Sunday, May 15, 2011

Explain the concept of discipline in an oganisation.

Explain the concept of discipline in an oganisation. Illustrate with reference to your organisation o an oganisation you are familiar with. Describe in detail how as a manger in that organisation you will take a disciplinary action against the concerned worker.

The first thing most people associate with the concept of discipline is the act of punishment. This is so because discipline, in its narrowest sense, is used to refer to the act of imposing penalties for "wrong" behaviour. However, it is important to remember that this negative expression is only a part of the meaning of the word discipline. Discipline means orderliness, obedience and maintenance of proper subordination among employees and a check or restraint on the liberty of individual. It is at one a training that correct, moulds and strengthens the individual behaviour. It is also a force which prompts individual or group to observe certain rules, regulations and procedures that are considered to be necessary for the attainment of an objective.
Discipline implies a state of order in an organisation. It means proper appreciation of the hierarchical superior-subordinate-relationship. It is, in other words, adherence to established norms and regulations. It corrects improper conduct and thus acts as a force leading to the observance of rules and regulations. It is, you may say, essentially an attitude of the mind, a product of culture and environment. Therefore, discipline cannot be maintained merely with the help of legislative sanctions! it requires persuasion on a moral plane.

In you own context of the work situation, the concept of discipline emerges from your interaction with your subordinates. And your interaction with you subordinates is governed by various formal and informal rules and regulations. Your company's manual or standing orders provide the formal rules and regulation, including work-related behaviour rules. But, these formal rules are not sufficient to cover the wide range of interaction that you and your subordinates are engaged in the complex context of industrial elations. A large part of your behaviour and interaction with your subordinates is governed by informal and unwritten rules and norms. These informal rules and norms that support and legitimize practice are based on convention and culture of the organisation. For every misconduct and act of discipline, you as a manger will have to take a disciplinary action against the concerned worker. However, there is no hard and fast rule to deal with indiscipline. The positive approach to discipline which we have discussed in an earlier section calls for self-discipline. This approach assumes that most of your subordinates, if not all, generally behave reasonably following the given norms and procedures. To institute this kind of discipline, you must ensue that you use your authority and powers in a manner that is easily acceptable to your subordinates. To establish this kind of positive disciph'ne among your subordinates you must ensure that"
1. Rules and regulations are reasonable, legitimate and clear ',
2. Subordinates are involved in framing rules and regulations so that they willingly accept them ,"
3. Prior and clear notice is given to the consequence of breaking rules
4. There is consistency and uniformity of punishment"
5. Human personality is treated with dignity; and
6. You as a manger should set high standards.
In addition, you can check indiscipline through counseling and
educating you subordinates. Strategies like job enrichment to
increase commitment among your subordinates, effective and
efficient grievance handling procedures, opportunities for
development of subordinate's potential are strategies that you may
adopt to prevent indiscipline in your organisation.
In order to maintain the motivation and morale of your
subordinates, it is necessary that you adopt a formal system for
dealing with indiscipline. The formal system often calls for a judicial

Q.2 Discuss the meaning, objective, levels and forms of participation.
Review the scheme of workers participation in management that
tare functioning in your organisation or an organisation you are
familiar with. Briefly describe the organisation you are referring to.

Workers' Participation-
The term 'workers participation' means different things to different
people, depending upon their objectives and expectations.
In view of these different views it is difficult to define 'workers'
participation'; it can only be described as a system of communication
and consultation, either formal or informal, by which the employees
of an organisation are kept informed about the affairs of the
undertaking and through which they express their opinion and
contribute to management decisions.
The following are the characteristics of workers' participation-
1. Participation implies practices, which increase the scope for employees' share of influence in decision-making at different tiers of the organisational hierarchy with concomitant assumption of responsibility.
2. Participation has to be at different patterns in regard to policy formulation and execution.
3. Participation presupposes willing acceptance of responsibilities by workers.
4. Participation is conducted through the mechanism of the forum and practices, which provide for association of workers' representatives.
5. The broad goal of participation is to change fundamentally the organisational aspect of production and transfer the management function entirely to the workers so that management becomes 'Auto-management'.
Levels of Participation
Participation is possible at all levels of management. The would
differ considerably at different levels of management. At one
extreme, where decision making is reserved for authorities,
participation will be the minimum; at the other, where exercise of
this authority is small, participation will vary depending upon a
variety of factors including the problems, the attitudes and past
experience of management and the development of human relations
in general and labour-management relations-in particular.
The levels of participation may range as discussed below from mere
information sharing to decisive participation^
Information Participation- Refers to information sharing on such
items as may be agreed to, like balance sheet, production, economic
condition of the plants, etc. Here, the workers have no right of close
scrutiny of the information provided.
Consultative Participation- is one under which the workers are
consulted in such matters as welfare programme and methods of
work and safety. Management may or may not accept the
suggestions. Here the members get an opportunity to express their
Associative Participation- Here the role of the council is not just
advisory. The management is under a moral obligation to accept and
implement the unanimous decision of the Council.
Administrative Participation- Here a decision, already taken, comes
to the Council for implementation with alternatives to select form.
Matters covered here are welfare measures and safety operation of
vocational training and apprenticeship schemes, preparation of
schedules of working hours, breaks and holidays, payment or
rewards for valuable suggestions received and any other matter as
may be agreed to by the members.
Decisive Participation- Here decisions are jointly taken on matters relating to production, welfare, etc. Workers' participation in management can deal with and exercise supervisory, advisory and administrative functions on matters concerning safety, welfare, etc. though the ultimate responsibility is vested in management. Individual grievances are excluded form its scope. Forms of Participation
Now we shall briefly consider the well-known participatory forums '• Collective Bargaining is done periodically or on a continuing basis between management and workers' representative, on issue over which the interests or workers and management are competitive, such as wage rates, bonus rates working hours and number of holidays. The agreements arrived at are normally binding on the-parties. In actual practice, each party tries to outbid the other and get maximum advantage by using necessary threats and counter-threats, like strikes, lock-outs and other direct actions. Works Councils- These are exclusive bodies of employees, assigned with different functions in the management of an enterprise. In some countries their role is limited only to receiving information about the enterprise.
Joint Management Councils and Committees- These bodies are mainly consultative and advisory. As these are consultative and advisory, neither the management nor the workers take them seriously.
Board Representation. The role of workers' representative on the board of directors is essentially one of negotiating the workers' interests with the other members of the Board. The effectiveness of the workers' representative at thee Board depends upon his ability to participate in decision-making, his knowledge of the company
affairs, his educational background, his level of understanding and also on the number of wodters' representatives on the Board. Workers' Ownership in Enterprise- This means complete control of management by workers through an elected Board and Workers' council. This system prevails in Yugoslavia. In this system two different sets of persons perform two distinct managerial and operative functions. Though workers have the option of influencing all decisions taken at the top level, yet, in actual practice, the Board and the top management team assume a really independent role in taking major policy decisions for the enterprises, specially on economic matters

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