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Just a Little Something from All of Us: Conflicting Expectations for Gift Fund Management Lead to Dissatisfaction

Cas 9 40 2019 003
Cas publié dans la Revue internationale de cas en gestion, vol. 17, no 1
Langues : 
  • Anglais
Mots clés: 
  • Organizational behaviour,
  • Perception,
  • Organizational justice,
  • Motivation
Année de production : 
Date de publication : 
Notes pédagogiques incluses : 

Jeanette Williams, the administrative assistant of the IT department of a large firm, had suggested creating a departmental gift fund to which employees would each contribute a set amount each year and that could be used to purchase gifts to mark significant events in the lives of department employees. Though she had managed the fund since its inception, Dave Babcock, the interim manager, had decided to take over its management. Over the course of several months, a number of events occurred requiring the use of the gift fund. In most cases, those events were of the type for which the fund had been created – births, deaths, promotions, and departures. However, Dave had also used the fund to pay for a social event, generating mixed reactions from employees. The fund had been depleted, and Dave had solicited volunteer contributions from employees when more events occurred calling for gifts. Department staff had begun to ask questions about Dave’s management of the gift fund. Faced with another event and a depleted fund, Dave had to decide what to do next.

Discipline principal : 
Management  - Comportement organisationnel
Discipline secondaire : 
Non disponible
Secteurs d'activité : 
  • Services professionnels, scientifiques et techniques
Provenance : 
HEC Montréal
Type : 
Cas traditionnel (Cas descriptif)
Type de données pour la production du cas : 
Données réelles, non publiques, mais maquillées/anonymisées
Lieu de l'événement : 
North America
Année de début de l'événement : 
Non disponible
Année de fin de l'événement : 
Non disponible
Taille de l'entreprise : 
Grande entreprise
Principaux thèmes couverts
  • The importance of communication, collegiality, courtesy, and consideration in a team environment;
  • Perceptions of fairness and the effects that feelings of inequity can have on employees;
  • The potential consequences of differing expectations and dissatisfaction on work-related attitudes and behaviour, particularly, on perceptions of organizational justice and motivation
Objectifs pédagogiques

Students will develop their analytical skills by applying theoretical concepts to examine relationships between supervisors and employees in cases where employees have a vested interest in management decisions; gain a better understanding of how different factors can interact (e.g., factors related to the actors involved and the context) to impact perceptions, attitudes, and behaviours, and ultimately work motivation and satisfaction; draw on both their analyses and knowledge of the literature to make recommendations as to how the manager should approach the current situation and improve it going forward.

Concepts et théories en lien avec le cas

Organizational behaviour; Perception; Organizational justice; Motivation