still accountable for it to his immediate superior. As the responsibility to the superior is absolute, it is also termed as the principles of absolute responsibility.
(c) Dual subordination should be avoided— There is a saying that a man can-not serve two masters in the same way. Every subordinate in the organization must know who delegates authority to him and to whom the matters beyond his authority will be referred. The executive should ensure that authority passes through the formal chain of command and the line supervisors are not bypassed.
The most important step in the organization of office work is to assign definite duties and responsibility to each executive. This should be accompanied by delegation of authority. Authority flows downward as it implies the right to acquire action of others. Responsibility flows upward because a person is accountable to another in the higher rank.
7 important Principles of Delegation formulated by Koontz and O'Donnell: Koontz and O'Donnell give the following principles as guides to delegation of authority.
1. Principle of Delegation by Results Expected: Authority is delegated to achieve the enterprise objectives. 'Delegation by results expected implies that goals have been set and plans made, that these are communicated and understood, and that jobs have been set up to fit in with them'.
2. Principle of Functional Definition: The functions undertaken by managers are clearly explained. 'The more a position or a department has clear definitions of results expected, activities to be undertaken, organisation, authority delegated, and authority and informational relationships with other positions, the more adequately individuals responsible can contribute toward accomplishing enterprise objectives'.
3. Scalar Principles: This refers to the chain of authority relationships from superior to subordinate throughout the organisation. 'As the scalar principle indicates, this clearer thin line is from the top of the bottom of the organisation structure, the better delegation and orderly decision making are facilitated'.
4. Authority Level Principles: Each manager can take his own decision within his authority and only matters not within his authority must be referred to his superior.
5. Principle of Unity of Command: This means that a subordinate is answerable to only one boss. 'The more completely an individual has a relationship to a single superior, the less the problem of conflict in instructions and the greater the feeling of personal responsibility for results'.
6. Principle of Absoluteness of Responsibility: The responsibility of the subordinate to his superior for the assigned responsibility is absolute.
7. Principle of Parity of Authority and Stability: This principle states that authority should correspond to the responsibility. 'The responsibility for action cannot be greater than that implied by a authority delegated, nor can it be less'.
3. (a) Bring out the role of groups in an organisation. Substantiate the claims that group task influences group performance and satisfaction.                                               8+8=16
(b) Define Perception. Explain the steps in the perceptual process.                        6+10=16
Ans: Perception
Perception is an important mediating cognitive process. Through this complex process, people make interpretations of the stimulus or situation they are faced with. Both selectivity and organization go 'into perceptual, interpretations. Externally, selectivity is affected by intensity, size, contrast, repetition, motion and novelty and familiarity. Internally, perceptual selectivity is influenced by the individual's motivation, learning and personality. After the selective process filters the stimulus situation, the incoming information is organized into a meaningful whole.
Individual differences and uniqueness are largely the result of the cognitive processes. Although there arc a number of cognitive processes, it is generally recognized that the perceptual process is a very important one. It is a process that takes place between the situation and the behaviour and is most relevant to the study of organizational behaviour. For example, the observation that a department head and a subordinate may react quite differently to the same top management directive can be better understood and explained by the perceptual process.
In the process of perception, people receive many different kinds of information through all five senses, assimilate them and then interpret them. Different people perceive the same information differently.
Perception plays a key role in determining individual behaviour in organizations. Organizations send messages in a variety of forms to their members regarding what they are expected to do and not to do. In spite of organizations sending clear messages, those messages are subject to distortion in the process of being perceived by organizational members. Hence, managers need to have a general understanding of the basic perceptual process.
Basic Perceptual Process
Perception is influenced by characteristics of the object being perceived, by the characteristics of the person and by the situational processes.
a)      Characteristics   of the   object   include   contrast, intensity, movement, repetition and novelty.  
b)      Characteristics of the person include attitude, self-concept and personality.
The details of a particular situation affect the way a person perceives an object; the same person may perceive the same object very differently in different situations. The processes through which a person's perceptions are altered by the situation include selection, organization, attribution, projection, stereotyping process, and the halo effect process. Among these, selective perception and stereotyping are particularly relevant to organizations.
a) Selective Perception: Selective perception is the process of screening out information that we are uncomfortable with or that contradicts our beliefs. For example, a manager has a very positive attitude about a particular worker and one day he notices that the worker seems to be goofing up. Selective perception may make the manager to quickly disregard what he observed. For example, a manager who has formed a very negative attitude about a particular worker and he happens to observe a high performance from the same worker. In this case influenced by the selective perception process he too will disregard it. In one sense, selective perception is beneficial because it allows us to disregard minor bits of information. But if selective perception causes managers to ignore important information, it can become quite detrimental.
b) Stereotyping: Stereotyping is the process of categorizing or labeling people on the basis of a single attribute. Perceptions based on stereotypes about people's sex exist more or less in all work places. Typically, these perceptions lead to the belief that an individual's sex determines which tasks he or she will be able to perform. For example, if a woman is sitting behind the table in the office, she will be very often, perceived as a clerk and not an executive at first. But it would induce holding an exactly opposite assumption about a man. Stereotyping consists of three steps: identifying categories of people (like women, politician), associating certain characteristics with those categories (like passivity, dishonesty respectively) and then assuming that any one who fits a certain category must have those characteristics. For example, if dishonesty is associated with politicians, we are likely to assume that all politicians are dishonest.
4. (a) What is the essence of Vroom’s Expectancy model of motivation? What are its merits and limitations?   8+8=16
Ans: Victor Vroom made an important contribution to the understanding of the concept of motivation and the decision process that people use to determine how much effort they will expend on their jobs. He said that a person’s motivation towards an action at any time would be determined by an individual’s perception that a certain type of action would lead to a specific outcome and his personal preference for this outcome. This model is based on the belief that motivation is determined by the nature of the reward expect to get an a result of their job performance. There are three variable in Vroom’s model given in the form of an equation. Since the model is a multiplier, all the three variable must have high positive value to imply motivated performance choices. If any of the variable is zero the probability of motivated performance tends to be zero.
All these three variable are explained as follows:
1)      Valence: Valence means the attraction (or repulsion) of an outcome to the individual. Whenever an individual has preference for a reward valence is the strength of that preference.
2)      Expectancy: Expectancy is also referred to as the Effort-Performance Probability. It refers to the extent to which the person believes his efforts will lead to the first level outcome i.e. completion of the task.
3)      Instrumentality (Performance-Reward Probability): Instrumentality refers to the probabilities attached by the individual to each possible performance-outcome alternative just as the individual previously assigned probabilities to various levels of effort leading to different levels of performance (expectancy).
The plus points of this theory are:
a)      The expectancy model is highly useful in understanding organizational behaviour. It can improve the relationship between the individual and the organizational goals. This model explains how individuals’ goals influence his efforts and like need-based models reveal that individual behaviour is goal oriented.
b)      The expectancy theory is a cognitive theory, which values human dignity. Individuals are considered rational human beings who can anticipate their future on the basis of their beliefs and expectations.
c)       This theory helps the managers in looking beyond what Maslow and Herzberg implied. According to him motivation does not mean satisfying the unsatisfied needs. The managers must make it possible for an employee to see that effort can result in appropriate need satisfying rewards.
Despite these plus points, there are some drawbacks of Vroom’s expectancy model as given below:
a)      Vroom’s theory is difficult to research and apply in practice. This is evident by the fact that there have been a very few research studies designed specifically to test Vroom’s theory.
b)      This theory assumes man to be a rational human being who makes all the decisions consciously. But there are numerous instances where decision are taken with no conscious thought. This is particularly true for routine jobs.
c)       Although, it is an important theory of motivation but it is quite complex. Many managers, in actual organizational situations, do not have the time or sources to use a complex system on the job.
(b) Point out in brief some behavioural implications of control. Suggest some suitable measures to minimize behavioural dysfunctions of control.                                16
5. (a) What is effectiveness? What are the different approaches which have been developed to study organisational effectiveness?                                  6+10=16
(b) “Resistance to change is a normal part of process of change.” Discuss what technique would you use in overcoming such resistance.                          16

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