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Case Studies Case

1: Sony Family

One way to manage human resources effectively is to treat each member of the
organization as the "member of the family deserving respect and recognition". There
should be no class system or social status differentiation among all the employees
from the president down to floor worker. The tendency of successful organizations is
towards participative style of management and workers' participation in making
operational decisions. Nothing is more motivational to workers than to know that there
are no barriers between them and the management and there are no 'ivory towers'
where managers get special and superior treatment than the workers. This style of
management is especially prevalent in the Japanese industries where there is open
and free communication between management and workers. This open interaction
among all is highly encouraged by one Japanese company which has established a
reputation for quality, service and human relations in the whole world. That company
is SONY.
To break down barriers between management and staff, Sony has instituted common
cafeterias, known as on-site dining. On-site dining is perceived as more than merely a
pleasant dining experience. According to Sony's director of facilities management,
"When employees eat in, they tend to exchange work ideas. They walk the work at a
different level."
On-site dining also saves time as well as abuses of lunch hour time because workers
do not have to commute to different restaurants for lunch.
Morita, a onetime highly successful Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Sony, once
explained: "I have always made it a point to know our employees, to visit every facility
of our company and to try to meet, and know every single employee." He himself
socialized with the employees because he considered them as a part of Sony Family.
To him, it was not human resource management; it was respect, for one's family.
The on-site dining facility helps to strengthen work-related relationships and thus
increase employee morale and productivity. It is a one-class cafeteria and there is no
special place or special food reserved for top management. All the employees eat in
the same place under the same environment. It. brings employees together in a more
relaxed setting, outside the work environment, so that they have the opportunity for
social bondage. This, in turn, can create work relationships and enhance productivity.
Workers get to know each other on a first name basis and then try to help each other
in the work environment. This also helps in providing easy access to management and
this is a morale boosting element. This is due to the fact that on site dining
encourages intra-company networking by bringing together people at different
positions in the structural vertical as well as horizontal hierarchy from different
departments. Such networking can ultimately facilitate internal communication since
people get, to know each other with respect and affection.
Such Japanese work ethic is being adopted by more and more American companies.
They are beginning to realize that human resource management is not moving the
people to work, but motivating the people to work and motivation comes with respect
and recognition rather than financial incentive or comfortable working conditions
How can you describe human resource management at Sony, based on this one
element of 'onsite dining for all the Sony employees?

Do you believe that, too much familiarity at work place lowers discipline and
hence productivity?
Do you think work place should be considered as a social place? Explain.
Write an essay on the reasons that led to Sony being one of the most successful
companies dealing in high quality electronic merchandise.
Do you think that this concept of HRM can be successfully applied in Nepalese
organizations too?

Case 2: Ajay Aryal: An Account Teacher

Mr. Ajay Aryal had been teaching accounting at Kathmandu University (K. U) for the
past four years. During that time, he had gained much respect from his students, his
peers, and the college administration. He had twice been rated as one of the five best
professors at Kathmandu University (K.U), a rating that carried with it an additional Rs.
10,000 stipend .He was active in the college, in the community, and in his own private
consulting business. He had published a number of articles and was confident that he
would be granted tenure and a promotion to full professor within three years.
In April, when the dean sent routine contract letters for the next academic year to
each faculty member to sign, Ajay Aryal returned his with a note saying that "he
would not be returning". Instead he was accepting a position in a Chartered
Accountants firm.
Shocked by the news, the Dean of KU called Aryal's department chairman to see why
this sudden resignation had occurred. The department chairman, Hari Sharma, said
that it was only a matter of time before it happened: "you see, dean, we cannot
compete salary -wise with private industry. We need to make adjustment so that our
salary compressions can be eliminated and these who are outstanding faculty
members be encouraged to stay".
You might be right, Sharma, but we cannot go beyond our means. If we lose a few of
the good ones, that are sad, but if we make concessions to keep Ajay Aryal, what will
that are opening us up to in the future?
Describe how the four areas of HRM- acquisition, development, motivation, and
maintenance are affecting Kathmandu University.
Based on your understanding of these four HRM functions, how might they
apply-in the Ajay Aryal's resignation case?
"The rewards/compensation policy of KU is faculty that's why this case has been
occurred." Do you agree or disagree? Give your opinion.
Suppose you are the dean and have just contacted Ajay Aryal and have asked
him to meet with you with regard to his resignation. How would you try to
convince him to stay? Discuss.