Discipline is needed in the organization so that the organizational employees can work together in a systematic manner for achieving the goal and objectives of the organization. The opposite of the discipline is anarchy, where the employees do what they want without concern for the fellow employees. For achieving success, the organization depends on group cooperation, and cooperation cannot be achieved without discipline. Discipline is the structure and order within an individual or within a group which allows for true cooperation, real support of the mission and the members of the team or organization. It implies confirming with the code of conduct established by the organization. Discipline in the organization ensures productivity and efficiency. It encourages harmony and co-operation among employees as well as acts as a morale booster for the employees.
Discipline is a concept which differs according to the issue, employee, and situation. In terms of the definition of discipline, three different definitions are normally prevalent are in focus. The first is the self-healing, modifying, and regulating control mechanism which is known as self-discipline. The second is the motivation and motivation mechanism to control the person within the group, which is known as team discipline. The third is a type of punishment imposed as a result of an undesired act legally and educationally. The formation of disciplinary behaviour involves a complex and time-consuming process. Hence, efforts to develop disciplinary behaviour are necessary to be carried out in a continuous and comprehensive manner.
Discipline is understood differently by different people. Some people see it as a punishment measure which inculcates fear when they get involved in a wrong move while other people can regard it as compliance and regularity with rules and regulations. The concept of discipline in French origin corresponds to the meaning of strictness, path, procedure, method, education, submission, self-regulation, acting in accordance with the laws, rules and society order, bringing up and branch of science. Discipline is the actions which prevent and correct deviations from the organizational rules, regulations, policies, and norms of the employees and the sanctions they face when they act contrary to the organization order.
The first concepts which come to mind when it comes to discipline are sanctions and punishments. However, in the real sense, discipline is not a punishment for anti-social behaviour and tendencies. Because of the meaning of the path, procedure, method, and science, it is actually an educational technique. Discipline means self-control, obeying the rules, and obedience. In another definition, discipline is an ability to control based on not performing actions which do not correspond to and support a structure to which the individual actually depends.
Organization thrives on team work, and without discipline, teams cannot function properly. Discipline acts as the backbone of the organization structure and maintains order. Organizational discipline, hence, can be explained as system of conducting the organizational proceedings by its employees who abide by the guidelines laid out by the organization. It imbibes a sense of obedience towards the organization which works instinctively under different circumstances.
Organization discipline is the force which prompts individuals or groups to observe rules, regulations, standards, and procedures deemed necessary for the organization. It means orderly and systematically conducting the different operations of the organization by the employees who strictly adhere to the necessary procedures. The employees work together as a team and cooperate harmoniously with each other so as to achieve organizational goal and objectives as well as mission and vision and they truly understand that the individual and group aims and desires are to match so as to achieve organizational success.
Organization discipline is the organization and programming of human activities in the organization for the achievement of a predetermined level of performance. The main purpose of the organizational discipline is to set the work performance standards of the employees and to encourage them to act responsibly in their workplaces. Discipline is self-control, self-sacrifice, and encouraged regular behaviour by the employees.
Organizational discipline is the practice of self-restraint and learning to follow the best course of action which can be not as per the desire of the employees. It is important as it binds the employees and also motivates them to respect the organization.
Organizational discipline is the force or fear of a force which deters the employee or a group of employees from doing things which are detrimental to the accomplishment of the goal and objectives of the organization. In other words, organizational discipline is the orderly conduct by the employees of the organization who adhere to its rules and regulations since they desire to cooperate harmoniously in forwarding the end which the organization has in view.
In team activities, where several individuals work towards the same goal, organizational discipline is of utmost importance. Objectives of organizational discipline are (i) improving and uplifting teamwork for the achievement of the goal and objectives, (ii) creating a sense of harmony among employees by making them follow the same set of procedures and instructions, and (iii) improving the sense of tolerance among employees. The features of organizational discipline are (i) training and education which improves individuals morally and mentally, (ii) controlling the natural instincts in certain situations like high pressure etc., (iii) earning obedience by following a systematic procedure, (iv) preserving the order, and (v) training by instructing and controlling.
The success of the rules of discipline depends (i) on the existence of a high degree of cooperation between the management and the employees, (ii) on faith to believe in one another’s motives, (iii) on the fulfillment of mutual obligation, (iv) on the management enlightened attitude towards the employees, and (v) over-all support from the employees’ trade unions.
Organizational discipline is considered to be one of the most important prerequisites for achieving organizational effectiveness. A number of studies have tried to identify factors which can determine regulation of employee conduct and maintenance of organizational discipline. Amongst these factors the nature and style of leadership has attracted considerable attention. Different studies have reported a variety of procedures and approaches adopted by different styles of leadership to ensure discipline in the organization. For example, one of the studies has suggested that the industrial / new modernist model of leadership, relying heavily on a hierarchal structure and a designated chain of command, uses dominance and control to regulate employee conduct and increase organizational effectiveness. Control based leadership demonstrates decisiveness where each activity, process, and resource-use have to be monitored to check negligence which can harm the organization. Another study suggested that the organization failing to control deviant behaviour and ensure adherence to its work ethics can experience failure in overall organizational performance.
The organizational discipline is mainly governed by the employees’ discipline which has five important objectives. These objectives are (i) to obtain a willing acceptance of the rules and regulations or procedures of the organization so that organizational goal and objectives can be achieved, (ii) to develop among the employees, a spirit of tolerance and a desire to make adjustments, (iii) to give direction or responsibility, (iv) to increase the working efficiency or morale of the employees so that their productivity is stepped up, the cost of is brought down, and the work quality is improved, (v) to create an environment of respect for the human personality or human relations. The organizational discipline is necessary for the smooth running of the organization, and for the maintenance of industrial peace which is the foundation of industrial democracy. Without this discipline, the organization cannot achieve success in its operations.
Good organizational discipline means that employees are willing to abide by rules and executive orders of the organization and behave in the desired fashion. Discipline implies the absence of chaos, irregularity, and confusion in the employees’ behaviour in the organization. Organizational discipline implies obedience, orderliness, and maintenance of proper subordination among the employees.
Employee behaviour is the base of discipline in an organization. Every organization wants its employees’ behaviour to be in conformity with the required system which it has prescribed in order to achieve the organizational goal and objectives. Hence, in brief, discipline is the orderly conduct by the employees in an expected manner. The purpose of discipline is to encourage employees to behave sensibly at work, that is, adhere to rules and regulations.
As per one of the studies, ‘organizational discipline is a force which prompts individuals or groups to observe rules, regulations, and procedures which are deemed to be necessary for the effective functioning of the organization’. Violation of rules, regulations, procedure and norms is considered as misconduct, which is, any act which is inconsistent with the fulfillment of the expressed and implied conditions of service, or is directly linked with the normal relationship of the management and the employees. This has a direct effect on the contentment or comfort of the employees at work or has a material bearing on the smooth and efficient working of the organization.
The objectives of the organizational discipline are (i) to obtain a willing acceptance of the rules, regulations and procedures of the organization by its employees so that organizational goals can be achieved, (ii) to impart an element of certainty despite several differences in informal behaviours pattern and other related changes in an organization, and (iii) to develop among the employees a spirit of tolerance and a desire to make adjustments.
Organizational discipline is an essential management tool necessary for the smooth and effective functioning of the organization. It facilitates efficiency and streamlines the operations of the organization. It helps the organization to move forward. It is also very important for peace and harmony in the organization. An organization devoid of discipline is in a mess of resources and nothing more. Organizational discipline, once instilled in the employees, helps in getting best out of them. Components of organizational discipline are shown in Fig 1.
Fig 1 Components of organizational discipline
Organizational discipline is that mental attitude and state of training which renders obedience instinct in the employees under all conditions. It is a state of order which is a result of regulations and rules. It is a learned behaviour and is founded upon respect for, and loyalty to properly constituted authority. While it is developed primarily by training, every feature of organization’s life has its effects on the organizational discipline. It is normally indicated in an employee or group of employees by respect for the seniors, and by prompt and cheerful execution by subordinates of both in the letter and the spirit of legal orders of their lawful superiors.
Employees are to be disciplined to achieve their goals. Organizational discipline consists of a training which moulds, develops, strengthens, and perfects mental faculties and character of the employees. It involves placing team’s goals above personal goals, being willing to accept orders from higher authority, and carrying out those orders effectively. Part of the job of the employees is to make their fellow employees aware of the purpose and meaning of organizational discipline.
The main features of organizational discipline are (i) training which is expected to produce a specific character or pattern of behaviour, especially training which produces moral or mental improvement, (ii) controlled behaviour resulting from disciplinary training, (iii) a systematic method to obtain obedience (iv) a state of order based upon submission to rules and authority, and (v) to train by instruction and control.
Types of organizational discipline
Organizational discipline can be classified by several methods. As per one of the methods, the organization discipline can be classified under six headings according to their application, content and methods. These are (i) preventive discipline, (ii) corrective discipline, (iii) gradual discipline, (iv) progressive discipline, (v) positive (constructive) discipline, and (vi) negative (punitive) discipline.
Preventive discipline – The aim of this discipline is to establish a system which employees willingly abide by the rules and regulations of the organization, to develop and to prevent offense before it occurs. While creating rules of this type of discipline, the opinions of the employees are to be taken into account. Rules are to be as simple and straightforward as possible. These rules and regulations are to be communicated to all the employees and explained individually if necessary. This type of discipline provides a more effective discipline policy. This type of discipline adopts the way of preventing disciplinary problems before they occur due to their understanding.
Corrective discipline – Corrective discipline is a disciplinary system focused on punishment to be applied in case of an offense. In this sense, corrective discipline is also called classical discipline, theocratic discipline, and negative discipline. The purpose here is to be a deterrent to prevent unintended behaviour in the future and to impose sanctions to intimidate.
Gradual discipline – Gradual discipline is a type of discipline which aims to give the persons who commit the offense for the first time a chance to correct themselves, to warn and to make themselves correct. Otherwise, if the previously committed offense is repeated, the penalty increases exponentially.
Progressive discipline – This discipline system involves a series of penalties with increasing severity every time an employee breaks the rules. Progressive discipline actions can include verbal counseling, verbal warning, written warning, monetary deductions, suspension and then termination as a last option.
Negative (punitive) discipline – Negative discipline has its origins in ancient times. The basis of this approach is the argument that punishment prevents negative behaviours. In this method, threat and intimidation are at the forefront. The biggest criticism of the traditional discipline approach is that it is reactive. This disciplinary approach has several disadvantages. These are (i) employees become inefficient when they work in fear of punishment, (ii) the punishment can be used as a means for a threat to blackmail, not disciplinary action, (iii) this system can cause managers to be seen as antipathic to employees, and (iv) managers who wish to escape from the negative environment of the penalty can ignore the offense committed.
Positive (constructive) discipline – Developments such as the prominence of people’s psycho-social needs, increasing the level of education and welfare, and increasing the impact of management approaches emphasizing the importance of human relations have led to the loss of the importance of classical punishment-oriented discipline. Positive discipline has emerged as a result of these developments. Self-discipline is a discipline model which focuses on positive behavioural points, based on the idea that there are no bad employees, only good with bad behaviour.
Positive style of discipline is a fairly new approach, with almost no place for punishment. Correction of unwanted behaviour is provided by providing consultant service to the person. In this, understanding can teach and strengthen good behaviour, and the person can be removed from bad behaviour without an oral or physical factor. Instead of fear and threat which are elements of punitive discipline, there are suggestions and recommendations. Positive discipline attaches importance to the dignity and honour of the employees. Another difference between positive discipline and negative discipline is that while negative discipline is normally applied to those who commit the offense and try to disrupt the order, positive discipline is carried out as an understanding which includes all employees since there is no punishment.
The aspects in which the positive discipline differs from negative discipline are (i) it does not force employees, (ii) it creates a sense of self-discipline and responsibility, (iii) it deals with the future, not the past, (iii) it does not threaten, but encourages, (iv) it is not separatist, but it is unifying which respect and security, (v) it holds the responsibility with the manager responsible for the solution of the problems, and (vi) it does not remain silent in the face of success, and rewards.
As per another method, the organization discipline can be classified as (i) self discipline, (ii) task discipline, (iii) group discipline, and (iv) imposed discipline.
Self discipline – Self discipline is a willing and instinctive sense of responsibility which leads the employees to know what needs to be done. Getting to work on time, knowing the job, setting priorities, and denying personal preferences for more important ones are the measures to determine how self disciplined the employees are. This is the highest order of all disciplines since it springs from the values which employees use to regulate and control their actions. The ideal situation is to motivate employees to willingly discipline themselves, and exercise self control and direction to accomplish the task. Self discipline indicates ideal situation where the employees themselves are motivated enough to regulate their actions like time management, priority setting etc. and the organization does not have to put in any extra effort.
Task discipline – Task discipline is a measure of how well the employees meet the challenges of their tasks. Task discipline needs the employees to have a strong sense of responsibility for doing their job to the best of their ability. Task discipline needs a situation in which the employees have to be responsible enough to do their job in the best way possible by them.
Group discipline – Group discipline means teamwork. Since majority of the jobs in the organization needs that the employees to work effectively as a team, and hence group discipline is very important.
Imposed discipline – Imposed discipline is the enforced obedience to legal orders and regulations. It is absolute necessary in case of emergencies when there is no time to explain or discuss an order. Training in organizational discipline teaches employees to carry out orders quickly and efficiently. This type of discipline prepares employees to accomplish a task in any situation and in any environment.
As per another method, the organization discipline can be classified as (i) technological discipline, (ii) financial discipline, (iii) operational discipline, (iv) process discipline, (v) employee discipline, and (vi) workplace discipline.
Technological discipline – It is the discipline needed to be followed for meeting the requirements of the technology employed at the work place. Without this discipline, processes go out of control making them unproductive and unsafe.
Each of the plant processes has its own set of the instructions, procedures, standards, and guidelines for its smooth functioning. This set of instructions, procedures, standards, and guidelines are made with the help of knowledge and experience gained over a period of time and following basic laws and practices established either with the help of scientific principles or by analyzing vast data collected over a period of time. The basic laws and practices are normally time tested and are normally accepted by all.
The importance of technological discipline at the workplace is increasing day by day. The cost of violation of technological discipline has become suicidal as the world is passing through a technological revolution, where the human life is becoming faster with each passing moment, where the processes and equipments are becoming larger and faster each day, and where the speeds of operations are increasing to the levels not been dreamt earlier. The safe working of the processes also needs adherence to a strict technological discipline.
Financial discipline – It refers to how well the organization is able to conform its spending and saving to the plans which the organization has set to achieve its monetary goals. Financial discipline ensures effective utilization of the organizational funds. It also helps the organization to have funds available for the development work.
Operational discipline – Operational discipline means complying with a set of ‘well thought out’ and ‘well defined’ processes, and consistently executing them correctly. DuPont defines operational discipline as ‘the deeply rooted dedication and commitment by every member of the organization to carry out each task the right way every time’. In short, operational discipline can be stated as ‘everyone in the organization doing it right every time’. It is an essential ingredient when trying to achieve operational excellence. Fig 2 shows how operational discipline leads to operational excellence.
Fig 2 Operational discipline leads to operating excellence
Operational discipline provides an organized and systematic way to complete tasks and implement operational changes through a fundamental set of procedures which are specific to the organizational unique product. Regardless of the final products of the organization, operational discipline increases reliability and decreases the risk of the occurrence of a high magnitude incident.
Process discipline – Process discipline is the adherence to well-thought-out and well-defined processes which are executed daily. It is achieved through strictly following the work procedures, work instructions, and operation and maintenance manual. Process discipline is necessary for the achievement of process productivity, product quality, and safe and healthy work environment.
Employee discipline – Employee discipline means that employees are willing to abide by the organizational rules and executive orders and behave in the desired fashion. It implies the absence of chaos, irregularity, and confusion in the behaviour of the employees. The orderly conduct by the employees is in an expected manner. It is the orderly conduct by the employees who adhere to its rules and regulations since they desire to cooperate harmoniously in forwarding the end which the organization has in view.
Workplace discipline – Workplace discipline is the discipline which the employees are to observe at the workplace. It consists of those features of discipline which the employees are to observe at their workplace. There are two major features of the workplace discipline. These are (i) observation, without any deviations, the technical instructions, procedures, standards, guidelines, and practices of the technological processes which the employees are operating at their workplaces, and (ii) observation of the rules and regulations of the organization which the management has framed for the functioning of the organization.
Administrative discipline – It is the orderly conduct of affairs by the employees of the organization who adhere to its necessary rules and regulations since they desire to cooperate harmoniously in forwarding the objectives of the organization and willingly recognize that in doing this, their objectives are also get brought into a reasonable unison with those of the organization. It is the process of training the employees so that they can develop self-control and can become more effective in their work. The objective of the administrative discipline is to obtain a willing acceptance of the employees for the rules, regulations and procedures of the organization so that organizational goals are attained.
Administrative discipline is one of the basic requirements for the organization to function efficiently. It is a part of a standard way of running of the organization. An organization without administrative discipline has a chaotic working and hence it cannot achieve its objectives and targets. Such organization project a poor image in front of its stakeholder.
The aims of the administrative discipline at the workplace is to ensure (i) conformance or adherence to the rules and directions of the organization, (ii) correcting the behaviour which does not conform to the rules and direction, (iii) re-asserting the authority of the management, (iv) setting of an example, and (v) punishing of the wrong doings. These aims can vary as per the needs of the organization as well as the circumstances of the employees’ behaviour. Without adherence to administrative discipline at the workplace, the workplace becomes chaotic with the employees doing exactly what they want.
Administrative discipline also makes the management to take steps to discover the violations of the established rules and directions. During monitoring if some violations are discovered, then the management can take steps for effective enforcement of the rules and the directions of the organization.
Administrative discipline imparts an element of stability in the organization despite several differences in informal behaviours pattern of the employees. It develops among the employees a spirit of tolerance and a desire to make adjustments. It inculcate in them giving and seeking of the direction and the responsibility. It creates an atmosphere of respect for the human personality and human relations. It increases working efficiency and morale of the employees so that their productivity is stepped up and the cost of production improved.
Importance of organizational discipline
Objectives of organizational discipline is to mould the behaviour of the employees by training and instruction to better achieve its goals. It is the managers’ duty to explain to their reporting employees the necessary areas of improvement. This promotes employee wellbeing. Organizational discipline is important for the organization because of its following effects.
Protection 0 having a disciplined work force the management ensures that the work environment in the organization is peaceful which provides a sense of security to the employees. Conduct of the employees in the organization also affects other employees. Organizational discipline is a way of protecting other employees who put in their time and talent at the workplace. With a clear and effective organizational discipline plan in place, employees know the consequences of their conduct. This streamlines providing of information about employee behaviour and provides a sense of security to all the employees.
Improves performance – A transparent organizational discipline system can deal effectively with problems like absenteeism, tardiness, missing deadlines, and not adhering to the code of conduct at the workplace. Organizational discipline indirectly helps employees to put their time to best use which results into their improved performance and the improved performance in turn results into higher efficiency and productivity.
Gain of the organization – Other than ensuring protection, effective organizational discipline code creates a congenial environment in which employees can work. This increases their output, which translates into improved working of the organization. Also in the present day environment of easy and fast communication, the organization with a strong reputation of organizational discipline can retain employees as well as attract more talent.
Positive organizational discipline – Tools for for organizational discipline are powerful and are to be used only in a positive way. The components for positive organizational discipline in the organization include communicating performance expectations and requirements to the employees, followed by giving oral reminders, written reminders and disciplinary leave of absence, suspension, and termination. The components are in increasing order of severity. The initial components provide support and time for the employees to correct their performance. If these do not succeed, more severe components are used.
Promotes appropriate behaviour – A disciplined environment in the organization helps both the managers and employees to put forward their best behaviour which fits into the image of the organization. Managers are to strictly adhere to the rules of the organization in order to effectively lead those looking to them as examples. Employees who enter this type of administration know what the expectations are as well as the penalties for committing violations. This knowledge promotes appropriate actions and conduct.
Efficiency – Efficiency is normally the output of the organizational discipline. Employees are to discipline themselves to work in a timely manner to produce quality output. Organization is to strive to cultivate a workplace in which standards are set which every employee in the organization is called upon to meet. This allows managers and employees to get things done. Organizational discipline needs concentration, time management, and orderliness, to which all the employees contribute to achieve high work efficiency.
Peaceful environment – Peacefulness results when employees have workplace which is committed to the values. The organizational environment which does not issue specific guidelines for behaviour is frequently impulsive, erratic, and uncertain. It is extremely difficult for the managers to effectively lead the employees under these conditions. Organizational discipline encourages a pleasant organizational environment which promotes good management and employee relations.
Fairness – Organizational discipline helps to produce an honest environment in which everyone is treated fairly. Employees do not have to fear being shouldered with an unfair quantity of tasks because set procedures are in place which calls for employees to share the load. Managers are less likely to play favourites in a disciplined environment as well, as they are subjected to the same conduct requirements as all others in the organization.
Ensures safety – Safety in the organization is of vital importance. Managers do not want the employees to suffer preventable accidents. Organizational discipline helps the employees to abide all the occupational safety regulations and trains the employees appropriately in the safety procedures. It provides a disciplined environment which is necessary for a safe work place.
Significance of organizational discipline
The significance of the organizational discipline in the organization is described below.
Creates awareness – Discipline Discipline brings awareness in the employees to do the job effectively and with good cheer. It brings best out of the employees by removing the laziness.
Solves organizational problems – Several organizational specially the discipline problems grow out of the failure of the management to inform employees what is expected from them. Organizational discipline helps the employees to learn the requirements of their job. It also increases respect towards the manager.
Good employment relationship – Organizational discipline builds a good employment relationship. Disciplined employees respond to leadership in a positive way. It also builds good teamwork and cooperation in the organization.
Positive attitude – Organizational discipline brings in positive attitude in the employees. Disciplined employees realize the meaning of punctuality. They understand corporate purpose and policy in a better way.
Strengthens self discipline – Organizational discipline strengthens self discipline in the employees. Several managers see the primary purpose of discipline as being to supplement and strengthen self-discipline within the employees and within each work group.
High morale – Employees have high morale due to the organizational discipline. It is the intention of the management to foster, and throughout at all times, the employment relationship, which helps the employees to have high morale. Employees’ high morale in turn brings in self-discipline in every employee and group discipline within every work team.
Observation of rules – Organizational discipline is the force which prompts the employees to observe rules, regulations, and procedures which are necessary for the achievement of the goal and objectives of the organization. By observing rules, regulations, and procedures, employees do not carry out such activities which are destructive.
Meeting of the challenges – Organizational discipline brings in disciplined behaviour in the employees which is a precondition for the efficient and effective performance for the employees. Only disciplined employees can meet the various environmental challenges and contribute to organizational goal and objectives by putting up their best of efforts.
Harmonious human relations – Organizational discipline plays an important role in maintaining harmonious human relations in the organization. In fact, no organization can prosper without discipline. Discipline has been a matter of utmost concern for the organizational management. Some people believe that maintenance of discipline in the organization is the responsibility of only the higher management in the organization. But in actual practice, discipline is to be the concern of the employees at all the levels in the organization.
Management of the organizational discipline in the organizations
Every organization has its own set of rules. The main purpose of these rules is to maintain order within the organization, to spread positive behaviours, and to prevent or reduce negative behaviours. The organizational discipline is to shape the behaviour of the employees through education and training to achieve its goals better. It refers to the actions which are taken so that all the employees adopt the rules, regulations, procedures, standards, and policies of the organization. It is the adaptation of the organizational rules, regulations and criteria in the employees’ behaviour.
The main purpose of the organizational discipline in is to create a positive organizational environment based on mutual trust so that the organizational productivity can be kept at the highest level. The practices related to the organizational discipline are to ensure that the employees behave in accordance with the organizational performance standards expected from them so that the organizational goal and objectives can be achieved. In addition, when the organizational discipline is improperly applied in the organizations, it can cause problems such as low morale, anger, and polarization of managers and employees.
The term ‘organizational discipline’ includes (i) employees behave in accordance with the rules and standards of conduct acceptable to the organization, (ii) to ensure that employees comply with organizational rules and take corrective actions if they do not, (iii) an organizational structure which encourages employees to comply with the organization’s standards, and (iv) an employee training and educational system for making the employees aware of the organizational rules, regulations, standards and procedures.
There are two basic principles which are applied for the organizational discipline in the organization. The first is that there is no harm to the organization as a whole, and the second is the protection of the rights of individual employees, which also means to ensure job security in some organizations.
An important issue is that there is no order and systematic working in the organization in the absence of organizational discipline and where there is no order, then freedom, and democracy cannot exist in the organization. Employees who oppose the rules adversely affect not only the organization, but also the effectiveness of other employees by pushing them to inefficiency.
Another important stage of the organizational discipline is the rewards. Unfortunately, the concept of reward and discipline are not considered together. However, reward is a very effective tool in ensuring the organizational discipline in the organization. On the other hand, when an employee, group, and organization are to be rewarded then the scope, degree, and size of the award are to be proportional to the success achieved.
To ensure the organizational discipline is widely accepted as a difficult issue for the managers. Organizational discipline ensures employees behave in an acceptable manner at the workplace and also adhere to the rules and regulations of the organization. Hence, these rules and regulations are very important elements which are used in carrying out the activities of the organization. There are some criteria which help the organization have in establishing and regulating the rules and regulations of the organizational discipline. The criteria for the rules and regulations include (i) they are to be up to date, (ii) they are to be reasonable, (iii) they are to be prepared clearly in simple language which can be easily understood, (iv) they are to be available in written form, (v) they are to be flexible, (vi) positive statements are to used in their content, (vii) they are to be prepared in harmony with the environment, (viii) they are to contribute to the performance of the work, (ix) Employees’ opinions are to be sought while preparing them, and (x) they are to cover all factors affecting the operations of the organization.
Poorly designed systems and practices for the organizational discipline can lead to productivity losses and reduce employees’ morale. Hence, the organization is required to apply a positive and preventive method. One of the studies has proposed a ‘fiery stove rule’ which states that a healthy and effective system for the organization discipline in the organization needs an urgent, consistent, advance warning system, timely and fair action, and positive approach. Organizational discipline system is to be applied without creating resentment to develop amongst the employees in the organization.
The organization which manages the organizational discipline system well can provide higher employee performance and efficiency. When fully implemented, the strategies followed for the organizational discipline system can protect qualified employees and improve the performance of the organization. There are several factors which affect the organizational discipline in the organization. These include individual, organizational, and environmental factors. The individual factors are personality, motivation, attitudes, expectations, and habits. The organizational factors include working environment, leadership, communication, reward system, and sanctions. The environmental factors include social environment, culture and family life.
However, there are some reasons which can relate to violations of the organizational discipline. These reasons include (i) lack of knowledge of the applicable organizational disciplinary rules and regulations, (ii) misunderstanding or inappropriate interpretation of the organizational disciplinary rules and regulations, (iii) lack of complete knowledge and experience of how the employees perform their duties, (iv) employees are not fully informed about what is expected of them, (v) employees do not believe in the correctness of the method the works is being done, (vi) employees do not evaluate the work positively, (vii) employees are not aware of their own low performance, (viii) rewarding low-performing employees and not rewarding or even punishing high-performing employees, (ix) inattention, and irresponsibility, (x) lack of motivation, (xi) excessive stress, and (xii) personal issues.
General objectives of the organizational discipline system include (i) ensuring the proper functioning of the organization, (ii) facilitating the organizational work, (iii) ensuring that employees adhere to reasonable and acceptable standards of performance and behaviour, and (iv) in case of non-compliance with these standards there is provision of reasonable and fair action. Organizational discipline is to contribute to improving the performance of employees and fulfilling their job responsibilities. It is difficult for the organization to achieve high efficiency and performance levels before the requirements of the organizational discipline are established in the organization.
The starting point of an effective organizational disciplinary system is the correct selection of employees. The prerequisites of an effective discipline system need a good employee selection system, an effective motivation system, making the necessary rules and regulations, and raising the awareness of the employee that the rules are applied.
Organizational discipline is an indispensable element for organizations. The common aim of several efforts and practices in ensuring organization discipline in the organization is (i) to increase the efficiency of the organization, (ii) to prevent the negativities which can occur, and (iii) to provide a work environment where employees can work happier and more peaceful. A balanced management style is to be shown in measuring organizational discipline. Lack of organizational discipline or excessive practice is not the right approach. In this sense, although organizational discipline is used synonymously with punishment, punishment forms a part of the discipline concept and is a limited discipline tool. Punishment is the practices which are applied by the management when (i) there is violation of the rules and regulations of the organization, (ii) fail to meet the required performance standard, (iii) act contrary to the established order, and (iv) to improve the attitude and behaviour of the personnel. Punishment is to be instructive, reminder and deterrent.
In the present day organization, a positive discipline model is needed. What is important in the organization discipline is that employees obey the rules and regulations at their own will. Applying organizational discipline by intimidating kills the creativity of the employee and causes the suppressed emotions of the employees to become resentment, hatred and hostility in the future. It is the organizational discipline to control the employee, direct and develop them in accordance with positive and organizational conditions.