What are the Characteristics of Organizational Behaviour?

What are the Characteristics of Organizational Behaviour?

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Jaya Sharma
Assistant Manager - Content
Updated on May 24, 2024 17:50 IST

Organizational behaviour (OB) is the study of how individuals and groups act within organizations. It encompasses various aspects, including individual behavior, group dynamics, and organizational structure. By analyzing these elements, organizational behaviour helps in understanding and predicting human behaviour. This knowledge helps in creating strategies to improve employee performance, enhance organizational behaviour satisfaction, and foster a positive work environment.

characteristics of organizational behaviour

Table of Contents

Characteristics of Organizational Behaviour

The following points highlight the characteristics of organizational behaviour:

1. Multidisciplinary Approach

Organizational behaviour or OB integrates concepts and theories from psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics, and political science. Psychology contributes insights into individual behaviour and mental processes. Sociology examines social structures, relationships, and group dynamics. Anthropology studies cultural influences and organizational culture. Economics provides models of decision-making and resource allocation. Political science explores power dynamics and organizational politics.

This broad-based approach allows for a richer, more nuanced understanding of workplace behaviour, offering diverse perspectives that may lead to effective problem-solving and management strategies.

2. Systematic Study

Organizational behaviour uses scientific methods to study behaviour in organizations. This involves formulating hypotheses, collecting data through surveys, experiments, or observations, and using statistical tools to analyze data. The goal is to identify patterns and causal relationships that explain behaviour.

A systematic study ensures that findings are objective and reliable. This empirical basis for understanding behaviour helps managers make well-informed decisions and implement evidence-based practices that are likely to yield positive results.

3. Focus on Individuals, Groups, and Structures

Organizational behaviour examines behaviour at multiple levels. At the individual level, it looks at personality, attitudes, perceptions, and motivations. At the group level, it studies team dynamics, communication, leadership, and conflict. At the organizational level, it analyzes organizational culture, structure, and processes.

By addressing behaviour at these different levels, Organizational behaviour provides a comprehensive framework for understanding how various factors interact and influence overall organizational effectiveness. This multi-level approach helps in designing targeted interventions to improve performance and workplace harmony.

4. Performance-Oriented

Organizational behaviour aims to enhance organizational performance by understanding and influencing employee behaviour. It looks at factors that drive productivity, efficiency, and effectiveness, such as motivation, organizational behaviour satisfaction, and work environment.

By focusing on performance, Organizational behaviour helps organizations identify and implement strategies that optimize employee output and contribute to the achievement of organizational goals. This performance orientation ensures that Organizational behaviour contributes directly to organizational success.

5. Humanistic Orientation

Organizational behaviour emphasizes the importance of considering employees' needs, motivations, and well-being. It advocates for creating a supportive work environment that values and respects employees as individuals.

A humanistic approach leads to higher organizational behaviour satisfaction, increased motivation, and better employee engagement. This, in turn, reduces turnover and builds a positive organizational culture where employees can feel valued and motivated to contribute their best.

6. Contingency Approach

Organizational behaviour acknowledges that there is no universal solution to management problems. Instead, it advocates for a contingency approach, which means that the effectiveness of a management practice depends on the specific context and situation.

This approach encourages flexibility and adaptability in management practices. Managers are trained to assess the situation and choose the most appropriate strategy, leading to more effective and responsive management.

7. Goal Orientation

Organizational behaviour aligns organizational practices with the achievement of specific, measurable goals. It focuses on setting clear objectives and designing processes that facilitate their attainment.

A goal-oriented approach ensures that all organizational activities are directed towards common objectives. This alignment improves coordination, enhances focus, and increases the likelihood of achieving desired outcomes, contributing to overall organizational success.

8. Change Management

Organizational behaviour provides insights into managing organizational change. It examines how individuals and groups respond to change and identifies strategies to facilitate smooth transitions.

Effective change in management helps organizations adapt to new conditions, technologies, and market demands. It minimizes resistance, reduces disruption, and maintains productivity during periods of change, ensuring that the organization remains competitive and resilient.

9. Ethical Perspective

Organizational behaviour incorporates ethical considerations into organizational practices and decision-making processes. It promotes fairness, integrity, and respect for individuals.

An ethical perspective fosters a culture of trust and accountability within the organization. It enhances the organization's reputation, builds stronger relationships with stakeholders, and mitigates the risk of legal and ethical issues, contributing to long-term sustainability.

10. Interdisciplinary Focus

Organizational behaviour leverages insights from various fields to address the complex nature of organizational behaviour. It integrates theories and practices from different disciplines to provide a comprehensive understanding of behaviour in organizations.

This interdisciplinary approach enriches the analysis and solutions to organizational issues. It allows for innovative and holistic strategies that consider multiple dimensions of behaviour, leading to more effective and sustainable organizational practices.

Organizational Behaviour Theories and Their Importance in Management
Organizational Behaviour Theories and Their Importance in Management
Organizational behavior theories play a significant role in understanding and shaping corporate cultures. These study human behavior in the real world – how employees interact with one another and the...read more

Advantages of Learning Organizational Behaviour

The following points highlight the advantages of learning organizational behaviour:

  • Enhanced Productivity: Organizational behaviour helps in understanding what motivates employees and how to enhance their productivity. By applying motivational theories and designing effective reward systems, organizations can boost employee performance and efficiency, leading to higher output and better results.
  • Improved Job Satisfaction: It studies factors that contribute to job satisfaction, such as work environment, management style, and job design. Whenever employees are satisfied with their jobs, they will be more engaged, committed, and motivated, reducing turnover and absenteeism rates.
  • Better Communication: Organizational behaviour emphasizes the importance of effective communication within the organization. Clear and open communication reduces misunderstandings, facilitates better teamwork. This ensures that everyone in the company is aligned with the organization’s goals and values.
  • Effective Leadership: It provides insights into various leadership styles and how they impact employee behaviour and organizational performance. Understanding different leadership approaches helps in developing effective leaders who are inspiring and can guide their teams towards achieving organizational goals.
  • Enhanced Decision-Making: Organizational behaviour helps in understanding how decisions are made within organizations and factors that influence decision-making processes. Better decision-making leads to more strategic choices, improved problem-solving, and the ability to respond effectively to challenges and opportunities.
  • Conflict Resolution: Organizational behaviour studies the sources and types of conflicts within organizations and provides strategies for managing and resolving them. Effective conflict resolution promotes a harmonious work environment, reduces stress, and prevents conflicts from escalating and disrupting productivity.
  • Improved Organizational Culture: It examines the elements that contribute to organizational culture and how it affect behaviour and performance. A strong, positive organizational culture fosters a sense of belonging, enhances employee morale, and supports the achievement of organizational objectives.
  • Increased Innovation: It encourages a culture of creativity and innovation by understanding the factors that promote innovative thinking. This leads to the development of new ideas, products, and processes that can give the organization a competitive edge in the market.
  • Strategic Human Resource Management: Organizational behaviour provides a framework for aligning human resource practices with organizational goals and strategies. It ensures that the organization attracts, retains, and develops the talent needed to achieve its objectives.
  • Better Work-Life Balance: It recognizes the importance of work-life balance and how it impacts employee well-being and performance. Promoting work-life balance helps in reducing burnout, increasing job satisfaction, and maintaining a healthy and productive workforce.

Courses To Learn Organizational Behaviour

The following courses can help you learn organizational behaviour in detail:

Course Name


An Introduction to Organisational Behaviour: How to Understand Your People

This course delves into organizational behaviour, emphasising the various aspects of employee behaviour. It includes topics like motivation theories, leadership styles, team dynamics, and communication patterns. Managers and HR professionals will gain valuable knowledge and skills to manage their teams effectively through this course.

Organisational Behaviour: Know Your People

This course delves into organizational behaviour, emphasizing the various aspects of employee behaviour. It includes topics like motivation theories, leadership styles, team dynamics, and communication patterns. Managers and HR professionals will gain valuable knowledge and skills to manage their teams effectively through this course.

Organisational Behaviour in Construction: An Introduction

This online course centers on organizational behaviour in the construction industry. It tackles the unique challenges that construction managers encounter, including project-based work, diverse teams, and high-stress settings. Participants will gain practical strategies to effectively manage and motivate construction teams, ensuring projects are completed efficiently and safely.

Organisational Behaviour and Leadership Skills

This organizational behaviour course blends learning about how people behave in organizations with building leadership skills. It covers important topics like motivation, team dynamics, communication, conflict resolution, and different leadership styles. Enrolled students will gain practical tips for improving their leadership abilities, creating a positive work culture, and boosting team performance.


What is the contingency approach in organizational behaviour?

The contingency approach recognizes that there is no one-size-fits-all solution to management problems. It suggests that different situations require different strategies and practices, promoting flexibility and adaptability in management.

What does it mean that organizational behaviour is performance-oriented?

Being performance-oriented means that organizational behaviour aims to enhance organizational effectiveness by improving employee productivity and efficiency. This focus ensures that strategies and practices are designed to achieve high performance and organizational goals.

Why is systematic study important in organizational behaviour?

A systematic study uses scientific methods to analyze behaviour, ensuring that findings are based on empirical evidence rather than intuition. This leads to more reliable with valid insights that can be applied to improve organizational practices.

How does organizational behaviour address individual, group, and organizational levels?

Organizational behaviour examines behaviour at three levels: individual (e.g., personality, motivation), group (e.g., team dynamics, communication), and organizational (e.g., culture, structure). This multi-level approach helps in developing targeted interventions to improve overall performance.

About the Author
Jaya Sharma
Assistant Manager - Content

Jaya is a writer with an experience of over 5 years in content creation and marketing. Her writing style is versatile since she likes to write as per the requirement of the domain. She has worked on Technology, Fina... Read Full Bio