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Part 1 Examination – Paper 1.3 Managing People 1 (a)

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December 2004 Answers

Teams have to develop, mature and often eventually terminate. According to Tuckman, it is possible to identify distinct stages of development through which teams pass. There are five distinct stages. The Forming stage is when the members meet and decide upon the purpose of the team and how it will operate. At this stage the team is no more than a collection of individuals, finding out about one another and about the task even though the objectives may be unclear. This stage is wasteful and time consuming, although essential since the prospective team members are not at this stage comfortable with each other. The second stage is Storming. The phrase ‘storming’ is a deliberate reference to a stage of development characterised by conflict. Previous ideas, ideals, norms, attitudes and behaviours are challenged and often rejected. There is competition for the roles within the team. This is a constructive and often fruitful stage with trust developing. If the individuals come successfully through this stage then a stronger team will result. The Norming stage is when the routines under which the team will operate are established. The team is settling down, members investigate ideas and test the reactions of the team as a whole and consequently, norms are established. In addition, it is at this stage that the team establishes patterns of behaviour, levels of trust and the methods by which decisions will be taken. By the time the Performing stage is reached, the team is now complete and able to perform to its full potential. Difficulties with team roles, individual conflicts and problems of adjustment have been resolved.

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The group of people who established ‘Rockers’ would by now have gone through the development stages, the scenario clearly suggesting that each group member had settled into and fulfilled their roles with the group having reached the performing stage. However, with Olivia’s departure and the recruitment of four new members – which represents a substantial expansion in numbers – the group would have been taken back to the forming and storming stage; a collection of individuals needing to resolve uncertainties and conflict. (b) (i) (ii) Olivia was the Shaper. The scenario describes a dominant, extrovert personality. Task driven to the point of passion; a force for action, her role is central and will be missed. Neville is the Coordinator. He provides the leadership, coordination and is good at working with others. A balanced and disciplined person. Peter is the Monitor Evaluator/Innovator, not creative but analytical in approach, examines ideas and finds errors and flaws. However, he may be tactless and aloof. Rosalind is the Resource Investigator. Popular, social, extrovert and relaxed, she is a useful source of new contacts but not ideas. She needs to be used. Quentin is the Company Worker. The administrator and organiser who turns ideas into jobs and tasks. He is efficient, trustworthy but unexcitable. Suki is the Team Worker. The ‘silent’ member. Concerned with the maintenance of the team, supportive and popular with the team but noticed only when absent. (iii) All team members are a matter of balance. Belbin suggests that all team members have a dual role; the primary role is that of the skill or function, usually the individual’s professional role. The secondary role is the team role based on the individual’s preferred behaviour pattern. Olivia was the Shaper, thus the team role which involves driving the team and ensuring that action takes place is missing. Her departure might well have a damaging effect on the group and the success of ‘Rockers’. In addition, the scenario does not describe remaining roles, the Plant (the introvert, intellectually gifted and imaginative individual who acts as a source of ideas) and the Completer/Finisher who pushes the team to meet targets, sees urgency and follow through as important and enjoys details. The person who fulfils this role is not popular with the team. These roles were probably secondary (Belbin suggests that it is possible to have more than one team role) but suggest, along with Olivia’s departure and the recruitment of four new members, that roles will need to be re-addressed. (c) Neville will need to re-build the team, identify and fill the vacant team roles and allow the team to develop through the stages of team development. He needs to understand that all team roles are required for a successful team in addition to the team members bringing their own disciplines and skills. It is possible that all will have more than one team role skill, although one will be greater. The team role itself may change, depending on the task and the number of team members otherwise there is the danger of team imbalance. Often the supposed benefits of teamwork do not materialise due to incompatible personalities or too many individuals with the same views and backgrounds. Teams can be destructive if not properly constructed.

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In practice, many teams reach the Dorming stage, which has been suggested as a final and fifth stage, when the team becomes complacent, has lost interest in the task and exists only for self preservation.

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Organisational culture reflects deep set beliefs about the way that work should be organised, authority exercised and the degree of formality, rules and procedures which are appropriate. (a) Mullins describes organisational culture as ‘the collection of traditions, values, policies, beliefs and attitudes that constitute a pervasive context for everything we do and think in an organisation.’ Schwartz and Davies describe organisational culture as ‘a pattern of beliefs and expectations shared by the organisation’s members and which produce norms which powerfully shape the behaviour of individuals and groups in the organisation.’ Many other writers describe culture simply as ‘the way we do things around here.’ (b) Charles Handy has suggested that organisations can, in general terms, be described in terms of the relationship between their structure and culture. Students should recognise that the descriptions of Handy are of the organisational structure and the relationship with culture. The Power/Club Culture: In this culture, power and influence come from the centre of the structure, often drawn as a web. Decisions are made by the centre and radiated outwards, the further from the centre of the organisation, the weaker the power and influence. This organisation is not rigidly structured, is capable of rapid change but relies very much on the influence and ability of the centre.

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The Role Culture: This is the traditional and typical organisational structure and culture based on rules, regulations, rationality, logic and predictability. This structure is illustrated by a Greek temple. The roles and functions are the pillars with the management at the top. The organisation is efficient, its activities and therefore culture are based on formality and procedures. Employees are process oriented, have clear roles and are not required to be innovative or imaginative. The environment is stable, predictable; this kind of organisation is slow to adapt or respond to change. The Task Culture: The task culture is often illustrated as a matrix or net structure. The culture is task and team based. The objective for the organisation and its members is clear, to complete the task. There is no leader. The individuals employed are experts or specialists formed together to fulfil a results based task. Job satisfaction is high, there is strong group identity and these organisations are flexible, changing and expensive. The Person or Existentialist Culture: This structure is illustrated as a bounded cluster. This type of structure is totally different from the others. It exists to fulfil the needs and ambitions of the individuals within it, rather than driven by any external task. These organisations exhibit interdepence and collaboration. Management is difficult because of individual expertise and the nature of rewards.

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Job analysis is an important component of the descriptive documents that relate to the job itself. Before any other job related tasks such as a job description or performance measures can be undertaken, the job must be carefully analysed and described. Job analysis precedes a number of other people management issues. (a) Job analysis is ‘the process of collecting, analysing and setting out information about the content of jobs in order to provide the basis for a job description and data for recruitment, training, job evaluation and performance management. Job analysis concentrates on what job holders are expected to do.’ (b) A job analysis must be carried out systematically in order to obtain the facts about the job and consists of four stages. Stage One is when all the necessary relevant and appropriate documentation is obtained. Stage Two involves asking managers about the purpose and more general aspects of the job, its main activities and the responsibilities involved. Stage Three asks the same questions of the job holders as perceptions may differ between individuals. Stage Four is the final stage and requires observation of the job holders at work. (c) The information collected during a job analysis investigation is made up of eight items. The Purpose is the reason for the activity. Access to and provision of information has to be seen within the context of the whole organisation. The Content identifies the tasks that are expected to be undertaken.

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Typical of small or new organisations, employees need to be adaptable, understand each other and the organisation’s objectives; personal contact and like minded individuals typifies this culture.

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The Accountabilities are the results for which the job holder is responsible, much as in the same way as the task. The Performance Criteria are the measurements by which the job holder is judged and may be based on task related matters such as work accuracy. The Responsibility item indicates the importance of the job and may be measured in terms of decision making responsibility, accountability, discretion and programmed or unpredictable routines. The Organisational factors which are taken into account identify how the job holder reports and whether by line management or function. The Developmental factors include promotion and career prospects of the job whilst the Environmental factors examine the working conditions, security and safety needs and requirements.

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Recruitment of suitable staff is fundamental to organisational success. Too often the recruitment and selection of staff is treated as a secondary, unimportant activity. It is important therefore that a formal procedure exists to ensure that recruitment and selection is successful. Recruitment and Selection This needs to be an organised and systematic process aimed at matching the correct candidate to the post. It begins with the recognition of a vacancy or vacancies and should be based upon the requirements detailed in the human resource plan. Recruitment and selection must follow a logical process.

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The Person Specification This is often overlooked during the recruitment process, the assumption being that the job description suffices. The person specification identifies personal characteristics such as physical attributes, aptitude, team approach, aspirations, intelligence, communication skills, personal disposition, experience and generally ‘fitting in’ to the organisation. A Job Advertisement Most organisations place an advertisement in an appropriate newspaper, professional journal or job centre. It is important to recognise that this advertisement must be targeted effectively and be attractive to a potential employee. It should include information about the vacancy (salary, work details, qualifications) and the organisation. An Application Form This is an effective and efficient way of gathering information about candidates and a mechanism for comparison. The form has to be designed to be completed in a logical manner so that the correct information is provided. It must include questions on age, qualifications and experience. It must also reflect the vacancy and the culture of the organisation. For example, if the vacancy is in the caring professions, then questions might be asked about social interests and family background. Space should always be provided for the candidate to write about his or herself and the reasons why he or she is attracted to the vacancy. The application form allows early screening of candidates and should result in the compiling of a short list of potential employees to be called for interview. The Interview This follows the screening of the application forms. It is the most important stage in the process. It provides an opportunity to assess the candidate and for the candidate to learn more about the organisation. The interview process must have clear goals. It should aim to find the best person for the job, allow the candidate to understand what is expected of him or her and ensure that the candidate feels that he or she has been fairly and equitably treated. The interview should be structured so that all candidates are put at ease, are asked the same questions and allowed the same opportunities to ask questions. A scoring system is sometimes adopted to ensure that some form of rational comparison is undertaken. Selection Testing This is a scientific method for assessing a candidate’s ability. The techniques of selection testing are widely used throughout business and industry and may include tests on intelligence, aptitude, proficiency and personality. They are, however, expensive to administer and may only be used for senior appointments. Offer Procedure If an offer is to be made to the successful candidate, references are taken up and an offer letter prepared together with the requirement of acceptance by the successful candidate. Upon acceptance, a formal contract is prepared by the employer. Unsuccessful candidates should also be notified and thanked for their interest.

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A Job Description This specifies the job content and the relevance of the vacancy to other posts. It must include the main duties and responsibilities of the post holder, the major tasks and limits to authority. It also details the job title, location and relationships with others in the organisation.

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Motivation can take many forms. Widening and deepening interest in the organisation and its many tasks and departments is a tried and tested method for motivating employees. (a) Job enrichment (sometimes referred to as ‘vertical job enlargement’) is a planned, deliberate action to build greater responsibility, breadth and challenge into the work of the individual. The emphasis is on the individual rather than the organisation, team or group. It provides the job holder with the responsibility for decision making of a higher order and provides greater freedom to decide how the job or task should be undertaken. It encourages participation in planning procedures, allows for regular feedback between the employee and management, whilst improving the individual’s understanding of the whole process. (b) Job enlargement (sometimes referred to as ‘horizontal job enlargement’) is aimed at widening the content of jobs by increasing the number of operations in which the job holder is involved. It reduces the level of repetition and dullness whilst providing a horizontal extension to the job. In addition, it reduces both monotony and boredom through the provision of a greater level of challenge and incentive. (c) Job rotation is the planned rotation of staff between jobs and tasks to reduce monotony and boredom and provide fresh opportunities and challenges. It takes two forms. The first is where job rotation takes the form of a transfer to another job after some time in an existing job and the introduction of another individual to the job being vacated. Alternatively, it can be used as a form of training where individuals are moved through different jobs to learn new skills. These moves are regular and the employee is invariably regarded as a trainee.

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Professional accountants require a knowledge of motivation techniques. However, it is equally important to recognise the other side of motivation, that of discipline and of the need for formal procedures when dealing with disciplinary issues. (a) Discipline is achieved when the organisation’s members behave and conduct themselves in accordance with standards of behaviour acceptable to the organisation‘s rules, goals and objectives. Discipline may be positive. The employee is encouraged to conform to good practices and acceptable behaviour through training and by the presence and consistent application of rules and procedures. Discipline may also be negative. This is the situation where actions may be taken to ensure that the organisation’s members behave in an appropriate way. Such actions include punishment, deterrent or reformative measures. (b) Proper disciplinary procedures are essential for harmonious relationships between management and staff and are increasingly a legal requirement. A six step approach to disciplinary actions is recommended. The Informal Talk If the disciplinary matter is of a minor nature and the individual has had until this occasion a good record, then an informal meeting can often resolve the issue. Reprimand or Oral Warning Here the manager draws the attention of the employee to unsatisfactory behaviour, a repeat of which could lead to formal disciplinary proceedings. Official or Written Warning A written warning is a serious matter. It draws the attention of the offending employee to a serious breach of conduct and remains a recorded document on the employee’s employment history. Such written documents can be used as evidence if further action is taken, including dismissal. Suspension or Lay-off If an offence is of a serious enough nature, if the employee has repeated an earlier offence, or if there have been repeated problems then an employee may be suspended from work for a period of time without pay. Demotion This is a situation where an employee is demoted to a lower salary or position level within an organisation. This is a very serious step to take and can be regarded as a form of internal dismissal. This course of action can have negative repercussions because the employee concerned will feel dissatisfied and such feelings can affect their own work and that of others. Dismissal This is the ultimate disciplinary measure and should be used only in the most extreme cases. As with demotion, the dismissal of a staff member can lead to wider dissatisfaction amongst the employees. Although a procedure is a legal requirement in some circumstances, this procedure may vary in detail between organisations and countries. Candidates may also note that such formal procedures are required by law in the UK and other countries.

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Part 1 Examination – Paper 1.3 Managing People 1 (a)

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December 2004 Marking Scheme

Description of Tuckman’s stages of group development and explanation of the group stages. (Two marks per development stage; two marks for identifying the team stage prior to Olivia’s departure; three marks for identifying the stages the group reverted to after her departure – forming and storming) (Up to a maximum for part (a) 15 marks) (i) (ii) Olivia’s role and its characteristics. Description of the team roles. (Two marks each) (Up to 5 marks) (Up to 10 marks) (Up to 5 marks) (Maximum for part (b) 20 marks) (Up to 5 marks) (Maximum for part (c) 5 marks) (Total for question 40 marks)

(b)

(iii) Description of problems after Olivia’s departure.

(c)

Recommendation on reversion to former cohesiveness.

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(Maximum for part (a) 3 marks) (b) Description of Handy’s four cultural types. (Up to four marks for each) (Maximum for part (b) 12 marks) (Total for question 15 marks)

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(a)

Brief description of the term ‘job analysis’. (Maximum for part (a) 3 marks)

(b)

Brief description and discussion of the four stages. (One mark per stage) (Maximum for part (b) 4 marks)

(c)

Description and discussion on the information expected. (One mark per item for the eight items) (Maximum for part (c) 8 marks) (Total for question 15 marks)

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The seven stages in recruitment and selection are: A Job Description (Up to three marks) The Person Specification (Up to three marks) The Job Advertisement (Up to three marks) The Application Form (Up to three marks) The Interview (Up to three marks) Selection Testing (Up to three marks) Offer Procedure (Up to three marks) Up to three marks possible for each stage up to a maximum for the entire quesition of 15 marks. (Total for question 15 marks)

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(a)

Explanation of what is meant by the term ‘culture’ in the organisational context.

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5 (a) Definition and explanation of the term ‘job enrichment’.

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(Maximum for part (a) 5 marks) (b) Definition and explanation of the term ‘job enlargement’. (Maximum for part (b) 5 marks) (c) Definition and explanation of the term ‘job rotation’. (Maximum for part (c) 5 marks) (Total for question 15 marks)

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(a)

Definition of discipline. (One mark) Recognition and description of positive discipline. (One mark) Recognition and decription of negative discipline. (One mark) (Maximum for part (a) 3 marks)

(b)

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(Maximum for part (b) 12 marks) (Total for question 15 marks)

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Description in correct order, of the six steps involved in a formal disciplinary procedure. (Up to two marks per step, one for the correct position in the order and one for the description)

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