Culture does not change because we desire to change it. Culture changes when the organization is transformed; the culture reflects the realities of people working together every day.
Have you ever had a job you loved and felt empowered to fulfill your responsibilities? If so, what was it about your co-workers, your manager/supervisor, and your work environment that made your experience so positive? Perhaps you've never felt that way about a job and, instead, you've dreaded heading to work every morning. Your boss might have rarely recognized your efforts. It's possible you weren't sure how to perform your job, but felt uncomfortable asking for help. Your co-workers might have seemed like characters from the movie Mean Girls. In this perfect storm of the forces of disengagement, we suspect you didn't last too long at that job. Or you felt overwhelmed with too much to do, with too little support, as depicted in the illustration on the next page.
According to a 2013 survey, more than half of workers in the United States were dissatisfied with their jobs. This statistic is alarming; after all, we spend approximately one-third of our waking hours and energy at work, plus dissatisfied employees tend to find new employers. Because we spend so much of our time and energy at work, the organizational culture can have a profound impact on our lives and the lives of those around us. If work cultures support interdependent, prosocial behavior instead of individualism and competition, we believe the business world, indeed our everyday lives, will be more positive and productive for almost everyone.
Any organization's mission will benefit from employees who care about their work and their colleagues. It's a win-win scenario. What factors influence employee job satisfaction? Aside from the obvious – job security, pay, and benefits (e.g., health insurance) – employees report that feeling safe at work, having a positive relationship with their immediate supervisor, and communicating openly and cooperatively with other employees and senior management contribute significantly to their work satisfaction. The bad news: In many organizational cultures, managers/supervisors struggle with these very issues, resulting in unacceptably high rates of employee dissatisfaction and turnover and a climate of distrust.
Imagine these disgruntled employees as supervisors who are responsible for mentoring newly recruited employees.
All explosive volcanic eruptions generate volcanic ash, fragments of rock that are produced when magma or vent material is explosively disintegrated. Volcanic ash is then convected upwards within the eruption column and carried downwind, falling out of suspension and potentially affecting communities across hundreds, or even thousands, of square kilometres. Ash is the most frequent, and often widespread, volcanic hazard and is produced by all explosive volcanic eruptions. Although ash falls rarely endanger human life directly, threats to public health and disruption to critical infrastructure services, aviation and primary production can lead to potentially substantial societal impacts and costs, even at thicknesses of only a few millimetres. Communities exposed to any magnitude of ash fall commonly report anxiety about the health impacts of inhaling or ingesting ash (as well as impacts to animals and property damage), which may lead to temporary socio-economic disruption (e.g. evacuation, school and business closures, cancellations). The impacts of any ash fall can therefore be experienced across large areas and can also be long-lived, both because eruptions can last weeks, months or even years and because ash may be remobilised and re-deposited by wind, traffic or human activities.
Given the potentially large geographic dispersal of volcanic ash, and the substantial impacts that even thin (a few mm in thickness) deposits can have for society, this chapter elaborates upon the ash component of the overviews provided in Chapters 1 and 2. We focus on the hazard and associated impacts of ash falls; however, the areas affected by volcanic ash are potentially much larger than those affected by ash falling to the ground, as fine particles can remain aloft for extended periods of time. For example, large portions of European airspace were closed for upto five weeks during the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, Iceland, in 2010 because of airborne ash (with negligible associated ash falls outside of Iceland). The distance and area over which volcanic ash is dispersed is strongly controlled by wind conditions with distance and altitude from the vent, but also by the size, shape and density of the ash particles, and the style and magnitude of the eruption. These factors mean that ash falls are typically deposited in the direction of prevailing winds during the eruption and thin with distance. Forecasting ash dispersion and the deposition ‘footprint' is typically achieved through numerical simulation.
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