Inter group relationships in organisational decision making - an ethnographical study.

Goldfield, R. H., 2009. Inter group relationships in organisational decision making - an ethnographical study. Other Thesis (Other). Bournemouth University.

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Abstract

This ethnographic study is concerned with the relationship dynamics between groups jointly tasked with decision making. It seeks to answer the general question: what are the main relationship drivers and influences at work during the process of inter group activity? The research examines the issues surrounding the inter group relationship. How are relationships between the groups formed and maintained and how do they impact the efficacy of the inter group decision process? What makes the inter group relationship in organisational decision making work at a practical level? The work lies within, and makes a contribution to, the areas of social and management psychology. In commercial entities, where a Board comprising executive and non-executive members is charged with strategic decision making, a client/advisor relationship often exists with another group. In the situation researched, one group has the ultimate responsibility for making the decisions whilst a second group is tasked with identifying the requirement for a decision, information gathering, the search for alternatives and the recommendation to the Decision Group. This particular situation is not uncommon within limited companies, partnerships, listed companies and a range of other organisations and is the situation within the research organisation. Successful and effective decision making is an essential ingredient of organisational management. The result of a set of dysfunctional relationships and inefficient processes can be terminal to the organisation. An understanding ofthe relationship dynamics at work improves the decision process and enables managers to identify those negative elements that may compromise efficacy. Additionally, the research conclusions have implications for group recruitment and group training. The research deals with individuals, their actions and their thought processes, both conscious and unconscious. The conceptual framework for the research centers upon the relationship dynamics and relationship overlap between the individuals that are members ofboth groups. The subject and circumstances lend themselves to qualitative research methodology and interpretive ethnography is the approach chosen and is seen as a useful counterbalance and addition to the considerable amount of empirical work on group dynamics available to researchers. An additional dimension is added by the position ofthe researcher as both an insider in the organisation and that organisation's Chief Executive. This poses certain ethical issues which are addressed within the thesis and also illustrates and proposes the use of insider interpretive ethnography as a powerful management tool for newly appointed senior managers and organisational leaders. The qualitative interview is the primary method of data gathering, however, a number of ethnographic methods are employed, including the extensive use of observation field notes. The research is directly grounded in the area of inter group relations and the findings show the direct importance oft he sharing dynamics of fate, motivation, values and understanding to the inter group relationship and the impacts upon trust within and between groups. The role of group leadership is examined and its significant impact on the inter group relationships is proposed. The research provides a further example ofthe use of interpretive ethnography by an organisational insider.

Item Type:Thesis (Other)
Additional Information:A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requiremests of Bournemouth University for the Doctor of Business Administration. If you feel that this work infringes your copyright please contact the BURO Manager.
Subjects:Technology > Business, Management and Marketing
Group:Business School
ID Code:12877
Deposited By:Mrs Jill Burns
Deposited On:03 Feb 2010 11:25
Last Modified:07 Mar 2013 15:20

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