ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR AND DEVELOPMENT

(UBSE 1123)

HBR CASE STUDY ANALYSIS

CHALLENGE THE BOSS OR STAND DOWN?

Lecturer:
Dr Harcharanjit Singh
(harcharanjit@ibs.utm.my)

NO NAME MATRIC NO EMAIL

1 Syerie Noer Hidayaty Binti Muhamad MBS151129 syerie@gmail.com
Basir

2 Sharifah Shafiqah Binti Syed Mustaffa MBS 151120 sh.shafiqah@gmail.com

3 Wan Nuraida Binti Wan Ahmad MBS 151126 nuraidahmad@gmail.com

4 Irna Farizah Binti Ramle MBS 151145 irfas_87@yahoo.com

5 Noor Adilah Binti Ismail MBS 151141 nooradilahismail@gmail.com

Submission Date: 8th October 2016

3 Assessing steps to be taken when disagreement with 5 superior/employer 3 CAUSES 6-8 4 SOLUTIONS & EVALUATION 4.2 D7 Displays .2 Impact of superior attitude towards employees 3–4 2.3 Solutions For Shannon & D7 Displays 9 5 RECOMMENDATIONS 5. TABLE OF CONTENT NO TITLE PAGE 1 CASE OVERVIEW 1-2 2 OBJECTIVES 2.1 Solutions For Tom 8-9 4.13 6 REFERENCES 14 1|Page .1 Analysing leadership skills in an organization 2-3 2.1 Recommendation for Improvement of D7 Displays 10 Kiosks Service 5.2 Solutions For Frank 9 4.Outlook for Improvement 10 .

who recommended for Tom to be promoted without discussing the matter with Frank. Shannon McDonald (Shannon) is a Division Vice President in the company. hotels. 2|Page . This had resulted the both of them being severely upset to each other. Tom was rather focusing on kiosk services development project. Frank Davis is a superior to Thomas Green (Tom). both Tom and Frank conveyed their disagreement to each other in the strategy planning meeting which was attended by other senior sales and marketing team. Second issue arose when Tom did not perform up to Frank’s expectation which Frank visibly expressed to Tom as Tom did not yield a prodigious outcome since he was promoted to the senior marketing specialist post. The conflict started when Tom was promoted to the senior marketing specialist post by Shannon. rather than based on experience and skills. However.0 CASE OVERVIEW Frank Davis (Frank) is a Marketing Director in D7 Displays. preferred for the company’s self-service kiosk to offer unique advantage to its customers and clients. Frank refused to address Tom’s concern over the proposed marketing strategy. The promotion appeared to be of a personal one. Tom being an enthusiast young man. The promotion did not go through Frank and Shannon was in favour of Tom due to the fact that both of them studied in University of Georgia hence are alumni of the university. there are few issues which need to be addressed. and car rental markets. In the case. Its main business is self-service kiosk which it majorly supplies to airports. while Frank was of the view that growth of sales could be achieved by focusing on airline. United States. Due to different views on methods to strive for the company’s boost of sales.1. Frank who was sternly dismayed by Tom’s attitude and decided to escalate the matter to Shannon. The matter became sombre when Frank and Tom had different views in growing the company’s sales of self-service kiosk and ensure that the company is able to sustain in the industry. a senior marketing specialist who was just promoted from account executive as he was the fastest rising star in the company. This had caused a heated disparity between the two. a company established in 1990 based in Atlanta.

3|Page . In addition to the above. and felt intimidated by it.1 Leadership skill in an organization This case study shows different leadership skills in one organization which complement each other in order to get things done. as he was stuck in a sticky situation. the case showed an apparent communication breakdown in a team which would be unhealthy for an employee to work in. 2. Issues addressed above led to a greater concern to Tom. Atrocious issues laid above will be deliberated in the latter part of this paper. impact of superior attitude towards employee and action to be taken if disagreement arise. it matches the leadership style with situational or contingency through leader-member relations. Shannon had promoted him which is a blatant favouritism on her part since she holds a high post in D7 Displays. Based on Fiedler Contingency Model.0 OBJECTIVES The objective for this case study analysis is to focus on analysing leadership skills within an organization. It is an irrefutable fact that teamwork and cooperation leads to success of a department in specific and the organisation as a whole. task structure and position power. which is whether he should challenge Frank’s requirements or to follow Frank’s suits as his superior. which is favouritism. Knowing Tom as a young man with inadequate experience. 2. Due to corresponding differences with each other. He wondered if he made the right decision on purchasing new house and car. her unethical behaviour would come to bite her one day. the case had evidently described behaviour of certain problems in leadership of organisations these days. Little did Sharon know. Each leader shows different charisma through transactional and transformational leadership. Tom was obviously unhappy with the fact that Frank was questioning his whereabouts.

whom is the immediate boss of Tom. promote and increase salaries of employees in the organisation. Being in a high position in the organisation. 2. transformational leadership are normally inspired and lead extraordinary effects to the followers and normally being implemented by the top management. On the other hand. employees can be affected by superior attitude and vice versa. She made the decision to promote Tom just after their dinner together without discussing with Frank.2 Impact of superior attitude towards employees Second learning objective is impact of superior attitude towards employees. he appeared to apply transactional leadership when he wanted Tom to be supervised while doing his job and everything should be reported to him in order for him to evaluate Tom’s performance. This is one of the reason she agreed to give him the promotion. Furthermore. As in this case. Felt emotion is individual feeling whereas displayed emotion is required emotion in organizational 4|Page . punish. Furthermore. she implied transformational leadership as she observed Tom’s previous performance which would add value to the company as Tom has creative idea. In organization. The transactional leadership is also known as managerial leadership which most manager implies on this. They are result driven based leader as they need to achieve certain target. he threatened his subordinate when he did not perform or meet his expectation as Tom was warned about his performance after the strategic planning meeting. Tom was in dilemma when Frank was dissatisfied with his performance and this leads to emotional labor situation which employee should express organizationally desired emotions at work. fire. Tom could solve it by differentiating between felt emotions and displayed emotion. Franks was described as a task structure leader as he was focusing on job assignments given to the subordinate and their performance. Shannon appeared to be as a position power leader due to the fact that she has imminent power to hire. fresh perspective and a fast learner which would definitely be of an advantage to the company. It occurred again when Shannon reminded Tom to be cautious of his performance in order to maintain his new position. In Fiedler Contingency Model. However.

5|Page . Positive mood aspired to convey the right message to subordinate as a leader. this leads to low negative affect as he became less focused with his new role and task which required him to be involved in strategic planning for his unit. As shown figure 1. Figure 1: The Structure of a Mood However. in decision making. This suit with Shannon when she offered a promotion to Tom with high confident that he will bring a fresh perspective to the marketing team. This situation pressured Tom severely and led to high negative affect when he became tensed and felt that it was impossible to achieve that target because there are a few obstacles that Frank refused to address. Furthermore. However. the structure of the mood shows that his action would be happy and excited with the promotion. Tom was not happy with Frank’s instruction when he was assigned to prepare strategic planning for extended business line for their kiosk. Frank tends to be aggressive in the meeting when he stated that the new sales projection for Eastern Region by 15%. His new promotion as senior marketing specialist put him in comfort zone at high positive affect after the promotion. She responded by giving him another chance to improve himself after Frank’s evaluation of his performance.and considered appropriate in given job. positive moods and emotions play an important role in helping managers to make a sound decision. This was reflected when he decided to get himself a new car and house.

In order to change Frank’s perception towards him. he should comply with the company’s vision and goal in a long run. He should stay focus and be proactive to gain his superior’s trust. In furtherance to the above. he was using hallo effect in judging Frank because he felt that Frank will remove him from his team. Tom should change the way he judged his superior. In order for Tom to deal with his ordeal with Frank.2. As an employee. he should have identified opportunities and showed initiative to fulfill the team’s target. Furthermore. Tom should review his degree of professionalism and personal interest towards the organization. sales and creative thinking. Based on objectives identified above. Frank has a personality of low agreeableness which was the reason of his firm decision of the sales projection for Tom to achieve. Tom should be ready to learn new perspective in order to enhance his skills at his current managerial level. In this situation. 6|Page . Tom has great advantage as he has skills persuasion. he should have a sense of responsibility and respect towards his new team rather than focusing on his individual self-centred interest. Tom on the other hand. he should assess Frank by referring to The Big Five Personality Model. Other than that. At the first place. is of proactive personality when he approached Shannon for a promotion. Tom should start improving his analytical and thinking skills because he had been promoted and not sitting at his old role as account executive. Furthermore. we are of the view that Tom should stand down and act in accordance to Frank’s requirements. which should be utilised to achieve company’s vision and goal. in regards to Tom’s dilemma whether to challenge Frank who is boss or whether to stand down and follow Frank’s instruction.3 Assessing steps to be taken when disagreement with superior/employer Another objective is to assess steps to be taken when in disagreement with superior or employer. In term of professionalism.

The promotion seems to be a personal interest rather than professional because Shannon had failed to consider Tom’s experience and skills. First and foremost. Shannon felt that Tom is the right person to hold the position as senior marketing specialist without discussing it first with Frank. which Tom felt intimidated with and felt that Frank was planning to get him fired. He showed his best effort when he made multiple trips to Shannon at headquarters office and showed her the potential clients and his strategies for winning them. Frank 7|Page . Second cause for the problem in the case study was when Tom disagreed with Frank on the new market penetration and projection proposed by Frank.3. Tom was an account executive before he was promoted as a senior marketing specialist for the Eastern North America region by Shannon who is division vice president at D7 Displays. Tom was promoted by Shannon instead of Frank. The issue started in this case study took place when there are favouritism between top management and employee. In the case. As Tom was thinking through his kiosk-services development project. Frank watched Tom’s daily activities.0 CAUSES There are obvious root causes detected from this case study. Secondly. Tom disagreed with Frank on the new market penetration and projection proposed by Frank. Favouritism occurs when we see an employer favors another person of the same environment than the rest. his new immediate superior. Frank felt disrespected with Tom’s behaviour for challenging him publicly and he was disappointed with his performance and lastly. he needed Tom to be responsible in developing market strategies for his region and Frank had high expectation for Tom to be better prepared when he is on his own for the performance of the Eastern region. It shows an unfair support from one person who has authorities to others. The first issue between Tom and Frank was when both disagreed with each other’s idea. As a marketing director. Next. Tom on the other hands was taking advantage on Shannon to be on that position as she could be his ticket to the fast track. As they both were alumni of University of Georgia.

Frank took action by keep watching Tom’s daily activities. As Tom challenged Frank in the meeting. hotel and car rental markets for that region which Tom objected. Frank warned him not to exceed the limit and never challenge him publicly again. In this situation. In addition. Tom did not agree with Frank in regards to the new market penetration and projection proposed by Frank. Tom argued with the sales projection performance proposed by Frank publicly in the meeting and it gave bad impression to Tom’s performance in the future. they were supposed to review and analyse the sales projections for the coming year as well as performance expectations for the senior marketing specialists together with their teams. Lastly.rejected his idea and he told him to hold his project because Frank needed Tom to focus on the market-strategy meeting so that Tom could strategize the development for his region. Tom should follow Frank’s suggestion and later on provide feedback to Frank as a room for improvement of the sales growth. As a subordinate who is lack of experience. but not for the bosses that still love the sort of difference that validates their status in an organization. Tom failed to deliver an important report on time and he is not keeping Frank informed about his work in general. Besides than two causes stated above. The cause for the problem in this case was when Frank felt disrespected with Tom’s behaviour and he disappointed with his performance. The problem occurred when Tom challenged Frank’s authority publicly at the meeting. He believed that their projection on future performance of 15% will not work if they still offer the same products. However during that meeting Tom argued with Frank’s idea regarding next year of growth goals for Eastern region. He 8|Page . Instead. Tom felt intimidated when Frank watched Tom’s daily activities. After the meeting. His suggestion was to do something different from others and offer other benefits that web services can’t offer and the company should produce new offers in order to compete in the business. Tom may believe that hierarchy is nothing in today’s corporate world. At the same time. According to Frank. He should not challenge his boss in front of other staff even if he was sure that his idea is correct. there are other causes for the issues rose in the case. Eastern region should be more aggressive and more viable and they have fixed the growth targets at 15% for the airline. During the meeting.

At this stage. Tom must apologize to Frank for challenging him publicly. he must try to gain trust and respect from Frank. Tom felt that Frank was planning to get him fired as Frank showed him a copy of the email he sent to Shannon and he was required to send email to her to explain about how he can improve his performance in the future.0 SOLUTIONS & EVALUATION This part will discuss about the solutions and evaluations that should be taken by Tom. Tom should adhere to all Frank's advice starting with updating his schedule on a daily basis and make a return messages or calls from the office promptly. since Tom is not the choice of Frank to hold the said position. Frank has to review all sales collateral in advanced. Tom can prove to Frank that he is capable to hold the position of senior marketing specialist. Secondly. Since Frank has been the marketing manager in D7 Displays for almost 20 years and managing all the managers from different regions. Tom also was required to update and deliver the reports in a timely manner and he must prepare all the specific client- communication strategies before sales calls. By doing so. Frank and Shannon in order to tackle the issues in D7 Displays 4.needed Tom to update him on his detailed plans and schedule on a daily basis and Tom has to update Outlook daily and return message from the office promptly. 4. he must be really experienced and more knowledgeable about the market situations compared to Tom. 9|Page . Tom should stand down by doing these step by step solutions. Tom must learn to respect and acknowledge his superior’s expertise. if he can secure his position. In addition. Thirdly. he may continuously enjoy his new car and house without wild doubts at the back of his mind.1 SOLUTIONS FOR TOM In order to maintain his position in the company and for the sake of his career development. Tom must try to achieve the market goals set by Franks. First.

Additionally. Frank should assign one senior specialist to guide Tom and the team. 4. If he thinks that Tom’s ideas are not appropriate he can meet Tom personally to discuss about it. and learn to hear all the opinions and suggestions from all the employees. Shannon must settle the conflict between Frank and Tom amicably. Through this program. he must act professionally in the meeting by giving space for Tom to express his ideas and suggestions. Shannon must create a mentoring program. 10 | P a g e . She must not be biased. details report what he have been doing so that Shannon will get vividly clear idea of what is really happening between Tom and Frank. Lastly. in the future they can work together in developing a better marketing plan for D7 Display. Tom might be given the opportunity to be promoted to a higher position.3 SOLUTIONS FOR SHANNON Seeing that Tom was promoted from a different department. Frank can also offer some rewards to Tom as motivation if he succeed. 4. he can monitor Tom’s development from distance. Considering Tom was still new in the marketing department and Frank wanted to keep his eye on Tom’s work. it will help Tom to adapt with the new environment and have better understanding about his new job. This cooperative behaviour between the two will boost the sales and profit of the company. Furthermore if Tom able to follow Frank’s leadership. This will reduce the conflict between Tom and Frank. This is to avoid the problem become worse and affect the company’s performance. In order to maintain his credibility as a superior to his subordinate. She should act as a mediator and call both parties for an open discussion. Tom must explain to Shannon. as a person in a managerial level.2 SOLUTIONS FOR FRANK Frank should be more of a good listener and try to receive new ideas from younger generation like Tom. to train Tom. By doing so. If things go well according to plan.

upgrade their seats.1 RECOMMENDATION FOR IMPROVEMENT OF D7 DISPLAYS As a company that was launched nearly 30 years ago focusing on providing ATM with 1. 5.2 D7 DISPLAYS .0 RECOMMENDATIONS 5. 11 | P a g e . with a rapidly changing of business model and competitive market. a highly motivated and innovative human resources are needed. a good organization must devote a greater effort in order to increase their capabilities. this can be considered as a huge success for the D7 Displays. the company should consider to move forward by eliminating the kiosks and concentrate on other added value services to serve the customers at their best rather than just focusing on the self-service check-ins only. or even pay for the lounge. Morphing into integrated mobile solution is seems to be a good approach as smartphone is more relevant since it became one of the most important things in life and the internet can be assessed anywhere at any time.OUTLOOK FOR IMPROVEMENT “Happy employees can produce a productive employees. However.500 self-check-in stations in 75 airports. It is becoming a trend in airlines sector to automate everything that eradicates customers’ interaction services. D7 Displays should change their business-operating model in order to compete with other service providers in order to serve the clients effectively.” In rapidly changing of business environment. Online check in would contribute in saving customers’ time at the airport. However.5. Looking at this. Human resource is the most important arm in an organization as they are the important assets that determine the success or failure of a company. Nowadays. The company should expand its markets and products rather than just be dependent on the self-service kiosk business. to achieve this goal. A mobile application for online check in can be a platform for the customers to check-in at their convenience. the markets are saturated with competition of web-based check-in services and D7 Displays appeared to lose their market share and clients.

His nature of being a transactional leadership has led him to supervise Tom while doing his job and ordered Tom to directly write a report to him. As mentioned earlier. Conger and Kanungo (1988) as cited in Kumar Sahoo and Das (2011). and decision-making are important in an organization as it portrays the true colours of employees that work within. Generally. every organization need to make a transformation by moving towards people-based process which is focusing more on giving freedom and motivation to their employees as this would prevent employees’ dissatisfaction similar to situation between Tom and Frank. As living in the competitive worlds. It is a participative management that involve employees who are responsible to the working process and people who knows what are the processes. One of the definitions of employee empowerment is by creating a positive working environment among employee and let them to have a feeling of ownership in specific tasks and projects (Fryer). Franks was described as a task structure leader since he was focusing on job assignments given to the subordinate and their performance. communicate and building a team among managers and employee is complementary in order to have a fully engagement between employees and achieve 12 | P a g e . the good about it and where the quality starts. competence and control in order to achieve the goals that the organization had set up at the very beginning. states that empowering the employee is a good move as the organizations allow the employee to have a sense of freedom. there is no employee empowerment given to Tom as he has no sense of freedom to express and show his capability of doing his tasks. according to Fiedler Contingency Model. Interpersonal skills such as communication. The ability to motivate. In this case. Employees that show good interpersonal skills seems to be highly productive and able to achieve job satisfaction compared to those who are showing poor interpersonal skills in an organization. listening. Employee empowerment is one of the ways of how to manage the human resource and fully utilized them. In business world. the ability of employees to work and get along with others while completing the task is best to describe the interpersonal skills. interpersonal skills can be defined as the skills that is being used by human to interact with others.

He wanted Tom just to listen his order without allowing Tom to express and share his thoughts and ideas. he shouldn’t challenge his boss during a strategic- planning meeting that cause Frank to feel threatened towards him. in order to be a good leader. Good leaders must have the ability to tolerate with the co-workers and subordinates and be considerate in win-lose situation. as it will enhance the productivity of employee and increase their job satisfaction. Besides the empowerment of employee and improving interpersonal skills among managers in organization. management skills as well as the operational skill for each of the employees. Frank and Shannon is essential in avoiding further conflicts that can affect their organization. An employee training programs is essential in every level of management team in the organization.the goals for organizations. In this case. According to Mel Kleimen (2000). A different type of training programs that can be offered to the employees are by offering scholarship to them to further their study to improve their knowledge and education in related field. At this point. A transparent communication between Tom. the most effective employee training programs are constructed based on three parts that included the orientation. The efficacy of managing the employees can be shown through the manager’s confidence level and also the ability to listen and understand the order. The main objective of providing the training programs are to ensure that the employee to get to know more and understand the culture of their organization as well as to increase the job satisfaction that finally can lead to a successful of the organization. the leader should capable to motivate their employees to get the work done and this is where the communication skills is required because it involves the interaction between the superior and the workers in organization. one should provide a good employee training programs for their employee in ensuring the job is smooth. In this case. the communication breakdown is clearly occurred between Tom and Frank. As for Tom. 13 | P a g e . Frank however needed to negotiate well with Tom in order to ensure the job was completed instead of being autonomy. Frank was unable to build a good communication while interacting with Tom.

if he was offered to go on for the training. However. it is unfair to put on the blame on Frank. as he is one of the top senior managers in D7 Displays. by applying a performance appraisal for both parties. Frank. Intensive training programs for employees should be introduced in D7 Displays as it gives mutual benefits to employees as well as the organization. he should take initiative to use all those opportunities offered for his betterment and his future career. For every employees. His experience is priceless and his aggressive goals in reaching the company’s goals were needed. the management team will have a room to close any possible gaps by performing evaluation of their job performance. Shannon should have taken the opportunity and get involved in solving the problem between Frank and Tom. Conversation between Shannon and Tom clearly showed that Tom doesn’t have any managerial experience despite his potential fresh perspectives. A good performance appraisal can indicate whether an employee is satisfied or upset with their working environment. he was in dilemma whether to stand down and leave the company when the conflicts arose between him and his superior. This is interrelated with the training and career development of the employees. Plus. a mutual understanding between Tom and Frank is the best solution for this situation as it can benefit the organization and both of them as a whole. Thus. job scope and superior. A good organisation will have the initiative to retain employees and has low turnover rate. Tom and Frank. Thus. 14 | P a g e . An accomplishment of the organization is definitely relying on the performance of employees itself no matter in which sector they are. It is a waste for failing to appreciate a talented employee like Tom. it will contribute capability to sustain their employment. as he is young and energetic with highly potential through his brilliant ideas. As for Tom. they are seeking for security in jobs. Organization that are willing to spend some amount of their money to their employees will be appreciated and cared for compared to companies that are not willing to invest on their employees. Shannon directly favored Tom that he needs to seek for guidance through the senior managers in D7 Displays in order to achieve his goals. In addition to the above. By providing a career development for the employees.

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