University Question Papers
2005 Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) M.B.A Business Administration MS-26 : Organisational Dynamics Question paper
MS-26 : ORGANISATIONAL DYNAMICS
Time : 3 hours
Maximum Marks : 100
Note : (i) There are two Sections A and B.
(ii) Attempt any four questions from Section A. Each question carries 15 marks
(iii) Section B is compulsory and carries 40 marks.
1. Why do people feel alienated from one's own self or others ? If a member of a group tries to destroy the cohesiveness of the group what measures may be taken to deal with him/her ? Explain with suitable exampes.
2. Explain the concept of 'Coping'. Differentiate between functional and dysfunctional coping strategies for role stresses, with suitable examples.
3. Why is 'Business Ethics' assuming greater importance in today's business world ? Identify and briefly discuss in various functions of management.
4. What do you understand by the term 'Empowerment' ? What is Empowerment Audit ? Should it be undertaken at all ? Justify your answer.
5. What are the dynamics behind group formation ? Identify the reasons which play an influential role in the formation of a group and why. Explain with suitable examples.
6. Write short notes on any three of the following :
(i) Job rotation
(ii) Structural Interventions for OD
(iii) BOSS and ROSS
(iv) Dimensions of Diversity
(v) Power dynamics in organizations
7. Please read the case given below and answer the questions given at the end :
On 15 March 1949, Merry Joseph came in to see Mr. John, the plant personnel director, to talk over a problem that was troubling her. Merry was a hand assembly production worker in a modern 600-employee branch plant located in a large eastern city. After Merry told Mr. John her story, he asked her to write out a description of the situation. Her statement is reproduced here.
Reconsider this case not unusual nor typical, but as having happened to me and to a few others. As I am not equipped to do the work, it offers little or no solution to the problem at hand. I would not be writing this report if I had not remembered the advice given by Mr. John of Personnel. He told a group that should we have a problem, to please consult him before walking out. However, I will mention here that I have seen a few very conscientious workers walk out without "fighting the case".
When I was first hired, Mr. Nair, the foreman, introduced me to the young lady who taught me the process of soldering lead wires. I asked her how much production I would be expected to turn in daily, and she secured this information for me from the other girls. This seemed at the moment like a fantastic sum, but she assured me that after a few days I would become quite efficient, which I soon did. I am not one to "bite the hand that feeds me", so I began working and finally developed the system into a sort of a game.
A few weeks later, one of the girls asked me how I was doing, and I told her that I was doing fine. She looked at my production sheet and swore. She was astonished to see how much I was producing each hour. She bitterly reminded me that girls that had been here for several months or even years were not producing what I had accomplished in a few weeks! I laughed that off as somewhat of a compliment. That was my big mistake as far as co-operating with the company or satisfying my gregarious tendencies was concerned. I was immediately and severely ostracized.
During the weeks that ensued, I noticed I was not completely alone; there were a few others who were also "friendless". However, it was soon apparent that ostracism was not satisfying the desires of their fiendish little plan. Threats were to follow and they did follow.
Having worked in the "violent ward" of a psychopathic hospital, I was not the least bit nervous because of these threats but others were, I noticed a few things about the character, temperament and education of those who were apparently "bossing". They were usually the old-timers and loafers - girls with great deal of confidence and little reason for it. Sometimes, their reasons for fighting the enormous business organisation which represents their security, were quite convincing : ''Your work is never appreciaied." "They'll always want more and more." "You haven't got a chance to get a merit wage increase unless you go out with the boss. ." After this general talking to, the poor girls began to wonder; some of them stayed a few days and then didn't turn up for work. The clique had scored again.
I sat and wondered as I worked. What to do ? I was assured I had the bosses on my side, but the... The long dead silence and the vulgar, stupid remarks of the other girls soon began to get under my skin. I worked quite a while at the psychopathic hospital, and "they" never bothered me, but these stupid little people and their moronic remarks soon began to annoy me terribly. Because my production was high, I was asked to work Saturdays. This brought a violent counter thrust from the rebels.
Soon their campaign began to affect me exactly as they had planned (Or am I giving them too much credit ?) My production was dropping. The assistant foreman. Bert, asked me if I was ill. When I told him my troubles, he advised me to see Mr. Nair, which I did. Mr. Nair listened attentively and asked the names of the rebels, which I readily gave, not feeling at all like an informer. He then assured me, though stammering, that justice would prevail. I noticed little change.
The little minds had other desires than to keep their jobs secure; they wanted to jeopardize the position of their immediate superiors. philip, who had advised me to talk to Mr. Nair, commonly held the reputation of being a communist, nailed on him by "my rebels". I have always maintained in my philosophy that if one cannot become great by one's own methods of accomplishment, then one will probably pull everyone else down below him, until by comparison he is above the mob, hence great. This is commonly known as "scapegoatism". These girls carried this farther than I ever dreamed would be done. Scapegoating is a common activity of the uneducated. Education of the population, while not the solution, will greatly aid in the eventual solution of this problem.
However, back to the practical aspects of the problem at hand. I had convinced myself that most of the girls were not the kind I would care to associate with, anyway, so my scope of activity was not ruptured too severely. As they ignored me, I ignored them. However, something happened that I had not counted on. I became physically ill from the entire situation. Having had a few lectures on psychosomatic diseases, I knew I had not incorrectly diagnosed the case.
My relief came in the form of a temporary transfer to another department. I knew it would take some time before the girls would become acquainted with my case, and the rest was welcome. I was shocked to find that no one was interested in my "reputation". I was further shocked when I began to notice that harmony, tranquillity, and cooperation prevailed in this department. It is my opinion that part of the cause for such cooperation in this department may be attributed to the fact of one boss - and a capable, understanding man, at that.
Then, I was told to return to my former department, where I was greeted by my boss with : "Enjoy your vacation". This does not strike me as being very complimentary to one who has been conscientious from the beginning.
I had been taught to report all inferior-grade materials, and this particular morning I found the wire defective. Afier reeling yards of red tape from a few of my bosses, I finally was sent to Mr. Nair. Again, Mr. Nair was glad to see me, "I want you to get back to your machine, sit down, and mind your own business. Your production is falling. Why ?" This I was told before I had a chance to speak. Here, I explained about the strain I was under and about the inferior materials. He then told me to work as best I could with the inferior materials, as he didn't want to send any of the girls home. I then told him I had thought of leaving. He sarcastically mentioned that perhaps it was for the best. This shock drove me to Mr. John of Personnel, and to standing here in my living room dictating this to my husband, the typist of the family.
(a) What are the salient features of the case ? Explain.
(b) How do you see the work culture/climate in the organisation ? Critically evaluate.
(c) What is the root cause of the problem ? Suggest a long term intervention plan ?
(d) How do you see the act and record of Merry vis-a-vis her colleagues in this case?