Organizational behaviour report
Read the following case study:
The work in the Leeds Call Centre, and its design and running resembles manufacturing industry lean production team. The work is fast paced and the workers are pressurised to achieve the standards
set. There is a close management monitoring and control with errors and lack of adherence to standards being punished. Management is mainly preoccupied with cost minimisation and high productivity.
The work is narrowly defined and heavily monitored with the strict procedures and instructions relating to the duration of the call, the conversation with customers, and advice to be given to
customers. The tasks are highly fragmented, with workers having to follow prescriptive scripting. Call centre operators are given their opening paragraphs, appropriate greetings, the order in which
to list any benefits to customers, and instructions on how to close the sale. The managers argue that ‘this helps the operator to structure the call into a coherent and professional interaction
with customers’. Call centre operators are disciplined for abandoning the scripts, regardless of their success in converting calls into business, i.e. closing the sale.
The training has been provided to the call centre operators. However, the training related to only one aspect of the incoming calls. The workers were trained on standardised calls. Cost
minimization was a key theme within the organisation and also in training.
At Leeds Call Centre, staff are rewarded when behaviour delivers results in line with business requirements. Each month, staff performance is reviewed against a number of objectives. This takes
pace as performance appraisal. Such standards or objectives relate to an average call length, sales of each product, and attention to detail. It also includes adherence to standards and to
prescriptive scripting. This performance appraisal system is known as Effective Level Review. The call centre operators can be ranked 1 to 10 in terms of their level of effectiveness. Depending on
the score they obtain, they can get an increase in salary after every six months of successful reviews. When employees move through the levels and get high scores this means that they have
performed well which in turn can mean that they can be given other tasks instead of answering the phone. This is a welcome change to the employees as the call operator role can become mundane and
repetitive and the opportunity to do other tasks is seen as a reward for good performance. Thus it reinforces acceptable behaviour.
Conversely, staff who display behaviour that is not desirable cannot move through these levels, and repeated failure to do so can lead to disciplinary action. This can be seen as punishment. People
can become resentful at having their performance graded every month, particularly in those areas where it is their line manager’s perception of whether or not they have achieved the desire
In 2,200 words, address the following question:
“Identify and critically assess the learning strategy illustrated in this case study in relation to the learning theories discussed in this course. Relate learning to motivation”.