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Organizational Behavior (OB)

OB the acronym for Organizational Behavior refers to a field where individuals or groups in organizations or institutes are studied and certain skills applied in understanding their behavior (Miner, 2007; Champoux, 2010). Fundamentally, it is considered a sister field to disciplines such as industrial and organizational psychology, and human resource. The major focus in the discipline is that the focus is in improving the productivity and teamwork in an organization so as to make the company effective in achieving its goals. 

The history of the field can be traced back in the 16th Century where philosophers such as Plato of Greece and Niccolo Machiavelli of Italy laid the basic knowledge of organization in power and politics. Since then the focus in the study had been on scientific management until 1980 where a leading academic Karl Weick introduced cultural methods in studying organizations. This was the beginning of modern OB where organizations are studied using qualitative methods that are influenced by social sciences such as anthropology, psychology, and sociology (Miner, 2007).

In the modern work place there are groups of people consciously working together in a coordinated way to achieve a common or set of goal (s). These people form an organization and it is therefore important to note that in any workplace there are challenges. Examples of organizations are: police departments, schools, federal agencies, hospitals, military, and many more. Naqshbandi & Kaur (2011) posited that challenges organizations face are all uniform and can be categorized in three: Organizational level, Group level, and Individual level.

At an organizational level the challenges faced in the workplace are: lower value and output, global village management, and competition due to globalization. Group level challenges are: group working and diversity in the workplace. Lastly, individual level trials include: empowerment, work satisfaction, and ethical behaviors. It is important to note that in dealing with the mentioned challenges, Naqshbandi & Kaur (2011) proposed organizational behavior models that would be essential for organizations to operate in. “The models are four and they are listed as: autocratic, supportive, custodial, and collegiate (Naqshbandi & Kaur, 2011, p. 184).”

In the autocratic model, Champoux (2010) discuses that the foundation is power with the manager being authoritative in the organization. Therefore, it can be seen that employees would be inclined towards obedience and dependence on the manager hence achievement of minimal effectiveness. The only advantage is that employees would get subsistence in their needs. In the second model—custodial, the same author noted that it had economical foundations with the focus being on money management. The result in this model is passive cooperation and security needs of the employee would be met.