Table of Contents

Research Companion to the Dysfunctional Workplace

Research Companion to the Dysfunctional Workplace

Management Challenges and Symptoms

New Horizons in Management series

Edited by Janice Langan-Fox, Cary L. Cooper and Richard J. Klimoski

A work exposing and exploring the phenomena of the dysfunctional workplace is long overdue. This fascinating book does just that, uncovering the subversiveness, counter-productive behaviour and unspoken ‘issues’ that managers struggle with on a daily basis.

Preface

Edited by Janice Langan-Fox, Cary L. Cooper and Richard J. Klimoski

Subjects: business and management, diversity and management, human resource management, organisational behaviour

Extract

I once interviewed a man called ‘Tony’ about how he did his job. He worked in a national communications organization and had recently taken up a position as a liaison officer after his previous job as a truck driver. The job required him to liaise between the shopfloor, of which he was a member, and management. His story (later indirectly corroborated by executives) told of secret meetings with management, staged performances at union meetings (throwing chairs etc.), and other extraordinary actions and hidden communications with either the manager or union leaders. His phone bill, which covered long late-night conversations with troubled shopfloor workers about family or work, was astronomical. Tony controlled and managed everything. However, he was paid only for his shopfloor liaison officer job despite having informal responsibility for the efficient running of his unit, the pastoral care of the workers, and the propping up of management. Tony contrived to appear on the side of the union and the shopfloor, and although never appearing to support management (at meetings, he made the manager the butt of jokes), secretly colluded with management in order to bring about productive organizational outcomes. Both sides knew he was a power broker, but it was never spoken about. Tony was an altruist at heart. He saw that someone had to step in and take charge of things and, with little education (he hadn’t even finished high school) and no management experience, he did a terrific job....