The article chosen for this analysis discusses the efforts of the Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz in encouraging employees to carry out their civic responsibilities. The company announced in March 2016 that it has strived to provide ease and support to its 150,000 employees by providing them with the ability to vote through a quick and secure digital access tool called Turbo Vote. The idea for such a solution was suggested by the company employee during an Open Forum discussion.
The company supported its decision to provide easy voting services to the employee by citing the 2014 Census data, where 60% of the United States citizens had not voted. The reasons expressed by such non-voters were complicated registration procedures or simply forgetting to vote . In this respect, the company engaged in an activity that fell under the domain of Corporate Social Responsibility or CSR. While the CSR initiative might not be directly related to Starbucks’ profit goals, it is related to the encouragement and motivation of its employees and their customers. Similarly, the CSR initiative will also contribute positively to the organizational culture. Dominant culture demonstrates core value of a society . The dominant culture in Starbucks seems to be helping employees as well as customers. In other words the organization is ethically responsible. Regardingthe effects on organizational behavior, the employees of Starbucks will be highly satisfied and motivated as they will feel engaged with the company and understand that the organization listens to the desires of its employees. They will also strive to be more responsible in their jobs and social responsibilities as they strive to adhere to the organizational culture. The effects of such a step by the company should be particularly impressive to the employees as the executives were quick to act on the employee suggestion, considering that the suggestion was only given in the month before the announcement. In addition to becoming gaining the attention of its current employees, with initiatives such as access to Turbo Vote, the company will also be able to attract newer employees, as they will perceive the management as highly involved and available to its employees. The organization through its culture creates an organizational climate, which refers to how employees perceive an organization and their work environment . In this respect, Starbucks has managed to emphasize that it cares about its employees and their opinions.
The perceived organizational support and psychological empowerment the company created in the employees by listening to suggestion on a seemingly unimportant issue will contribute very positively to the organizational citizenship behavior. Starbucks is well knownfor its corportae culture of paying attention to the needs and suggestions of its employees. The incorporation of an effective and efficient voting tool in the company suggests similar notions. Operating on a suggestion which, most probably cost the company valuable funds, to provide an added advantage to the employees, enabled the company to engage the attention of the workforce, and keep it satisfied. In addition to this, the employees also became aware that no suggestion can be deemed useless or redundant, in front of the management, as a casual suggestion by an employee was taken highly seriously by the coffee making company. Through such actions the company ensures that the employees are engaged and motivated as this will contribute positively to their work environment, the job, profits as well as customer satisfaction. The world renowned coffee company takes care of its workforce. Therefore it faces fewer incidents of employee disturbances due to the well trained and satisfied employees who are reluctant to leave the organization. If organizational culture is created in this respect, then the employees should not need strict rules and regulations to guide them in their actions .
Regarding organizational behavior problems that may arise from the company’s decision, the employees may be lead to believe that the company has a responsibility to meet every need of each employee, which is contrary to the case. In fact, as a rule, all companies operate for the sake of profit, while contributing to the society and economy. Therefore, Starbucks also takes wise decisions regarding the issue of listening to employee suggestions. Strategically, the company listened to the employee demand as it would enable the company to meet the needs of its employees, while simultaneously indulging in CSR activities, as well as creating an ethical organizational culture. Strong cultures that support ethical values tend to have significantly positive impact on employee behaviors . To ensure that the employees are aware of the fact that Starbucks does not comply with unreasonable requests, it is vital that the CEO of the company justifies the reasonability of the step to the employees. As a result of divulging such information, the employees will feel involved and committed to an organization that trusts them with power in key decisions, which will also contribute to the organizational culture. In this respect ethical and innovative cultures can be enforced by the leaders of the organization . In the case of Starbucks, Howard Shultz is playing an extremely important role to establish ethical climate in the company
Conclusively, it can be stated that Starbucks took a very calculated decision as it was able to meet multiple requirements of the business at the same time. It also managed to influence the organizational behavior in a positive manner, as the company created an organizational culture that encouraged employees to contribute their idea. In addition to this, the company would be able to foster a culture of creative and innovative workforce that will be aware that its smallest and most mundane ideas might very well contribute to the success of the organization. There may be a possible disadvantage to such steps as an employee may strive to take advantage of the caring and nurturing environment that the coffee company strives to create. In this respect, it is suggested that providing employees with complete and valid information would ensure that the employees feel part of the family and, therefore, do not take advantage of Starbucks.
List of References
Addady, M., 2016. How Starbucks Is Making Voting Easier for its Employees. [Online] Available at: http://fortune.com/2016/03/10/starbucks-voting/ [Accessed 22 March 2016].
Robbins, S.P., 2001. Organizational Behavior. Boston: Pearson Custom Publishers.