2 Discussion Responses 150 Words Each
respond as a student do not grade or critique only add to conversation.
First response to Aldrin
Smith Initial Post (Topic 1)
Whirlpool’s network groups are still very much evident in their web site. When delving into the 16 listed brands further, it is readily apparent that there is diversity amongst the Whirlpool Corporation. Just doing a quick survey of all the brands within the network, I was able to identify products from the USA, Brazil, Germany, Mexico, and China. Not to mention the original Whirlpool brand has 12 different websites to service customers all over the world.
More notably, on the website, there is a page dedicated to diversity & inclusion. This is diversity outside of just geographical borders. Their inclusivity extends across sexual orientation, disabilities, gender, and even ages. What I found interesting was that how Whirlpool defined or showcased diversity wasn’t only by taking a wide-range of people under a single roof, but also by having a network of varied brands, throughout the globe, under a single corporation.
I believe that Whirlpool’s strategy and efforts on diversity is certainly a model all organizations can adopt. With that said, the Whirlpool Corporation appears to already be deeply seated in diversity and inclusion, so other companies can use Whirlpool as “what right looks like.” Furthermore, with a more diverse and inclusive culture within an organization, it can create a more positive atmosphere among employees who have traditionally been marginalized (Moves to increase diversity, 2018). Moreover, Whirlpool understands that since their products are found globally, their employees should also be representative of their customer base’s diverse backgrounds. That is because with a diverse workforce, they’ll have a greater sense of understanding for what their consumers actually want in a product (Jones, 2017). This of course, will have a positive impact on revenue. If an organization values diversity, like Whirlpool does, they can benefit from the cultural insight that each employee brings with them. Further offering a different perspective that may be unknown to others.
Jones, M. (2017, July 22). Chapter 5 Case Study: Employee Networks at Whirlpool [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2xc5b78iHCk&feature=youtu.be
Moves to increase diversity and inclusion in the workplace: Fairness and camaraderie as building blocks. (2018). Human Resource Management International Digest, 26(2), 41-43. doi:10.1108/HRMID-01-2018-0012
Second response to Kristine
Harvard Business Review interviewed Linda Hill and Kent Lineback, the authors of Being the Boss, The Three Imperatives for Becoming a Great Leader. They brought about a positive aspect to organizational politics (Harvard Business Review, 2011). A very interesting question was posed to Kent. The interviewer asked him what one of his biggest mistakes was of being a manager. He said that he had a regret that he just didn’t want much to do with any work politics and that it was a waste of time. Looking back on those years he felt that way he discovered that it truly wasn’t the way to go and he should have used the politics to guide the employees under him. There seems to be a domino effect that trickles down to the employees. If a manager doesn’t seem to care to involve himself in the organizations diversity, it leaks lack of care into the employees as well.
Linda Hill stated that a lot of times managers don’t like to get involved with organizational politics are because they think that power is corrupting and not a tool, when in fact, it is the opposite. When used with the right intention power can be a very important tool because, regardless if there is a lack of desire to get involved, “most organizations are inherently political entities” (Harvard Business Review, 2011). This means no matter how we look at it, politics exists due to three stated conflict sources. These are because, no matter where you go, there is always going to be individual’s diverse perspectives, interdependency on others, and choices about how to use resources in an organization (which sometimes can be scarce) (Harvard Business Review, 2011). Hill also stated that you just can’t be afraid of these three dynamics or there will be failure. This results in powerlessness and lack of respect. Lineback stated that powerlessness has the ability to corrupt, “if you don’t have power then you can’t stand up for what you believe is right” (Harvard Business Review, 2011).
Their suggestions on how to be successful using the political chain within the organization is to “build bridges” and “create allies.” There are three ways to do this. Build three networks. These consist of: 1. Operational, 2. Strategic, 3. Developmental. Operational focuses on your immediate team. Strategic focuses on environment, opportunities outside the department that the team could take advantage of, and create an awareness of possible threats and impending problems. Developmental is where you make your connections and network and build relationships with many areas in order to develop skill and to continue to grow. Kent stated that, “Who you know determines what you get to do, and what you get to do determine what you get to know” (Harvard Business Review, 2011). I found this to be very true in my own life. At times, I found that I didn’t want to stay in the position that I was as there was no possibilities of working up the ladder. So, on my spare time, I would volunteer to help others in their departments, and in return, all I would ask is that they teach me some of their amazing things. I knew this could only build and it was such positive networking. It was because of working with others that way that I landed a new position in the same department and a promotion also. Their suggestions do work. According to them, cultivating these important relationships builds substantial credibility.
The take away that I received from this important video is that if you want to be successful, you need to put away the stigma that organizational politics and power is negative and harmful. If you understand the organizations goals and how you will participate in them, you will better understand the need for networking. Also, as Linda said one of the biggest reasons companies and organizations need to focus on building relationships is due to diversity. With most, companies going global, we need to learn others cultures and beliefs in order to communicate. People from other cultures and countries may see things differently that we in the US do, such as, how they view authority, time, and mannerisms (Harvard Business Review, 2011). I will give you an example. I worked with an Indian doctor who had just come here to this country. In his culture, they are known to move their head in certain directions as a sign that they are in agreement with you or to show you they are interested. It is called a bobble by some. One of my coworkers comes to me one day and said, “Do you know that new Indian doctor offended me!” I asked her why, she said while she was talking he was shaking his head signaling “No” to her! She was so mad. I have had experience prior to understanding what he was doing. I had to disarm her a little and tell her that he meant well. She still didn’t like it though. Later it seems that it was spread that he was doing this and it was offensive. Because of this, I watched him out of courtesy and humility tries to control it. After his four years of residency there, he no longer used that as a sign of agreement. He adapted to diversity. All the factors presented in this video are stellar. It changed my way of looking at power. As a leader, you could use these guidelines and tools to be very successful. It seems that great relationships are on the forefront.
Harvard Business Review. [Jones]. (2011,July). The Best Way to Play Office Politics [Video File]. Harvard Business Publishing. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m6of16QgaSA&feature=youtu.be