Trident MGT302 Course – All Case Assignments With Sample Answers

MGT302 Module 1 Case Assignment

Strong cognitive abilities are usually considered a very important and positive trait to seek when hiring new employees. However, one police department decided not to higher those who scored too high on a cognitive skills exam on the grounds that people who are too intelligent will not be satisfied with their job as a police officer and will end up quitting (Naish, 2013). This of course is a controversial policy that resulted in at least one lawsuit.

For this assignment we will be looking at individual characteristics that may predict job satisfaction, organizational commitment, and job performance for police officers. Being a police officer is a demanding job that required strong physical capacity, sharp mental capacity to deal with difficult and life-threatening situations, and strong interpersonal skills in order to effectively work with the communities they protect and serve. The issue of what traits to look for in police officer recruiting is a controversial one.

Review the background materials on individual traits, personality, and attitudes such as job satisfaction and organizational commitment. Then read these articles on law enforcement recruitment with the issues in the background materials in mind:

  • Naish, R. (April, 2013). Too clever by half. E. Learning Age, 8. [ProQuest]
  • Means, R., Lowry, K., & Conroy, D. (2011). Hiring: Background investigation, part 3. Law & Order, 59(3), 12-13. [ProQuest]
  • Reaume, S. (2009). Improved hiring for child protective investigators. Law & Order, 57(2), 19-20,22,24. [ProQuest]

Now suppose a police department has hired you as a consultant to come up with an exam to assess personality and other traits of applicants to the department. The department is looking to hire applicants who meet the following criteria:

  1. Are likely to have strong job satisfaction and organizational commitment to the police department after they are hired.
  2. Will be able to work effectively under stressful and sometimes life-threatening situations; can make good decisions under pressure.
  3. Will be able to present a positive image of the police department in the communities they serve and maintain strong relations with community leaders.

Using what you’ve learned in the background about personality traits such as the Big Five Personality traits and factors that influence job satisfaction and organizational behavior, write a 4- to 5-page paper addressing the following issues:

  1. Do you think cognitive abilities should be part of the exam? Do you agree with the police department mentioned in Naish (2013) that there should be an upper limit to cognitive abilities, or should the department try to hire those with the highest cognitive abilities?
  2. What personality traits do you think will best predict a police officer’s ability to handle stressful situations in the field and make decisions under stress? Consider the Big Five traits as well as any other personality traits that you read about in the background materials. Be specific about what traits the department should consider and why these traits will be associated with an ability to work under stress.
  3. What personality traits will best predict an ability to work cooperatively with their coworkers as well as with members of the community they serve? Again, be specific about which traits the department should consider and why these traits will be associated with a good ability to work with others

MGT302 Module 2 Case Assignment – EMOTIONS AND MOODS

Pret A Manger is a London based chain of cafés and sandwich shops known for their extremely friendly workers who take “service with a smile” to a new level. Employees are screened and selected for the positive-oriented personalities and trained to provide their customers with highly positive and friendly service. Management even sends “mystery shoppers” which are members of the corporate office go under cover as normal customers and enter one of the cafés. These mystery shoppers rate and evaluate the performance of the workers without the workers knowing it.

Pret A Manger’s approach has brought them success as they are now rapidly expanded from London into New York, Washington, DC, and Chicago. However, their emphasis on their workings presenting a positive and friendly attitude at all times which is enforced by visits from “mystery shoppers” has been criticized as an extreme form of emotional labor

Review the concepts of emotional labor and emotional intelligence, and then do some research on Pret A Manger’s management of emotional labor. Here are a few articles to get you started:

  • Noah, T. (2013). Labor of love. New Republic,244(1), 18. [Academic Source Complete – EBSCOHOST]
  • Clifford, S. (Aug. 7, 2011). Would you like a smile with that? New York Times.[ProQuest]
  • Goodman, M. (Mar. 6, 2011). Smile, it will pay for everyone. Sunday Times.[ProQuest]

When you have finished reviewing the background materials and finished your research on Pret A Manger, write a 3- to 4-page paper addressing the following issues:

  1. What do you think the positive benefits will be to Pret A Manger’s employees from the emotional labor they have to engage in? Will this emphasis on presenting a positive and happy image at all times lead to positive attitudes such as greater job satisfaction and organizational commitment?
  2. What negative consequences might Pret A Manger’s employee face from the heavy emotional labor they have to perform? Will it lead to burnout or problems.
  3. Which of the four aspects of emotional intelligence do you think would be most helpful for a Pret A Manger employee? Should Pret A Manger use emotional intelligence tests to recruit employees?

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MGT302 Module 3 Case Assignment WORKPLACE MOTIVATION

In the background materials you read about some very traditional theories of motivation such as Theory X and Theory Y, and the hierarchy of needs. But one trend that has received a lot of attention in the media is that of weird or offbeat methods to motivate employees. The recent move The Internship is set in the odd (or “googly”) workplace culture of Google. Zappos Shoes even mentions “weirdness” in the list of corporate values.

CashLinq, a financial services firm, is famous for their Nerf gun battles in the office. Eric Ryan, founder of the highly successful soap company Method, was known to go to extremes to motivate employees such as dressing up as a chipmunk or holding impromptu office dance parties. Other examples of unorthodox motivation techniques may include unusual perks such as health insurance for your pets, or allowing employees to ride scooters in the office.

But is this just a passing fad for trendy new companies, or there actually a method to their madness? For this assignment, you will be doing some research on these offbeat new motivation techniques and investigating whether or not these techniques actually fit in with standard textbook theories of motivation. Review the background materials, and then read the following articles and also see if you can find any other examples of bizarre or unusual workplace motivation techniques:

  • Alsop, R. J. (2010). The last word. Workforce Management, 89(10), 50. [ProQuest]
  • Petrecca, L. (Dec. 30, 2011). Quirky perks for workers: Pet insurance, massages. USA Today[ProQuest]
  • Quirky offices may inspire employees. (Dec. 17, 2010, Dec 27).McClatchy – Tribune Business News[ProQuest]
  • Habib, M. (Oct. 7, 2011). Foosball? bah. employers dangle offbeat incentives. The Globe and Mail[ProQuest]

When you are done with your research, write a 4- to 5-page paper addressing the following issues:

  1. Are these unusual motivation techniques more closely matched to McGregor’s Theory X, or his Theory Y?
  2. Which of Maslow’s needs do think these techniques address or do not address – physiological, safety, belonging, esteem, and self-actualization?
  3. Overall, what do you think the main advantages and disadvantages are of these new and unusual motivation techniques as compared to more traditional techniques?

MGT302 Module 4 Case Assignment – GROUPS AND TEAMS

A rapidly growing trend in the business world is the growth of virtual teams. Some companies are allowing teleworking, which means that more and more workers have to coordinate their activities with other team members through the phone or internet. Even among workers who are working from their office, more and more companies are having employees work in teams with employees who work at other locations who they may or may not have ever met in person. New technologies have been developed to help facilitate virtual teamwork, but challenges still remain.

Review the background materials and also do some research on virtual teams. Here are a few articles on virtual teams to get you started:

  • Garfoot, A. (2003, 05). The reality of virtual teams.IT Training,, 32-34. [ProQuest]
  • Sadri, G., & Condia, J. (2012). Managing the virtual world. Industrial Management, 54(1), 21-25. [ProQuest]
  • Rigby, R. (2013). How best to manage a virtual team. The Financial Times[ProQuest]

When you are finished with your research, integrate what you learned in general about group dynamics in the background materials with more specific information you learned about virtual teams. Write a four to five page paper addressing the following issues:

  1. How do you think the five stages of group development (forming, storming, norming, performing, adjourning) will be different for virtual teams as compared to traditional teams? Discuss in regard to all five stages of group development.
  2. Do you think virtual teams will be more or less cohesive than traditional teams? Include a discussion of the issue of groupthink in your discussion.

Overall, do you think virtual teams will perform better or worse than traditional teams? Explain your answer with references to the background readings.

Case Assignment Expectations

  • Answer the assignment questions directly. Stay focused on the precise assignment questions; don’t go off on tangents or devote a lot of space to general background materials.
  • Make use of both the required Case Assignment articles as well as the required general background materials in your paper. Apply concepts that you learned in the background materials in your answers to the assignment questions.
  • Review our “Writing Style Guide” for more detail on referencing and writing expectations. This guide is found under “My Resources” in the TLC portal.

MGT302 Module 5 Case Assignment – ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE

Southwest Airlines and Koch Industries are both known for their distinctive organizational cultures, and both have been highly successful and profitable companies. Southwest Airlines is known as a “fun” place to work where socialization and humor in the workplace are strongly encouraged. Koch Industries, on the other hand, has a culture defined by the principles of “market-based management” where performance and revenue growth is emphasized.

Do some background reading on the cultures behind Southwest Airlines and Koch Industries. While doing your research, keep strongly in mind the characteristics of organizational cultures discussed in the background materials such as team-oriented, people-oriented, outcome-oriented, etc. Here are some articles to get you started on your research that will give you some background about the cultures at these two organizations:

  • Klein, D. (2011). Creating cultures that lead to success: Lincoln Electric, Southwest Airlines, and SA Institute. Organizational Dynamics41(1), 35-39 [Available in Science Direct. Note: you only have to read the middle portion of the article concerning Southwest Airlines and not the whole article]
  • Bird, A. (Mar. 13, 2011). Southwest: Corporate culture combines work, play. The Post and Courier.[ProQuest]
  • Whatley, H. (2013). Principles and dimensions of market-based management. Independent Journal of Management & Production, 4(1), 126-135. [ProQuest]
  • Dissecting the Kochtopus. (Jun. 7, 2014).The Economist, 411, 76. [ProQuest]

When you are finished with your research, write a 4- to 5-page paper addressing the following issues:

  1. Describe the organizational culture of Southwest Airlines the best you can using the characteristics of organizational culture discussed in the background materials. These include: but are not limited to detail-oriented, team-oriented, innovative, aggressive, outcome-oriented, and people-oriented. Be specific as you can regarding which characteristics of organizational culture that you read about in the background materials apply to Southwest and which ones do not.
  2. Describe the organizational culture of Koch Industries using the criteria as in Question 1 above.
  3. Now suppose Koch Industries decided to purchase Southwest Airlines. Compare and contrast Southwest Airlines and Koch Industries  cultures, and explain what kind of challenges you think they would face in merging the two cultures. Also, explain what steps you think would need to be taken in order to prevent culture clashes between the two organizations.

Assignment Expectations

  • Answer the assignment questions directly. Stay focused on the precise assignment questions; don’t go off on tangents or devote a lot of space to general background materials.
  • Make use of both the required Case Assignment articles as well as the required general background materials in your paper. Apply concepts that you learned in the background materials in your answers to the assignment questions.
  • Review our “Writing Style Guide” for more detail on referencing and writing expectations. This guide is found under “My Resources” in the TLC portal.

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