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Discuss culture, climate and ethical decisions

Note:I did my situation audit on Tesla
I will do the audio when I receive it.
Note from professor:
Project 3
Posted Nov 13, 2017 7:25 AM
Final Deliverable: Culture, Climate, and Ethical Decisions

In designing your presentation, refer to the guide to creating a narrated PowerPoint presentation. In addition, prepare a brief memo (no more than three pages) that outlines your key points.

Consider the following among the key things your presentation will need to address:

Define concepts: Define organizational culture, climate, and ethical decisions and practices. Use the academic sources embedded in the steps or other resources of like quality, written by authoritative sources.
Identify consequences: Describe the likely consequences of these concepts for an organizations operations. See sample questions below.
Describe culture and climate: Describe the current organizational culture and climate. See sample questions below.
Describe the approach to ethical decisions and practices: Think about the meaning of ethics and how they are applied in your organization. Does your leadership model them? Are employees placed in uncomfortable situations? How are ethical standards communicated?
Assess implications for the organization: Assess the implications of the above issues for your organization. For example, what does it mean that the organization has the type of culture and climate you identified?
Recommend actions: Recommend actions your COO should consider implementing to facilitate a shift in the organizations culture, climate, and ethical decision-making to ensure closer alignment with its organizational mission and values. If you dont see a need for any changes, why?

Sample—Questions/Issues:

What is the organizational culture? How does it relate to my organization? How would I describe the culture of my organization? Does the culture need to be changed? How can that be accomplished? If not, why not?

What is the organizational climate (Do people enjoy working here? If so, why? If not, why not? Are our motivation, evaluation and reward system perceived as fair and equitable? What effect do such measures have on climate? Do we do climate surveys? What do they indicate as key concerns? If we dont measure climate, should we? Why or why not? How?)

What are our ethics habits? Do we employ fair practices? Are we provided clear ethical guidelines? Do we receive ethics training? How do we measure compliance? Do our leaders shape ethical decision making? If so, how? If not, why not? Do we ask employees to do certain things we would not? Have there been any scandals to overcome? If so, how were they dealt with? Are they gone? What steps have been taken to ensure they do not recur?

Attachment from professor:
ANNOTATED REFERENCE EXAMPLE
In your past studies, you might have been asked to create an annotated bibliography. While the task you will complete next is similar, for this particular project, think of yourself as a consultant and strive to explain the key points you discover from your research in a way that will be most meaningful for a practicing manager. Imagine therefore that what you are giving Kate in this project is a short reading list, with a brief note for each item.
Here is an example:
Ardichvili, A., Mitchell, J. A., & Jondle, D. (2009). Characteristics of ethical business cultures. Journal of Business Ethics, 85(4), 445-451. doi:10.1007/s10551-008-9782-4 http://ezproxy.umuc.edu/login?urlhttp://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?directtrue&dbbth&AN37042727&siteehost-live&scopesite
A beginning assumption is that an ethical business culture is one where employees know the difference between right and wrong and are able to implement ethical decisions in situations where there are no apparent differences in options. Leadership is widely accepted as important in creating and maintaining an ethical culture and this has been well supported by research. Important leader competencies include the ability to communicate what constitutes high ethical stanidards, model expected behaviors, and serve as an ongoing champion of an ethical corporate culture.
Creating and nurturing an ethical culture also requires a supportive structure, systems, and policies. This includes a structure that ensures authority is distributed appropriately and that all employees take ownership of and are accountable for maintaining high ethical standards. Important policies and procedures include creating and communicating a code of conduct and providing mechanisms that allow concerns about potential ethical misconduct to be reported without fear of negative consequences.
Also important for creating an ethical corporate culture are incorporation of attention to expected ethical standards in incentive initiatives, performance reviews, and in critical decision processes. The authors emphasize that in ethical cultures attention to ethical ramifications of decisions takes precedence over cost-benefit analysis.
And perhaps most challenging is the need for informal and less tangible elements that are found in ethical corporate cultures. Examples include sharing stories of strong ethical decisions and successes, opportunities to celebrate and recognize the organizations ethical culture as a source of mutual pride, leaders who incorporate attention to and care about ethical conduct of business in their daily conversations and actions, and of course, the many small decisions and actions that serve as concrete evidence that the commitment is to more than just stories and words.
This study included interviews with 54 business executives and 13 academics. The interviews produced an extensive list of characteristics of ethical organizations that were analyzed and organized in the following five categories (or clusters):
Clarity and strength of mission and values.
Stakeholder inclusion, commitment, and actions.
Leader effectiveness.
Integrity of processes.
Long-term perspective and commitment.
While the findings reported in this article are not new, the authors do a nice job of summarizing key points (derived from individual interviews) upon which practicing corporate leaders and academics agree. The article was published in 2008 in the top journal focusing on business ethics. The authors have all published, two extensively, on this topic and are affiliated with reputable institutions. The authors continue to contribute to this body of work.

PROJECT 3 Final Deliverable: Culture, Climate, and Ethical Decisions

Create a 7 8 narrated PowerPoint (PP) slide presentation, which excludes your cover page and reference section and write a 2-3-page memo to the COO (CAO, CEO, or comparable leader) that highlights the main points of your projects findings. Include your notes for each PP slide in your narrated presentation in the note section of your PP presentation for each slide. The PP and memo must each include proper in-text citations and a Reference Section in APA format. In designing your presentation, refer to the guide on creating a narrated PowerPoint presentation. The memo and narrated PP are submitted in the last step.

Consider the following among the key things your presentation will need to address:

Define concepts: Define organizational culture, climate, and ethical decisions and practices. Use the academic sources embedded in the steps or other resources of like quality, written by authoritative sources. Identify consequences: Describe the likely consequences of these concepts for an organizations operations. See sample questions below. Describe culture and climate: Describe and differentiate between the current organizational culture and climate of your organization. See sample questions below. Describe approach to ethical decisions and practices: Think about the meaning of ethics and how they are applied in your organization. Does your leadership model them? Are employees placed in uncomfortable situations? How are ethics communicated? Assess implications for organization: Assess the implications of the above issues for your organization. For example, what does it mean to your organizations practices that the organization has the type of culture, climate, and ethics you identified? Recommend actions: Recommend actions your COO (CAO, CEO, or comparable leader) should consider implementing to facilitate a shift in the organizations culture, climate, and ethics to ensure desired or improved outcomes for your organization such as meeting its mission and values. If you dont see a need for any changes, why?

Sample—Questions/Issues:

What is organizational culture? How do authorities on culture define it? How does it relate to my organization? How would I describe the culture of my organization? Does the culture need to be changed? How can that be accomplished? If not, why not?

What is organizational climate? How do authorities define climate? Do people enjoy working here? If so, why? If not, why not? Are our motivation, evaluation and reward system perceived as fair and equitable? What effect do such measures have on climate? Do we do climate surveys? What do they indicate as key concerns? Should we measure climate? How?

What are organizational ethics? How do authorities define ethics? How does my organization enforce ethics? Do we have fair employment practices? Are we provided clear ethical guidelines? Do we receive ethics training? How do we measure compliance? Do our leaders shape ethical decision making or not? Do we ask or imply certain marginal practices are okay? Any past scandals? How were they dealt with? What steps have been or need to be taken to eliminate recurrences?
Project 3 Start Here
Once youve read the scenario below, get started by going to Step 1.
The day after you hand in your organizational analysis, you notice the following headline in the business section in the news: Employees Accused of Stealing from Company. Apparently, a group of employees who worked for a company similar to yours was routinely lying on their expense reports, claimingand getting reimbursed forpersonal expenditures, including Caribbean trips and four-star restaurants.
You nearly spit out your coffee when you read this. You work in the same sector! After doing your organizational analysis, you feel like you have a good grasp on the mission and values of your company, and youd be very surprised such behavior was tolerated. This article, however, still makes you wonder about your industry as whole.
Once you get to your office, you discover that you arent the only one interested in this story; everyone is buzzing about it. As soon as you drop your stuff in your cube, you see a message from the COOs assistant: the COO, Kate Lindsay, wants to see you this afternoon. Why does Kate want to see you? Kate is very high in the organizational food chain.
You head to Kates office. As you sit down, Kate lives up to her reputation for being focused and direct and immediately launches into what she has to say, You must have heard about the expense report scandal at our competitors organization. We need to ensure that the same thing is not happening here. She continues, I came to this organization because I considered it to be among the best are we? She begins ticking off questions on her fingers: How can we be sure what we believe and say matches what we actually do? How can we be sure we dont have a culture and climate that are viewed as unethical and unhealthy? Do we put enough emphasis on ethical and caring behavior in our decisions and our actions?
She pauses before going on. Im new to this position and to this sector in general. Im clearly responsible and accountable for the climate, culture, and ethical behavior in this organization. We need to be concerned about these issues, and I need your help figuring out where we stand and what, if anything, we should be doing differently. Your help? You look at her expectantly.
She answers your implied question, I read your organizational analysis last night, and I was enough impressed with it that I think you could handle this particular task. Im an engineer by training, and Im methodical, thorough, and detailed, Kate says, before adding, This report needs to reflect +myand, more importantly, this organizationscareful and thoughtful approach to these issues. So even though organizational culture, climate, and ethics may seem like soft issues, I expect strong critical thinking and an evidence-based report. I dont just want opinions. It might help to imagine yourself as an independent consultant we are counting on for both expertise and objectivity.
She glances at her phone. I have a meeting in two minutes. She stands up. I really need your best thinking and good advice on this in three weeks. Talk to my assistant about making an appointment to see me then, and have 15-minute PowerPoint presentation ready along with a brief memo summarizing your points, she says, Also, I trust you understand this is a matter that needs to be kept between us. She looks at you squarely: I dont want to learn my questions and concerns have become the subject of general discussions in the office. Absolutely! You say, with confidence, as Kate heads out of her office. Then she turns around, Oh, and I want to see some of your work-in-progress as you do this project. Talk to my assistant about that as well.
You return to your desk thrilled that the COO has shared her concerns and asked you for your input. You have so many ideas and lots of questionsbut you also realize you are going to need to proceed without all the information you would ideally love to have. You know you will need to rely only on publicly available information and not go poking around in confidential work files or asking others in your office for input or advice.
How will you tackle this project? What evidence will you use to inform your understanding and strengthen your analysis? What will you tell your COO next Wednesday?
When you submit your project, your work will be evaluated using the competencies listed below. You can use the list below to self-check your work before submission.
2.1: Identify and clearly explain the issue, question, or problem under critical consideration.
2.2: Locate and access sufficient information to investigate the issue or problem.
2.3: Evaluate the information in a logical and organized manner to determine its value and relevance to the problem.
2.4: Consider and analyze information in context to the issue or problem.
2.5: Develop well-reasoned ideas, conclusions or decisions, checking them against relevant criteria and benchmarks.
5.1: Develop constructive resolutions for ethical dilemmas based on application of ethical theories, principles and models.
9.3: Apply the principles of employment law for ethical practices and risk mitigation
Step 1: Organizing Your Work
The first thing you should do is review the following:
the desrption of the final deliverable
instructions on how to create a narrated PowerPoint presentation
the rest of the Steps to Completion for this project
After you have a good idea of the scope of work for this project, consider how you will approach an analysis of your own organization.
First, review these brief guidelines about conducting research on your organization.
Please discuss with your instructor any limiting factors you may encounter as you write this report. After youve discussed these issues with your instructor, if you believe its best for you to research an organization other than your own, please read the guidelines about using an outside organization.
As you plan to complete this project consider the following:
the information you need
how to get that information
allocating appropriate time to each step
and any other project management factors that may seem relevant
Keep the final deliverable (see link above) in mind as you complete the project.
Narrated PowerPoint Presentation
One of the things you will need to be able to do in this course is create a Narrated PowerPoint presentation. What that means is that you will be recording an audio trackyour spoken voicefor each slide in your presentation. First, here are some general guidelines that should help you with this task. Later in this document you will find specific instructions for various types of hardware and versions of PowerPoint.
As with any project, it is good to begin by creating an outline. This will help you determine how many slides you will need to develop and how much information you will need to present on each slide. It should also help you determine a logical order in which to present your material.
Now you are ready to begin work on your slides and your srpt. You may find it easiest to create a slide based on your outline and then write the srpt for that slide. Or you may decide to create all of your slides and then write your full srpt. Another alternative is to write a full srpt first and then create your slides.
Some recommendations for your slides:
Keep slides uncluttered by using very brief bullet pointsonly a few key words each.
An easy way to make your presentation look more appealing is to use one of the designs provided within PowerPoint.
Adding images and/or clipart is another good way to add some visual interest to your presentation, but dont overuse these.
When you are citing your sources of information on a slide, use a small font size so the citations dont detract from the primary points you are making.
Be sure to proofread carefully: Any errors on a slide will be particularly noticeable because of the relatively small number of words.
When you record your audio for each slide, a loudspeaker icon will appear in the middle of the slide. You can drag this icon to a better position (often the bottom right corner of the slide) so it doesnt interfere with the bullet points you have included.
Presentation srpt
The srpt for your presentation can be a complete word-for-word documentation of what you intend to say as each slide is displayed, or it can be a much briefer set of notes that you will use as a reminder while you are recording to ensure that you cover all the points you intend to make. The latter approach is preferable, because this makes it less likely that you will sound rushed or overly srpted when you are speaking. Keep in mind that if you were making your presentation in person, you would not want to be reading your comments; instead, you would want to make eye contact with your audience.
Here are some additional recommendations for your srpt:
Try to keep the amount of narration to less than two minutes per slide. If you find that you need to say more than that, it is probably a good idea to create another slide so your audience doesnt get bored.
Make sure your srpt and what appears on your slide are closely related so your audience can easily follow what you have to say.
Dont simply read the material on your slideadd value by providing additional information.
Recording the narration
At this point, you have created and saved your slides as a PowerPoint presentation, and you have your srpt ready. Now its time to record your audio.
Here are a few general recommendations before you record:
If you are using a computer to record, do use a headset/microphone combination rather than using the computers built-in speakers and microphone. It isnt necessary to spend a lot on a headset/mic (typically $20 or less), and you will be rewarded with better sound quality and less background noise.
Make sure your headset/mic is installed and working. There are simple programs on both Macs and PCs that allow you to test whether recording is occurring and whether the sound quality is acceptable.
Choose a quiet location to do your recording so that background noise is minimal.
When you begin recording, speak clearly and conversationally without rushing.
Remember that its easy to redo the audio for a slide. If youre not happy with the way it sounds, you can do it over.
Once you have completed and narrated your presentation, it is a good idea to email the file to another computer. If you are able to watch and listen to the slide show successfully on the second computer, you will know that the audio files have been successfully embedded in the presentation.
Below are specific recording instructions based on various combinations of hardware and software.
For a PC, Windows 7 and Windows 10, PowerPoint 2010
Open your presentation file in PowerPoint.
Click on Slide 1.
Click the Insert tab in your menu bar, and then choose Audio (the speaker icon at the far right).
When you click on the Audio icon, you should see three options. Choose Record audio.
A new window will open with three recording controls. When you are ready to record, click the red record circle. Youll see the total sound length counter start to increment so you know how long youve been speaking. When youre finished, click the square stop button. If you now click the arrow, youll be able to hear what you just recorded. And before you close this pop-up box, rename the audio file to something appropriate (e.g., Slide 1 Audio).
Now you can follow the same process (steps 25) for each of your remaining slides.
When you are finished, save the presentation. In fact, you may wish to do this after you record each slide.
Now play the full presentation back as a check on both your slides and your narration. To do this, click Slide Show in the menu bar at the top, and choose From beginning.
Once you have made any final changes, save the presentation again.
For a PC, PowerPoint 2003
Open your presentation file in PowerPoint.
Then in the slide sorter click on your first slide. (There are other ways to do this; this is just the easiest!)
Then go to the top of your screen in Microsoft PowerPoint. Go to Slideshow and select that. Scroll down and select Record Narration.
Check the microphone level and set the quality (remember that you want the quality to be good enough for your audience to hear, but its not necessary to choose the top quality because that may make the file unmanageably large).
Warning: Do NOT click on the option to link the narrations, as this will create a separate (not embedded) sound file. When you upload your presentation to LEO, the sound file will be left behind on your computer.
Click OK and begin recording. When you finish with one slide click the left mouse button one time. Continue with your presentation one slide at a time until you are finished.
At the end click Save.
Now play back your presentation by going to the Slideshow Menu again and select View View Show or just press F5. If the show progresses through on its own with sound, you are 95% of the way there. Save the presentation immediately with a new file name to prevent loss.
For a Mac, PowerPoint 2010
Open your presentation in PowerPoint.
Click on your first slide.
On the menu at the top of your screen, click Insert.
Then choose Audio: Record Audio.
This will pop up a recording window. Make sure your headset microphone, not the computers internal microphone, is selected as the sound input device.
When youre ready to begin recording, click the red record button, and start speaking naturally. When youre finished recording the audio for that slide, press the stop button. Save the file.
Click on the next slide, and repeat the process.
Continue with your remaining slides until you are finished.
Do a slideshow of your presentation, listening to ensure that audio is playing back correctly for all slides. If you want to change the audio for one or more slides, just click on the slide and go through the Insert: Audio: Record Audio process again. The original audio will be overwritten.
When you are done, save the file. You can check the size of the file by choosing the File menu at the top, clicking Properties at the bottom of the list, and choosing General.
You will need to be mindful of file size, since the audio component of a narrated file on a Mac can be very large. For example, in a 48MB narrated PowerPoint, 44MB might be accounted for by the audio alone. It is possible to upload very large files to LEO discussion areas, but patience will be needed because it is a time-consuming process.
iPhone (to record audio only)
The Voice Memos App that comes standard on the iPhone can be used to record your voice. Just speak normally as if you are talking on the phone. Do this for each slide.
Once you are finished, the app allows you to email the recorded files to yourself.
The files are in MPEG4 audio format which can be played on any Mac or Windows PC.
Save the emailed audio files on the computer where you have your PowerPoint presentation, being sure to note the files location.
Open the presentation in PowerPoint.
Click on slide 1, and insert audio audio from file.
Do the same with your remaining slides, matching them up with the emailed audio files.
Run a slide show to make sure the audio has been successfully inserted on each slide.
Using an Outside Organization: Requirement to Consult with Faculty

Students: If you are not currently employed or believe your employer is not an appropriate choice for this project, you must contact your professor immediately and book a time to discuss the possible alternatives. If either of these situations apply, you must receive approval from your professor before proceeding with any steps in this project.

1. If you are not currently employed, it will be important to consult with your professor and obtain prior approval to complete this project for a specific organization you believe may be appropriate. Here are some guidelines to help you prepare for your discussion with your professor:
a. After reviewing the project requirements, find and select a possible alternative organization. Briefly describe the organization and your relationship with it.
b. Explain your rationale for believing the organization is a good choice.
c. Identify and make note of specific challenges you envisage encountering if the professor supports your suggested choice of organization for this project. Explain your plan for addressing these challenges.
2. If you are employed but believe you may not be able to use your organization for this project here are some guidelines to help you prepare for your discussion with your professor:
a. Review the project deliverables carefully and make note of those for which you expect you will not be able to get the needed information.
b. Identify an alternative organization you believe would work for this project and jot down the key points that support your conclusion.
c. Consider both the advantages and possible disadvantages of doing this assignment on an alternative organization. Note that this project requires no gathering or sharing of confidential or sensitive information so it is usually easy to address and resolve concerns.
Step 2: Collect and Analyze Resources
Before beginning your research in business and management journals, however, there are some preliminary readings you should complete to help you develop a broad understanding of the key theories, concepts, and ideas that are relevant for this project.
organizational behavior
organizational culture
organizational climate
business ethics (organizational ethics)
As you read about each of the key concepts for this project — organizational culture, organizational climate, and business/organizational ethics — think about the implications for industries and organizations such as yours and for their leaders. Jot down ideas and questions you will need to research further in order to develop the expertise required to complete this project successfully.
When undertaking your research for your presentation recall what you learned about good graduate-level research practices in PRO 600. Be sure to consult with your professor if and when you have questions about the strategy and process you plan on using to find good resources for this project.
Once you have completed your reading and library research for this project, apply what you have learned to your organization, looking for:
any publicly available policies and procedures that provide helpful insights into how ethical conduct and desired organizational behaviors are managed
any nonconfidential sources where your CEO or other leaders may have written or spoken about these topics
Organizational Behavior
As you begin the process of addressing this project it is useful to recall that Kate is counting on you to help her with the questions she raised in her meeting with you:
How can we be sure what we believe and say matches what we actually do? How can we be sure we dont have a culture and climate that are viewed as unethical and unhealthy? Do we put enough emphasis on ethical and caring behavior in our decisions and our actions?
You will need to do some independent library research to complete this project, but before you begin there are two readings that will help you get started.
First, read Chapter 1: An Introduction to Organizational Behavior (see Resources section) to learn more about this field of study and its potential value for you and your organization. As an MBA student and future graduate, it is important that you know about the disciplines and fields of study that have informed and helped improve business and management practices. Organizational behavior (OB) focuses on human behavior in organizations, both individual and groups. Those who contribute to this field of study are interested in understanding the reasons for particular behaviors and attitudes and also want to learn where and how improvements might be made. In other words, they are not just interested in describing what they discover from their research, but are also striving to make a positive difference for people, managers, and their organizations. The topics that are the focus of this projectorganizational culture, organizational climate, and ethicsare all important to OB scholars.
Related to these central topics are others to which OB scholars have contributed, including work that focuses on understanding motivation; individual differences in preferences, attitudes and behaviors; diversity; factors affecting job satisfaction; causes and consequences of workplace stress; organizational commitment and the implications for performance; teams and teamwork; interpersonal, group, and organizational communication and conflict; leadership; organizational power and politics; organizational culture and climate; and ethics and corporate social responsibility. Those with work experience will find most if not all of these topics familiar. While less true today than in the past, some may see these topics as soft or just a matter of common sense. This is readily countered by pointing to the many employees who give their managers average or failing grades, to the increasing concerns about workplace stress, to high levels of turnover and conflict, and to continuing problems with ethical decision making and behavior in the workplace.
Your focus for this project is on organizational culture, climate, and ethics. However, as you explore the research on these topics and apply what you learn to the task Kate has entrusted you with, you will find that some of these other subjects investigated by OB scholars are relevant. When you think, for example, about things that cause people to engage in unethical behaviors such as those in the newspaper story that caused Kate to ask for your helpit is easy to imagine that poor examples from leadership, weak motivation, job satisfaction, stress, low commitment, negative conflict, etc. might help explain undesirable behaviors (including stealing from the company). Read Chapter 5 Theories of Motivation in the Resources section below.
What Is Organizational Culture?
Thinglass/Essentials Collection/Getty Images
When working with internal and external customers on a project, it is essential to pay close attention to relationships, context, history, and the corporate culture. Corporate culture refers to the beliefs, attitudes, and values that the organizations members share and the behaviors consistent with them, which they give rise to. Corporate culture sets one organization apart from another, and dictates how members of the organization will see you, interact with you, and sometimes judge you. In many cases, projects, too, have specific cultures, work norms, and social conventions.
Some aspects of corporate culture are easily observed; others are more difficult to discern. You can easily observe the office environment and how people dress and speak. In one company, individuals work separately in closed offices, while in another, teams may work in a shared environment. The more subtle components of corporate culture, such as the values and overarching business philosophy, may not be readily apparent, but they are reflected in member behaviors, symbols, and conventions used.
Project Managers Checklist
Once the corporate culture has been identified, members should try to adapt to the frequency, formality, and type of communication customary in that culture. This adaptation will strongly affect project members productivity and satisfaction internally, as well as with the client organization.
Which stakeholders will make the decision in this organization on this issue? Will your project decisions and documentation have to go up through several layers to get approval? If so, what are the criteria and values that may affect acceptance there? For example, is being on schedule the most important consideration? Cost? Quality?
What type of communication among and between stakeholders is preferred? Do they want lengthy documents? Is short and sweet the typical standard?
What medium of communication is preferred? What kind of medium is usually chosen for this type of situation? Check the files to see what others have done. Ask others in the organization.
What vocabulary and format are used? What colors and designs are used (e.g., at Hewlett-Packard, all rectangles have rounded corners)?
Project Team Challenges
exi5/Signature Collection/Getty Images
Todays globally distributed organizations and projects consist of people who have differing worldviews. A worldview is a looking glass through which people see the world. As Bob Shebib describes, it is a belief system about the nature of the universe, its perceived effect on human behavior, and ones place in the universe. Worldview is a fundamental core set of assumptions explaining cultural forces, the nature of humankind, the nature of good and evil, luck, fate, spirits, the power of significant others, the role of time, and the nature of our physical and natural resources (Shebib, 2003, p. 296).
In most situations, there is simply no substitute for having a well-placed person from the host culture to guide the new person through the cultural nuances of getting things done. In fact, if this type of intervention isnt present, it is likely to affect the persons motivation or desire to continue trying to break through the cultural (and other) barriers. Indeed, optimal effectiveness in such situations requires learning of cultures in developing countries or international microcultures and sharing perceptions among the culturally diverse task participants on how to get things done. Project leaders require sensitivity and awareness of multicultural preferences. The following broad areas should be considered:
individual identity and role within the project versus family of origin and community
verbal and emotional expressiveness
relationship expectations
style of communication
language
personal priorities, values, and beliefs
time orientation
There are many interpersonal dynamics and intraproject challenges faced by a globally distributed team. Individual members and the team itself requires important social supports to mitigate uncertainty, conflict, motivational challenges, culture shock, and the more-encompassing ecoshock that comes from facing head-on the unfamiliar and diverse situations consistent with a different cultural and geographically distributed context.
Diverse and globally distributed project teams (i.e., different ethnic cultures, genders, ages, and functional capabilities)often working on complex projects spanning multiple time zones, geography, and history, and operating with tight deadlines in cost-conscious organizationsneed to make time and resources available to physically meet each other, and connect, at the very least, at a formal kick-off meeting. Especially when working with team members from high-context cultures, it is essential to meet face to face, discover members individual identities and cultural preferences, share professional knowledge and personal stories, and observe critical verbal and nonverbal cues that may not easily be observed online, or on the telephone. This interaction is key to establishing a safer climate and building trust for stronger relationships among both team members and management.
Organizational Climate
Now, read the Dickson & Mitchelson (2007) article on organizational climate from the Resources list below. As you can see from this article, there is debate about exactly what organizational climate is and how to best differentiate among different types of climates. Organizational climate has been defined several ways. A definition offered by leading contributors to this area of inquiry is that climate is shared perceptions of organizational policies, practices, and procedures, both formal and informal (Reichers & Schneider, cited in Vardi, 2001). Ostroff, Kinicki, and Muhammad (2012) distinguish between psychological and organizational climate, explaining that the latter requires agreement by employees about their perceptions of the work environment. To describe an organizations climate requires an understanding of employees shared perceptions of what people are feeling and thinking about work and the workplace. In other words, while culture is about the way things are done around here, climate is simply the way things are around here (Vardi, 2001, p. 327).
Among the many things that contribute to climate are
managerial and leadership styles, approaches to decision-making, and methods of communicating
relationships among employees at the group and organizational levels
leader/manager attitudes about what employees can and should do
attitudes about how customers should be served
…and so on. Evidence that climate is perceived as relatively important, even if many find it difficult to put into words, explains the fact that it is fairly common for organizations to ask their employees to complete a climate survey (sometimes also referred to as a general satisfaction survey). Sometimes this happens when organizations are experiencing lots of conflict and leaders are under pressure to figure out what is wrong and make needed changes (a reactive approach). And there are also organizations that make it a practice to conduct a climate survey on a regular basis and then use the information gathered to help identify areas of strength and those needing improvement (a proactive approach).
When thinking about Project 3, it will be important to see if you can gain a sufficiently deep understanding of organizational climate to explain its possible implications for creating and/or ensuring ethical conduct in the industry and organization that is your focus. In other words, you are interested in learning whether there is such a thing as an ethical or unethical organizational climate and, if so, what the key elements are and how these are created/nurtured and sustained. If you find that there is a positive climate, then we might expect to find evidence of a shared perception that the organization is ethical. If you perceive the climate as negative, we might expect a shared perception that the organization is one where not enough attention is paid to ethics.
As you conduct your search for literature on organizational climate and its relevance for ethics in the workplace, you may come across work on something called sociomoral climate (SMC). As explained by Pircher Verdorfer, Steinheider, and Burkus (2014), the focus for this kind of climate shifts away from traditional means of encouraging or requiring ethical conduct (for example, use of codes and/or penalties for misconduct) to one that emphasizes the importance of creating a workplace environment where employees know and want to do the right thing. You might have heard people in some organizations referring to having to deal with a climate of fear, meaning that people may be afraid to speak up and share what they are thinking and/or feeling because they worry about retaliation. The idea behind SMC is to seek to eliminate fear-based climates and instead create ones that emphasize care, respect, trust, and a shared commitment to ethical decisions and behaviors.
Finally, as you probably realize, you will almost inevitably discover multiple climates in your organization, and they might not be aligned or mutually supporting. Imagine, for example, an organization where those in senior leadership positions have a shared perception that employees are generally happy, feel respected and valued, understand what is happening and why, and are completely or mostly on board with upcoming changes. Now shift to elsewhere in the same organization where you find a shared perception that leaders have absolutely no idea what they are doing, do not care about employees, and cause employees to feel confused and anxious about changes they have heard about via the grapevine. If we use climate in the natural environment as an analogy, in one group everything is sunny and beautiful but just a little distance away a storm is looming. Recognizing that you are likely to find multiple climates within an organization is good, but this also adds to the complexity of the task of figuring out how to create a situation where a commitment to ethical decisions and behavior is both a shared perception and a reality.
Business Ethics
This is a big and very important topic in this program and in the work world. This project is just one of numerous times you will have an opportunity to visit, study, and contemplate topics related to ethics. The overview article in the Resource list below is intended to get you started on this journey.
Weber (2008) offers a practical seven-step framework for ethical decision-making. His illustrative example of a plant closing and layoff decision is helpful in understanding how this framework may be applied when confronted with an ethical dilemma for which there is no perfect solution.
The task of creating and nurturing an ethical organizational culture requires leaders and managers to be proactive and strive to reduce the likelihood of ethical misconduct and the need to address an ethical dilemma. As Meinert (2014) writes, this is not a small challenge. Referencing the 2013 National Business Ethics Survey, she reports that 41 percent of U.S. workers said they observed unethical or illegal misconduct on the job (para 4). What makes this an even bigger challenge is that managers may be the primary contributors to workplace misconduct (Ethics Compliance Initiative president Patricia Harned, cited in Meinert, 2014). In response to this challenge, the Society for Human Resource Professionals (SHRM) Foundation published a book titled Shaping an Ethical Workplace Culture as a complimentary resource. The author, Stephen Olson, offers a simple explanation of ethics, provides guidance on how to assess ones workplace culture, identifies the building blocks of an ethical workplace, and describes three types of cultures typically found in organizationthose focused on compliance, those that adopt a positive perspective toward ethics, and those that qualify as virtuous (those pursuing the highest standards and levels of compliance (p. 18).
Trevio (2008), one of the leading scholarly contributors to the work on ethical culture and climate, emphasizes the importance of integration between an organizations formal and informal systems and processes. She defines ethical culture as a subset of the overall organizational culture that represents the interplay of multiple formal and informal cultural systems that either work together or at cross-purposes to support ethical or unethical conduct (para 5). Formal systems consist of such things as ethics codes, ethics training, and specific incorporation of attention to ethics in the organizations decision-making processes and in performance appraisals. Informal systems include leaders and managers modeling behaviors, and shared organizational stories of success in handling difficult ethical situations. Another very simple explanation of an ethical culture and climate is offered by Michael C. Hyter, a senior partner at Korn Ferry: What it means to me is an environment that makes it easy to do the right thing and makes it difficult to do the wrong thing (cited in Meinert, 2014, p.3).
For project 3 in particular you will be focusing on how to create an organizational culture and climate that promotes and supports ethical decision making and behaviors. Your specific task is to provide information and guidance that will help a senior manager learn what will be needed to ensure her organization is not at risk of the kinds of ethical misconduct described in the news story discussed in the scenario. Thus, you will want to enrich your understanding of ethics further by finding, reading, and incorporating insights from research that investigates the extent to which ethical behavior in the workplace is dependent upon an ethical organizational culture and climate.
Step 3: Independent Research
As you did for the situation audit, adopt the perspective of an outside consultant when working on this report. This will increase your objectivity as you examine your own company. The COO, Kate Lindsay, absolutely needs objectivity with this subject.
Independently research (as a consultant would) the concepts of organizational culture, climate, and ethics
Determine the consequences of organizational culture, climate, and ethics to your organizations operations. Would legal measures (employment laws) need to be used to re-shape the culture, climate or ethics of the organization? If so, what impact would that have on the workforce?
Step 4: Annotated Resource List
Create an annotated resource list (creating an annotated bibliography) of four key articles or sources dealing with culture, climate, and ethics that will be used in your memo and presentation. One of the four annotated resources can deal with the impact of employment laws on organizational culture, climate, and ethics.
Keep in mind that the quality of the resource matters in determining the quality of the memo and the quality of the presentation (e.g., a well-researched study or article by an acknowledged authority published in a peer-reviewed academic journal is primary research and would outrank an interpretation of the same academic content as published in a newspaper column or summarized in a magazine, trade journal, or internet source — even where such secondary sources contain quotes from the original authors work or attribute their interpretation to that material.)
Before you submit your assignment, review the competencies below, which your instructor will use to evaluate your work. A good practice would be to use each competency as a self-check to confirm you have incorporated all of them in your work.
2.1: Identify and clearly explain the issue, question, or problem under critical consideration.
2.2: Locate and access sufficient information to investigate the issue or problem.
2.3: Evaluate the information in a logical and organized manner to determine its value and relevance to the problem.
2.4: Consider and analyze information in context to the issue or problem.
2.5: Develop well-reasoned ideas, conclusions or decisions, checking them against relevant criteria and benchmarks.
5.1: Develop constructive resolutions for ethical dilemmas based on application of ethical theories, principles and models.
9.3: Apply the principles of employment law for ethical practices and risk mitigation.

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