High working performance
Over the past 10 years the Sunday Times has been publishing a survey of the Best Companies to Work For. This survey is based upon employees’ perceptions of their own workplace and the policies and processes of the employers using the categories below. The survey reveals that if employees are ‘happy’ in these areas they are more likely to perform effectively and to make a greater contribution to the business.
Leadership: How employees feel about the head of the company and its senior managers
Wellbeing: How staff feel about the stress, pressure and the balance between their work and home duties
Giving something back: How much companies are thought by their staff to put back into society generally and the local community
Personal growth: To what extent staff feel they are stretched and challenged by their job
My manager: How staff feel towards their immediate boss and day-to-day managers
My company: Feelings about the company people work for as opposed to the people they work with
My team: How staff feel about their immediate colleagues
Fair deal: How happy the workforce is with their pay and benefits
Your scenario to undertake a critical analysis of the extent to which the approach of your chosen organisation is supported by influential contributors and theories studied in this unit. ( CHOSEN COMPANY: BMW UK, RANK:67)
You are aware of the early work done on Human Resource Management and the performance link and high performance working especially that of Jeffrey Pfeffer in his book The Human Equation (1998). Pfeffer went a step further to claim not only that people were at the heart of business success, but that the management requirement could be reduced to a set of seven HR policies: employment security; careful recruitment; teamwork and decentralization; high pay with an incentive element; extensive training; narrow status differentials and lots of communication.
You will need to investigate the literature surrounding high performance working with reference to 2-3 of the following topics studied to date in Leading People in Organisations:
Individual differences and diversity
Teams and groups
Human Resource Management
Your research exercise should culminate in a professional individual report of no more than 2500 words reporting upon your findings. Ensure your report has sufficient academic rigour to support your arguments and conclusions and to guarantee its credibility in the eyes of the organisation, including cost-effective recommendations and an action plan for the organisation to improve effectiveness and add value etc.
Please refer to the detailed Assessment Evaluation Criteria
1. Undertake a critical literature review of high performance working.
2. You will need to explore the implications in-depth from the perspective of two of the following:
a. Individual differences and diversity
b. Teams and groups
e. Human Resource Management
3. Draw conclusions based upon your findings to create a high performance work environment and make recommendations that are feasible and fully justified, including a consideration of costs and benefits and any further/possible implications to the organisation.
High commitment HRM practices (Adapted from Pfeffer 1998)
HRM policy (input) Company performance (output)
? Employment security and internal labour markets
? Selective hiring and sophisticated selection
? Extensive training, learning and development
? Employee involvement and participation: worker voice
? Self-managed teams/teamworking
? High compensation contingent on performance
? Performance review, appraisal and career development
? Reduction of status differences/ harmonisation
? Work–life balance
Pfeffer argued that the closer organisations get to this list, the better performance is likely to be.
Pfeffer J. The Human Equation. Boston, HBS Press, 1998
Introduction Short (approximately 250 words) introduction to the report setting out what the aims and objectives of the report are, what the report will cover and why. You should also seek to explain why HPW is such a ‘hot topic’ in HR.
Analysis Using third party sources (e.g. academic literature or practitioner-orientated material) for support, analyse the theoretical concept underpinning high performance working. What it is, to what extent is it thought to work or not and why it benefits (or not) an organisation. You should make reference to any relevant models, and frameworks and include critical viewpoints. You are also expected to include relevant examples of organisations using such approaches. (Approximately 1250 words)
Conclusions This section should initially answer the report aim and objectives and draw together the main points from your analysis of literature. It summarises what has been learned from undertaking this research. It should also begin to weigh up the options available to the organisation and what would impede implementation and based upon option evaluation, begin to identify the way forward. No new information should be presented in the conclusions.
(Approximately 500 words)
Recommendations Make recommendations for improvement based upon your conclusions, clearly stating how they can add value to the organisation. Recommendations should be fully feasible and justified stating clearly costs, priority level, time-scale, resources, who is responsible, benefits and any further implications to the organisation. Your proposals should be actionable (‘immediately implementable’) not just a list of ideas. You can use a table to help structure your action plan.
The recommendations for action should be linked to creating and sustaining high performance, or to enhancing the existing level. In other words, your recommendations should cover conceivable contingencies for leading people in organisations. (Approximately 500 words)
Reference List A list of the third-party sources you have consulted and which are cited directly in the text. All these sources should be properly identified.
Bibliography List The sources you consulted but which you do not cite. All these sources should be properly identified.
Appendices Lengthy appendices are not necessary and must be discouraged. Ideally there will be no appendices, but if there are the total number should not exceed two and the total number of pages should not exceed four.
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