I spent this past summer working for the City of Lloydminster Engineering Department in which was my fifth straight season surveying with this same organization. My first summer I started out as the regular “rookie” laborer and my time was spent as a rodman who, to sum it up, is the person who walks for miles pounding stakes in the ground not knowing what the stakes mean or why they are put in each spot. This was the pattern for my first summer, but in my second summer I had an increased amount of task variety, task identity, task significance, and was given an increased amount of autonomy and feedback thus fulfilling my Job Characteristics Model (JCM) needs.Each year since, as I came back to work for the summer, I was given more freedom to work as I saw fit and increased pay.
With that meant more responsibility and commitment to my work. With the increased responsibility and wage I had an increased job satisfaction level. As a result of this high satisfaction level from working at the same job for the same people, I had developed a high level of organizational citizenship behavior.
I was very motivated to accomplish the tasks my surveying team and I were required to complete. Because I was in a leadership position, I was required to obtain and sustain a good level of communication with foremen and laborers of construction companies that we worked with on a daily basis. This was done by being more outgoing and getting to know the personalities of most of the workers. The result of this was, slowly but surely rapport was built with these individuals and a level of trust was established. These were some of the situations I would endure once again.The StoryThis particular summer was no different. I came back and was given the responsibility of being accountable for 4 other summer students. Three of these students had no experience at this particular job and these students were Kiel, Mandy, and Robin.
Robin, however, was in trade school to become a civil engineer. The fourth student, Adam, was back for his third straight summer with the City of Lloydminster Engineering Department and his second as being part of a field-surveying team. With this particular student is where the main problem originates.This past summer Adam was in his third season with the same job, which gave him seniority over the other three summer students. This and his previous work experience entitled him to be the leader of a group including himself, Mandy, and Robin, who would work apart from myself for the most part on other projects that did not have immediate deadlines. Because Adam was not in school to become a civil engineer he was paid less than Robin who is a married woman dependent on her and her husband’s income for support, even though he had seniority over her.
Because it was made known to everyone from the beginning of the summer what each person would earn, a conflict was bound to arise as Adam, who lived with his mid-upper class dad, was the kind of person who was very equity driven. He would do whatever it takes for things to be fair and equitable in his eyes. Because of this inequity Adam would slack off at work in any and every way possible in order to restore the negative inequity. To sum it up, Adam was a social loafer in the eyes of each of the other summer students and was causing our summer student crew to be much less efficient and unsatisfied with the job as a whole. As a result of this, I being the leader of the summer student contingent, confronted our boss Ron, and enlightened him with our feelings towards Adam.
After this I then suggested that he be released from his position, which did immediately occur.Problem Primary Problem The main problem is with Adam. He is not a mature, responsible adult and is not to be a leader. His only worry is for his own well being and reputation. He is very self-absorbed. Secondary Problem The second problem was with the organization. Ron did not hire an individual who was fit for the position.
Ron did not maintain an open, confident level of communication with the summer student employees about their feelings towards the position as a whole including attitudes towards co-workers.