Organizational Behavior

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Being in the “Out” Crowd

Many large multinational corporations are hardly a model of organizational efficiency, with the right hand frequently not knowing what the left is doing. A valuable solution developed at one location fails to spread to other sites struggling with a similar problem, so they continually have to reinvent the wheel.

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Conflict in the Workplace

Everyone knows conflict in the workplace is a bad thing, right? Perhaps not, answers a team of six researchers. Specifically, they found that Americans, as opposed to East Asians, seem to believe that they can overcome personal conflicts with co-workers when it comes to the pursuit of profits.I

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How Business Education Must Change

Former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan recently noted that in many cases, “old-fashioned corporate decision-making hasn’t caught up with new Information Age tools.” Indeed, companies must increasingly function as nodes in vast knowledge networks, and it is obvious that many of them are not up to the challenge.

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The Art of Making Change Initiatives Stick

Too many managers have experienced this scenario: The chief executive announces a bold new corporate initiative aimed at generating dramatic performance improvements. The initiative calls for sweeping changes in the company’s processes, systems and culture. The launch proceeds with great fanfare and a substantial investment of the company’s resources.

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The Power of Moderation

Employees with deep motivation, strong commitment, unquestioned loyalty and widely shared values can have drawbacks. Much has been written about the upside of deep commitment, but employers need to be wary of workers who identify too much with the company. Overidentification, says the author, may lead to an ends-justifies-the-means outlook, unethical actions, substitution of personal needs for company goals and resentment when the company doesn’t meet employees’ expectations.

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When Learning Stops

Learning rarely follows a linear, upward progression. People forget what they once knew; institutional memory fades; obstacles of all kinds block individuals and groups from making progress. Sometimes an initially successful program or approach stops delivering results.

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The Hidden Costs of Organizational Dishonesty

When companies act dishonestly, the psychological costs outweigh any short-term gains. Dishonesty ultimately decreases repeat business and increases worker turnover and employee theft. Degradation of a company’s reputation, adverse effects on employee values and increased surveillance of workers through expensive new systems eat at an organization’s health. The authors offer proof that honesty is still the best policy.

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Rethinking the Knowledge-Based Organization

For “knowledge-based” to be more than a buzzword, managers must recognize that the concept has little to do with the kind of products they sell. Whether it‘s a cement maker like Holcim or a financial services company like CapitalOne, a company‘s knowledge base is predicated on how it uses knowledge to change processes, overcome traditional boundaries, set strategy, and create a corporate culture.

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Escaping the Identity Trap

Organizations, like people, have essential natures defined by their formative experiences, their beliefs, their knowledge bases and their core competences. Attempts at change that are in conflict with this core identity are often doomed to failure. Managers can learn to recognize such conflicts and initiate identity change to make their companies more adaptive.

Showing 21-40 of 52