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Construction Management and Organisational Behaviour

Maureen Rhoden

Senior Lecturer, Department of Built Environment, University of Greenwich, London, UK




Brian Cato

Senior Lecturer, Department of Built Environment, University of Greenwich, London, UK







About the Authors

Maureen Rhoden MA, PGCE, SEDA, FCIH, FHEA has worked in a number of large public organisations as a senior manager with approximately 10 years’ experience in housing management and for 20 years teaching organisations and management to students studying Built Environment courses in the higher education sector.

Brian Cato MSc, MRICS, FHEA is a Chartered Quantity Surveyor and Project Manager with 30 years’ experience within the construction industry – 25 years in private practice and, more recently, 5 years in higher education.


We would like to thank Laura Elson whose creative ideas and extensive knowledge in developing the case studies, together with her ability to identify inconsistencies helped us throughout the writing of this book.


The theories and concepts contained within this book are relevant for the work of managers and employees within the construction sector and similar organisations. Students and professionals with experience of the construction industry will benefit from the ability to apply these concepts to other organisations within other sectors. There are a wide range of organisations including universities or colleges to sports and other recreational clubs or groups that all rely on organisational behaviour in order to function. Some organisations will be able to function well and others will do so poorly.

The study of organisational behaviour may result in changing long held views that you may have held regarding how people and organisations work in the real world. In addition, you may also gain a better understanding of questions such as what motivates people to work, what is the most appropriate leadership style and how can the structure of a company affect the performance of employees.

Studying the many theories and examples that are provided within this book should enable you to identify problems within a company or organisation and to develop solutions or, even better, improve methods that you could use to avoid problems occurring in the first place. However, you will need to understand and apply the concepts to your own particular context which should make you a more effective manager.

Structure of the book

The remainder of this book is divided into the following chapters:

  • Chapter 2 considers the development of management theories and models and how they relate to the contemporary views of how organisations should work.
  • Chapter 3 explores some of the main schools of thought regarding the nature and scope of management.
  • Chapter 4 discusses contemporary views regarding leadership and we examine the qualities of successful leaders.
  • Chapter 5 begins with a discussion of the different types of communication that exist within organisations and their relative advantages and disadvantages. The chapter also explores the role of motivation in organisations and how managers can use motivation with their teams and individual members of staff.
  • Chapter 6 will address the problems associated with managing conflict within a team and the importance of being aware of the different types of conflict that exist is discussed. The chapter also considers the role of negotiation in particular situations and the techniques that may be used by managers and individuals.
  • Chapter 7 examines the different types of problems that managers may encounter within their company. While these problems can be addressed by using a variety of approaches, there are a number of advantages and disadvantages depending on the chosen solution.
  • Chapter 8 focuses upon organisational change and the different ways that the process can be managed. The effect of individual and group resistance to organisational change should not be underestimated. However, managers can anticipate the problems that may arise and manage the process efficiently and effectively.
  • Chapter 9 begins by focusing on the influence that entrepreneurs have in identifying opportunities and developing business ideas or innovations that are successfully brought to the market. We explore the different types of innovation and discuss the varied situations that can affect organisational creativity and innovation.
  • Chapter 10 discusses how social scientists have perceived organisational culture. The overt and covert aspects of organisational culture are examined along with the varied theories. We then explore the role of globalisation and national cultures and how companies are adapting to take into account the changing needs of their employees.
  • Chapter 11 recognises how important an organisational strategic approach has become and how it is used to provide a framework for the effective management of the activities within companies. The effect of the changing business environment upon the content of the strategy is considered along with the use of the market approach and the competitive advantage.
  • Chapter 12 begins with a discussion of the theoretical models of organisational structure. It discusses the way that we work and the impact that organisational design can have on the levels of production and motivation within a company.