Posted: June 8th, 2021

Portfolio Activity Two

 
Case Study One:
Portfolio Activity Two
Purpose:
In this case the committee is looking to see how you can apply communication skills to obtain the maximum job performance of the employee in each of the short scenarios.   After reading each short case, prepare answers to the questions for the upcoming search committee interview to review.
Outcomes:
The students will demonstrate understanding of the following outcomes:

How to manage, organize, and lead employees;
To identify the organizational theory related to increasing job performance to raise company effectiveness;
How to communicate effectively to affect change or motivation; and
Writing for persuasiveness.

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Scenarios and Questions:
After reading each short case, prepare answers to the questions for the upcoming search committee interview to review. 
1) “RLI Home Builds a Castle on Communication”
Since the outset the owner Ralph Lorean has prided himself on focusing the culture of the company on excellent customer service. Managers know that a culture like this would only work if the company’s employees enjoyed their work and the company. He wanted to build a company where every employee felt they owned the castle.  Ralph believed that communication was essential to making an employee feel a part of the group, so he often said that he never wanted employees to “read about their company in the media and learn something new.”
Because RLI is international in scope it is possible that on any given day or time two thirds of its 2,000 employees are outside an office. To conquer the communication this problem imposes Ralph is surveying his managers to see if they think a new, but very expensive, “dashboard” intranet system would be worth the expenditure. The system would ensure optimal communication strategies allowing every employee remote access from wherever they are. Regardless, of location every employee can share information on the dashboard from their cell phone. However, it does not offer a “SKYPE” feature. Management has sent a short questionnaire to you asking the following questions:
A) How would the new tool influence job performance positively in RLI?
B) Could dependence on a program which does not permit access to verbal or face to face communications hinder job performance in a global setting?  If so why?
C) If the dashboard was only presented in English would this be a factor in its intracompany success?
D) One of the biggest reasons suggested for purchasing the system is that it allows information to flow both from top down to bottom up. Do you see this as possible if the company is not structured in a similar way? If so why, if not why not?
2) Email Over All!  Richard Burton is one of the production supervisors at Lighting R Us a branch of RLI. Richard supervises 25 employees and has been performing well in this same job for 5 years. Burton wants a promotion in the foreseeable future but feels it unlikely. Burton is always “on”. He has 24/7 email access, texts almost a hundred messages a day and is never without his phone. Richard believes that because of the efficiency involved, E-communication is better the face to face.
A) Can Richard’s philosophy on communication affect his career? Why or Why not?
B) If Richard wanted to control his email for maximum performance can you make two recommendations that will help him?
C) Using two sentences only express your personal philosophy on communication given your own personal skill set. Justify how this statement will maximize your job success and your career.
3) Do I have to Move? RLI has recently decided to relocate one of its plants from California to Mexico. If you were asked to handle the transition how, to whom, and where would you communicate the news? Be sure to justify the answer with class material.
4) I Can’t See You! Marlena is one of the best Sofa designers that RLI has ever had. She is currently living and working in the Egyptian branch of the RLI as part of the new fall sofa line has an Egyptian theme. She contacts you to ask for help. It seems that Marlena is being asked to wear traditional Muslim dress as the factory is in a very conservative section of Cairo. Her team leader provides no further explanation even when pressed. She is concerned about wearing the clothing because it is very constricting, and she is used to moving all over the floor when making her prototypes. But this is the least of her problems. Her real problem is that her project head, Assan, keeps saying, “I can’t see you when you are unclothed.” And then turns his back on her, sometimes continuing to talk but most often walking away. Marlena wails “I cannot see his face and his body language. I do not know if he likes the work, is trying to be nice, or just hates it and refuses to tell me. Worse yet, I am not sure if I trust him to tell me the truth. I have overheard him on his phone saying that he is just letting me stay on the team because he has to have a woman.”  Marlena is tired of this situation and is considering asking for a transfer back home to Germany.
1) Identify the communication issues do you see in this situation?
2) What advice would you give Marlena in her actions with Assan? Be sure to give at least three points of action for Marlena to take when dealing with her team leader.
3) What advice would you give her about asking for a transfer?
Assignment Instructions
After reading each short case, prepare answers to the questions for the upcoming search committee interview to review. Remember your reading audience is wanting to see you apply your interpersonal skills related to communication and how they can and will influence job performance.
Step 1: How to Set Up the Paper
Create a Word or Rich Text Format (RTF) document that is double-spaced.  Use 12-point font.  The final product will be between 6 and 8 pages in length excluding the title page. Write clearly and concisely.
 Use the following Report Format. 

Title Page
Head each Scenario by Number (e.g. Scenario 1)
Provide a Reference List after each Scenario

Step 2: Completing the Paper 

Read the grading rubric for the project.  Use the grading rubric while completing the project to ensure all requirements are met that will lead to the highest possible grade.  
Third person writing is required.  Third person means that there are no words such as “I, me, my, we, or us” (first person writing), nor is there use of “you or your” (second person writing).  If uncertain how to write in the third person, view this link:  http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/first-second-and-third-person.  
Contractions are not used in business writing, so do not use them.  
Paraphrase and do not use direct quotation marks.  Paraphrase means you do not use more than four consecutive words from a source document, but put a passage from a source document into your own words and attribute the passage to the source document.  Not using direct quotation marks means that there should be no passages with quotation marks and instead the source material is paraphrased as stated above.  Provide the pageor paragraph number when using in-text citations.  Note that a reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa.  
You may not use books as source material.  
You are expected to use the facts from the case scenario paired with the weekly courses readings to develop the analysis and support the reasoning.  No more than two (2) external resources can be used in completing the assignment.  The expectation is that you provide a robust use of the course readings.  If any material is used from a source document, it must be cited and referenced.  A reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa.    

Step 3:  Review the Paper 
Read the paper to ensure all required elements are present.  Use the grading rubric to ensure that you gain the most points possible for this assignment. 
Proofread the paper for spelling and grammatical issues, and third person writing. 

Read the paper aloud as a first measure;
Use the spell and grammar check in Word as a second measure;
Have someone who has excellent English skills to proofread the paper;
Consider submitting the paper to the Effective Writing Center (EWC).  The EWC will provide 4-6 areas that may need improvement. 

Step 4:  Submit the paper in the Assignment Folder 
(The assignment submitted to the Assignment Folder will be considered the student’s final product and therefore ready for grading by the instructor.  It is incumbent upon the student to verify the assignment is the correct submission.  No exceptions will be considered by the instructor).
NOTE: All submitted work is to be your original work. You may not use any work from another student, the Internet or an online clearinghouse.  You are expected to understand the Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism Policy, and know that it is your responsibility to learn about instructor and general academic expectations with regard to proper citation of sources as specified in 
Case Study Two
BMGT 464 Project 2
Managing Commitment
Purpose:
The purpose of this project is to examine your understanding of the challenges of managing critical employees who work in demanding jobs. Using an actual work case study, you will be asked to identify the management challenges and how the effect employee commitment thus affecting organizational effectiveness.
Outcomes:
Upon completion of the assignment you will have met the following outcomes:

Demonstrate an understanding the importance of managing commitment within an organization;
Identify and apply theories that relate to stress, emotional intelligence, team diversity, cohesion and groupthink in workplace behavior;
Writing skills persuasive enough to obtain the job.

Case Study:
Ralph Lorean International (RLI) owner of several house décor and furniture manufacturers recently purchased a controlling interest in a medium size firm, House of Cloth (HOC), which employs 6,644 people worldwide. HOC has been considered a premier manufacturer of cloth since 1964. Revenues over the last four years have been flat and costs are rising steadily. RLI purchases the interest in the company despite the flat sales because of its reputation and loyal customer base. RLI has a history of turning troubled companies around and they think they can do the same with HOC. 
RLI has to date allowed HOC to operate independently while they examine closely the causes of the recent poor performance of the company. Areama Cantros, was recently promoted to senior management analyst because of her superb work with Izzy’s Bed Emporium. RLI has decided to send Areama to HOC on a fact finding mission. She is to discover the challenges facing the management at HOC and make recommendations that will improve and grow significantly HOC’s financial performance. 
Areama’s, first meeting with HOC’s management team after arriving at their headquarters seemed to go well. The first thing Areama noticed about the team was that while they seemed to be personally different in obvious ways, beneath the surface they were quite alike. Of the seven members who compose the team, three have been with the company since its inception. The remaining four are much younger and came to the company after its international expansion in 2010. Two of the team members have worked with HOC in India and came to headquarters as part of a promotion plan. The other two team members come from Guatemala and Romania where they were employed in local branches of HOC. The team membership is predominately male with only two women. Despite the differences in age, gender, company tenure, and their functional and industry background, the members seem they are cut from the same cloth in that each is very businesslike, analytical, competitive, and results driven.
In your discussion regarding the company’s expansion five years ago, Henry Smythe, one of the founders, remarked, “The expansion was tough for us because of all the pressure and uncertainty, and to be honest, we really didn’t jell together at first-I though it was a big mistake to bring new people on board to manage the ship-but now we’re past all that, we’re very cohesive, and we share the same vision of how we do business. This is a good thing because when I retire in a few years, I’ll know the company is in good hands.” Everyone in the room seemed to be nod in agreement. Another founder, Russell “Rusty” Gee, then looked squarely into Areama’s eyes and added, “I’m not exactly sure what you ae doing here, but we have weathered storms together and while I admit the last years haven’t been stellar, I know we can handle things ourselves-this was part of the deal, wasn’t it? We know this place better than anyone, so I can’t imagine we’ll seriously consider any recommendations that will upset the apple cart.” Rusty made the statement in a friendly way with a smile on his face, yet Areama knew he was serious.
Although the meeting told Areama many things two things stood out to her as real problems. First turnover among the creative team associates is high: thirty-five percent each year for the last two years, and thirty percent the year before that. The industry average is twenty percent. HOC’s creative team is integral to its competitive edge in the industry. New patterns, cloth fabrics and uses are essential to the firm’s livelihood. Although the top management team is aware of the problem they seem to rationalize it. As “Jamie Wagner, VP of human resources noted, “We hire the best and the brightest, so it’s only natural that they occasionally get poached by other firms. We try our best to keep them, but we haven’t been able to match salaries with our competitors in recent years. Once things turn around the numbers will go down.”
Beside the turnover issue Areama also learned that the company had been sued three times recently. The cases all involved associates who were passed over for promotion and who claimed the work environment was so filled with stress that it made them ill and unable to work. Areama was aware of the first case because it was highly publicized and HOC was forced to settle the case to get out of the public eye. Afraid of the similar problems with the first case HOC settled both suits out of court quickly and managed to keep them out of the eye of the press.  Senior management seemed to be proud of this fact.  Before you had a chance to ask Jamie if she thought the suits and turnover may be related, Jamie volunteers the following. “We were really unlucky during this period. We hired three associates who didn’t possess the right capabilities for the job and each had trouble coping in their own way. Most everyone that comes to our design team at HOC is drawn to our reputation for quality and success. We just have to find a better way of finding people who fit.”
Areama’s conversation with the design team members revealed nothing too far out of the industry norm. Workload and time pressure are high, but not atypical. The design teams are put together by fabric use and usually their members are led by a senior client manager, who has the final design approval. Jamie told Areama that the teams were self-managed but that appeared not to be the case. The senior lead assigned tasks to each associate member during the projects. Because the support staff is reduced team members had to assume a lot of administrative duties. 
Creative teams have autonomy to work wherever and whenever they need to. This arrangement gives employees a lot of flexibility and working odd hours in strange locations is not unusual. Areama heard one story that a creative dinner was held in the private room of a local restaurant. The team paid the owner $1,000 to keep the room available to them for as long as they needed. The team stayed overnight and left just before lunch the next day. While all the members were on board with the idea one member had to leave because of a family obligation. The team produced a successful
revealed the story remarked,” fantastic team building experience for those that chose to tough it out” and it perfect reflect the company’s ‘work-hard, play-hard’ mentality’.”
Areama’s inquiry as to how the design team’s job performance is managed, she learned that towards the end of the calendar year, senior client managers get together and spend an entire day on the evaluation process. The evaluations focus on the extent to which the member contributed to the designs of the team they worked on the previous year. All members are given scores and listed. Using the member’s job performance score, their names are placed in one of three categories. The top ten percent will receive a bonus up to fifty percent of their base pay and are fast tracked for senior client managers. The next thirty percent will receive a twenty-five percent bonus and are consider on track for promotion. The last group gets 2-3 percent of their salary as a bonus. The bonus checks are mailed to the members home before the winter holidays to “avoid bad feelings and conflict, that can naturally come about among teams” Jamie remarks.
Lunch with the senior client managers told Areama that the subject of turnover and the law suits is touchy. One manager said “Around here, you’re rewarded for paying your dues, for doing whatever is thrown your way. Yes, it is demanding, and requires sacrifice, but how else can we find out if people have what it takes? Those of us sitting at this table have been through it and we know it works-look how successful we have been. Hires who claim they can’t take it or that it’s abusive just can’t be tolerated.” 
After lunch Areama met with a group of associates who seem to shed yet another perspective about life in the design department. As an example, on associate member said, “I learned a lot from dealing with the pressure at the beginning, but the work is non-stop. They say it’s ‘work-hard, play-hard’, but even the play feels like work. The projects are great, but I never really feel like I’m fully involved. I’m always trying to get a chance to be heard.” Another member agreed and added “It’s okay I guess if you get plugged into the right manager from the outset, but I’ve never seemed to gain favor no matter how many hours I work. To top it off, the crazy hours are creating a lot of conflict at home and the strains are adding up.”
ASSIGNMENT: CANDIDATE QUESTIONS
Areama has decided that she wants another person’s perspective on the issues that she faces. She has asked you, a respected colleague, to answer the following questions to help her get that needed input:

Does the diversity present in HOC’s top management team likely to impact its functioning and effectiveness? Answer and explain why or why not?
Does HOC’s top management suffer from group think? Explain in detail. Be sure to give examples from the fact pattern to support your ideas.
Identify the primary sources of stress that the associate members of the design team are experiencing.
Explain how some of these stresses have led to the turnover and law suits.
Are there differences between the perception of senior client managers and associate managers as to management policies and practices? If so yes if not, why not?
Areama would like you to give her three recommendations that are likely to resolve HOC’s turnover and legal commitment issues. Explain the justification for each one.

Source: Adapted from a Case entitled “Managing Commitment in Demanding Jobs” found in “Organizing Behavior: Improving Performance and Commitment in the Workplace” by Jason A. Colquitt, Jeffery A. Lepine, Michael J. Wesson McGraw-Hill/Irwin New York NY 10020, 2013. Page 551 
Assignment Instructions
In a memo format detail the answers to the candidates questions.
Step 1: How to Set Up the Paper
Create a Word or Rich Text Format (RTF) document that is double-spaced.  Use 12-point font.  The final product will be between 4 and 6 pages in length excluding the title page and reference list. Write clearly and concisely.
 Use the following Memo Format Memo Template 

Add the Title Page
Add the Reference Page

Step 2: Completing the Paper 

Read the grading rubric for the project.  Use the grading rubric while completing the project to ensure all requirements are met that will lead to the highest possible grade.  
Third person writing is required.  Third person means that there are no words such as “I, me, my, we, or us” (first person writing), nor is there use of “you or your” (second person writing).  If uncertain how to write in the third person, view this link:  http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/first-second-and-third-person.  
Contractions are not used in business writing, so do not use them.  
Paraphrase and do not use direct quotation marks.  Paraphrase means you do not use more than four consecutive words from a source document, but put a passage from a source document into your own words and attribute the passage to the source document.  Not using direct quotation marks means that there should be no passages with quotation marks and instead the source material is paraphrased as stated above.  Provide the pageor paragraph number when using in-text citations.  Note that a reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa.       

Address the Memo to Areama Cantros  
You are expected to use the facts from the case scenario paired with the weekly courses readings to develop the analysis and support the reasoning.  No more than two (2) external resources can be used in completing the assignment.  The expectation is that you provide a robust use of the course readings.  If any material is used from a source document, it must be cited and referenced.  A reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa.    
Step 3:  Review the Paper
Read the paper to ensure all required elements are present.  Use the grading rubric to ensure that you gain the most points possible for this assignment. 
Proofread the paper for spelling and grammatical issues, and third person writing. 
 
Read the paper aloud as a first measure;
Use the spell and grammar check in Word as a second measure;
Have someone who has excellent English skills to proofread the paper;
Consider submitting the paper to the Effective Writing Center (EWC).  The EWC will provide 4-6 areas that may need improvement. 

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