Organizational Behavior (OB) is, “the study of human behavior in organizations” (Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn, 2005). As individuals, we act and react in very different ways when influenced by operational factors and, over time, these factors can contribute to predictable trends. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the influence of ethics on decision-making and the impact of technology on work-related stress . Decision-making is arguably the most difficult task an individual will attempt during his or her management career.
Ethics will have an enormous impact on the process during each step. Specifically, an individual’s morals and values help define who they are and influence what they perceive as right and wrong. During the first and second steps, personal values dominate the process. The criteria we use to recognize and define problems differ among people. What I think is an issue may not be one to another individual. What I think might resolve or elevate a problem could be seen as unacceptable by others.
The beliefs which shape our infancy and the values instilled by our mentors establish the foundation for our ethics. The final three steps are altered by our moral conduct. Taking action is imperative to completing the decision-making process. Decisions may involve lying, deceit or fraud and inevitably we show our “true colors”. Decision-making is a process but ethics, including values and morals, influence the process by questioning whether we should or should not make the decision. This is critical because the process illustrates the difference between individuals.
Our peers will eventually develop ethical perceptions related to our conduct. Stress is described as, “the state of tension experienced by individuals facing extra ordinary demands, constraints or opportunities. “(Schermerhorn, Hunt & Osborn, 2005). This realization is important because average operational procedures impact stress and individual behavior. Typically, stress is considered either physical or mental and there are many factors which contribute to work-related occurrences.
The desire to succeed, advance in a position or accomplish a given task is classic catalysts for increased stress. Individuals of current corporations are exposed to enormous pressures and performance criteria which add to work-related stress. The recent advancements in technology are considered the greatest single impact contributing to stress. The vast majority of our recognizable organizations are lead by a blend of seasoned veterans and generation X youth. This mixture will quickly end and these advancements will accelerate to unknown levels.
Until this time comes, the demands imposed on the technologically challenged individuals will only increase and work-related stress could skyrocket. Computers are prime examples of common tools used in most businesses. They have proven to increase productivity and aid in superior operational performance. This technology and the potential benefits available come with a price. As most can appreciate, PC’s are often considered outdated within six months of production. The software which drives the processes and methods are instantly upgradeable but the end users capabilities are not.
This operational short-fall creates stress. We have come to accept instant access to information as the norm. Our PC’s, servers, PDA’s, cell phones and other data devices have altered our behavior and trained us to settle for nothing short of a “give it to me now” mentality. This new acceptance has merged into our business world. Our Customer Relationship Management (CRM) portals and endless databases require expert navigation knowledge to acquire much need information.
For those individuals who resist technology, these product knowledge demands limit productivity. The behavior of these employees is altered due to additional time allotments for training. These pressures stem from accountability. We, as employees, are expected to achieve minimum standards and return measurable results to our employers. Technology has enabled our organizations to better manage our performance. Excel spreadsheets, GPS trackers, automated reporting engines provide our managers to necessary information to hold us accountable.
In the past, these methods were completely manual and cumbersome. Due to this methodology, we did not recognize the microscope we were under and because of this manages were less prone proactive solutions. The results are obvious, very little stress. Organizational Behavior is impacted and influenced by many factors. The ethics which guide our decision-making and the influence of technology on stress are only a few typical examples. These trends and unlimited additional impacts will aid our individual growth as managers.