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What Are the Challenges of Organizational Behavior?

Kristie Lorette
By Kristie Lorette
Updated May 16, 2024
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Organizational behavior is the culture of the organization, which includes how the employees interact with one another. It also involves how the employees feel about the company itself. The challenges of organizational behavior that most companies face include overcoming cultural and ethnic differences, improving productivity, hiring employees that fit into the organizational culture or who can improve it, and helping employees to find proper level of a work-life balance.

One of the primary challenges of organizational behavior is overcoming ethnic and cultural diversity among employees. Because different employees have different beliefs, opinions and ways of working, it can be challenging for employees to work together because of these differences. Some organizations choose to offer diversity training courses or workshops to help overcome these issues. The point is to illuminate how the diversity of an organization actually makes it better for the different benefits that each of the employees bring to the table.

Another challenge related to organizational behavior is finding ways to motivate employees as a way to improve activity. Some of the ways organizations improve productivity within the organization is to empower the employees. When organizations and businesses empower its employees, it gives them a sense of loyalty to the company because they feel like they are part of the success of the business.

A third of the challenges of organizational behavior is hiring the right employees for the company. Hiring the right employees for the organization is not only about finding the people with the skills and knowledge that the position requires, but also employees that fit into the organizational culture or can help to improve employee relations.

For example, it can be de-motivating to employees if upper management is not open to progressive thoughts and actions that can move the business forward. Hiring a progressive and forward thinking executive manager who also has the experience and knowledge can help to give the employees a new outlook on the company.

Another of the main challenges of organizational behavior is how to run a productive company, but also show its employees that it cares about them as well. In other words, it is about helping employees find the right work-life balance. For example, a company that provides an on-site daycare center as an employee benefit or at a reduced cost is one way for the company to show that it cares about its employees both professionally and personally. This can lead to the employees contributing to organizational behavior and culture in a positive manner.

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Discussion Comments

By MrsPramm — On Jan 12, 2013

@KoiwiGal - Well, to be honest, in that kind of extreme case, in the modern world, it will cost them more money to ignore it than to challenge it. I mean, a few diversity seminars (and a few firings if necessary) aren't going to cost as much as a law suit.

It's actually kind of fascinating how a sort-of mob mentality can rule in a company. When you look at some of the things that went on in companies like Enron, before it fell, it makes you wonder how the people involved could keep fooling themselves like that.

By KoiwiGal — On Jan 11, 2013

@clintflint - I think you're right, of course, but in terms of deciding on organisational behavior diversity is still a lot of trouble, no matter how good it is for the company in the long run.

It's all too easy to slip into the norms of the majority and forget about the minority (or in some cases, actively harm the minority). You see this all the time in companies that allow sexual harassment or homophobia to thrive, because "it's the way it's always been done".

Changing that kind of group-think takes a lot of time and money and I can definitely see why companies might prefer to ignore it (even if I don't think they should).

By clintflint — On Jan 11, 2013

I think it's important not to think of cultural diversity as something to overcome with the goal of a kind of corporate unity of purpose. I read an article the other day where they talked about how, if you have a very similar group of people in a room together, it doesn't matter how smart they are, they will very rarely stray outside of similar ideas.

But if you include someone of a different gender, or culture in that group, suddenly the whole group becomes more creative, because having even one person who can provide new ideas can spark them from everyone else.

Which is not to say that diversity doesn't have challenges as well. But it's important to remember the opportunities outweigh the challenges.

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