Improving Group Productivity
There are many different factors which contribute to the foundation of an organization, all of which directly determine overall success. The staff of an organization is one such important factor, and one which requires consistent effort and creative approaches on how to keep employees feeling motivated, satisfied, and interested in working toward the greater good. Understanding group formation and the dynamics that exist within allows organization leaders to create and maintain a working environment where all members are aware of roles and corresponding responsibilities, encourages effective communication skills, understands diversity and works to build cohesiveness between group members, and works consistently on eliminating excessive intergroup conflict. Through examination of a hypothetical working environment, in this case a sports bar, examples will be provided on how to build cohesiveness within the organization in the effort to minimize group conflict and improve overall group productivity. Owning a sports bar can be both an enjoyable and a profitable choice in business, offering customers a place to hang out and unwind. Like any other organization, there are business specific factors to consider. A sports bar requires a clean, comfortable environment, a unique selection of food and bar items, quality televisions with a diverse selection of viewing material, and a friendly, organized staff. Employees hired to compose the staff in a sports bar should possess an array of customer service friendly qualities, but one of the most important is the ability to communicate with both customers, and other staff members. Lack of communication in an environment rich in verbal exposure can find it difficult if not impossible, to successfully complete the day, or even shift.
One of the issues of a bar environment is the high turn-over rate, which unfortunately does not exclude bar management. Bar owners knowledgable in management, understand that familiarity is one of the best qualities, and so they often choose to promote from within. Often times however, promoting a head bartender to a supervisory position may also mean losing a quality bartender for busy shifts, and so the employee is given dual roles within the organization. This process is good for the bar, ensuring that the candidate poses full knowledge of day to day operations while continuing to provide quality service, but can also create role conflict within the group. Role conflict occurs when an individual is forced to assume conflicting roles within an organization. Definitive lines of responsibility specific to each role become blurry, and can be confusing for the entire staff. Following an organizational change or restructure, check with workers to ensure they understand any additional responsibilities or duties that are required of them (Workplace Health and Safety Queensland, 2013). As stated by Mercer (2013), “An employee with both work and management roles…. assumes the conflicting roles of supervisor and co-worker” (p.1). Suddenly the employee is expected to work collaboratively with other group members, but is at the same time expected to report underperformance and delinquent activity. This type of role conflict can create undermining of authority, lack of respect, tension, and resentment. Effective communication and clear, specific role expectations can help to relieve role conflict within the workplace. Employees should be provided with a handbook that defines in detail the roles which they are expected to fulfill. In the case of inner-staff promotion, all employees should be notified of the change at once. Hosting an employee meeting provides the opportunity to highlight the employees’ strong attributes, announce the promotion, and re-iterate the role guidelines set forth by the handbook. Employees should also be given the chance to ask…