Micro-Organizational Behavior

Essay by ciea1224University, Master'sA, November 2014

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Micro-Organizational Behavior

Robert Alford

Grantham University



During the course of this class my focus will be on the use of micro-organizational behavior and to focus on and discuss the finer points of behavior within a large organization such as that of the military or that of Wal-Mart Corporation. Furthermore I will talk about the process of decision-making and cooperation between small groups of people and how it affects the organization or company. The ultimate focus of my project is to gain a full understanding of the concept of micro-organizational behavior and to relay how the issues that surround this subject matter is relevant to the issues that will be studied throughout the duration of this course. I will in essence discuss the importance of delegation and responsibility and how they positively and negatively affect both the individual and a large group of individuals as a whole.

This area of Organization Behavior is of interest to me because micro-organizational behavioral studies focus on individual and group dynamics within an organization. In other words, micro-organizational behavior correlates how employees act alone or in teams. On an individual basis, much of micro-organizational behavior is concerned with rewarding employees in ways that work best for them, and studying their personality types to determine where they might be a good fit. In addition to rewarding employees this type of organizational behavior also focuses on mentorship and coaching. Team studies are a very popular part of organizational behavior studies and examine the best ways to form, use and lead teams in a variety of situations.



I. Micro-Organizational Behavior

A. Definition

B. Effects of micro-organizational behavior

C. Decision making within micro-organizational behavior

II. Micro-Organizational Behavior vs. Macro-Organizational Behavior

A. Difference between micro and macro organizational behavior

B. What does micro-organizational behavior change?

C. What does macro-organizational behavior change?

II. Dynamics of Micro-Organizational Behavior

A. What are the dynamics of micro-organizational behavior?

B. Leadership and organizational behavior

C. Group dynamics and organizational behavior

III. Corporations with Micro-Organizational Behavior

A. Wal-Mart

B. Military

C. Macy's

IV. Conclusion


The overall concept of micro-organizational behavior is to understand the full scope and meaning of what is meant by the term. Micro-organizational behavior is a sub-topic of organizational behavior. Organizational behavior studies the actions of individuals in an organizational context according to Hitt, Miller, & Colella (p13) According to Schermerhorn's Management 11th Ed he defines organizational behavior as the study of individuals and groups in organizations. Micro-organizational behavior is an informal set of values and norms the hat controls the way people and groups in an organization interact with each other and with people outside the organization as quoted by George and Jones. Greenberg and Baron states that micro-organizational behavior is defined as a cognitive framework consisting of attitudes, values, behavioral norms, and expectations shared by an organization's members. Also it can be expressed in this manner as a belief system shared by an organization's members.

Organizational culture is created by the individuality and sometimes the commonness of the employees within the organization. According to the text Human Resource Management, "Organizational culture is a pattern of knowledge, belief, and behavior it is the form, beliefs, norms, social patterns, the way things are done, the symbols and rituals" (Burton, Lauridsen, & Obel, 2004). Fundamentally speaking organizational culture is ultimately caused by organizational behavior. Micro-organizational is a system that refers to individual and group dynamics in an organizational setting. Let's begin to discuss and look at the effects of micro-organizational behavior within a corporation. The effect associated with micro-organizational behavior as it applies to the military is that of minimal effects. What are the strategic implications of organizational behavior for your selected industry or business? The organization


that was chosen to do an analysis of micro-organizational behavior will be that of the military and as a second industry would be that of United Parcel Service (UPS). As a person that has

served in the military the concept of micro-organizational behavior is something that is applied on a daily basis. The soldiers are challenged constantly to work together as a cohesive unit and team. When it Micro organizational behavior refers to individual and group dynamics in an organizational setting.Micro organizational behavior refers to individual and group dynamics in an organizational setting.Micro organizational behavior refers to individual and group dynamics in an organizational is time for a mission or training event to take place micro-organizational behavior is put into action.

The question is asked what are the strategic implications associated with organizational behavior within the military. Strategic implication is defined as a conclusion of a carefully designed or planned activity or program to serve a particular purpose or advantage. The strategic implications surrounding the military is that when a mission is assigned to a particular team or unit the mission is not complete until the end results are achieved. There is a variety of things associated with micro-organizational behavior and one of those things is the decision making within. The choice to make the wrong decision can be detrimental to the outcome of the assigned mission. On several occasions there was a time that can be recalled when the officer in charge failed to relay the appropriate message to the next in charge which caused the mission to have a different outcome.

An organization is, simply, a body of people organized for some specific purpose. Organizational behavior is taking a look at the way humans behave within a company (Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn, 2005, p. 17). Within the military regardless of the branch, they have in some respects, a unique organizational behavior that coincides with micro-organizational behavior. The behavior of the soldiers in the military is governed by a very strict set of rules and regulations. One prime example of this is the Uniform Code of Military Justice. The military is


not like any other organization because the military can legally imprison a soldier assigned to a unit for not obeying his or her supervisor or for not being where he or she is supposed to be.

Unlike the military a civilian organization will fire that employee and once that takes place there is little to no legal ramifications.

The culture within the United States military is one that is embedded with a long standing tradition. Since the beginning of time there has not been any organization that has been in existence since the Revolutionary War. Furthermore, once you are a member of this prestigious organization, you are flooded with constant reminders of traditional roles within the organization. Consequently, decision making as associated with micro-organizational behavior can be looked at as the Rational Decision-Making Model. According to Stephen Robbins, "the rational planning model is the process of realizing a problem, establishing and evaluating planning criteria, creating alternatives, implementing alternatives, and monitoring progress of the alternatives. It is used in designing neighborhoods, cities, and regions. (Robbins, Judge, 2007, pp 156-8). Furthermore the theories of decision making can be subdivided into three categories and they can be defined as (1) Normative which concentrates on how decision should be made, (2) Descriptive which is concerned with how the thinker came up with their judgment, and (3) Prescriptive is the aim to improve decision making.

When it comes to micro-organizational behavior as compared to macro-organizational behavior there is a difference. Micro-organizational behavioral studies focus on individual and group dynamics within an organization. What this means is that micro-organizational behavior is a study of how employees act alone or in teams. On an individual basis, much of micro-


organizational behavior is concerned with rewarding employees in ways that work best for them, and studying their personality types to determine where they might be a good fit. Mentorship

plays a major role as well as the concept of coaching. Team studies are a very popular part of organizational behavior studies and examine the best ways to form, use and lead teams in a variety of situations. As compared to micro-organizational behavior, macro-organizational behavioral take steps back and looks at an organization as a whole. It studies how organizations move in markets, and how their strategies regarding employees and leadership affect the performance of the entire organization. This is the part of the field that may recommend a flat organization with few levels of management where the leadership has an inspirational role to play in the organization. (Lacoma)

According to Tyler Lacoma, micro-organizational behavior serves the purpose of looking at organizational behavioral studies with ways to change businesses to show them how to make a difference, to improve performance and ultimately increase profits. On the micro level, this has a lot to do with interpersonal relations. Many businesses seek ways on how to coach their employees on ways to learn more skills and advance themselves in the company. Consequently these businesses study methods to use teams as ways to complete tasks without having to waste time or ultimately falling into group think and argumentative patterns. Those in upper level management try to create new methods of negotiation and conflict resolution based on psychology and other studies. Macro-changes affect the organization as a whole and are more related toward policy or business formation. For instance, diversity is a common macro-level topic in the United States, as are job equality and ethical behavior toward clients and employees alike. These are affected by the company's own standards, government regulations and how the


company creates and transmits decisions. In the macro-environment, the industry and economy the business operates in can become very important when making key decisions about the future.

What business needs within the military represent opportunities for organizational behavior? The business needs that need to change take place inside the military for them to line up with the organizational behavior would be to allow their superiors and soldiers to work together in a more controlled environment. What is meant by a controlled environment would be that of doing a case study on the day to day activities of they interact when assigned to perform a mission or assigned deployment. On many occasions the actions of an individual will determine what will happen in a given situation. Furthermore, things in the military can get out of hand if the environment is not monitored as an organized unit. If things are out of synch then it leads to an insidious workplace. According to Greenberg in his book Insidious Workplace Behavior he defines insidious workplace behavior as a form of intentionally harmful workplace behavior that is legal, subtle, and low level (rather than severe), repeated over time, and directed at individuals or organizations. He further states that insidious means spreading or developing or acting inconspicuously but with harmful effect (Oxford American Standard Dictionary, 1980, p. 342) and stealthily treacherous or deceitful; operating or preceding inconspicuously but with grave effect (Macquarie Concise Dictionary, 1998, p. 584). With that definition simply put these things exist in the military and can be detrimental to the overall performance of the American fighting force. Insidious workplace behavior is not a unique behavior in its own right, but rather a particular form of several varieties of deviant behavior. The set of qualifying characteristics is as follows:

Intentionally harmful: Acts that are performed in an effort to bring harm.


Legal: Acts that do not break the law.

Low-level severity: Acts that are subtle and incidental in nature, with minor (sometimes, seemingly unremarkable) effects that may go unnoticed when they occur on an isolated basis.

Repetitive: Acts that are repeated over time (as opposed to single acts) with effects that are cumulative in nature.

Individually and organizationally targeted: The intended victim of harm usually is another individual, although it also may be an organization with which the actor is associated.

This characterization of insidious workplace behavior paints a picture of subtle and stealthy behavior that cumulatively chips away at a worker's dignity or if a metaphor could be used it would be simply put as "death by a thousand paper cuts" or "being nibbled to death by guppies." (Insidious Workplace Behavior, Greenberg, pp 4-5)

Let's take a look at the dynamics of micro-organizational behavior. To gain an understanding of what is meant by dynamics there must first be a definition. According to the World English Dictionary dynamics is of or concerned with energy or forces that produce motion, as opposed to static. Also dynamics can be looked at as the pattern or history of growth, change, and development in any field. When it comes to the dynamics of micro-organizational as it is related to the military can be related as the forces that can oppose against it. On a constant basis there are opposing forces that are up against the military because of the ongoing terrorist threat. The soldiers are always in a high state of readiness to protect the citizens of the United States and to ensure our borders are not compromised. When leadership begins to play a


major role in the overall aspects of organizational behavior then and only then can their subordinates function together to accomplish one common goal: total defense and protection of

whatever it is they are assigned to achieve. As a major player in the military the leadership in the upper echelon are the ones to ensure that the cohesiveness of their subordinates in the brigades and battalions maintain a normal atmosphere when it comes to the dynamics of micro-organizational behavior.

There are many organizations that operate on the concept of micro-organizational behavior they are Wal-Mart, the Military, Macy's and many others. With an understanding of how effective it can be to their company many CEO's have realized the impact it has on its employees and the role they play within the organization. As a major company Wal-Mart has been in business since 1962 and they pride themselves on running an effective and organized company. What Wal-Mart has proven to work within their company has caused others to ensure their employees are treated fairly and that they receive the necessary training to function as a well ran organization. In conclusion, micro-organizational behavior is a set of standards that should not only be in place in many major corporations but also in smaller but well defined companies. As stated earlier micro-organizational behavior is an informal set of values and norms the hat controls the way people and groups in an organization interact with each other and with people outside the organization as quoted by George and Jones.



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Tyler Lacoma

Tyler Lacoma has worked as a writer and editor for several years after graduating from George Fox University with a degree in business management and writing/literature. He works on business and technology topics for clients such as Obsessable, EBSCO, Drop.io, The TAC Group, Anaxos, Dynamic Page Solutions and others, specializing in ecology, marketing and modern trends.