Sunday, 29 September 2013

MBA Dissertation | Corporate Culture | Communication | Research | EC Group

MBA Dissertation | Corporate Culture | Communication | Research | EC Group

This MBA dissertation investigates the importance of trust and open communication within a live working environment. Throughout this study, the researcher aimed to determine the interdependence between trust and communication and employees morale; appreciating that low workforce morale inevitably translates into lower productivity and jeopardises a company’s success. The objectives set by the research were to acquire a critical understanding of the impact of closed communication on employee morale, identifying the causes for such phenomena, and determining effective recommendations for the re-establishment of a strong corporate culture that would foster open communication and build trust throughout the EC Group. The study was deemed important not only on an academic level, where relevant literature is abundant, but even more so with regard to the imminent crisis faced by EC Group, a UK based medium-size, marketing outsourcing company. Indeed, EC Group was facing serious communication problems, and general, increasing, low employee morale, ultimately translating into lower productivity and poorer output quality standards. The literature review, covering thirty academic works, confirmed the researcher’s basic assumptions whereby communication is deeply intertwined with trust, and where the lack of one engenders the other, ultimately resulting in low morale and consequent decrease in productivity. Special attention was also given to corporate culture and the leader figure vis-à-vis the issue of trust. Much in line with expectations, the investigation, conducted through face-to-face quali-quantitative surveys submitted to the entire organisations workforce (i.e., 41 employees with a response rate of 95%) provides the company with a picture of the current situation, highlighting the causes of the identified communication and trust problems. As a result, the researcher recommends specific steps that need to be planned and implemented, in order to reinstate a solid corporate culture able to foster communication and knowledge sharing, progressively regaining employees trust. The study's results and constraints also indicate the necessity for further and deeper research, to be carried out prior to the implementation of the above-mentioned recommendations. This is essential for said culture to reflect correctly and coherently the organisations values and beliefs, in a manner that they can be easily shared and embraced by the workforce. The objective of such research is to provide the company with the necessary input to effectively implement recommendations, thereby restoring an environment of cooperation and re-establishing productivity levels as well as quality standards. Finally, the special attention given to validity, reliability and generalisability proved effective, and render this research a relevant academic work for future analogous scenarios. In view of the research scope and aim, four objectives were pursued;

Comprehend the repercussions of closed communication on employees morale;
Identify the reasons that lead to closed communication;
Explore corporate culture and the leader’s influence on communication and trust;
Make recommendation for HRM to manage the problem of lack of trust and communication within the EC Group.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Economics Dissertation | Trade Barriers | External Trade | European Union | EU

Economics Dissertation | Trade Barriers | External Trade | European Union | EU

After setting up the necessary framework for the Technical Barriers to Trade (TBTs) subject, this thesis study tries to enlighten the removal efforts of the Technical Barriers to Trade within the European Union (EU) and within Turkey. In this respect, this study covers the removal approaches of TBTs in the EU together with Turkey's alignment with the EU in the subject, as required by the Customs Union Agreement. This thesis study also tries to evaluate the importance of different approaches on the removal of Technical Barriers to Trade on Turkish trade with the EU.  This evaluation is prepared by allocating external trade values for product groups into the regulatory approaches of the EU and then analyzing the coverage of these approaches in the total external trade of the EU (15) countries. Accordingly, it is found that most of the Turkish trade with the EU (15) countries may be subject to technical regulations. Moreover, it is observed that the share of the Turkish trade regarding different EU approaches on TBTs evolves over time. In this framework, it is found that the importance of the harmonizing the EU legislation on the removal of TBTs on Turkish exports to the EU (15) has been increasing over the timeline. Additionally, it is observed that the number of product groups that Turkey reveals comparative advantage in harmonized area is increasing over time and thus Turkey is becoming more competitive in the EU (15) market.

This dissertation aims to shed a light on the removal efforts on the TBTs subject in the perspective of the European Union (EU) and Turkey. In this manner, we first set up the necessary framework on the standards and related concepts, namely technical regulations, conformity assessment procedures and market surveillance. Following that, we try to explain TBTs phenomenon and the elimination methods of them. Then, we address the TBTs subject in the EU emphasizing on the approaches on removal of them. In the EU perspective we evaluate the position that Turkey possesses in the subject regarding the Customs Union requirements. After that, in order to detail an EU approach on the subject, we address the new chemicals policy of the EU, REACH, and Turkey's alignment with it. Finally, referencing the EU members, we recover the importance of different approaches on the removal of TBTs for the Turkey's external trade with the EU and we evaluate the competitiveness of Turkey in those approaches.