HUMAN BEHAVIOR IN ORGANIZATIONAL CONTEXT
By Aurangzeb Soharwardi
There are numerous Large , medium , small and micro organizations in the world ,offering products and services to wide range of diverse consumers. Mostly we see their products and services,marketing promotions,prices , quality or sales promotions but the most important aspect is generally ignored and that is that how the employees working in those organizations get together to work for producing these products and services. How their psychology and sociology works to gel them for common objectives. How the culture is shaped up to achieve targets,tackle crises and fulfill customer needs profitably to grow. How their personal biases , attitudes ,interests and the group dynamics affect the over all working and performance.
In order to understand this, we have to dive into the ocean of knowledge and find out building blocks of this phenomenon. Human behavior in organizations is connected with various fields and subjects of study, the basis of which are psychology,sociology, human ecology and anthropology as the major areas of study. Anthropology is the scientific study of humanity, concerned with human behavior, human biology, and societies, in both the present and past, including past human species.Social anthropology studies patterns of behavior, while cultural anthropology studies cultural meaning, including norms and values. Linguistic anthropology studies how language influences social life. Biological or physical anthropology also study various human dimensions.Economic anthropology is a field that attempts to explain human economic behavior in its widest historic, geographic and cultural scope. It is an amalgamation of economics and anthropology.Besides this there are many other diverse subjects are also connected to this. The basis of this is the social psychology which is the scientific study of how people think about ,influence,and relate to each other. It has the foundations in Psychoanalytic theory,Behaviorism and Gestalt theory.Psychoanalytic theory deals with Freud’s theory of emphasizing unconscious motivation, Behaviorism deals with analysis of learning that focuses on observed behavior and the Gestalt theory focuses on the concept that people from coherent and meaningful perceptions based on the whole , not individual parts. There are many theories associated with social psychology like Motivational theories,Learning theories(Social learning theory,Reinforcement,Observational learning,modeling), Cognitive theories,Decision making theories(Expectancy-value theory), Inter dependence theories(Social exchange ) and Socio -cultural theories. The concepts of individualism and collectivism also play important role in this.Then there is evolutionary social psychology which is the analysis of human behavior in terms of evolution and natural selection. The evolved psychological Mechanism gives us the human tendencies and preferences resulting from natural selection.It also has the shades of group dynamics and theory of social identity. Social psychology not only has a direct impact on employee performance but also on the social well being and health. Another important area of study associated with this is Organizational and Industrial psychology , which cover not only the process dynamics in the organizations but also the structural and behavioral aspects in the organization. The organizational hierarchy & structure,Systems and procedures,designs, the working conditions,culture, health ,safety ,environment are the main components of I O Psychology. Organizational theory and design is the subject which deals with organizational structures and designs with interdependence. Organizational theory consists of many approaches to organizational analysis. “Organizations” are defined as social units of people that are structured and managed to meet a need, or to pursue collective goals. Theories of organizations include rational system perspective, division of labor, bureaucratic theory, and contingency theory. Then there are at least three theories relevant here which are theories of economics, theory of the firm, transaction cost economics, and agency theory. There is another simplest definition of organization that it is a goal directed social entity. Organizational ecology (also organizational demography and the population ecology of organizations) is a theoretical and empirical approach in the social sciences that is considered a sub-field of organizational studies. Organizational ecology utilizes insights from biology, economics, and sociology, and employs statistical analysis to try to understand the conditions under which organizations emerge, grow, and die. The ecology of organizations is divided into three levels, the community, the population, and the organization. The community level is the functionally integrated system of interacting populations. Economic sociology is the study of the social cause and effect of various economic phenomena. The field can be broadly divided into a classical period and a contemporary one, known as “New economic sociology”industrial sociology is also the part of this whole phenomenon, until recently a crucial research area within the field of sociology of work, examines “the direction and implications of trends in technological change, globalization, labor markets, work organization, managerial practices and employment relations to the extent to which these trends are intimately related to changing patterns of inequality in modern societies and to the changing experiences of individuals and families the ways in which workers challenge, resist and make their own contributions to the patterning of work and shaping of work institutions.
This leads to the behaviors of employees in the organization at individual,group and organization levels and the subject which covers this is the Organizational Behavior which deals with the the study of how people behave within groups. Early studies determined the importance of group dynamics in business productivity. The study of organizational behavior is a foundation of corporate human resources. Organization and Job related perception , attitudes and behaviors of employees. Organizational behavior management (OBM) is a sub discipline of applied behavior analysis (ABA), which is the application of behavior analytic principles and contingency management techniques to change behavior in organizational settings. Through these principles and assessment of behavior, OBM seeks to analyze and employ antecedent, influencing actions of an individual before the action occurs, and consequence, what happens as a result of someone’s actions, interventions which influence behaviors linked to the mission and key objectives of the organization and its workers. Such interventions have proven effective through research in improving common organizational areas including employee productivity, delivery of feedback, safety, and overall morale of said organization. Behavioral economics studies the effects of psychological, cognitive, emotional, cultural and social factors on the decisions of individuals and institutions and how those decisions vary from those implied by classical economic theory. Behavioral economics is primarily concerned with the bounds of rationality of economic agents. Behavioral models typically integrate insights from psychology, neuroscience and microeconomics theory. The study of behavioral economics includes how market decisions are made and the mechanisms that drive public choice.
Human relations whether at work or social are formed on the basis of the study of Organizational behavior .Understanding the linkage between behavior,human relations and Performance is very important to understand.As the result of various research work of HR experts like Campbell 1990, who propagated that performance is a work behavior (Task , contextual, adaptive) , there fore to enhance employee performance in organizations this connectivity has to be understood and established. An other important aspect of human relations is Diversity (Interpersonal,interpersonal) is very important to understand and work on.Organizational politics is another prominent area linked with human relations in organizations.Communication is the foundation of human relations in the organizations,which facilitates or disrupts relations. Culture is an aspect which is the outcome of all the shared values,norms,traditions, bonded by communication in the organizations.Cultural economics is the branch of economics that studies the relation of culture to economic outcomes. Here, ‘culture’ is defined by shared beliefs and preferences of respective groups. Programmatic issues include whether and how much culture matters as to economic outcomes and what its relation is to institutions. As a growing field in behavioral economics, the role of culture in economic behavior is increasingly being demonstrated to cause significant differentials in decision-making and the management and valuation of assets.
In order to glue the employees together , Socialization is very significant and it is covered under an other study area which is On boarding; also known as organizational socialization, is management jargon first created in the 1970s that refers to the mechanism through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviors in order to become effective organizational members and insiders. In the United States, for example, up to 25% of workers are organizational newcomers engaged in an on boarding process. Tactics used in this process include formal meetings, lectures, videos, printed materials, or computer-based orientations that outline the operations and culture of the organization that the employee is entering into. This process is known in other parts of the world as an ‘Induction’ or training. Studies have documented that socialization techniques such as on boarding lead to positive outcomes for new employees. These include higher job satisfaction, better job performance, greater organizational commitment, and reduction in occupational stress and intent to quit. All this is linked with each other and is intended to create an Organizational citizenship Behavior for sustainable organizations with high performance. Organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) is a term that’s used to describe all the positive and constructive employee actions and behaviors that aren’t part of their formal job description.OCB is not something that’s required from employees to do their job and it’s not part of their contractual tasks.Besides this the Organizations try to curb the opposite of it which is Counter Productive Behavior of employees which reveals that Counterproductive work behavior (CWB) is employee behavior that goes against the legitimate interests of an organization. These behaviors can harm organizations or people in organizations including employees and clients, customers, or patients. It has been proposed that a person-by-environment interaction can be utilized to explain a variety of counterproductive behaviors. For instance, an employee who is high on trait anger (tendency to experience anger) is more likely to respond to a stressful incident at work (e.g., being treated rudely by a supervisor) with CWB. Some researchers use the CWB term to subsume related constructs that are distinct. Workplace deviance is behavior at work that violates norms for appropriate behavior. Retaliation consists of harmful behaviors done by employees to get back at someone who has treated them unfairly. Workplace revenge are behaviors by employees intended to hurt another person who has done something harmful to them. Workplace aggression consists of harmful acts that harm others in organizations.
This is the whole science and frame work which is behind the production of goods and services,growth or decline of organizations. To produce products and services in organizations , various departments are established on the basis of business functions. All departments create an eco system and employees work there to achieve joint organizational objectives.It is imperative for the people managing all sorts of organizations to study these dynamics and manage the employees and the systems to develop organizations.