HRM2003/HRM2007 Work organisation and society
Coursework 2 – Individual academic essay (60%)
Each student must choose one of the questions below. Essay needs to be 1500-2000
words (excluding references).
Students must submit their essay on Turnitin on MyLearning no later than 1st of May, 2020.
The turnitin link will close at 23.59GMT on this date.
1. In recent years companies like Google and Innocent have tried to implement ‘fun’
corporate cultures. Assess the pros and cons of such organisational cultures for
workers and organisations.
Baptiste, N. R. (2009) Fun and well‐being: insights from senior managers in a local
authority, Employee Relations, 31(6), 600-612
Bolton, S. C., & Houlihan, M. (2009). Are we having fun yet? A consideration of workplace
fun and engagement. Employee Relations, 31(6), 556-568.
Bratton (2015) Chapter 17: Culture. In Bratton, J. Work and Organizational Behaviour. 3rd
edition. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Fleming, P. (2005). Workers’ playtime? Boundaries and cynicism in a “culture of fun”
program. The Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 41(3), 285-303.
Fleming, P. and Sturdy, A. (2009) ““Just be yourself!”: Towards neo‐normative control in
organisations?”, Employee Relations, 31(6), 569-583
Han, Heesup, Kim, Wansoo and Jeong, Chul (2016) Workplace fun for better team
performance: focus on frontline hotel employees, International Journal of Contemporary
Hospitality Management, 28 (7), 1391-1416
Harris, L.C. and Ogbonna, E. (2002) The Unintended Consequences of Culture
Interventions: A Study of Unexpected Outcomes. British Journal of Management, 3(1): 31-
Karl, K. A., Peluchette, J. V. & Hall, L. M. (2008). Give them something to smile about: a
marketing strategy for recruiting and retaining volunteers. Journal of Nonprofit and Public
Sector Marketing, 20 (1), 71-96
Plester, B. and Hutchison, A (2016) “Fun times: the relationship between fun and workplace
engagement”, Employee Relations, 38 (3), 332-350
Plester, B, Cooper-Thomas, H. and Winquist, J. (2015) “The fun paradox”, Employee
Relations, 37(3), 380-398
2. Some say that the contemporary world of work is heading towards the ‘gig
economy’. Critically discuss the pros and cons of gig work for organisations,
workers, and the wider society.
Baldry, C., Bain, P. and Taylor, P. et al. (2007) The meaning of work in the new economy.
Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Barzilay, A.R. & Ben-David, A. (2017) Platform inequality: gender in the gig economy. Seton
Hall Law Review, 47(2): 393-431.
Beck, U. (1992) Risk Society: Towards a New Modernity. London: SAGE
Beck, U. (1994) The Brave New world of work. London: Polity Press.
Burchell,B., Ladipo, D., and Wilkinson, F. (2002) Job insecurity and work intensification.
Chan, S. (2013) ‘I am King’: the paradox of precarious work. The Economic and Labour
Relations Review 24(3): 362–79
Flanagan, F. (2017) Symposium on work in the ‘gig’ economy: Introduction. The Economic
and Labour Relations Review, 28(3): 378-381.
Lozza, E., Libreri, C. and Bosio, A.C. (2012) Temporary employment, job insecurity and their
extraorganizational outcomes, Economic and Industrial Democracy, 34(1): 89 – 105
Moynihan, R. (2012) Job insecurity contributes to poor health, British Medical
Journal, 345(1): e5183-e5183.
Standing, G. (2011) The precariat: the new dangerous class. London: Bloomsbury
3. Only six FTSE100 companies are led by women and research suggests that there
are invisible barriers to women’s progression to leadership termed ‘the glass ceiling’.
Critically discuss what organisational and social factors may lead to such situation.
Some suggested readings
Acker, J. (1990). ‘Hierarchies, jobs, bodies: a theory of gendered organizations’, Gender &
Society, 4, 139–158.
Calás, M.B. Smircich, L.and Holvino, E. (2014) in S. Kumra, R. Simpson and R. Burke (Eds)
Theorizing Gender-and-Organization: Changing Times…Changing Theories?. In The
Oxford Handbook of Gender and Organizations, London: Oxford University Press
Carli, L. and Eagly, A. H. (2016) Women face a labyrinth: an examination of metaphors for
women leaders, Gender in Management: An International Journal, 31(8), 514-527
Hoobler, J. M., Wayne, S. J., & Lemmon, G. (2009). Bosses’ perceptions of family-work conflict
and women’s promotability: Glass ceiling effects. Academy of management
journal, 52(5), 939-957.
Kanter, R.M. (1977/2008) Men and Women of the Corporation. New York: Basic Books
Metz, I. and Kulik, C. (2014) ‘The Rocky Climb: Women’s Advancement in Management’, in
S. Kumra, R. Simpson and R. Burke (Eds) The Oxford Handbook of Gender and
Organizations, London: Oxford University Press. pp. 175-199
Powell, G. (2014) Sex, Gender and Leadership: What do Four Decades of Research Tell
Us?, in S. Kumra, R. Simpson and R. Burke (Eds) The Oxford Handbook of Gender
and Organizations, London: Oxford University Press
Schein, V. E., R. Mueller, T. Lituchy and J. Liu (1996). ‘Think manager – think male: a global
phenomenon?’, Journal of Organizational Behavior, 17, 33–41.
Wajcman, J. (2013). Managing like a man: Women and men in corporate management. John
Wiley & Sons.
Weyer, B. (2007) “Twenty years later: explaining the persistence of the glass ceiling for women
leaders”, Women in Management Review, 22(6), 482-496
– contextualization of the topic
– thesis statement – your answer to
– outline of essay
– Shows understanding of theories
– Shows understanding of the
‘managerial’ and ‘critical’
approaches in OB.
Evidence of use of research:
– Academic sources are used to
support the argument
Presentation and structure
– Use of academic writing skills
– Clear and logical structure
Focus on question
– The essay focuses on the question
set and offers points that are
relevant to the answer
– Restates the argument and the
answer to the question
– Gives a succinct summary of the
main points made