The Week 2 of the Organizational Behavior course deals with the issues of perceptions and misaligned expectations experienced by members of an IT department because of the poor handling of a departmental gift fund by the department manager. Students were guided by the instructor, Dr. Kuok Kei Law, to analyze the motivations behind the manager's management, the perceptions of both the manager and the department members on the issue, and the resulting lack of trust and communication caused by the issue. Throughout the analyses, students came across several motivation theories, organizational justice theories, cognitive dissonance theory, self-serving bias, as well as self-determination theory.
An important takeaway from the class is that perception really matters; sometimes perception even matters more than the reality. How people perceive you determine how they will deal with you. For managers, knowing how to manage subordinates' expectations and perceptions is the key to avoid dissatisfaction and enhance commitment among the subordinates. Students also learnt that an individual's perceived unfairness can have a change to induce a climate of collective injustice among other members. It is therefore very crucial for managers to have open and sincere communication with their subordinates so as to minimize any possible misunderstandings and thus, mis-perceptions.