From personal experience I believe that effective management needs to have the right blend of elements in order to be successful and get the best out of their workforce. Whilst working at McDonalds we had 4 assistant managers who ran the place under the store manager. Whilst working under 4 different management styles I believe that the most successful one was the one that could relate to the staff and find the right blend of authority whilst being easy-going.
A little example of this was on a close. This is when the store is no longer open, staff worked to clean up. Obviously, each manager had their own way of doing things, but one made all staff keep on ties, hats and total uniform whilst working in almost complete silence; productivity was low; the staff didn’t want to work for him. On the other hand, one of the other managers allowed the staff to take off hats and ties whilst listening to music. Although this may not seem a lot to many, it showed the staff that the ‘boss’ was able to relate to the employees, productivity was improved and people enjoyed working. Coincidently this floor manager actually became the new store manager!
This little example of differentiation in managerial styles shows how one can take things to the extreme and show no remorse, whilst one can implement authority with the correct level of leniency. Obviously the successful implementation of change is dependant on many factors; Firstly, the size of the change. Perhaps it may be minimal or it may be extreme, whatever, it has to be critically analysed and implemented accordingly. Also the time allocated for the total implementation of the change need to be taken into account. Is there a deadline? Or is time not of drastic importance? Both the manager and workforce need to understand this. Both need to be aiming towards the same goals, thus resulting in quicker implementation and facilitation of ideas.
A very important factor is the type of change, whether structural, managerial or technological. Time will differ between each, as it will take time for employees to adapt. With structural change, employees will need time to adapt due to possible changes in job responsibilities. They may have to be more reliant on others due to hierarchical changes, which have been made, or vice versa they may have added responsibilities, which they never had before. Managerial change is dependant as much on the manager as it is on the employees. I believe managerial change relies on the manager’s ability to put across his/her ideas to their workforce. As we have previously established change is ‘dynamic’, goals, which were previously targeted, may never actually be achieved due to constant changes in the market.
The manager needs to understand that perhaps his/her present goals & visions of where the business should be will have to change for various reasons. He/She is therefore chasing a ‘moving target’, which may never be reached. The manager therefore needs to be dynamic whilst having the ability to inspire their workforce and mould them into what they feel they should be. Perhaps the most inescapable factor out of all is technological change. The fact is, it cannot be stopped. There is absolutely no way of forecasting where the current technology will be in the future.
” I look forward to what new technology might do for me; I dread what it might do to me” In order to be more competitive businesses have to adapt to change, they therefore have to merge technology into their business in some way or another. This may be a very simple change, such as a new till or a new computer. But drastic technological overhaul could result in the need for retraining or maybe even re-recruiting. As today’s world is one of mass production, employees have absolutely no choice but to invest in such technology in order to merely stay competitive.
Whilst taking into account all factors, another major issue is MONEY. “Money makes the world go round” Although we have mentioned many of the factors which need to be taken into account when implementing change. Perhaps the most overlooked, but important, is COST. How much will change cost the business? Is change worth the cost? Will the change and all the factors involved benefit the business in the long run? Such questions all need to be posed and answered before any type of change is made or considered. If this is not done, and done correctly then the business could face instant problems and future existence of the business/organisation may even be in doubt. However, such change could bring about synergistic gains, which could never have been imagined.
“Change is a constant feature of business activity and is not within the company’s control”(A-Z Business Economics) External change is perhaps the hardest to control or even influence. Changes in tastes, fashions, laws, beliefs or competition are all major external constraints. The firm will try to adapt to these but will not always succeed. The business must ensure that it is able to react to and adapt to whatever change occurs.
For example, an outbreak of BSE in British beef may see companies, which use the product face extreme problems. Concludingly, I believe that the world is changing so fast that is isn’t always possible to be aware of the exact effects of any given change. Also due to such a rapid rate of change, managers may not always have the time to over analyse and think of all possible outcomes when implementing/reacting to change.