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Organisational Behavior at Ryanair

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            Organisational behavior refers to the ways establishments and individuals operate within set frameworks (source). Sources of behavior within individual organisations could be developed by management as part of operational strategies, by employees in their day-to-day activities, or by individual industries depending on demands set participants. The main purpose of having specific behaviors exemplified in organisations is order, which is needed for certain activities to be achieved with greater efficiency. This behaviuor is also important for the purpose of having order and some uniformity in organ lest employees have differently ways of interpreting decisions within organisations. In the attempt to illustrate how Organisational behavior works concurrent sections of this paper shall analyse Ryanair, an Irish low budget airline that has increasingly dominate the industry despite being in business for just two decades. The purpose of using Ryanair as a model for Organisational behavior is because of how the management requires employees to undertake customer care operations. Ryanair employees are consistently under pressure to behave in certain ways for the company to maintain its position as Europe’s cheapest and the most innovative among players in the market. Thanks to the Organisational culture practices by the airline, the labor force has been able to withstand all sorts of pressure.

            Organisational behavior at Ryanair has resulted to one of the most productive labor force in the airline industry and also admired by organisations in other sectors. The result of this productivity has been increased dominance in a highly competitive market. This is cultivated through employee understanding of long tern goal of their employer, which is to provide ever lower and competitive prices for its clients. Employees are thus encouraged to behave in ways that would be in line with reduction in the cost of operating the company. This means being frugal in all manner of day-to-day operations. Having all employees exemplify similar behaviuor results to uniformity and standardization of their work (source), which has led to company rightly expecting high quality services. In addition, having having set particular standard of behaviuor and results within the company has help employees to support each other in times of need. Indeed, Rollinson (2004 pp. 23) argues that Organisational behaviour lets employees to support each other at all times. This means that senior management does not have to keep tracking on whether members of the labor force are following into behaviors set by the respective establishments.

Instead, the management focuses on developing and implementing long run strategies that would aid in improving Organisational competitiveness within respective markets. This is exactly what has happened as a Ryanair. Michael O’Neil, the company’s Chief Executive or fellow managers do not go round looking for employees who are not running their activities in accordance to the organisational behaviuor used in the company; it is employees themselves who help each other to deal with such issues. However, departmental leaders are tasked with the responsibility of ensuring that organisational behaviuor is followed to the letter. Having the 20, 000 members of the labor force understand the Organisational behaviuor, which they are supposed to exemplify has also been tasked to departmental managers. Schein (1997 pp. 121) notes that having the lowest level of management take control of Organisational behavior, helps in establishing micro-departmental behaviors specific to certain line of duty. In this regard, it can be claimed that Ryanair departments have some departmental behaviors that are developed for the purpose of increasing efficiency in the said department. However, these departmental behaviour come second to organisational ones that must be practiced. Other that departments, individuals working teams could develop short term behavior to be exemplified during period of certain projects.

            Organisational behavior, notes Dawson (1986 pp. 25) helps organisations to create certain images in minds of stakeholders as well as members of the public. Ryanair has successfully done this through its dedicated labor force. Since employees tends to serve as windows by which members of the publics understand organisations, those of Ryanair have in no doubt illustrated company low fare goals. This is shown by their enthusiasm in performing their day to day activities. Members of the public have therefore been left with Ryanair low fare images upon meeting employees. The success of employees in  creating such an image in within potential travelers is indeed a boon for future performance in the market. In knowing the impact of their Organisational behavior in the larger airline market, employees are more likely to help each other in improving their employers long run image. In addition, continued exemplification of Organisational image helps in attracting new members of staff that get to replace the current generation. For instance, the current positive image from Ryanair’s employees helps attract future employees that admire the way the company operates. It is even possible that some individuals get encouraged to become employees in the company so they could bring about change (Morgan 1997 pp. 203).

            Despite employees success in using Organisational image in cultivating positive image in the eyes of potential customers, the relationship between the company and employees internally has not been so smooth lately. This is occasioned by the tight control of employee affairs by the management. For instance, the management has completely refused to allow employees established of be involved with labor union issues. This has resulted to employees feeling that their association liberties are being abused. As a result, members of the labor force have consistently threatened on downing their tools in demand for better pay as well as being allowed to establish a labor union. This confrontation has been worsened by management’s hard line on threatening to dismiss members of staff engaging in union activities. Some organisational behavior scholars have pointed the exclusion of employees in developing  internal behavior as reasons for confrontation such as the one seen in Ryanair. Indeed, Pugh  and Hickson (1997 pp 220) point that for organisational behavior to succeed in meeting goals, employers must make employees feel part of implementing decision making body.

This therefore comes out as Ryanair’s weakness. All decisions regarding organisational behavior are developed, implemented and overseen by senior management. In this regard, employees could be feeling as if they are being exploited. In order to reduce tension between the two parties, management in the company should feel obliged to inform employees on issues regarding organisational behavior. But since the expected behaviuor in the company has already been established and implemented, it is vital that the management embarks on having employees, or their representatives understand how the said behavior came to be. This could help reduce misunderstanding between them. Employees should also be invited to provide some thoughts regarding the present behavior. This should then be followed by discussions on and eventual agreement on what would be changed in order to meet interest of the two stakeholders.

            Having members of the labor force participate in the behavior development process is however seen as total disregard on organisational owner’s liberty to control the respective establishment as seen fit (Schein 1997 pp. 120). This calls for employers to develop organisational behavior in ways they see serving long run benefits better. On their part, employees have little choice other than following into the the behavior as demanded by organizational owners. In this regard, employees ate Ryanair should embark on using the behavior as exemplified by the management. This is considering that those who feel as if the management is asking for too much should embark on leaving the company for other occupations. However, employees having the liberty to leave the company for other airlines or sectors does not provide Ryanair with all the freedom to pressure employees into following on the Organisational behavior. In any case, the management should be considerate enough to help employees understand why the behavior at all times during their daily activities. Teaching employees on the importance of the exemplifying Organisational behaviors should be a daily undertaking by managerial at all levels of the management. In addition, employees who have been in the company for longer should take the responsibility of helping their newer colleagues to deal with the challenges of practicing the behaviuor.

            The just mentioned challenges have not stopped the company from expanding the use of Organisational behavior in day to day running of various businesses. Instead, its application has intensified in recent past. This is seen by the increased dependence on the departments. Though division of labor, individuals have come to develop ways and means of using Organisational behavior to perform tasks. All they need to know is the importance of keeping operating cost down and consequently apply the most efficient and cost effective measures. As all employees do this, the overall organizationals ends up reducing operating cost, which eventually result to competitive pricing. In addition, it become easy to identify members of the labor force that do not practice Organisational behavior seen as important in the company’s well being.

            The division of labor in the company further leads to increased productivity, because employees end up specializing in activities they are best at performing. For instance, employees who help with cleaning planes after landing understand that time is their critical factor, considering that the airline management requires planes to be on tarmac for a short while. In this regard Organisational behavior  influence employees to perform their respective tasks in most efficient ways. Sharing the behavior of being efficient as they run this crucial activity leads to faster turn around. As a result, Ryanair planes are taken airborne within few minutes upon landing. Since this happens in hundreds of flight daily, the tactic translates to many more passengers getting served by the company. Serving the travelers at faster than other airlines ha further endeared the company to many.

Organisational behavior is hereby exemplified by the interaction between employees at during the most tasking periods of their day to day activities. The absence of this behaviuor would result to greater amounts of confusion as some employees would not understand the value of helping each other, even with duties that do not require special skills. For instance, pilots would just be sitting in their cabin while attendants try to beat the time frame allocated to turnaround. Fact that more labor would be required to help prepare aircraft for next flight would mean that Ryanair wold have to face extra costs of employing more labor. But thats to the company’s Organisational behavior, employees are able to prepare aircrafts for take off in speeds that maximize assets’ utility.

            Bloisi (2006 pp. 59) holds that organisational behavior is among best practices that help organisations to increase cooperation among employees and with the labor force. Though Ryanair and its labor force are sometimes at logger heads, employees themselves have historically shown greater collaboration among themselves. This can be seen in the collaboration at the just mentioned turn around. The company is known for its twenty-minute turnaround. This means that it takes only twenty minutes for Ryanair aircrafts to empty arriving travelers, load departing ones and exit from airports’ gates. This all happens at such a short period despite fact that the airlines has one of the smallest labor forces in airlines of its size. It is not unique to see cabin crew helping flight attendants to clean up the plane as well as helping travelers into their seats. Though there is division of labour in the company, employees are more that eager to use the Organisational behavior of reducing costs by helping their colleagues. This has resulted to continuation of lower operating costs and ticket prices in the company, while competitors face challenging times in this very competitive industry.

            The continued practice of organizational behaviuor in the company has also resulted to attracting larger amounts of stakeholders who want to participate in the airlines success story. For instance, the ever increasing amount of passengers in carried by the airline has many regional governments all over Europe providing incentives for Ryanair to start flying into their respective airports. To these regional governments, the mass of travelers carried by the company represent tourists who could patronize regional environs and therefore boost respective economies. This impact of Ryanair’s Organisational behavior is consistent with Wilson and Rosenfield’s (1999, pp. 104) assertion that well crafted Organisational behavior can help organisations shape the society in certain ways. Ryanair has done this successfully.

The airline heavy emphasis on low cost that is deeply buried in its Organisational behavior has led to the regional governments to reduce their landing charges in order to benefit from the company’s mass of travelers. Since landing charges are used to maintain regional air transport facilities, their reduction must be followed by cutting of expenses in these areas. This would require regional authorities to embark on frugality in maintenance programs. Fact that airlines would require top quality airports would further mean that authorities would be spending only on essential facilities. All these lead to one conclusion: the society is eventually being changed by the airline’s frugality. It is not just the regional governments that are affected or improved by Ryanair’s activities. Passenger trains and buses are being forced to improve their price competitiveness, because Ryanair’s low price, facilitated by Organisational behavior in the airlines labor force, can easily put them out of business.

            Airline companies have also been affected by Ryanair’s Organisational behavior. The completion posed by the company means that fellow players in the industry have to conform by developing similar techniques. Some players in the industry have tried similar tricks but have not succeeded, reason being lack of proper organizationals behavior supporting their strategies. Competitors have failed to catch up with the airline’s success because it is usually hard to copy Organisational behaviuor from one company and paste to another. In the analysis of organizational behaviour from different companies, Rollinson (2004 pp. 120) finds that applying Organisational behavior from one company to the other  requires patience, because results can only be seen during the long run business life. However, not many companies are ready to wait for long in order to benefit from the accruing Organisational behavior.

Most of leaders in these organisations would mostly rush to apply results instead of behaviors themselves. Indeed, some players in the European airline industry embarked on setting low cost fares in their routes with hopes of beating the competition posed by Ryanair, which explains whey they failed in succeeding. Therefore, for players in the European airline industry tom replicate success achieved by Ryanair, they have to  establish organizational behaviors that would lead to employees see the benefit of applying low cost, high efficiency methods. On their part, employees should feel obliged to deal with take part in this process, failure of which would lead to continued domination of their employer by companies such as Ryanair. The management in these establishments should on their part ensure involving employees in that process.

            According to Handy (1990 pp. 121), Organisational behaviour is vital in helping company  employees to understand their employer’s vision, mission and goals. This becomes more successful when members of the labor force are introduced to Organisational behavior upon their entry into the respective company. At this point, knowing what the company wants to achieve achieve in the long run aids in developing working ethic that would be mutually beneficial to the Organization and employees. On employees side, understanding vision, mission and goals at the beginning of their careers lead to their development of tactics that would aid in meeting specific objectives. The continued use of these tactics in daily activities lead to employees becoming more productive in their duties. In the end, this leads to greater job satisfaction. Being more productive also helps in endearing self to the management and thus increase chances of being promoted to higher levels of Organisational management ladder.

With regard to the Ryanair, employees are introduced to vision, mission and goals even before they embark on their first duties in the organization. This  has been easy to achieve, because most of employees know about the airline, it operations challenges and opportunities faced by its labor force. This is due to the popularity in all areas that its operations are. It has therefore become possible to higher employees who would easily feet into the demands set upon them by the management. Training them on how to live and practice company vision, mission and goals therefore becomes easy task to the management as well as fellow employees involved in the process. In addition, constant reminder on what the company stands for leads to improvement in employee productivity.

            Other than helping members of the labor force understand company’s vision mission and goals, the use of organizational behavior helps in the spread of Organisational culture within the labor force, reason being that employees are able to help each other practicing the culture (McShane 2003 pp. 96). Organisational culture comes in handy in aligning company goals with those of employes. Or in other words, helping employees understand that only by exercising their employers’ long term would help them achieve various short term goals they have in their lives, whether related or not related with the relevant Organization. At Ryanair, Organisational culture revolves around being efficient enough to ensure that the company achieves the goal of having the lowest fares in the market and providing quality service to its clientèle. As it happens with many aspects of the airline industry, speed helps reduce cost as well as increase amount of passengers serves. Indeed, as mentioned in various sections of this essay, Ryanair has increasingly embarked on ensuring that all its operations are achieved in record times, which helps reducing the cost of running activities. At Ryanair, an idle aircraft or member of the labor force is seen as wasted resource. The airlines employees employ Organisational culture to ensure that all matters pertaining to running operations are attained in line with demand for having aircraft on air and with the allocated number of passengers aboard.

Continued use of organizational behavior in the company has resulted to the development of two vital kinds of culture: personal an team cultures. Personal culture, also referred to as task culture, has enabled individual employees to improve their productivity by getting better in their respective activities. As employees increase their performance in the Organization, senior and junior management do not have to deal with the challenge of following into employees each and every move. In this regard, members of the labor force get encouraged by seeing the trust bestowed upon them by the management. This is bound to increasing efforts in respective activities and therefore improve performance. The development of personal culture in Ryanair employees has resulted to them developing specialty in their respective activities. Becoming good in their operations thus afford them to deal with challenges or pressures that come with operations in the business.

For instance, surge in air transport during holiday seasons means does not find Ryanair employees off guard; personal culture prepares them for such challenges. With regard to team culture, practicing companies’ Organisational behavior determines how employees interact with each other and how they work as a team. Positive Organisational behavior mean that members of the labor force would increase their competence in their respective fields. Sine task cultures had enabled employees to improve performance in their respective fields, individual teams are easily able to deal with team tasks. This is because non of them would be delaying team project because of slow pace. This is seen in most of Ryanair operations, where teams are accustomed to completing tasks with each. In addition to being fast, Ryanair teams benefit from knowing how to undertake various tasks, which helps in speeding up projects at needy times.

            Pugh and Hickson (1997 pp. 200) finds Organisational behavior as a way of training employees to become problem solvers. This mean providing employees with opportunities of identifying crisis and consequent development of solutions, seen market potential and inconsequently developing ways and means of making profits form potential, as well as seeing where company’s strategies could be applied in order to benefit from diversify revenue. The use of organisational behavior in relying on employees to increase company’s dominance in the market and diversifying source of revenue has been one of Ryanair’s strengths. This is well cultivated through incentives in pay packages that lead to surge in employee initiatives in the company. Though the practice of Organisational behavior, members of Ryanair’s labor force are in a position to internally perform SWOT analysis and therefore help develop solutions to threats as well as implementing methods of exploiting strengths and opportunities.

Due to the greater degree of decentralization and division of labor in the company, the task of overseeing the development of solution finding culture is left to individual departments.  This means each department seen on areas that could be improved, which is followed by taking the necessary measures. Solutions that requires senior management are also made with greater contribution from department heads. Sine departmental heads are seen as representatives of their team members, entire groups in the said departments fees appreciated by having to determine the course of actions affecting their operations.

            Just as the way departments and individual employees are supposed to observe problems and develop solutions, Organisational behavior requires them to constantly perform cost benefit analysis of various options that are to be undertaken in this departments. This is because decentralization of decision making through Organisational behavior comes with responsibilities that leadership in respective departments and other individuals must accept (Huczynski & Buchanan 1997 pp. 59). In this regard, departmental management at Ryanair are required to develop the analysis before embarking on subjecting the company to changes aimed at achieving greater efficiency in operations. This means that the same management or individuals involved must take the responsibility of implementing the plans,  as well as responsibilities for the outcomes.

            Organisational behaviour has therefore been central to the Ryanair’s operations in the last decades. Its application has helped bind employees, management and other stakeholders together. This has resulted to all the affected groups to have a common goals of keeping the company competitive through low cost operation costs that lead to competitive ticket prices. Employees have benefited from Organisational behavior by developing important trains in their work. First, members of the labor force have developed the ever important Organisational culture that has helped them to undertake their daily activities in the company with customers in mind. With regard to the management, fact that employees have developed culture of hard work means the less tome would be spent following-up on employees activities.

In this regard, the management can concentrate on other more pressing Organisational issues, such as developing and implementing strategies that would improve Organisational competitiveness in the long run. The efficiency achieved by moth management and employees has increased collaboration between the two groups, which has further meant more productivity and revenue, both of which aid in the creation of shareholder value. The successful application of Organisational culture in Ryan air is testament that use of the system can indeed improve long run performance in practicing organisations. However, senior management and employees should understand that practicing this system does not come easy; sacrifices on either sides for the system to archive the desired goals.


Bloisi,W. 2006, Management and Organisational Behaviour, McGraw-Hill, London.

Dawson, S. 1996, Analysing Organisations, MacMillan, London.

Handy, C. 1990, Understanding Organisations, Penguin, London.

Huczynski A. and &Buchanan, D. 2007, Organisational Behaviour, Prentice hall, London.

McShane, T & Von Glinov, D. 2003, Organisational Behaviour, McGraw-Hill, London.

Morgan, G. (1997), Images of Organisations, Sage, London.

Pugh, D. and Hickson, D. 1997, Organisation and Writers, Penguin, London.

Rollinson, D. 2004, Analysing Organisational Behaviour, Prentice hall, London.

Schein, E. 1997, Leadership and Organisational Culture, Jossey-Bass.

Wilson, C. & Rosenfield, T. 1999, Management Organisations, McGraw-Hill, London.



Bloisi,W. 2006, Management and Organisational Behaviour, McGraw-Hill, London.

Dawson, S. 1996, Analysing Organisations, MacMillan, London.

Handy, C. 1990, Understanding Organisations, Penguin, London.

Huczynski A. and &Buchanan, D. 2007, Organisational Behaviour, Prentice hall, London.

McShane, T & Von Glinov, D. 2003, Organisational Behaviour, McGraw-Hill, London.

Morgan, G. (1997), Images of Organisations, Sage, London.

Mullins, J. 2007, Management and Organisational Behaviour, Pitman, London.

Pugh, D. and Hickson, D. 1997, Organisation and Writers, Penguin, London.

Rollinson, D. 2004, Analysing Organisational Behaviour, Prentice hall, London.

Schein, E. 1997, Leadership and Organisational Culture, Jossey-Bass.

Wilson, C. & Rosenfield, T. 1999, Management Organisations, McGraw-Hill, London.

Journals and Newspapers: 

European Management Journal. 

Harvard business Review.

Journal of Management Studies.

Business Week.

The Economist.


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