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The Coca-Cola Company is one of the world’s most recognizable brands. For more than a hundred years, the company has managed to hold the dominant position in the market of non-alcoholic beverages. Also, Coca-Cola is an example of successful market diversification, as its products are currently present in over 200 countries worldwide. The current paper aims at identifying the elements responsible for the success of the company, such as leadership, motivation, and teamwork of the employees, and identifying their impact on the organizational behavior, as well as analyzing the benefits of the said strategies for the organization as well as the community.
Leadership is often recognized as one of the defining components of organizational behavior. Successful and well-organized leadership defines the acts and attitudes of the employees as members of the team rather than individuals and facilitates the commitment to the goals and values of the company. While its definitions and requirements vary depending on the leadership style and other factors, the dominant consensus is the presence of such factors as vision and mission.
The transformational leadership model suggests that a leader can conceive the vision and mission of the organization and project it at his followers, successfully transforming their view rather than forcing them to follow it as mandatory (Kumar & Meenakshi, 2009).
Such is the case with Coca-Cola’s 2020 Vision. Conceived by Scott Figura, Global Director of Productivity and Operational Excellence, the 2020 Vision comprises the creation of inspiring and friendly workplace, the production of quality beverage brands, the orientation toward market diversification by forming international partnerships, constantly improve quality standards of production, and work towards profit maximization. It is also worth noting that the 2020 Vision includes a separate part that tackles the environmental issues, stating the readiness to decrease the possible adverse effects of its activity and be a responsible Earth citizen (The Coca-Cola Company, 2012).
While the profit maximization is an obvious solution for a business entity, the environmental aspect is used to boost the commitment and belief in corporate values. The research has previously shown that employees exhibit stronger affiliation with the organization if they generally perceive its activities as benevolent and contributing to the well-being of humankind (McAlister & Ferrell, 2002). As a result, a survey conducted among the Coca-Cola employees showed that the majority feel that being affiliated with the company makes them feel empowered and make a difference, which results in increased productivity (Hill, Stephens, & Smith, 2003).
Teamwork is another important element that defines organizational behavior. The whole idea of a successful organization is to make their employees work as a single body rather than a set of individuals. At Coca-Cola, the company’s culture facilitates teamwork on all levels. The members of all departments are encouraged to voice opinions and contribute ideas. The suggestions of the process optimization are highly valued and rewarded.
Rewards are organized in such a way that the department usually benefits from the member’s contribution, which results in a constant flow of ideas and possible improvements in the production chain, marketing, and sales. Besides, the communication policies are oriented toward teamwork as well, with the scheduled meetings of a leadership team, department teams, and sessions involving employee teams. Finally, the company emphasizes the diversity of their team.
This specific detail is important for two reasons. First, the diverse workforce provides better opportunities for the successful introduction of their product to the new markets and addressing the cultural difficulties in the markets where the drink is already introduced. The multicultural team that works in unison and readily participates in solving the corporate problems will most likely provide the most appropriate solution. This is best illustrated by the ad campaign launched by the company in the U.S. in 2013.
The ad showed several people singing “America the Beautiful” in seven languages. The campaign was a tremendous success primarily because of its inclusive nature, as it targeted the overwhelming majority of the country’s population and aligned with its diversity. Second, the diversity of the team currently constitutes the recognition of the current social trends and adds to the company values and, by extension, to productivity and commitment.
Finally, motivation is boosted at several levels in the company. An appropriate motivation program is crucial for the performance of the employees. The Coca-Cola company secures it on several levels. First, it provides fair financial and career opportunities. The direct monetary awards include competitive compensation, annual merit review, equity plans for employees in specified grade levels, among other things (The Coca-Cola Company, 2011).
Additionally, the company offers a series of discounts and services present on the site of work. Besides, it provides social benefits, such as a wide range of medical services and a retirement plan. However, these benefits account only for the existing category of the ERG theory suggested by Clayton Alderfer (Kumar & Meenakshi, 2009). The needs of relatedness are satisfied with the implementation of the 2020 Vision values discussed above. Finally, the Growth needs are accounted for by providing various training programs, developmental forums, the opportunities provided by the Coca-Cola University, an online resource for improving and building new working skills.
Besides, the company offers several types of incentives that can be used for education, such as the scholarship fund and tuition reimbursement. As a result of these benefits, the surveys show a steady increase in the percentage of employee involvement incorporate activities, with the most recent number being 84% (The Coca-Cola Company, 2010). The involvement results in increased efficiency and productivity, not to mention a healthier working environment.
The Coca-Cola Company recognizes the importance of organizational behavior and works towards establishing a formidable level of employee involvement. The progress made by the company in the U.S., as well as multiple foreign markets, proves the success of the strategies chosen by its management. The identifiable transformational leadership model establishes the goals and values of the company, known as the 2020 Vision by encouraging the employees to embrace and utilize the values rather than repeat them unenthusiastically.
The inclusion of values contributing to common good strengthen the workers’ belief in the company and add the feeling of empowerment and making a difference, ultimately adding to the motivation to work. Other motivation techniques, including the financial incentives and the possibilities for career and personal growth, further contribute to the overall level of involvement of the staff.
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Additionally, the management encourages participation in group activities and rewards voicing opinions and providing feedback that may turn out to be useful in improving any part of the company activities. The diversity of the team both strengthens the feeling of empowerment and contributes to the idea pool available to solve current issues and secure future shortcomings. All the techniques viewed above may and are encouraged to be used by the other companies for the benefit of both the staff and the stakeholders.
Hill, R. P., Stephens, D., & Smith, I. (2003). Corporate social responsibility: an examination of individual firm behavior. Business and Society Review, 108(3), 339-364.
Kumar, A., & Meenakshi, N. (2009). Organizational behavior: a modern approach. Jangpura, New Dehli: Vikas Publishing House.
McAlister, D., & Ferrell, L. (2002). The role of strategic philanthropy in marketing strategy. European Journal of Marketing, 36(5/6), 689-705.
The Coca-Cola Company. (2010). Employee engagement. Web.
The Coca-Cola Company. (2012). Mission, vision & values. Web.
The Coca-Cola Company. U.S. employee benefits. (2011). Web.