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Running head: BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

TOPIC: Behaviour and Influence in Great Eastern Malaysia Berhad

Name: Chen Jing Shi (201720033)


Diong Pein Ying (201730033)
DATE: 24 July 2018
Lecturer: Ms. Nazrila Shaherah
BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

Table of content
1.0 Introduction………………………………………………………………………………1
2.0 Background of the company………………………………………………………………3
3.0 Group dynamics of the company…………………………………………………………4
3.1 Ways to improve group dynamics…………………………………………………9
4.0 Individual differences in the company…………………………………………………12
5.0 Motivation in the company ……………………………………………………………16
5.1 Extrinsic motivation……………………………………………………………16
5.2 Intrinsic motivation………………………………….…………….…………18
6.0 Conclusion…………………………………………………………………………...…21
References……………………………………………………………………………………23
Appendices…………………………………………………………………………………...24

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1.0 Introduction

A group is defined as a collection of two or more interacting individuals who maintain

stable patterns of relationships, share common goals and perceive themselves as being a group

(Greenberg, 2011). According to the studies of Greenberg (2011), organizations can be thought

of as collections of groups that are focused toward attaining the mutual goals of achieving

success for the company. However, this is not people’s only motivation and enthusiasm for

joining groups. Significantly, the group helps individual to feel stronger, have fewer self-

doubts, and be more contrary to threats. Likewise, people sometimes join groups because they

seek the security of group membership (Williams, 2014). Moreover, groups also exist as they

appeal to a basic psychological need to be social since people have a basic need to affiliate with

others (Bernstein, Sacco, Young, Hugenberg, & Cook, 2010). In this case, workgroups

significantly contribute to meet the need for friendships and social relations. Also, group

memberships can sometimes raise the feelings of self-esteem like being accepted into a highly

valued group (Crabtree, Haslam, Postmes, & Haslam, 2010). Therefore, it can be a very

effective method of nurturing self-esteem. In fact, people are attracted to groups for a multitude

of reasons (Stahl, Maznevski, Voigt, & Jonsen, 2010). Although they may have different

motivations for joining groups, once they are formed, groups develop in obviously similar ways

(Stahl et. al., 2010).

Specifically, based on the investigation of Greenberg (2011), there are two types of

groups, including formal groups and informal groups. In detail, the formal group is the units

constituted by management as part of the organization structure (Ahmady, Mehrpour, &

Nikooravesh, 2016). According to the analysis of Ahmady, Mehrpour, and Nikooravesh

(2016), a formal group is formed when members come together to accomplish organizational

goals and objectives. Also, it has particular structures and roles where responsibilities of

members of the group are defined. Likewise, activities that carried out by a formal group have

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specific regulations in which members of the group are supposed to adhere to and follow to

ensure good coordination (Ahmady, Mehrpour, & Nikooravesh, 2016). For example, the

command group is referred to as a formal group in which it is created by the connections

between individuals who are a formal part of the organization (Lunenburg, 2012). Notably,

this group usually consists of a supervisor and subordinates (Lunenburg, 2012). In addition, a

formal organizational group may be formed around some specific task and such group is known

as a task group (Haas, 2010). A task group is consisting of individuals with some special

interest or expertise in a specific field regardless of their positions in the organizational

hierarchy (Haas, 2010). However, it is a temporary group and the boundaries are not limited

to its immediate hierarchical superior (Haas, 2010).

On the contrary, informal groups are alliances that are neither formally structured nor

organizationally determined (Diefenbach & Sillince, 2011). These groups are developed

naturally among the members without any direction from the management of the organization

within which they operate (Diefenbach & Sillince, 2011). As a matter of fact, the dominant

factor in the formation of these groups is a common interest shared by the members (Song, Shi,

Ma, & Yang, 2015). Likewise, a group of similar members who group together to share ideas

about how to advance within the company is called an interest group. Also, the friendship

group is another type of informal groups (Nkala & Barbara, 2014). According to the analysis

of Nkala and Barbara (2014), these groups arise because members know each other very well

before joining the organization and in the initial stages, they recognize each other only. These

social alliances frequently extend outside the work situation and can be based on similar age

or ethnic heritage or for holding similar viewpoints or for having the same hobbies (Nkala &

Barbara, 2014).

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2.0 Background of the company

The company that we have chosen to conduct our interview is the Great Eastern Life

Assurance (Malaysia) Berhad Johor Branch agency office. This organization is an insurance

company and it was set up in the year 1996. The owner of this agency office is Mr. Tan Ba Ba.

In general, this organization consists of twelve subordinates and four business partners.

Specifically, the age range of the subordinates in this company is between twenty-two to fifty-

six years old. In detail, some of the employees in this company are undergraduates and some

are students. Also, their working time is usually from nine in the morning to five in the

afternoon. However, their working time is more freely in which they do not have to stay in the

office all the time.

Moreover, the structure of this organization in which Mr. Tan is the chairman of this

office branch. Within this organization, there are divided into two branches. In detail, each

branch has a group agency manager. Besides that, there are three agency managers and career

agents in each branch. However, Mr. Tan has implemented some of the criteria for hiring the

employees in this company in which candidates must have completed upper secondary

education and the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM). Apart from that, Mr. Tan claimed that he

helps to motivate and train the part-timers such as university students to be the effective leader

of this company. Additionally, Mr. Tan mentioned that he wishes to hire someone who is

fulfilling the criteria above and have a higher level of involvement in the extra-curricular

activities in the school.

Markedly, in this organization, the services of insurance are divided into two areas that

include general insurance and life insurance. Specifically, the general insurance includes house

insurance, car insurance, or travel insurance whereas the life insurance includes health

insurance, accident insurance, or personal testament. Basically, the employees in this company

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approach potential clients by utilizing mailings and phone solicitation and visit them in a place.

Not only that, Mr. Tan mentioned that he has set some regulations in which the subordinates

must visit three customers in a day. Due to this reason, Mr. Tan requires his subordinates to

follow up on the current situation of the customer, pay attention to the customers’ need and

provide care together with sincerity to the customers. In this case, they are able to determine

their clients' particular needs and financial situations by scheduling fact-finding appointments.

Nevertheless, the subordinates must follow the Law of Malaysia in which they have to comply

with the Financial Services Act 2013 to prevent them from terminating. Notably, this Act is

cited as the Malaysia Deposit Insurance Corporation Act 2011 that includes managing the

financial institutions, payment systems, and etcetera (Financial Services Act, 2013). Therefore,

the subordinates who violate the rule that includes in this Act, they may be terminated to

continue this career. Furthermore, Mr. Tan stated that he always encourages his subordinates

to uphold the professional spirits by providing the professional insurance, solving the financial

problems of the customers and understand the social situations of each class. By the same

token, he claimed that he desires to cultivate a future leader that meet the demands of leadership

in the company. In this case, Mr. Tan advertises the slogan “Life is Great” that properly

represents his company.

3.0 Group dynamics of the company

Group dynamics is known as the social procedure by which people interact and behave

in a group environment (Greenberg, 2011). It involves the influence of personality, power, and

behavior on the group procedure (Greenberg, 2011). As we know, a great deal of the work

performed in organizations is done by people working in groups. Therefore, it makes sense to

recognize the types of groups that exist and the variables regulating the interrelationships

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between them and individuals (Downe, Cowell, & Morgan, 2016). Significantly, group

dynamics focuses on the nature of groups, including, the variables that determine their

formation and development, their structures, and their interrelationships with individuals, other

groups, and the organizations within which they exist (Tsai, 2011). In other words, to be a

group, there are four fundamental principles that need to be met.

As mentioned earlier, a stable group structure is one of the main characteristics of a

group. Specifically, in the Great Eastern Life Assurance Malaysia Berhad, different aspects of

group structure including roles, norms, status, and cohesiveness are studied. Significantly,

based on the investigation and analysis above, the company has the structural dynamics of work

groups. They share a high level of commitment to achieve the common goals and objectives.

Notably, in the company, Mr. Tan is the boss and a great deal of responsibility rests on his

shoulders. For instance, he is both an evaluator of the subordinates’ performance and the main

source of the resources and rewards they seek. Furthermore, he takes the formal powers as the

president of the company and makes the crucial decisions in the meeting. Due to this reason,

his role of company president is largely symbolic since he is the ones making key decisions.

According to our interview, Mr. Tan mentioned that he applied decision-making techniques

that include group discussion and participation in which may lead to higher quality decisions

and this is especially if the problems are complex or unstructured. Significantly, in line with

the analysis of Greenberg (2011), the role incumbent’s recognition of the expectations of his

role helps in avoiding the disorganization that certainly would result if no clear role

expectations existed. Moreover, we realized that the boss trusts and has confidence in his

subordinates as he welcomes their participation in planning and decision making, which may

give them a major level of control over their life at work. For this reason, the boss looks to

their subordinates to accomplish their departmental objectives. In this case, the subordinates

are able to acknowledge and realize the roles of their boss and have certain expectations of him.

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Significantly, according to the investigation of Guala, Mittone, & Ploner (2013), learning of

roles and causing the change in the behavior occur with the certain phases, and as a result of

interpreting of group expectations by the boss for holding the office of the president and

realization of the behavior complying with it, the boss completes his real role behavior.

Additionally, in accordance with our analysis, the subordinates have clearly defined

roles and responsibilities within the organization. In detail, the subordinates certainly

acknowledge the expectations from their roles and they share a common understanding of each

other’s roles and responsibilities. For instance, some common responsibilities of team

members include, participating actively in all meetings, completing assignments between

meetings and serving as a note taker and preparing meeting records. Consequently, these

actions can reduce their role ambiguity and role conflict in the form of job stress that will affect

the employees. In addition, every member of the company is clear about their superiors or the

person they have to report to, their responsibilities and corresponding expectations, and the

level of authority they require in order to make decisions. Likewise, this company consists of

group agencies, agency managers, unit managers and other office assistants to work together

in pursuit of the goals and objectives of the company. In general, when roles and

responsibilities are clearly defined in the company, team members are more productive

(Zarutskie, 2010). Due to this reason, there is less duplication of effort, less confusion,

disappointment, and frustration and subsequently involve greater productivity (Mohammed &

Nadkarni, 2011). When roles and responsibilities are clearly defined, team members look

beyond their own individual positions and learn to understand, respect, and value the unique

contributions of one another, and they recognize that the overall success of the team is a

function of shared responsibility and ownership (Charbonnier-Voirin, El Akremi, &

Vandenberghe, 2010). Thus, this company is function efficiently since the team has established

clear roles and responsibilities.

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Besides that, the existence of group norms in the company can enhance their orderly

functioning. As described by Greenberg (2011), norms generally agreed-upon informal rules

that guide the behaviors of group members. Today's working world is one in which the

happiness of employees is of utmost importance, not only in order to retain staff, but also to

maintain productivity. Hence, company culture and company values go hand-in-hand in

creating a great working environment (Blattner & Walter, 2015). Specifically, the environment

of this company is centered around the seven norms in which the subordinates are ingrained in

the way the company is run and often applied as a guideline in their daily lives. For example,

the company focus on humility and accountability in which everyone is responsible for the big

picture as they commit to ideas agreed upon and take responsibilities. However, the group

norms do not change the personal beliefs and emotions of the members, but the individual’s

behaviors or attitudes may have affected voluntary. Moreover, the organization also develop

the prescriptive norms in which the members should be genuine with each other about ideas,

challenges, and feelings. Likewise, they practice a consistent commitment to sharing all the

information they have in order to avoid hidden agendas. In general, everyone is aware of the

norms and values and agrees on them as it is not just the boss’s standpoints. In fact, having

company values encourages a sense of purpose and responsibility to one’s work. The values

and norms are what support the vision, shape the culture and reflect what the company identity.

Apart from that, cohesion can be thought of as the determinant of any groups' structure

(Greenberg, 2011). It refers to the strength of group members’ desires to remain a part of their

groups (Abu Bakar & Sheer, 2013). Highly cohesive work groups are ones in which members

are attracted to each other, accept their groups’ goals, and help work toward meeting them (Abu

Bakar & Sheer, 2013). For one, cohesiveness generally tends to be greater when the more time

group members spend together (Dunlop & Beauchamp, 2011). Similarly, cohesiveness tends

to be greater in smaller groups (Dunlop & Beauchamp, 2011). Likewise, the members of this

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company have some influence on one another. Specifically, the members have a collective

identity and they share a sense of purpose, working together on a task and they establish a

structured pattern of communication. For instance, we noticed that all the members are

working as a unit and they share tasks to achieve and strive for the company monthly target.

According to the interview, Mr. Tan mentioned that he always promotes team spirit among his

subordinates by holding outdoor recreation leisure activities such as a picnic, hiking, and

camping. Also, he invites his subordinates' family to join together in the activities or trip. Thus,

team bonding brings people together by encouraging collaboration and teamwork and the

members of the group will have some influence on one another. In this case, the fun activities

that help the members see each other in a different light and allow them to connect in a different

setting and thus they will recognize the contributions of other members. Additionally, the

members of the company share common goals in which to increase the number of customers

and achieve the monthly target of RM 100000. For instance, Mr. Tan always encourages the

other group members to help each other in achieving the mutual goals and work well together

in an integrated way, with a high level of awareness and appreciation of each other. Due to

this reason, the company members experience real strength from their membership and the

sharing of goals. Consequently, they are willing to invest considerable energy in the interests

of the company.

Apart from that, culture plays several important roles in an organization (Greenberg,

2011). Likewise, in Great Eastern Life Assurance Malaysia Berhad that we have chosen, the

culture has generated commitment to the company’s mission. According to our interview and

survey questionnaires, the subordinates believe in the company are dedicated to what it stands

for, and intend to do what is good for the company. In this case, committed subordinates

contribute greatly to the company because they perform and behave in achieving the company’s

goals. Due to this reason, a strong company culture enables their employees to understand the

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goals of the organization, and as they work towards organizational goals, their level of

commitment increases (Nongo & Ikyanyon, 2012). Besides that, the type of organizational

culture that the company applied is the clan culture. In accordance with the studies of Asci,

Cemberci, and Civelek (2015), an organization to have a clan culture when it has a strong

internal focus together with a high degree of flexibility and discretion. Based on our analysis,

the working environment is friendly and people have a lot in common, and it is similar to a

large family. Likewise, the subordinates share their experiences, family stories, and problems

with each other. They behave and treats each other just like a family. Also, the boss and the

managers are seen as mentors and even as father figures. Based on the interview, the boss

claimed that he always encourages his subordinates to attend some English courses and special

training courses. In this case, the organization is held together by loyalty and tradition as there

is great involvement. Moreover, the company emphasizes long-term human resource

development and bonds with colleagues by morals. Notably, the success of this company is

defined within the framework of addressing the needs of the clients and caring for the people.

In short, this organization promotes teamwork, participation, and consensus.

3.1 Ways to improve group dynamics

Based on the interview that we have conducted, we have suggested some methods to

improve the group dynamics of this company. First of all, the company should place greater

emphasis on diversity and inclusion initiatives to strengthen organizational adaptability. In this

case, there are some benefits to the company and best practices when it comes to implementing

and monitoring a racial and ethnic diversity policy in the workplace. Markedly, companies

increasingly understand the value of recruiting and retaining diverse employees (Wan

Mohammad, Wasiuzzaman, & Nik Salleh, 2016). For this reason, in line with the hypothesis

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of Mazur (2010), these employees play a crucial role in a company's ability to adapt, grow and

sustain a competitive advantage in the modern business landscape. However, this company

fails to recognize the advantages of having a racially and ethnically diverse workforce. Factors

such as prejudice and stereotypes towards certain racial or ethnic groups, whether conscious or

unconscious have led to the discriminatory practices in hiring. Likewise, the company can

create a business case for diversity by outlining some strengths of a racial and ethnically diverse

workplace. For instance, some benefits of racial and ethnic diversity in the company in which

may improve access to new and diverse customer markets, increase innovation, improved

company reputation management provides greater flexibility and adaptability in a globalized

world. For this case, the company is more likely to acquire these advantages when they strive

to understand both the social and cultural complexities inherent in embracing diversity and

strive to be diversity leaders in their industry.

Besides that, the organization can increase more numbers of the worker with different

age range and gender in the company. In line with the investigations of Kunze, Boehm, and

Bruch (2011), the first things that people usually think about diversity in which including age,

gender, race, and cultural background. Moreover, there is far more important to create a diverse

workplace by hiring people who fit into different age brackets and create the perfect male to

female ratio (Gompers, Kovner, Lerner, & Scharfstein, 2010). According to the studies of

Hoever, Van Knippenberg, Van Ginkel and Barkema (2012), by hiring people with different

genders and at varied stages of their career, it can help to foster creativity and offer a range of

perspectives and ideas. For example, individuals from diverse backgrounds can offer a

selection of different talents, skills together with experiences and that may be of benefit to the

company and their work performance. Due to this reason, a variety of skills and experiences

among the team members also means that the subordinates can learn from each other.

Moreover, by working alongside people of different backgrounds, experiences and working

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styles, creative concepts can be born from bouncing ideas off of each other and offering

feedback and suggestions. For instance, one member may be great at generating interesting

and out of the box ideas, whereas another member may have the necessary experience to

execute it. Markedly, in line with the investigations of Mueller, Melwani, and Goncalo (2012),

the most creative people are the youngest as they are less biased. However, the most innovative

is the more mature people because they are the ones who almost always have the base on which

to build the innovation process (Jackson & Joshi, 2011). Also, to innovate one must have good

ideas, but more than that, one must know the business and the tools that give values to the

company. By the same token, a company that embraces diversity will attract a wider range of

candidates to their vacancies, as it will be viewed as a more progressive company and will

appeal to individuals from all walks of life (Knippenberg, Dawson, West, & Homan, 2011).

Thus, it is essential to play on each member’s strengths and collaborate with others in the

company.

Other than that, the company should establish an agenda for managing time to complete

the tasks. Likewise, it is the end of another busy working day and, even though some

employees came into the office early and left late, they do not feel as if they have accomplished

anything significant. Specifically, regarding the interview that we have conducted, some

employees faced with endless meetings and frequent interruptions, and they can easily be busy

all day without making any progress on high-priority projects and goals. Due to this reason,

there are some of the employees undergo moderate stress in their working position. In this

case, the subordinates mentioned that thereby making time for the work that really matters,

while still leaving time for personal development, family and friends are important for them as

well. Therefore, we suggest that this company may use the method of scheduling in which it

is the art of planning the activities so that the employees can achieve their goals and priorities

in the time they have available. In fact, it can be effective when is done. Likewise, the

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subordinates can understand what they can realistically achieve within the specified time and

achieve a good work-life balance to have enough time for family and friends, exercise and

hobbies. Moreover, scheduling helps them to think about what they want to achieve in a day,

week or month, and it keeps them on track to accomplish the personal goals along with the

company’s goals (Brudan, 2010). Thus, it is important that the subordinates’ schedule makes

time for their professional and personal goals.

4.0 Individual differences in the company

According to the research of Williams, Myerson, and Hale (2008), people differ from

one another as individual differences, and such unique qualities can have major influences on

our thinking and behaviour as well as our lives and career. As such, these factors play a role

in many aspects of behaviour in work settings. In accordance with the analysis of Thong, Hong,

and Tam (2012), the impact of individual differences on organisational behaviour is becoming

more and more tremendous. Especially in the recruitment and selection process of the

organisation, individual differences are highly concerned by employers (Ashraf & Caldwell,

2016). In work settings, individuals bring a number of differences to work, such as unique

personalities, values, emotions, and moods. Moreover, companies hire people with the

expectation that those individuals have certain skills, abilities, personalities, and values (Ashraf

& Caldwell, 2016). Thus, considering the development of organisational effectiveness, the

study of individual differences to discover how they may affect individual performance so to

influence organisation’s performance.

As a matter of fact, employees are the greatest asset for an organization to shine, as the

organizations depend on the competence and professional attitude of the employees (Chugh,

2014). First of all, we consider the matter of how various facets of personality combine with

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elements of the work environment to influence behaviour. However, the Big Five dimensions

of personality are measured by means of questionnaires in which the members whose

personalities are being assessed answer various questions about themselves (Greenberg, 2011).

The Big Five dimensions of personality consist of five dimensions of personality including

extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness to experience that

are strongly related to different forms of organizational behaviour (Greenberg, 2011).

According to our analysis, we noticed that most of the subordinates in the Great Eastern

Life Assurance Malaysia Berhad show the higher level in extraversion and conscientiousness.

In detail, extraversion is the degree to which a person is outgoing, talkative, and sociable, and

enjoys being in social situations (McCabe & Fleeson, 2012). According to the established

findings by McCabe and Fleeson (2012) is that extroverts tend to be effective in jobs involving

sales. For this case, subordinates who scored high level of extraversion may help in striving

the company’s monthly goal which is the target sales of RM 100000. Moreover, extraverts do

well in social situations, and as a result, they tend to be effective in job interviews and they are

likely to use their social network (Weibel, Wissmath, & Mast, 2010). Significantly, members

who have high extraversion levels can involve themselves well in the social situations and

further increase their job performances. Due to this reason, their wider locus of the social

network can help them in achieving their monthly goals since they enjoy talking to people.

This will have an easier time making cold calls or engaging with customers than a salesperson

who would prefer to work alone. Furthermore, they actively seek information and feedback

and build effective relationships, which helps with their adjustment (Weibel, Wissmath, &

Mast, 2010). Based on our observation and analysis, the extroverts in the company always

involve themselves socially with everyone who will have them. They instigate personal

discussions and often become the social directors for the department. Consequently, extroverts

gravitate toward groups and constant actions, and they tend to think out loud in the company.

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Likewise, they are friendly, encourage other members of the company and get their energy

from being around and working with other people. Subsequently, according to the

interactionist perspective, this would facilitate voicing their own opinions especially when the

organizational norms and culture send strong signals that this is encouraged (Greenberg, 2011).

Thus, this can be an opportunity to build a pleasant workplace relationship.

Therefore, for extroverts to be successful, they need a workplace that promotes open

communication and collaboration, not inhibits it (Garcia, Duncan, Carmody-Bubb, & Ree,

2014). Without the ability to interact with others, extroverts begin to feel less engaged in their

work and burn out quickly (Garcia, Duncan, Carmody-Bubb, & Ree, 2014). Surprisingly, the

boss of the Great Eastern Life Assurance Malaysia Berhad has focused on providing some

techniques in the office to prevent extrovert burnout. For instance, Mr. Tan assigns group work

in which the members work together on larger projects and each member have brought a

different strength to the group. For this reason, extroverts work better with other people than

on their own and consequently, group work will create a collaborative environment that helps

them excel. Additionally, the boss has arranged the subordinates with high extraversion in the

same department work as partners to complete their tasks. However, if the task is more

complex, he will increase the group size by combining teams. Therefore, by doing this, the

group dynamics of the company can be more effective since the boss was able to acknowledge

the traits of his subordinates. Also, this demonstrated that the boss was able to recognize the

positive efforts their subordinates are making. Thus, the group culture of this company can

improve the job satisfaction of the subordinates and eventually increase their job performances.

In addition, according to the survey, the members of the Great Eastern Malaysia Berhad

demonstrated a high level of conscientiousness. Conscientiousness is a tendency to show self-

discipline, systematic, punctual, achievement-oriented, and dependable (Carter, Dalal, Boyce,

O'connell, Kung, & Delgado, 2014). Moreover, across a variety of occupations and jobs,

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conscientiousness is the one personality trait that uniformly predicts how high a person’s

achievement will be (Le, Oh, Robbins, Ilies, Holland, & Westrick, 2011). Markedly,

conscientiousness is the trait most desired by recruiters and results in the most success in job

achievements (Le, et al., 2011). This is not a surprise, because, in addition to their high

performance, conscientious people have higher levels of motivation to perform, lower levels

of turnover, lower levels of absenteeism, and higher levels of safety performance at work

(Ohme, & Zacher, 2015). For instance, in this company, the members work hard in the face of

challenges and can control their impulses. For this case, when they faced with roadblocks, they

persevere and double their efforts in which enabling them to succeed in whatever they put their

minds into. Specifically, they are better at goals setting in which they are setting their personal

goals, working toward them, and persisting amid setbacks. Furthermore, subordinates who

show a high level of conscientiousness can increase their job performances as they pay

attention to details together with plans and deliberates. As a result, they may help the company

in achieving the goals and objectives. For example, the subordinates will not miss the deadlines

as they prefer neat, detailed and orderly manner and they often have a To-Do list. In general,

achievers like this are valued by the company, so they get promoted faster and would have

higher salaries. Therefore, the employees have greater job satisfaction.

Besides that, in accordance with the studies of Rich, Lepine, and Crawford (2010),

conscientious people also like to follow rules and norms. In this case, if someone in the

company shows up on time, that is a great clue toward conscientiousness, since a punctual

person has to be organized and care enough to arrive on time. Particularly, they have high job

support and high job control in which are associated with better work functioning and less

absenteeism in the work settings. As a result, the company norms and culture can be enhanced.

For instance, when the members showing up on time, doing thorough work and being

thoughtful towards their colleagues helps people regardless of their job function or workplace

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situation. Also, the values and attitudes they presented in the company can also influence other

member's workplace behavior that includes their actions and judgments (Dane & Brummel

2014). For this reason, members who score well on conscientiousness may be a proactive

personality, someone who is more apt to take initiative and persevere to influence the

environment. As a result, the relationships among the company members can be strengthened

and the effective group dynamics can be performed.

5.0 Motivation in the company

Motivation can be defined as the willingness of a person to perform a task and

conditioned by behaviours to meet the needs (Tan, Rajah, & Yusoff, 2014). According to the

studies of Greenberg (2011), motivation refers to the processes that account for an individual’s

arousal, direction, and persistence of effort toward achieving a goal. Specifically, the first

component of motivation is arousal in which people should have the drives or energy behind

their actions (Greenberg, 2011). Specifically, this drives people to do what it takes to

accomplish these purposes. Moreover, people need to set the direction such as how many

things need to do as a path toward meeting their goal (Greenberg, 2011). Lastly, the final

procedure of motivation is to maintain the behaviour in which the persistence that keeps a

person to achieve their goal (Greenberg, 2011). Therefore, motivation is important in any

businesses or companies because it is able to satisfy the employees’ needs and make the great

outcome in job performance. Thus, according to our analysis, the Great Eastern Life Assurance

Malaysia Berhad is applying both external and internal motivation towards their employees.

5.1 Extrinsic motivation

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

In this company, the extrinsic motivation is provided for subordinates. First of all, the

subordinates not only get their basic salary, they are also get the equal commission in each

business they do. In line with the hypothesis of Greenberg (2011), money is not the top impetus

to the subordinates, but it is still highly significant to them. However, the main key point is

that they can get the balance between inputs and outcomes among the colleagues. According

to equity theory, people tend to maintain the rate of their own rewards to their own

contributions that are fair to the rewards and outcomes rate of others with whom they contrast

themselves (Greenberg, 2011). Moreover, based on the studies of Salah (2016), he stated that

the reward or stimulative system ought to be equitable and non-discrimination. Thus, in this

company, every subordinate gets an equal commission that formulated by Great Eastern central

company in Kuala Lumpur. For instance, every subordinate can get RM300 commission from

a RM 30,000 new Medicare. Consequently, the subordinates will not feel guilty with

overpayment or get angry with the underpayment to their colleagues.

Apart from that, one of the external motivations is when they achieve their sales target,

they will receive a trophy as a recognition. In this company, different job position will carry

different target of sales. As an illustration, the career agent needs to sell eight new cases and

above and the agent needs to sell four cases and above in a month. Therefore, if they reach the

sales target, they will receive the trophy together with the praises from the upper management

during the meeting. In addition, this company provides free overseas travel for the subordinates

as a reward. In general, this reward has been implemented for many years in the company.

Specifically, the boss will set up a different target of sales in a year for his subordinates to

achieve. According to Mair (2015), he pointed out that stimulative travel is regarded as a

significant reward by the organizations and their workers. Hence, based on our interview, Mr.

Tan claimed that he will provide and sponsors the fees for the trip when the subordinates were

successfully achieved the company’s goals. Surprisingly, the boss will also suggest different

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

countries for the trip. Significantly, in this company, subordinates who achieve the target sales

of RM 70,000 in a year, they will be given chances to travel to China. Moreover, if the

subordinate does not want to travel abroad, they can convert the reward and choose the more

desirable future alternatives. This situation is fit to the cafeteria-style benefits plans. It means

that the stimulative systems in which subordinates have the choices to choose the fringe

benefits they like from a list of available alternatives (Greenberg, 2011). Therefore, the

subordinates will not force to receive what they do not like as a reward.

5.2 Intrinsic motivation

Not only extrinsic motivations, intrinsic motivations also implemented in Great Eastern

company. In the Great Eastern company, Mr. Tan mentioned that the emphasis on intrinsic

motivations rather than extrinsic motivations. Due to this reason, he believes that giving

spiritual encouragement is the greatest way for them to believe in themselves and to realize

that they have a greater potential within. For this case, encouragement can lead to success for

an employee. In general, the company will provide some professional training seminars and

incentive lectures as an intrinsic motivation for their subordinates. Due to this reason, the boss

wishes to improve the quality of the employees and boost their self-confidence and

subsequently increase their job performances. Specifically, the company will invite

professional lecturers to give the suggestions and the methods in providing suitable services to

the customers. Not only that, the company will provide some of the practical courses for the

employees as a motivation. Likewise, personal improvement course and emotional intelligence

training are fully sponsored by the company. In this case, these courses can give the employees

a better chance to improve self-development, improve their Emotional Intelligence and

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

Emotional Quotient and help everyone perform under pressure regardless of their level within

the organization.

According to our survey questionnaire, all the subordinates mentioned that they have

achieved the self-improvement in their workplace and even in daily life. Hence, they can

constantly look on the bright side of things and have enough inspiration and creativity to focus

on their roles and responsibilities. Based on Nielsen, Ogbonnaya, Kansala, Saari, and Isaksson

(2017), they described that workers with high well-being can perform well at work and vice

versa. Due to this reason, more comprehensive health and productivity programs can tackle

elements such as the workforce’s emotional and mental health, social connectivity, sense of

fulfillment on the job, and many other aspects.

Apart from that, the Great Eastern company will suggest their subordinates to challenge

themselves to move forward in achieving their goals. Based on Preenen, Vianen, and Pater

(2012), they stated that challenging works can excite the learning and retentivity of a

subordinate. Due to this reason, according to the investigations of Preenen, Vianen, and Peter

(2012), they described that there is a positive relationship between workers' mastery-method

and the performance of challenging jobs. Thus, from Mr. Tan's statement, the company will

set the horizontal stretch goals to their subordinates to attempt to their unfamiliar tasks in jobs.

In fact, a horizontal stretch goal is a goal that challenges people to execute a job that they have

not try before (Greenberg, 2011). Not only in work, he also suggests his subordinates to try

some challenging entertainment such as scuba diving in order to make them have new

experiences in their life. Markedly, this method is shown to be an effective motivation among

the subordinates. From our analysis, the subordinates prefer to have the challenging task that

requires more cognitive effort than easier tasks. Therefore, personal accomplishment will be

cultivated deeply among them. This is because according to the goal-setting theory,

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

subordinates will be stimulated to achieve a goal as it can make them feel successful

(Greenberg, 2011).

Furthermore, the Great Eastern company emphasis on the trust relationship between

employer and employee in the workplace. Based on Yasir, Imran, Irshad, Mohamad, and Khan

(2016), they mentioned that through establishing trust with the employees the leader can get

them to participate in the improvement process and eventually alter the capacity of a company.

From our survey, the subordinates mostly agreed that they have built a trust relationship with

their superiors and colleagues. Moreover, they thought that their capacity in the job is valued

by their superior. For this reason, according to our interview with Mr. Tan, we realized that he

had provides autonomy needs to their subordinates. As an illustration, subordinates have

opportunities to engage in the decision-making process and set their personal goals in the work

setting. Based on Shaharruddin and Ahmad (2015), in dealing with the problem of

organizational cynicism, job autonomy as one of the key tools to decrease negative attitudes,

as workers will not be entirely controlled in their job. Moreover, autonomy will give

subordinates to have more freedom in terms of managing their job and to structure procedures

on work assessment (Shaharruddin & Ahmad, 2015). Consequently, subordinates can fulfill

their autonomy needs and enhance their self-efficacy and eventually increase the job

performance together with satisfaction in their workplace.

In addition, the superior not only built a good relationship with their subordinates, they

also have a good relationship with their family. For this reason, based on the interview with

Mr. Tan, we realized that they emphasis on the value of humanity to their subordinates. Not

only that, from the survey questionnaire, subordinates agreed that their working team has

positive images to their family and friends. Significantly, their family members know each

other well. Moreover, they also thought that receiving encouragement from their superiors and

colleagues is the desirable motivation from the workplace. Accordingly, this can satisfy their

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

affiliation, relatedness, and intimacy needs in the workplace (Greenberg, 2011). In fact, four

motivational needs including achievement, power, affiliation, and growth can influence

psychological empowerment positively (Jha, 2010). Furthermore, subordinates are desired to

demonstrate a high rate of need for affiliation (Jha, 2010). As such, they will feel that they

have a close friend who they enjoy being and appreciate and accept them.

6.0 Conclusion

In conclusion, the Great Eastern Malaysia Berhad has performed a stable group

structure that includes clearly defined roles and responsibilities, company’s norms and group

cohesiveness. Specifically, the boss plays a crucial role in maintaining the status of the

company. Also, the subordinates have a clear understanding of their job positions and

responsibilities. Subsequently, they were able to perform well in the company and achieve

higher job satisfaction. Furthermore, the company's norms and culture play the significant role

in the organization. In Great Eastern Life Assurance Malaysia Berhad, all the employees are

ingrained in the seven norms that the company applied. In addition, this company has

demonstrated high cohesiveness in their workgroup. The members share a sense of purpose

and they influence on each other. Moreover, this company has applied clan culture in their

organization. The clan culture in the organization has increased the level of commitment

among the employees. They promote team spirit, consensus and support each other just like a

family.

Additionally, job performance and the Big Five dimensions of personality are related.

The five factors are strongly associated with cooperating with others and enjoying the overall

workplace experience, which are key components of long-term job success. Specifically,

conscientiousness and extraversion are the two dimensions of the five-factor model that are

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

always correlated with positive job performance. Therefore, the Big Five dimensions of

personality is a valid predictor of workplace performance and the group dynamics. Also, this

company has many motivational aspects as well. Therefore, employee motivation is a crucial

aspect of the workplace which leads to the performance of the department and even the

company's goals. In this case, motivated employees can lead to increased productivity and

allow an organisation to achieve higher levels of output.

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BEHAVIOUR AND INFLUENCE IN GREAT EASTERN LIFE ASSURANCE MALAYSIA BERHAD

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