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OB Models and Approaches

OB Models

Organizational behavior reflects the behavior of the people and management all together, it is considered as field study not just a discipline. A discipline is an accepted science that is based upon theoretical foundation, whereas OB is an inter-disciplinary approach where knowledge from different disciplines like psychology, sociology, anthropology, etc. are included. It is used to solve organizational problems, especially those related to human beings.

There are four different types of models in OB. We will throw some light on each of these four models.

Autocratic Model

The root level of this model is power with a managerial orientation of authority. The employees in this model are oriented towards obedience and discipline. They are dependent on their boss. The employee requirement that is met is subsistence. The performance result is less.

The major drawbacks of this model are people are easily frustrated, insecurity, dependency on the superiors, minimum performance because of minimum wage.

Custodial Model

The root level of this model is economic resources with a managerial orientation of money. The employees in this model are oriented towards security and benefits provided to them. They are dependent on the organization. The employee requirement that is met is security.

This model is adapted by firms having high resources as the name suggest. It is dependent on economic resources. This approach directs to depend on firm rather than on manager or boss. They give passive cooperation as they are satisfied but not strongly encouraged.

Supportive Model

The root level of this model is leadership with a managerial orientation of support. The employees in this model are oriented towards their job performance and participation. The employee requirement that is met is status and recognition. The performance result is awakened drives.

This model is dependent on leadership strive. It gives a climate to help employees grow and accomplish the job in the interest of the organization. Management job is to assist the employee’s job performance. Employees feel a sense of participation.

Collegial Model

The root level of this model is partnership with a managerial orientation of teamwork. The employees in this model are oriented towards responsible behavior and self-discipline. The employee requirement that is met is self-actualization. The performance result is moderate zeal.

This is an extension of supportive model. The team work approach is adapted for this model. Self-discipline is maintained. Workers feel an obligation to uphold quality standard for the better image of the company. A sense of “accept” and “respect” is seen.

OD Approaches

Human Resources Approach

This approach recognizes the fact that people are the central resource in any organization and that they should be developed towards higher levels of competency, creativity, and fulfillment.

People thus contribute to the success of the organization.

The human resources approach is also called as the supportive approach in the sense that the manager’s role changes from control of employee to active support of their growth and performance.

The supportive approach contrasts with the traditional management approach.

In the traditional approach, managers decided what employees should do and closely monitored their performance to ensure task accomplishment.

In the human resources approach, the role of managers changes from structuring and controlling to supporting.

Contingency Approach

The contingency approach (sometimes called the situational approach) is based on the premise that methods or behaviors which work effectively in One situation fail in another.

For example; Organization Development (OD) programs, way work brilliantly in one situation but fail miserably in another situation.

Results differ because situations differ, the manager’s task, therefore, is to identify which method will, in a particular situation, under particular circumstances, and at a particular time, best contribute to the attainment of organization’s goals.

The strength of the contingency approach lies in the fact it encourages analysis of each situation prior to action while at the same time discourages the habitual practice of universal assumptions about methods and people.

The contingency approach is also more interdisciplinary, more system – oriented and more research-oriented titan any other approach.

Productivity Approach

Productivity which is the ratio of output to input is a measure of an organization’s effectiveness. It also reveals manager’s efficiency in optimizing resource utilization.

The higher the numerical value of this ratio, the greater the efficiency.

Productivity is generally measured in terms of economic inputs and outputs, but human and social inputs and outputs also are important.

For example, if better organizational behavior can improve job satisfaction, a human output or benefit occurs.

In the same manner, when employee development programs lead to better citizens in a community, a valuable social output occurs.

Organizational behavior decisions typically involve human, social, and/or economic issues, and so productivity usually a significant part of these decisions is recognized and discusses extensively in the literature on OB.

Systems Approach

The Systems Approach to OB views the organization as a united, purposeful system composed of interrelated parts.

This approach gives managers a way of looking at the organization as a whole, whole, person, whole group, and the whole social system.

In so doing, systems approach tells us that the activity of any segment of an organization affects, in varying degrees the activity of every other segment. A systems view should be the concern of every person in an organization.

The clerk at a service counter, the machinist, and the manager all work with the people and thereby influence the behavioral quality of life in an organization and its inputs.

Managers, however, tend to have a larger responsibility, because they are the ones who make majority are people oriented.

The role of managers, then, is to use organizational behavior to help build an organizational culture in which talents are utilized and further developed, people are motivated, teams become productive, organizations achieve their goals and society reaps the reward.

Inter-Disciplinary Approach

Organizational behavior is an integration of all other social sciences and disciplines such as psychology, sociology, organizational theories etc.

They all are interdependent and influence each other. The man is studied as a whole and therefore, all disciplines concerning man are integrated.


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