SMU MBA Solved Assignments 2012

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Thursday, August 30, 2012

SMU MBA MB0038 Solved Assignment Spring/Feb 2012

Dear Friends, 
I know you are looking for solved assignments for SMU -MBA, and some of you are ready to pay for that also, but there is no need to pay anyone to get the solved assignments, below is the answers for the SMU-MBA MB0038 Assignment Spring/Feb - 2012.
Soon i am going to publish answers for rest of the MBA programs.

MB0038 - Management Process and Organizational Behaviour

Q.1   Write a note on the managerial roles and skills.
According to Mintzberg (1973), managerial roles are as follows:
1. Informational roles
2. Decisional roles
3. Interpersonal roles
1. Informational roles: This involves the role of assimilating and disseminating information as and when required. Following are the main sub-roles, which managers often perform:
a. Monitor - collecting information from organizations, both from inside and outside of the organization
b. Disseminator - communicating information to organizational members
c. Spokesperson - representing the organization to outsiders
2. Decisional roles: It involves decision making. Again, this role can be sub-divided in to the following:
a. Entrepreneur - initiating new ideas to improve organizational performance
b. Disturbance handlers - taking corrective action to cope with adverse situation
c. Resource allocators - allocating human, physical, and monetary resources
d. Negotiator - negotiating with trade unions, or any other stakeholders
3. Inter`personal roles: This role involves activities with people working in the organization. This is supportive role for informational and decisional roles. Interpersonal roles can be categorized under three sub-headings:
a. Figurehead - Ceremonial and symbolic role
b. Leadership - leading organization in terms of recruiting, motivating etc.
c. Liaison - liasoning with external bodies and public relations activities.
Management Skills:  Katz (1974) has identified three essential management skills: technical, human, and conceptual.
Technical skills: The ability is to apply specialized knowledge or expertise. All jobs require some specialized expertise, and many people develop their technical skills on the job. Vocational and on-the-job training programs can be used to develop this type of skill.

Human Skill: This is the ability to work with, understand and motivate other people (both individually and a group). This requires sensitivity towards others issues and concerns. People, who are proficient in technical skill, but not with interpersonal skills, may face difficulty to manage their subordinates. To acquire the Human Skill, it is pertinent to recognize the feelings and sentiments of others, ability to motivate others even in adverse situation, and communicate own feelings to others in a positive and inspiring way.
Conceptual Skill: This is an ability to critically analyze, diagnose a situation and forward a feasible solution. It requires creative thinking, generating options and choosing the best available option.

Q.2   Discuss the methods of shaping behavior in detail.
Shaping Behavior
When a systematic attempt is made to change individuals’ behaviour by directing their learning in graduated steps, it is called shaping behavior. There are four methods of Shaping Behavior. They are as follows:
1. Positive reinforcement - This is the process of getting something pleasant as a consequence of a desired behavior, to strengthen the same behavior. For example, one get a commission, if he/she achieves sales target.
For example,
i) Bonuses paid at the end of a successful business year are an example of positive reinforcement.
ii) Employees will work hard for a raise or a promotion.
iii) Salesmen will increase their efforts to get rewards and bonuses.
iv) Students will study to get good grades, and
v) In these examples, the rises, promotions, awards, bonuses, good grades, are positive reinforces.
2. Negative reinforcement - This is the process of having a reward taken away as a consequence of a undesired behavior. For example, scholarship is withdrawn from the student who has not done well on the examination. Just as people engage in behaviours in order to get positive reinforces, they also engage in behaviours to avoid or escape unpleasant conditions. Terminating an unpleasant stimulus in order to strengthen or increase the probability of a response is called negative reinforcement.
3. Punishment is causing an unpleasant condition in an attempt to eliminate an undesirable behavior. This is the process of getting a punishment as a consequence of a behavior.
According to B. F. Skinner, punishment is still the most common technique of behaviour control in today’s life. When a child misbehaves, he is spanked. If a person does not behave as the society or law wants him to do, he is punished by arrest and jail.
Example: Loss of pay for coming late to office. Punishment can be accomplished either by adding an unpleasant stimulus or removing a pleasant stimulus. The added unpleasant stimulus might take the form of criticism, a scolding, a disapproving look, a fine, or a prison sentence. The removal of a pleasant stimulus might consist of withholding affection and attention, suspending a driver’s license, or taking away a privilege such as watching television.
Accordingly, in situations where punishment is desirable as a means of behaviour modification, certain guidelines would make it more effective thus minimizing its dysfunctional consequences.
a) Praise in public; punish in private.
b) Apply punishment before the undesirable behaviour has been strongly
reinforced. Thus, the punishment should immediately follow the undesirable
c) The punishment should focus on the behaviour and not on the person.
4. Extinction - An alternative to punishing undesirable behaviour is extension - the attempt to weaken behaviour by attaching no consequences (either positive or negative) to it. It is equivalent to ignoring the behaviour. The rationale for using extinction is that a behaviour not followed by any consequence is weakened. However, some patience and time may be needed for it to be effective.
This type of reinforcement is applied to reduce undesirable behaviour, especially when such behaviours were previously rewarded. This means that if rewards were removed from behaviours that were previously reinforced, then such behaviours would become less frequent and eventually die out. For example, if a student in the class is highly mischievous and disturbs the class, he is probably asking for attention. If .the attention is given to him, he will continue to exhibit that behaviour.
Both positive and negative reinforcement result in learning. They strengthen a response and increase the probability of repetition. Both punishment and extinction weaken behavior and tend to decrease its subsequent frequency

Q.3   Explain the classification of personality types given by Myers -Briggs.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator
The MBTI classifies human beings into four opposite pairs (dichotomies), base on their psychological opposites. These four opposite pairs result into 16 possible combinations. In MBTI, Individuals are classified as (McCrae and Costa, 1989) :
a. Extroverted or introverted (E or I).
b. Sensing or intuitive (S or N).
c. Thinking or feeling (T or F).
d. Perceiving or judging (P or J).
·These classifications are then combined into sixteen personality types. For example:
a. INTJs are visionaries. They usually have original minds and great drive for their own ideas and purposes. They are characterized as skeptical, critical, independent, determined, and often stubborn.
b. ESTJs are organizers. They are realistic, logical, analytical, decisive, and have a natural head for business or mechanics. They like to organize and run activities.
c. The ENTP type is a conceptualizer. He or she is innovative, individualistic, versatile, and attracted to entrepreneurial ideas. This person tends to be resourceful in solving challenging problems but may neglect routine assignments.

Q.4   What are the factors influencing perception?
Factors Influencing Perception
Perception is our sensory experience of the world around us and involves both the recognition of environmental stimuli and actions in response to these stimuli. Through the perceptual process, we gain information about properties and elements of the environment that are critical to our survival. Perception not only creates our experience of the world around us; it allows us to act within our environment.
A number of factors operate to shape and sometimes distort perception. These factors can reside:
i) In the perceiver.
ii) In the object or target being perceived or
iii) In the context of the situation in which the perception is made.
1. Characteristics of the Perceiver: Several characteristics of the perceiver can affect perception. When an individual looks at a target and attempts to interpret what he or she stands for, that interpretation is heavily influenced by personal characteristics of the individual perceiver. The major characteristics of the perceiver influencing perception are:
a) Attitudes: The perceiver’s attitudes affect perception. For example, suppose Mr. X is interviewing candidates for a very important position in his organization - a position that requires negotiating contracts with suppliers, most of whom are male. Mr X may feel that women are not capable of holding their own in tough negotiations. This attitude will doubtless affect his perceptions of the female candidates he interviews.
b) Moods: Moods can have a strong influence on the way we perceive someone. We think differently when we are happy than we do when we are depressed. In addition, we remember information that is consistent with our mood state better than information that is inconsistent with our mood state. When in a positive mood, we form more positive impressions of others. When in a negative mood, we tend to evaluate others unfavourably.
c) Motives: Unsatisfied needs or motives stimulate individuals and may exert a strong influence on their perceptions. For example, in an organizational context, a boss who is insecure perceives a subordinate’s efforts to do an outstanding job as a threat to his or her own position. Personal insecurity can be translated into the perception that others are out to "get my job", regardless of the intention of the subordinates.
d) Self-Concept: Another factor that can affect social perception is the perceivers’ self-concept. An individual with a positive self-concept tends to notice positive attributes in another person. In contrast, a negative self-concept can lead a perceiver to pick out negative traits in another person. Greater understanding of self allows us to have more accurate perceptions of others.
e) Interest: The focus of our attention appears to be influenced by our interests. Because our individual interests differ considerably, what one person notices in a situation can differ from what others perceive. For example, the supervisor who has just been reprimanded by his boss for coming late is more likely to notice his colleagues coming late tomorrow than he did last week. If you are preoccupied with a personal problem, you may find it hard to be attentive in class.
f) Cognitive Structure: Cognitive structure, an individual’s pattern of thinking, also affects perception. Some people have a tendency to perceive physical traits, such as height, weight, and appearance, more readily. Others tend to focus more on central traits, or personality dispositions. Cognitive complexity allows a person to perceive multiple characteristics of another person rather than attending to just a few traits.
g) Expectations: Finally, expectations can distort your perceptions in that you will see what you expect to see. The research findings of the study conducted by Sheldon S Zalkind and Timothy W Costello on some specific characteristics of the perceiver reveal
· Knowing oneself makes it easier to see others accurately.
· One’s own characteristics affect the characteristics one is likely to see in others.
· People who accept themselves are more likely to be able to see favourable aspects of other people.
· Accuracy in perceiving others is not a single skill.
These four characteristics greatly influence how a person perceives others in the environmental situation.
Characteristics of the Target:  Characteristics in the target that is being observed can affect what is perceived. Physical appearance plays a big role in our perception of others. Extremely attractive or unattractive individuals are more likely to be noticed in a group than ordinary looking individuals. Motion, sound, size and other attributes of a target shape the way we see it.The perceiver will notice the target’s physical features like height, weight, estimated age, race and gender. Perceivers tend to notice physical appearance characteristics that contrast with the norm, that are intense, or that are new or unusual. Physical attractiveness often colours our entire impression of another person. Interviewers rate attractive candidates more favourably and attractive candidates are awarded higher starting salaries.
Verbal communication from targets also affects our perception of them. We listen to the topics they speak about, their voice tone, and their accent and make judgements based on this input. Non-verbal communication conveys a great deal of information about the target. The perceiver deciphers eye contact, facial expressions, body movements, and posture all in an attempt to form an impression of the target .As a result of physical or time proximity, we often put together objects or events that are unrelated.
For example, employees in a particular department are seen as a group. If two employees of a department suddenly resign, we tend to assume their departures were related when in fact, they might be totally unrelated. People, objects or events that are similar to each other also tend to be grouped together. The greater the similarity, the greater the probability we will tend to perceive them as a group.
Characteristics of the Situation:  The situation in which the interaction between the perceiver and the target takes place, has an influence on the perceiver’s impression of the target. E.g. meeting a manager in his or her office affects your impression in a certain way that may contrast with the impression you would have formed, had you met the manager in a restaurant. The strength of the situational cues also affects social perception. Some situations provide strong cues as to appropriate behaviour. In these situations, we assume that ±ie individual’s behaviour can be accounted for by the situation, and that it may not reflect the individual’s disposition. This is the discounting principle in social perception. For example, you may encounter an automobile salesperson who has a warm and personable manner, asks you about your work and hobbies, and seems genuinely interested in your taste in cars. Can you assume that this behaviour reflects the salesperson’s personality? You probably cannot, because of the influence of the situation. This person is trying to sell you a car, and in this particular situation, he probably treats all customers in this manner.

Q.5 Mr. Solanki  is the VP- HR of a leading Financial services company. He is having a meeting with Ms. Ramani  leading HR consultant. Mr. Solanki is concerned about creating an environment that helps in increasing the job satisfaction amongst employees. Assume that you are Ms.  Ramani, the HR consultant. What suggestions you will give to Mr. Solanki, for creating an environment that increases job satisfaction.
Measuring Job Satisfaction:  Job satisfaction is the sense of fulfillment and pride felt by people who enjoy their work and do it well. For an organization, satisfied work force ensures commitment to high quality performance and increased productivity Job satisfaction helps organizations to reduce complaints and grievances, absenteeism, turnover, and termination. Job satisfaction is also linked to a healthier work force and has been found to be a good indicator of longevity. And although only little correlation has been found between job satisfaction and productivity, it has also been found that satisfying or delighting employees is a prerequisite to satisfying or delighting customers, thus protecting the "bottom line (Brown, 1996).
The most important factors conductive to job satisfaction are:
i) Mentally Challenging Work: Employees tend to prefer jobs that give them opportunities to use their skills and abilities and offer a variety of tasks, freedom and feedback on how well they are doing. Under conditions of moderate challenge, most employees will experience pleasure and satisfaction.
ii) Personality-Job Fit: People with personality types congruent with their chosen vocations should find they have the right talents and abilities to meet the demands of their jobs; and because of this success, they have a greater probability of achieving high satisfaction from their work. It is important, therefore to fit personality factors with job profiles.
iii) Equitable Rewards: Employees want pay systems and promotion policies that they perceive as being just, unambiguous, and in line with their expectations. When pay is seen as fair based on job demands, individual skill level, and industry pay standards, satisfaction is likely to result. Similarly, employees seek fair promotion policies and
practices. Promotions provide opportunities for personal growth, more responsibilities and increased social status. Individuals who perceive that promotion decisions are made in a fair and just manner are likely to experience job satisfaction.
iv) Supportive working conditions: Employees prefer physical conditions that are comfortable and facilitate doing a good job. Temperature, light, noise and other environmental factors should not be extreme and provide personal comfort. Further, employees prefer working relatively close to home, in clean and relatively modern facilities and with adequate tools and equipment.
v) Supportive Colleagues: Employees have need for social interaction. Therefore, having friendly and supportive co-workers and understanding supervisor’s leads to increased job satisfaction. Most employees want their immediate supervisor to be understanding and friendly, those who offer praise for good performance, listen to employees’ opinions and show a personal interest in them.
vi) Whistle blowing: Whistle-blowers are employees who inform authorities of wrongdoings of their companies or co-workers. Whistle blowing is important because committed organizational members sometimes engage in unethical behaviour in an intense desire
to succeed. Organizations can manage whistle blowing by communicating the conditions that are appropriate for the disclosure of wrongdoing. Clearly delineating wrongful behaviour and the appropriate ways to respond are important organizational actions.
vii) Social Responsibility: Corporate social responsibility is the obligation of an organization to behave in ethical ways in the social environment in which it operates. Socially responsible actions are expected of organizations. Current concerns include protecting the environment, promoting worker safety, supporting social issues, investing in the community, etc. Managers must encourage both individual ethical behaviour and organizational social responsibility.
Job enrichment:  It is a deliberate upgrading of responsibility, scope, and challenge in the work itself. Job enrichment usually includes increased responsibility, recognition, and opportunities for growth, learning, and achievement. Large companies that have used job-enrichment programs to increase employee motivation and job satisfaction include, AT&T, IBM, and General Motors (Daft, 1997).
Workers’ role in job satisfaction
A worker should also take some responsibility for his or her job satisfaction. Everett (1995) proposed the following questions which employees ask themselves in regard to job satisfaction at the workplace:
1. When have I come closest to expressing my full potential in a work situation?
2. What did it look like?
3. What aspects of the >workplace were most supportive?
4. What aspects of the work itself were most satisfying?
5. What did I learn from that experience that could be applied to the present situation?
The following suggestions can help a worker find personal job satisfaction:
1. Seek opportunities to demonstrate skills and talents.
2. Develop communication skills.
3. Acquire job related skills and try to implement them.
4. Demonstrate creativity and initiative.
5. Improve team building and leadership skill.
6. Learn to de-stress.

Q.6   Given below is the HR policy glimpse of the “VARK-LEARNING” a learning and training solutions company
1. It offers cash rewards for staff members
2. It promotes the culture of employee referral and encourages people to refer people they know may be their friends, ex. Colleagues batch mates, relatives.
3. What all needs do it takes care off according to maslow’s need hierarchy
4. It recognizes good performances and give fancy titles and jackets to the people who perform well and also felicitates them in the Annual Day of the company.     
What all aspects does it takes care of according to the Maslow’s Need Hierarchy ?
The following needs are taken care of according to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory:
According to this theory, proposed by Maslow (1943), human beings have wants and desires which influence their behavior, only unsatisfied needs can influence behavior, satisfied needs cannot. The needs are arranged in order of importance, from the basic to the complex. The person advances to the next level of needs only after the lower level need is at least minimally satisfied. The further they progress up the hierarchy, the more individuality, humanness and psychological health a person will show.
The first point of rewarding the staff members with cash shows the physiological needs which is satisfied, the staff members will be satisfied to receive any form of monetary benefits which encourages him to perform better
The second point is the promotion of referral for employees, this shows that the social need can be satisfied as with referrals the employee feels to be a part of the company being responsible for the referral given to the firm, an employee feels belongingness to his firm/company
The fourth point of recognition and felicitation for the good performance shown by the employee satisfies the esteem andself-actualization, the esteem need will take care of the recognition of one’s work which improves achievement realization and self respect for one’s work which in turn gains him the status recognition and attention within the company.
The employee’s drive to become what he is capable of including one’s growth is satisfied with the self-actualization needs, along with one’s growth the employee gains the confidence to achieve to his fullest potential and this gives him the satisfaction of self-fulfillment 
These are among the few things which are satisfied by Maslow’s  Need Hierarchy  the hierarchy is clearly stated below which shows all the 5 basic needs required by an employee of the company/firm. Maslow was a contributor who influenced the human aspects of management in workplace
The above pictorial representation is the Maslow’s Hierarchy as explained below
Maslow’s Need Hierarchy Pyramid.
The five needs are:
· Physiological: Includes hunger, thirst, shelter, sex, and other bodily needs
· Safety: Includes security and protection from physical and emotional harm
· Social: Includes affection, belongingness, acceptance, and friendship
· Esteem: Includes internal esteem factors, such as, self-respect, autonomy, and achievement; and external esteem factors, such as, status, recognition, and attention
· Self-actualization: The drive to become what one is capable of becoming; includes growth, achieving one’s potential, and self-fulfillment
Maslow separated the five needs into higher and lower orders. Physiological and safety needs are described as lower-order. Social, esteem, and self-actualization are classified as higher-order needs. Higher-order needs are satisfied internally, whereas, Lower-order needs are predominantly satisfied, externally.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the answers, could you please provide answers for MB0040 also.