Globalization is at its fullest and that’s the reason for the attracted human resources in the whole working world. People want to move from one place to another according to the maximization in their wages and salaries, comfortability etc. Sometimes, the company has to call or appoint some skilled or unskilled employees according to the requirements of the company. Managing the bulk of the people is very difficult for the top-level managers and they have to face many problems and obstacles during this management. It takes time to read and understand the mind and heart of the employees like how to motivate them, how to utilize their optimum efficiency and effectiveness as they are totally from different cultures and nationality. Basically, it is a challenge to manage all the employees and keep them happy and satisfied.
This case analysis is almost about the same thing that how cultures and nationalities effect the work environment and goal achievement of an organization and what are the roles of managers in an organization. This is the case study of KazOil Corporation which is owned by China. Let’s proceed with the analysis of the case.
1. Identify the most important facts surrounding the case pertinent to the topic you are exploring: –
Till 1996 KazOil company has been properly saved from the competition of international market by the Kazakh Ministry of Energy and further, it had been sold to the to a Canadian company Hydrocarbons Ltd. for US $ 120 million (Gordon, 2017)with the base of 5000 employees initially. Under the management of Canadian, the company was blooming very much. It had successfully drilled 20 wells with 100% interest and since 1997, there is an increase of 10% on the reserves. In 2005, Hydrocarbons sold the KazOil to a Chinese company named China Petrol for the US $ 4.2 billion (Kyle, 2004)which easily destroyed its rivals from Russia and India.
Usually the focus of the Hydrocarbons was on some not so important problems of the company like cutting down the expense of capital and reducing the cost but at the same time it was also used to train all the members from top to bottom of the management through general training programs and there was continuous English Learning Program for the whole employee to make their communication friendly the organization. Whereas in a survey which was formally done in the management tells the satisfaction story as 26% of local managers stated that they fully supported the changes while 52% of them indicated their belief that the company was moving the right direction (Azimbekova, 2014).
When it comes to Chinese managers to manage the KazOil, they came out as very narrow-minded and during their ownership the company had faced many problems and obstacles, easy to say that they were not working environment-friendly. Further, that company sent almost 30 number of managers to KazOil and by the way after this merger almost partly global members quit their jobs. The Chinese managers tried to detain the employees by paying them dividend even twice a year but still, many employees were not satisfied with the working environment and they were escaping themselves from there for the sake of the betterment of their future career prospects as it might decrease the value of their career.
2. Identify the key issue or issues in the case based on your understanding of this topic: –
This topic is all about the description of the two points chosen by me by my understanding which is relevant to the case study.
i. Managing global teams and diversity: –
This case study is basically showing the roles and challenges of the Canadian and Chinese manager. When it is about Canadian managers, they were very supportive and gave the priority to democracy to speak. They used to communicate with all the levels of employees. There was no rule of ‘managers should rule’, all employees were free to discuss, to say, to complain but in their own boundaries (boss- employ relationship) and this way of treating the employees made the environment very friendly and helps a lot in the achievement of desired goals of the KazOil. This motivates the employees working there and were classified by their high authority respect and reduced the employability turnover ratio which directly effects the goal attainment process. There was a continuous session of general training used to be held for all the employees working there to boost up their morale and confidence and maximize the feeling of satisfaction from their jobs, no matter they were the superiors or the subordinates. The created good working environments helped the managers in reducing uncertainty, focus the short term. They used to put described plans and strategies into action.
Whereas under the leadership of Chinese managers everything was just opposite. They didn’t bother about the employees. According to the rules were meant to be made and discussion and decision both should be done by the top level of management that is managers. Employees were only to work not to discuss and this creates a bad effect in the company as the employees /subordinates also started ignoring them and here the problems started as ‘nobody cares’ and employees started following timetables instead of focusing on the targeted goal of the company. It was seeing that there was a reverse gear proceeding again to the Soviet style of leadership and management. Due to this top-bottom style of decision making created a communication gap between managers and employees.
So, these were some challenges and responsibility has been faced by the Canadian and Chinese managers at KazOil during their own era of leadership and basically, by Canadian managers, it was responsibilities which were taken care the most and under Chinese managers the company has faced lots of difficulties and obstacles.
ii. Communicating across cultures: –
If we will explore we get to know that Kazakhstan uses two languages for communication where ‘Kazakh’ was the state language and ‘Russian’ was declared as the official language there. So, according to this fact, they basically use the Russian language to communicate personally and professionally. So, when the KazOil owned by the Canadian company and many expatriates joined the company to work, the problem of communication started. So, the managers come up with the solution of this problem by providing continuous courses for English learning to all the staffs working there at different levels. This was not enough and bounded within the company, they also promoted this courses at schools and kindergartens. This helps the employees by developing their confidence and make them able to join any conversation going on within the company without any hesitation.
After some years, when the ownership of the KazOil had been transferred to the China Petrol, the new managers and new people who joined after some resignation of unhappy employees and they started to communicate in Chinese language which got bounce to the mind and employees were not able to get it that what’s going on inside the company, what decisions are being taken by the management and somehow, the employees found this system very secretive and mysterious and didn’t feel comfortable to work in that kind of environment. Even after takeover they terminated that course of English learning and the facility of learning the Chinese-language had been provided just to some preferred categories of top-level employees only. This kind of behavior created a dearth of faith among the relationship of employees and new managers and also lack of interest towards their work for the organization.
3. Consider the alternative source of action: –
So, the new approach of management is not able to organize the employees and utilize their efficiency and effectiveness to their optimum because of the dissatisfaction from their job. So, there is need to take decision or alternative course of action.
i. After analyzing this that employees at KazOil is not satisfied with the Chinese style of management, the managers should switch to the Canadian style of management as being narrow minded not going to help any of them (company, managers & company). Herzberg’s theory of motivation and hierarchy of needs theory by Maslow and try to work on it that how to satisfy the employees and make them interested to work in company.
ii. They should aware of the linguistic problem going on within the company and should have to find out remedies for that to reduce the mysterious professional talks and create an environment of togetherness with the company.
iii. Start involving the all levels of management in the discussions and decision-making process so that they should also feel like the part of the company and the working team.
iv. Managers should provide some proper trainings and awareness seminars of safety at work, time to time to all the employees without discrimination.
4. Evaluate each course of action: –
i. Switching to previous way of management makes the employees comfortable to work as they are habituated to work like that so they will manage to work like that and give more than targeted benefits.
ii. Applying Herzberg’s theory of motivation and hierarchy of needs theory enables the manager to get information about the all the stages of satisfaction an employee needs from his/her job like self-esteem, social appearance, fulfilling basic needs etc. and keeps them motivated to work and in this way the employee’s turnover ratio will minimize.
iii. Managers must keep in mind that language should never become a problem, where the people are not able to communicate how will they expect to work for long hours and achieve the demand and goal and represent themselves up to the mark. Where there is lack of communication there will be lack of trust, confidence and satisfaction.
iv. Involvement of all the levels of the management for any discussion or decision will increase the scope of ideas and information and other than that top-bottom level of employees will work like a team and able to consider fastly what is good for company and what is not and there must be scent and feeling of togetherness.
v. Providing time to time trainings and seminars keep them aware, updated and focused to their goal and nothing can divert them. So, it is also work like an eye-opener if in case employees got distracted somehow, then this seminars and trainings will get them back to their work area and area’s rules and ethics.
5. Recommend the best course of action: –
After going through all the above course of action the best plan or course of action to be recommended to be followed are is the hierarchy of needs theory this will definitely help the manager to short out almost every problem regarding employee’s job satisfaction and after that the employees will work more efficiently and effectively. They cope up with any uncertainty which they feel like going to be happen. They will able to work properly and happily without any frustration and will give their best. This motivation and satisfaction theory will work as the best for the whole company.
This case study was about the KazOil company which is owned by two different companies one was Canadian company (Hydrocarbon Ltd.) and another one was Chinese company (China Petrol). Employees really got affected as the working style and environment of both were totally opposite. Basically, the two-relevant topic for this case study according to me were, first, challenges and responsibilities for the global managers and the other one is Communicating across cultures. After that there were many alternative courses of action but within all of them the best one was motivation and satisfaction of employees at job which should be focused the most if managers want to drag the company in the list of successful companies.
Arystanbekon, K. (2005). Kazakhstan’s economic policy with hifh levels of foreign investment. Preblems of Economic Transition, 29-42.
Azimbekova, Y. a. (2014).
Herzberg, F., Mausner, B., & Snyderman, B.B. (1959). New York: John Wiley & Sons. The Motivation to Work.
Maslow, A.H. (1970). New York: Harper and Row. Motivation and Personality.