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The COMM222 Final Exam Paper
COMM222, Final Exam, Paper
Instructors: Raghid All Hajj, Michael Beigleman Brinda Bissoonauth, Simon Blanchette, Tracy Hecht (Course Coordinator), Shaun Lynch, Michael Masters, Barbara Reda, Jeffrey Sacksner,
Maya Sharma, Alexander Yuriev This take-home final exam replaces the on-site final exam that was originally planned for this course. This assignment is worth 25% of your final grade in the course. DUE DATE Your final exam must be submitted by April 21, 2020 at 14:00pm. Late submissions will NOT be accepted.
The time allotted already accounts for all necessary accommodations, including those for religious reasons and those for which students registered at the access center. If you are ill or unable to complete the exam for another legitimate reason, you must request a deferral through the proper University channel (follow the link below for more information or to complete the deferral request form).
Do not ask your instructor to grant you a deferral. Also, please remember that the University does NOT grant deferrals after a student has submitted their work. https://www.concordia.ca/students/exams/accommodations/def-note.html REQUIRED SUBMISSION FORMAT You must submit your completed exam using the the link “Upload Take Home”.
This link can be found in the “Take Home Final Exam” section, accessible through the “Assessments” section of the course website. Should you have any difficulty submitting through the eConcordia website, you may email your file (see specifications below) directly to email@example.com
Your submission must adhere to the following format requirements:
NOTE: You may only make one submission. Before submitting your exam, please double-check to make sure that you attached the correct file. No amendments to your responses will be accepted, even if you decide to submit your work before the deadline.
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ACADEMIC CODE OF CONDUCT Please remember that the Academic Code of Conduct remains in effect and violations will be reported. This as an exam and you must submit your own work. Note that:
previously taken COMM222, is not permitted. • Purchasing a completed assignment from any service is not permitted • Plagiarizing from a published or unpublished source is not permitted
It is everyone’s responsibility to maintain the academic integrity of our institution. Do your part and act with honesty. EVALUATION CRITERIA AND WORD LIMITS There are word limits for each question on this exam. Please respect these limits. Communicating in a concise manner is part of demonstrating your mastery of the material.
Point form is permitted, but please be coherent and communicate your ideas clearly. Your answers will be evaluated on the extent to which they:
This is an individual, open-book exam. This means that your answers should reflect your own individual work, but you can use your textbook, the instructor’s PowerPoint slides, and your notes when writing your answers. Note that, because this is an open-book exam, you are not required to provide definitions of the terms being used, or to copy theoretical explanations from your textbook or the PowerPoint slides, but you do need to use appropriate OB terminology.
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HOW TO APPROACH YOUR ANSWERS When it comes to answering exam questions, please remember that:
– A concept is a single idea, whereas a theory includes principles about how different concepts are related to one another
– Identifying is providing the correct OB term or label for a concept or theory – Applying a concept or theory is saying how it fits, or does not fit, in a particular situation, or
how a situation is consistent or not with what a concept or theory says, and giving examples to support your point.
– Providing a rationale is using your own words to explain the reason or logic behind your answer.
– Comparing and contrasting is talking about how two things are similar and how they are different.
– Providing recommendations means offering a concrete suggestion as to how an OB problem could be solved on the basis of OB concept, theories, and evidence.
If you have questions and need clarification, you must contact your instructor by email before April 20, 2020 at 2:00pm. Questions received after this time will NOT be answered before the submission deadline. Also, please note that instructors will not answer any query about possible answers to exam questions, nor will they review your answers before the deadline.
This exam has 7 questions that are worth a total of 45 points. Some questions have 2 parts. Please make sure that you answer all questions and that you include the word count for each of your ANSWERS. Question 1. Organizational Culture (5 pts) The incident below describes a local organization.
Read the incident carefully. Then, choose one (1) of the company’s self-stated cultural values and apply the concepts of stories, rituals, or symbols to “decipher the culture” of the organization. Provide a rationale as to whether the stories, rituals, or symbols that are described in the article are consistent or inconsistent with the one (1) cultural value that you chose. Use two (2) different examples from the incident to illustrate your response.
THE DREAM BOSS On hot summer days, Eric Naaman brings ice cream to workers on the factory floor. As a reward for having reached business objectives, he took all 77 of his employees to a beach in Mexico for four days. They travelled to Mexico in 2017 as well, and to Cuba in 2012. Naaman, 54, is the president and CEO of Damotech, a Boisbriand-based industrial company specializing in the repair and inspection of steel racking systems like the kind you see in warehouse-type places such as Costco or Home Depot.
Clients include Amazon, Ikea, and Mercedes-Benz. In a recent interview, Naaman said that when he acquired the company in 2010 after a two-decade career as a photographer, “I wanted to make this a very special place to work.” Four times a year, Naaman gathers everyone for so-called “no-fly days”.
With a lot of business at Damotech being conducted in the US, travelling is a part of the job for many employees. During no-fly days, however, there is no travel and no work. People gather at the Boisbriand facility and Naaman gives an hour-long presentation about what the company has done during the year and where our revenue numbers are,” he said.
He added that “Everyone has some participation in making our numbers – and there is complete euphoria when we make them.” The presentation is followed by a team-building exercise, such as Olympic Games or a fundraising car wash for food baskets for the Sun Youth Organization.
It was on a no-fly day in November 2018 that he asked every employee to write down five dreams. He wouldn’t say why. At the Christmas party of 2018 he announced that he would soon choose 30 of their dreams, for Damotech’s 30 years, and make them come true.
Word Limit: 250 words
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For Naaman, part of making Damotech a special place to work was creating an inviting workplace. He spent two years working on the design of the sleek, modern 43,000 square- foot facility he had built in 2015. The offices are bright and modern, and the factory is LEED-certified. It’s a beautiful building.
But there’s more to it. Recently, he said: “It’s great to create a building and put people in it, but you have to make sure they live the values of the company and behave in a certain way so there is a collaboration between employees and it is a happy environment.”
At the Christmas party of 2019, Naaman announced a new program for 2020: allocating $500 per employee for a class, course or program that will “help them grow as individuals, that will make them more well-rounded.” Preferably, he said, it will be unrelated to their jobs.
Furthermore, the cafeteria of Damotech has a library of over 200 business, inspirational and self-improvement books. Depending on the book’s complexity, Naaman pays employees from $10 to $40 for brief reviews posted on the company’s intranet.
On the wall that is opposite to the library, employees see the company’s values, printed in large block letters: “Efficiency, Dedication, Collaboration, Innovation, Good Humour.”
Note. This case is excerpted and adapted from the article “Building shelving and happiness,” by Susan Schwarz, Montreal Gazette, Saturday February 1, 2020, p. A8
Question 2: Leadership (10 pts) Word limit: 500 words Watch the following short video (about 10 minutes) and pick two (2) different clips from it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0Q6SfGmZmk For each of the two (2) clips that you choose, explain whether or not you agree with the characterization of the leadership style that was assigned to the clip in the video.
In your answer, make sure that you apply all concepts from the assigned style to the clip and explain the rationale as to why you think the assigned style applies or does not apply to the clip. Use examples from the clips to support your answers. Make sure you clearly identify the chosen clips in your response. Please note that the first clip has strong/foul language.
Word Limit: 500 words
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Question 3: Leadership (4 pts) Word limit: 200 words Several leadership theories emphasize the importance of having good relationships with subordinates (e.g., path-goal theory, transformational leadership, LMX).
Choose two (2) of the leadership theories listed in the brackets above, and then compare and contrast them with respect to the how they view relationships between leaders and followers and/or the role that relationships play in leader effectiveness Note that you only need to include one (1) similarity and one (1) difference between the two chosen theories in your answer, and using examples can clarify your reasoning.
Question 4: Decision-Making (6 pts) Word limit: 300 words The incident below describes a decision that was made in an organization. Read the incident carefully. Then, identify two (2) specific elements of boundedly-rationality, decision biases, and/or disadvantages of group decision-making that are demonstrated in the decision-making process that is described in the incident. Provide a rationale for your choices and use information from the incident to support your answer.
Recovering Market Share at Sweets & Treats
The CEO of Sweets & Treats had recently noticed that they were losing market share compared to their competitors and she concluded that the main problem was the plastic packaging on their candies and chocolate bars, which was environmentally unfriendly. She called together her executive team and told them that they needed to figure out a way to make their packaging more environmentally-friendly or the loss to their market share would put them out of business.
The VP of Operations commented that Sweets & Treats was only doing what 90% of other companies were doing and was unconvinced that plastic packaging was the problem. At that point, the CEO pointed to results of a recent focus group that had been conducted with millennials and she said that all she could remember was one vocal person who could not stop talking about how their packaging was polluting the world’s oceans and killing the fish.
The VP Sales & Marketing then forcefully suggested they use recycled plastic instead of new materials to make their packaging and try to “sell” this as reducing the overall carbon footprint of the company. He argued that this would be enough to recover their lost market share, even if it didn’t really reduce the amount of plastic in the ocean.
Everyone else was quiet and no one contradicted him. The VP of Operations wanted to say the he thought they needed to change their products, not their packaging, but he
Word Limit: 200 words
Word Limit: 300 words
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looked around the room and no one else seemed to want to consider any other options. So, he kept quiet too. “Well, it’s settled then” the CEO said “We all agree. Using recycled materials should be good enough to recover our market share and that’s what we need to do at this point. I trust you will all do your best to help make this happen.”
Question 5: Ethics (5 pts) Word limit: 250 The current pandemic brings to the surface questions about presenteeism (i.e., attending work when ill and not working at full capacity). Many organizations still require employees to physically go to work (e.g., supermarkets, hospitals, manufacturers and suppliers of essential goods) and many other organizations are asking people to work from home.
At the same time, employees may be ill due to COVID-19 symptoms, and also due to many other illnesses, including other less dangerous colds, flus, and bacterial infections, and/or mental health problems, among other chronic illnesses, and may not be able to work at full capacity.
Identify one (1) cause of unethical behaviour that may influence an employee’s decision to engage in presenteeism when they are working from home or at the office, and provide a rationale as to why this cause could be relevant in the current situation. Discuss whether you believe that it is ethical or unethical to engage in presenteeism during the pandemic. Apply the concept of ethics, as defined in this course, as well as concepts related to the nature of ethical misconduct and its causes to answer this question. Question 6: Conflict and Stress (10 pts, 5 pts for 6a and 5 pts for 6b) Word limit: 500 (250 for each part)
The incident below describes a conflict that was eventually resolved. It also describes stressors that were faced and how individuals reacted to those stressors. Read the incident carefully.
Then, answer the two (2) questions that follow. Note that the gender-neutral pronoun “they” is used in the singular in this incident.
Annual Performance Review Day
It was that time of year again at Vanguard Organization: annual performance reviews. One manager in particular faced a whole day of performance evaluation meetings and worried about what lay ahead. If the evaluations did not reward employees fairly, then valued employees could quit. On the other hand, if too many rewards were given out, the manager would blow the budget and risk being fired.
Word Limit: 250 words
Word Limit for 6a: 250 words
Word Limit for 6b: 250 words
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In the first meeting of the day, the employee walked in and explained how they thought they had exceeded performance expectations over the past year and deserved a raise to recognize their good work. The manager responded by explaining that the employee’s performance met expectations, but did not exceed them, and that the budget for bonuses was severely limited.
Then, the employee and the manager argued about whether the employee would get a raise or not. The employee provided more detail about their accomplishments, and explained how important it was to them for their good work to be recognized. The manager reiterated the company’s perspective on its performance standards and re-emphasized the need to meet their budgetary constraints.
After a long and heated discussion, the employee accepted a revised appraisal that did acknowledge their good performance, but with no bonus or raise. The employee did have a great deal of respect for the manager and did not want the manager to go over budget if the company could not afford it. The employee also expected to work under the manager for at least another year, so they did not want to be too aggressive and ruin the chance of a bonus in the future.
The manager breathed a sigh of relief when the meeting ended, but no sooner had the first employee walked out, a second employee was knocking on the manager’s door for their scheduled meeting. The second employee also came with a long list of their accomplishments in hand and gave a 30-minute speech to the manager about why they deserved a bonus and how competitor companies were recruiting them.
This time the manager agreed that the employee’s performance had exceeded expectations and really did not want them to take one of the competitors’ offers. Still, there was no money in the budget for a bonus and the manager did not know what to do. After a long awkward pause in the conversation, the employee asked if the manager would consider giving them an extra week of paid vacation instead of a bonus.
This would allow the employee to achieve their goal of a fair reward for their work and would allow the manager to reach their goal of not exceeding the available budget. The manager agreed to grant the employee the extra vacation and felt relieved that the company probably would not lose this valuable employee.
By the time the second employee walked out, it was barely 10:30am and the manager was already drained. As the third employee knocked on the door, the manager wondered how they were going to make it through the rest of the day.
Every employee seemed to want their own personal deal and the manager simply didn’t have the energy, or time, to consider all their individual accomplishments and demands. The boss wished they had a bigger budget, so they could just give everyone a bonus and be done with the whole process.
Question 6A: Identify the modes of conflict management that were adopted by the each of the two employees in the incident, and provide a rationale as to whether they were appropriate, or not, given the situation. Use information from the incident to support your answer.
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Question 6B: Identify two (2) stressors that were being faced by the manager in the incident and provide a rationale for your choices. Use information from the incident to support your answer. Recommend one (1) solution to manage stress in this case based on OB concepts or theories.
Question 7: Choice of various topics (5 pts) Word Limit: 250 words
Please choose one (1) of the OB topics below and reflect on your personal experience with it. Then, please describe your experience with the chosen topic and do one (1) of the following:
You must apply at least two (2) concepts from the course in your answer. Topics
individuals or groups 4. Stress: you faced stressors and experienced stress and stress reactions
FINAL REMINDERS Remember, answers to all seven (7) questions on this final exam will be evaluated on the extent to which they meet the following 4 criteria:
DO NOT CHEAT. Submit your own work. This is an exam. This exam must be submitted by 14:00pm on April 21, 2020. Follow the submission guidelines provided in this document.
GOOD LUCK. STAY SAFE. BEST OF LUCK WITH THE REST OF YOUR STUDIES.
Word Limit: 250 words
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