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Assignment 1: Tough ConversationsDue Week 3 and worth 150 pointsImagine you are the HR manager at a company. A female employee came to you upset because she felt a male coworker was creating a hostile work environment by repeatedly asking her out on dates even after she said “no”. What would you do? (If you haven’t been exposed to having these types of conversations speak to your manager or someone who is familiar in addressing tough conversations.)Write a plan for how you would approach your conversation with each employee, including the most essential topics to cover. As you write your plan, think about what your goals are for this situation, and how each conversation will help you achieve those goals.Write a five to seven (5-7) paragraph paper in which you:Write a plan for the conversation you would have with the employee, based on the concepts found in your textbook. What are the most important points you would need to cover in this conversation, and why?Write a plan for the conversation you would have with the employee’s male co-worker, based on the concepts found in your textbook. What are the most important points you would need to cover in this conversation, and why?Format your assignment according to the following formatting requirements:This course requires use of Strayer Writing Standards (SWS). Please take a moment to review the SWS documentation for details.Include at least 1 reference to support your paper.The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:Create a plan for approaching tough conversations with employees, including a rationale for the most essential topics to cover. You can view the rubric for this assignment here.
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Chapter 4
The Competitive Environment
Copyright ©2020 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. May not be scanned, copied or duplicated, or posted to a publicly accessible website, in whole or in part.
LEARNING OUTCOMES
1. Describe the competitive environment of human
resource management
2. Identify three types of strategies and relate each
to human resource management
3. Discuss human resource strategy formulation and
relevant organizational factors
4. Discuss the processes through which human
resource strategy is implemented
5. Discuss how the human resource function in
organizations can be evaluated
Copyright © 2020 Cengage Learning. All Rights Reserved. May not be scanned, copied or duplicated, or posted to a publicly
accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH4
2
LO 1
Competitive Environment
• Firms can gain competitive advantages
through their management of human
resources (HR)
• HR managers:
• Adopt strategic perspectives
• Recognize the critical links between
organizational and HR strategies
• Add value by providing expertise on how to use
a firm’s existing human resources to accomplish
its objectives and gain competitive advantage
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH4
3
Strategic Perspective in the Competitive
Environment
LO 1
• Employees are important sources of
competitive advantage
• Steps to gain a sustained competitive advantage
– Hire the right people
– Train them to be effective
– Place them in the right jobs
– Motivate them to work hard
– Strive to retain them
• Organizations must develop strategies to use
their human resources in the most effective
manner
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH4
4
LO 1
Influence of Organizational Purpose and
Mission
• Fundamental contextual forces that define
the strategic context of HRM include an
organization’s purpose and mission
• Purpose: Basic reason for an organization’s
existence
• Mission: Statement of how an organization
intends to fulfill its purpose
– Provides subtle cues about the importance an
organization places on its human resources
• Both its purpose and its mission affect an
organization’s HR practices in some ways
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH4
5
LO 1
Influence of the Top Management Team
• Top management team: Group of senior
executives responsible for the overall
strategic operation of an organization
• Sets the tone for the organization and plays a
major role in shaping its culture
• Abilities of top management teams to
influence their organizations and success
depend on the nature of the industry,
organization, and individual
• Described using the term managerial discretion
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HR5 | CH4
6
LO 1
Corporate Governance
• Determinant of managerial discretion
• Role: To deal with agency problems
• Agency problems: Mismatch in the interests of
the managers and owners of a firm
– Solved by a board of directors who monitor
actions of the top management team to
ensure the protection of stockholders’
interests
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH4
7
LO 2
Types of Strategies
• Corporate strategy
• Deals with determining what businesses the
corporation will operate
• Business strategy
• Deals with how a firm will compete in each
market where it conducts business
• Functional strategy
• Deals with how a firm will manage each of its
major functions such as marketing, finance, and
human resources
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8
LO 2
Corporate Strategies
• Growth strategy
• Focuses on growing and expanding the business
• Pursued internally by opening additional
locations
• Pursued externally through mergers, joint
ventures, or acquisitions
• Retrenchment or turnaround strategy
• Occurs when an organization finds that its
current operations are not effective
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
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9
LO 2
Corporate Strategies (Continued 1)
• Major changes are needed to rectify the
problem
• Involves rightsizing the organization by closing
operations, shutting down factories, and
terminating employees to get back on the right
track
• Stability strategy
• Used after a period of retrenchment or rapid
growth when a company plans to stay in its
current businesses and intends to retain the way
they are managed
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10
LO 2
Corporate Strategies (Continued 2)
• Diversification strategy
• Used by firms that are adding new products,
product lines, or businesses to their existing core
products, product lines, or businesses
• Related diversification: Used when a firm
believes it can achieve synergy among its
various businesses
• Unrelated diversification: Used when a firm
attempts to operate several unique businesses in
different, unrelated markets
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11
LO 2
Business Strategy
• Adaptation model: Popular approach to
business strategy where a business seeks
ways to adapt to its environment
• Strategic alternatives include:
– Defender strategy
– Prospector strategy
– Analyzer strategy
– Reactor strategy: Seen as a strategic failure
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12
LO 2
Defender Strategy
• Identifies a relatively narrow niche in the
market and then directs a limited set of
products or services at that niche
• Guards and secures a position in existing
markets
• Appropriate in an environment with low
uncertainty and risk and high stability
• HR managers recruit and seek to retain
stable employees who exhibit high levels of
commitment and loyalty to a firm
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13
LO 2
Prospector Strategy
• Focuses on new products and markets
• Avoids long-term commitment
• Business environment is dynamic and grows
with considerable uncertainty and risk
• HR managers prefer to recruit and retain
entrepreneurial employees who are highly
flexible and more dedicated to their craft or
profession than to the organization itself
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14
LO 2
Analyzer Strategy
• Identifies and exploits new markets and
products
• Simultaneously maintains a nucleus of
traditional core products and customers
• Appropriate in relatively stable conditions
with moderate uncertainty and risk
• HR managers may seek to recruit and retain
employees who might be moderately
entrepreneurial and flexible but who will
also be quite dedicated and loyal to a firm
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15
LO 2
Specific Competitive Strategies
• Differentiation strategy
• Firms attempt to develop an image or
reputation for their products or services that set
the firms apart from their competitors
• Cost leadership strategy
• Focuses on minimizing the costs as much as
possible
• Focus strategy
• Undertaken when an organization tries to target
a specific segment of the marketplace for its
products or services
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16
LO 2
Functional Strategies
• Address how an organization will manage
its basic functional activities, such as
marketing, finance, operations, research
and development, and HR
• HR strategy formulation formally begins to
take shape at the functional level
• HR strategy should be closely integrated and
coordinated with corporate, business, and other
functional strategies
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17
LO 3
Human Resource Strategy Formulation
• Staffing strategy




HR planning
Recruiting
Selection
Placement
• Development strategy




Performance management
Training
Development
Career planning
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18
Human Resource Strategy Formulation
LO 3
(Continued)
• Compensation strategy
• Wage/salary structure
• Employee benefits
• Incentives
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19
LO 3
Basic Components of HR Strategy
• Organization design
• Corporate culture
• Unionization
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20
LO 3
Forms of Organization Design
• Functional design (U-form organization)
• Organizations group members into basic
functional departments
• Has a single HR department for an organization
• Conglomerate (H-form) design
• Used when an organization has implemented a
strategy of unrelated diversification
• HRM is a common staff function, but each of the
unrelated businesses has its own HR department
that functions with relative autonomy within
that business
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21
LO 3
Forms of Organization Design (Continued)
• Divisional (M-form) design
• Facilitates synergy across businesses
• HR function is likely to be diffused so that
operating managers take on more of the
responsibility for HR activities
– Somewhat smaller HR staff provides basic
services and plays more of a consultative role
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
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22
LO 3
Corporate Culture
• An organization’s culture refers to the set of
values that help members understand:
• What the organization stands for
• How it accomplishes what it desires
• What it considers important
• Plays a major role in shaping managerial
behavior
• Strong element in how an organization
manages its human resources
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23
LO 3
Corporate Culture (Continued)
• Firms must have a strong and wellarticulated culture
• Communicated through training, consistent
behavior, and other organizational activities
• May either facilitate or impede the work of
HR managers
• Crucial for the success of corporate mergers
and acquisitions
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24
LO 3
Impact of Unionization and Collective
Bargaining
• Labor relations
• Process of dealing with employees who are
represented by a union
• Unionized firms tend to have more rules
and formal procedures that may limit a
firm’s ability to formulate an ideal strategy
• Strong unions facilitate strategic change if their
leaders and the firm’s management work
together productively
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25
LO 4
Interpersonal Processes
• Psychological contract
• Overall set of expectations held by an individual
with respect to what he or she will contribute to
an organization and what the individual receives
in return
• Personality
• Relatively stable set of psychological attributes
or traits that distinguish one person from
another
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26
LO 4
Interpersonal Processes (Continued)
• Motivation
• Set of forces that causes people to behave in
certain ways
• Stress
• A person’s adaptive response to a stimulus that
places excessive psychological or physical
demands on that person
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LO 4
Strategy Implementation
• HR managers are responsible for:
• Identifying potential leadership qualities among
existing employees and to help structure
procedures for developing and enhancing those
qualities
• Improving behavioral processes
• Directly related to communication
• Written, oral, and nonverbal communication are
all pervasive in organizations
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28
LO 5
Evaluating the HR Function in Organizations
• The costs and benefits of HRM functions are
examined to see which ones contribute to
competitive advantage and which should be
outsourced
• Line managers may choose between the
corporation’s HR department or an outsider
vendor when they need HRM help
• Recent trend is to evaluate entire systems
of HR activities
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29
LO 5
Human Resource Management Practices
That May Lead to Improved Firm Performance






Self-directed work teams
Total quality management (TQM)
Contingent pay
Attitude surveys
Formal performance appraisals
Continuous training
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KEY TERMS
• Purpose
• Mission
• Top management
team
• Corporate strategy
• Business strategy
• Functional strategy
• Growth strategy
• Retrenchment or
turnaround strategy
• Stability strategy
• Diversification
strategy
• Related diversification
• Unrelated
diversification
• Adaptation model
• Differentiation
strategy
• Cost leadership
strategy
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31
KEY TERMS







Focus strategy
Organization design
Culture
Psychological contract
Personality
Motivation
Stress
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SUMMARY
• Firms gain competitive advantages through
the management of human resources
• Key to strategic operations is developing
and implementing effective strategies
• HR strategy can be developed using a firm’s
corporate and business strategies as context
• Interpersonal processes play a major role in
the implementation of HR strategies
• Evaluating the effectiveness of the HR
function has become a trend in recent years
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Chapter 2
The Legal Environment
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LEARNING OUTCOMES
1. Describe the legal context of human resource
management
2. Identify key laws that prohibit discrimination in the
workplace, and discuss equal employment
opportunity
3. Discuss legal issues in compensation, labor
relations, and other areas in human resource
management
4. Discuss the importance to an organization of
evaluating its legal compliance
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accessible website, in whole or in part.
HR5 | CH2
2
Legal Context of Human Resource
Management (HRM)
LO 1
• Catalysts for modifying or enhancing the
legal context include:
• Legislative initiatives
• Social change
• Judicial rulings
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3
LO 1
Regulatory Environment of HRM
• Process
• Creation of new regulations
– Court decisions set precedence
• Enforcement of regulations
• Practice and implementation of regulations in
organizations
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4
LO 1
Legal Regulation of HRM
• Prospective employees
• Protection from discrimination in selection,
initial job placement, and initial compensation
• Current employees
• Protection from discrimination in:
– Performance appraisal
– Subsequent job placements
– Training and development opportunities
– Career and promotion opportunities
– Other dimensions of work in the organization
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5
LO 2
Equal Employment Opportunity
• Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
• Illegal discrimination: Behaviors or actions that
cause members of a protected class to be
unfairly differentiated from others
• Ensures that equal opportunities are available to
everyone
• Illegalizes employment or discrimination based
on race, color, religious beliefs, sex, or national
origin
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6
LO 2
Forms of Illegal Discrimination




Disparate treatment
Disparate impact
Pattern or practice
Retaliation
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