contains a number of challenging and provocative ideas

Referencing Styles : Harvard MA 02: Working in organisations Remember to check the Assessment guidance[Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] to see an overview of assessment on B716, practical information about your TMAs and assessment criteria. Tony Watson’s (1996) article ‘Motivation: That’s Maslow isn’t it?’ [you can access the article by clicking on ‘Full Text (PDF)’ in the ‘This Article’ box], which you read in Unit 2, Session 2.2, Activity 2.2, contains a number of challenging and provocative ideas. This part of the TMA requires you to engage with one of the important issues raised in the article: ‘we should start with a real question… how do you go about getting people at work to do things you want them to do?’ (p. 459) Task 1: Essay [no more than 1,500 words] Using two of the four forms of control (Knights and Willmott, 2012) as a framework, use any of the material in Unit 2 to discuss the benefits and challenges of these methods of management. You should also explore the implications these managerial issues provoke in relation to your own practice as a manager or as an employee. In answering this question you are expected to use relevant theories, models and ideas from Unit 2 as well as the stipulated forms of control framework, and pay particular attention to assembling both a coherent and critical argument. Task 2: Reflective commentary [no more than 500 words] Provide a reflective commentary on the implications of Tony Watson’s article for both: 1. your own practice as a manager or employee and 2. your learning as a student. Please note that for this TMA full academic referencing is required. The absence of this will result in a deduction of marks. Guidelines Task 1 Firstly you are asked to identify two of the four forms of control (Knights and Willmott, 2012) which have been used in Unit 2 as a framework. You should therefore choose TWO from the following: • Direct supervision. • Bureaucratic procedures. • Cultural control. • Output and self-regulation. You should use these two frameworks for organising ideas, concepts and theories that relate to the different techniques associated with getting employees to do what the ‘organisation’ wants them to do. Using associated ideas, concepts and theories from Unit 2 (you may also make passing reference to Unit 1 if appropriate) you should show how your two chosen frameworks each have benefits and challenges – you can do this from the point of view of yourself as a manager, an employee, or both. You can of course be critical about the methods employed (types of control), as well as the individual theories relating to these types of control. This is not an assignment which is simply about motivation. Motivation implies techniques around the employee ‘wanting’ to do things, but Unit 2 has showed you that there are a variety of ways in which employees are managed, that include: commitment, control, compliance, coercion, threat, insecurities, fear, performance management, self-regulation or explicit reward mechanisms. It is not necessary for you to read Knights and Willmott’s book – as the entire framework of control has been reproduced many times throughout Unit 2 – see Activities 1.1, 1.2, 1.8, 2.4 and 3.1, for example. The material has been organised very specifically to deal with each form of control, i.e. the first in Activity 1.1, the second in Activity 1.2, the third starts in Activity 1.3 and the fourth starts in Activity 2.4. Throughout Unit 2 there are also a myriad of activities (see Activities 1.2C, 1.5A, 1.6, 2.4, 2.5, 3.7B and 3.8B) which require you to constantly revisit ideas relating to the four forms of control and fill in the relevant ‘forms of control template’. This is a template provided for you to link ideas with your own experience, so you can accumulate many examples of this organising framework and reflect on them. There should, therefore, be no surprises regarding the Knights and Willmott framework at the end of Unit 2 as you should have seen it many times. Knights and Willmott is simply a conceptual framework relating to different ways of organising/managing/controlling employees in the workplace, and many examples and theories in the module material have been provided to illustrate these ideas. However, if you wish to do extra reading you should consult the ‘read all about it’ suggestions on say culture, or bureaucracy, or whichever of the two forms you choose to write about. The assignment specifically asks you to consider your own practice as a manager or as an employee so it is expected that you will draw from your own experience either as a manager attempting to get others to do what you want them to do – or as someone who has been managed by others. The best answers will ‘weave’ together theory and evidence rather than writing them as separate chunks, which is more artificial and contrived, and therefore can be less persuasive. Excellent answers will ‘weave’ together theory and evidence together to form a persuasive argument. In assembling a coherent and critical argument you should incorporate the following: • Defending as well as critiquing your selection of theories, models and ideas in terms of how they might work in practice – either in combination or isolation. • Unpacking/challenging the assumptions inherent in Watson’s quote with examples about how control works in your part of the organisation or sector. • Illustrating how certain theories might be of use in one context and yet might change according to who people are, where they work and what they do (i.e., that they are context dependent). • Explaining how your chosen concepts, e.g. direct supervision, bureaucracy, culture or self-regulation, might be valuable in developing your thinking and insights around this issue for your own practice as a manager or as an employee, as well as what the pitfalls might be. Task 2 This part of the assignment is a reflective commentary about Tony Watson’s (1996) article ‘Motivation: That’s Maslow isn’t it?’. Clearly this task relies on you having already read this article (either in the earlier activity or prior to attempting this assignment). You should discuss the ideas in the article in relation to how they might potentially change the way you approach your practice, and also how they might have prompted you to think differently about the approach you take to your studies. You may also wish to disagree with some (or all!) of the ideas suggested by Watson and, in this case, you should provide a coherent and persuasive discussion about why this might be. You should give equal weight to any learning that has occurred in terms of your own practice as a manager/employee, and your role as a student. While discussing either issue you are of course at liberty to reference any of the module material, although the emphasis here is more on your own reflections about the article in terms of your own practice and learning. .

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