In another class—preferably one with a lecture format—practise active listening. Ask questions, paraphrase, exhibit affirming nonverbal behaviours. Then ask yourself: Was this harder for me than a normal lecture? Did it affect my note taking? Did I ask more questions? Did it improve my understanding of the lecture’s content? What was the instructor’s response? Spend an entire day fighting your urge to talk. Listen as carefully as you can to everyone you talk to, and respond as appropriately as possible to understand, not to make your own point. What, if anything, did you learn from this exercise?
Daily Archives: November 24, 2021
Make smooth transitions between the roles of speaker and listener. When you are a student sitting in a lecture hall, you find it relatively easy to get into an effective listening frame of mind. Why? Because communication is essentially one-way: The teacher talks and you listen. But the teacherstudent dyad is not typical. In most work situations, you are continually shifting back and forth between the roles of speaker and listener. The effective listener, therefore, makes transitions smoothly from speaker to listener and back to speaker. From a listening perspective, this means concentrating on what a speaker has to say and practising not thinking about what you are going to say as soon as you get an opportunity.
Avoid distracting actions or gestures. The other side of showing interest is avoiding actions that suggest your mind is somewhere else. When listening, don’t look at your watch, shuffle papers, play with your pencil, or engage in similar distractions. They make the speaker feel that you are bored or uninterested. Maybe more important, they indicate that you are not fully attentive and may be missing part of the message that the speaker wants to convey. Paraphrase. Paraphrasing means restating what the speaker has said in your own words. The effective listener uses phrases such as “What I hear you saying is . . .” or “Do you mean . . . ?” Why rephrase what has already been said? Two reasons! First, it’s an excellent control device to check….
After the debate is over, the class should discuss the following:
a. How effective was communication during these debates?
b. What barriers to communication existed?
c. What purposes does nonverbal communication serve?
d. Relate the lessons learned in this exercise to problems that might occur when communicating on the telephone or through email.
Kaspar Rorsted, CEO of Henkil, a consumer and industrial products company based in Germany, says that copying others on emails is overused. “It’s a waste of time,” he said. “If they want to write me, they can write me. People often copy me to cover their back.” Do you agree? How can you decide when copying others is necessary vs. “a waste of time”?
Interview three managers at different organizations. Ask them about their experiences in managing teams. Have each describe teams that they thought were effective and why they succeeded. Have each also describe teams that they thought were ineffective and the reasons that might have caused this.
Party A is to select a topic from the following list:
a. Managing in the Middle East is significantly different from managing in North America.
b. Employee turnover in an organization can be functional.
c. Some conflict in an organization is good.
d. Whistle-blowers do more harm than good for an organization.
e. An employer has a responsibility to provide every employee with an interesting and challenging job.
f. Everyone should register to vote.
g. Organizations should require all employees to undergo….
Prepare a meeting agenda. An agenda defines what you hope to accomplish at the meeting. It should state the meeting’s purpose; who will be in attendance; what, if any, preparation is required of each participant; a detailed list of items to be covered; the specific time and location of the meeting; and a specific finishing time. Bring proper closure. You should close a meeting by summarizing the group’s accomplishments. Clarify what actions, if any, need to follow the meeting, and allocate follow-up assignments. If any decisions are made, you also need to determine who will be responsible for communicating and implementing them.
In your small groups, discuss the following questions (your instructor may choose to have you discuss only a subset of these questions):
a. What percentage of the plan did each member of your group contribute, on average?
b. Did your group have a leader? Why or why not?
c. How did the group generally respond to the ideas that were expressed during the planning period?
d. To what extent did your group follow the five-stage model of group development?
e. List specific behaviours exhibited during the planning and building sessions that you felt were helpful to the group. Explain why you found them to be helpful.
f. List specific behaviours exhibited during the planning and building sessions that you felt were dysfunctional to the group. Explain why you….
Expand jobs vertically. Vertical expansion gives employees responsibilities and control that were formerly reserved for management. It seeks to partially close the gap between the “doing” and the “controlling” aspects of the job, and it increases employee autonomy. Open feedback channels. By increasing feedback, employees not only learn how well they are performing their jobs, but also whether their performance is improving, deteriorating, or remaining at a constant level. Ideally, this feedback about performance should be received directly as the employee does the job, rather than from management on an occasional basis. For instance, at many restaurants you can find feedback cards on the table to indicate the quality of service received during the meal.
Provincial funding of many colleges and universities has decreased dramatically over the years, increasing pressure on administrators to generate revenue through tuition increases and other means. How might this pressure create ethical tensions between the need to generate revenue, student retention, and grading? Create natural work units. The creation of natural work units means that the tasks an employee does form an identifiable and meaningful whole. This increases employee “ownership” of the work and improves the likelihood that employees will view their work as meaningful and important rather than as irrelevant and boring.
Spend several minutes discussing whether the instance was more distributive, procedural, informational, or interpersonal in nature. What was the source of the fair/unfair treatment? How did you feel, and how did you respond? Was it easier to remember the fair or the unfair instance, and why do you think that is? Each group should develop a set of recommendations for handling the unfair situations in a fairer manner. Select a leader for your group who will briefly summarize the unfair instances, along with the group’s recommendations for handling them better. The discussion should reflect the four types of justice discussed in this chapter (distributive, procedural, informational, and interpersonal).