Management Assignment (Short Course)

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1. Define Leadership. What are the four stages of leadership according to situational leadership model? Explain each using relevant examples. (5)
2. Explain various problems related to managing resources? (5)
3. What are the five ingredients for managing a meeting? (5)
4. Outline various feedback techniques. (5)

Submitted: June 08, 2019

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Submitted: June 08, 2019

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1. Define Leadership. What are the four stages of leadership according to situational leadership model? Explain each using relevant examples. (5)

Whilst there are overlaps between management and leadership there are some clear differences between them. It may be beneficial to define the term ‘leadership’. According to Ratcliffe (2013) leadership differs from management in that it is “about aligning people to the vision” of the team, adding that good leadership should “be clear and strategic, but it also needs to be collaborative both between and within organisations”; conversely, the term ‘management’ refers to “a set of processes the keep an organisation functioning”. Other definitions, according to Myers (2017) describe the term ‘leadership’ as “setting a new direction or vision”, whereas the term ‘management’ pertains to the controlling or directing of people and resources.

The ‘situational model’ of leadership as outlined by Hersey and Blanchard (1977) describes four different styles of leadership. The first is the ‘director’s style’ which places emphasis on directing the team, whilst being able to account for results; this style is particularly useful with new employees, who take direction with eagerness. The ‘coach’s style’ is a combination of direction and support towards individual team members becoming independent in the completion of their tasks, with a greater emphasis on the provision of support. The third style is the ‘supporter’s style’ which encourages team members to problem-solve on their own, with support given in terms of tools and resources. Finally, the ‘delegator’s style’ refers to a style whereby the delegator retains responsibility for the results of work completed by other team members, but with provision of little direction or support.

 

2. Explain various problems related to managing resources? (5)

Managing resources can present numerous challenges and can require constant monitoring and a fluid and flexible approach, allowing one to prioritise and re-prioritise as changing needs require redeployment of resources. Resources can be categorised as falling into one of two categories; ‘tangible assets’ and ‘intangible assets’. Tangible assets tend to be material in nature and include property and raw materials; intangible assets include more conceptual resources, such as reputation and technical knowledge and experience.

Barriers to effective resource management include a lack of resources or competing demands and priorities. Examples of such may include limited staff, limited equipment, inadequate training or knowledge, poor customer service, substandard raw materials, poor quality control or a lack of brand recognition to name but a few (Charles Sturt University, 2008).

Conversely, factors which may facilitate effective resource management are also many; with examples of large companies, such as the Walt Disney Company having revenue streams from large hotels, theme parks and merchandise sales. This brand recognition has taken decades to develop and provides a basis for an expectation of good customer service, which gives a competitive advantage over rivals companies. With this in mind, it is fair to assume that opposite and juxtaposing factors would present barriers to good resource management; for example a lack of physical presence such as theme parks would limit the income of the firm and poor brand recognition would limit public attention and diminish the size of the target market.

Another example given in the literature attached to this course is that of Amazon and their competitive nature, with advanced search technology, allowing the online store to target specific customers with specific suggestions based on their previous search and purchase history; without such resources or assets, rival companies may be better able to compete for a larger proportion of the target market.

If resources are scarce, rare or difficult to replicate or copy then this obviously provides a particular advantage; however, if such resources are held by a rival company then this places a certain disadvantage on the ability of the company to manage resources, if they are simply not readily available. These can be referred to as ‘core competencies’; unique knowledge, skills or other resources which provide an edge over rivals.

 

3. What are the five ingredients for managing a meeting? (5)

When facilitating or conducting a meeting there are many factors and points to consider. The literature accompanying this course highlights a multitude of tips and advice for when carrying out or leading a meeting. Some of these include keeping contributions concise and short, without excessive or irrelevant detail; being efficient with note-taking, using short-hand and not allowing oneself to lose track of the meeting; avoiding interrupting others; self-awareness of non-verbal behaviours and cues; and timing of delivery of contribution to maximise impact (McNamara, 2017; Tracy, 2017).

 

4. Outline various feedback techniques. (5)

According to the course material provided and other sources such as Brookhart (2008), there are several methods for giving feedback, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Firstly, this includes the well-known ‘sandwich’ format, whereby positive feedback is given, followed by a description of behaviours to change or improve, and followed again by another positive comment to reinforce. The ‘open-ended approach’ directly describes the behaviour to change or improve, without an opening positive comment; this is then followed by positive reinforcement and a reminder of the value of the input of the individual receiving feedback. When no changes are required of the individual receiving feedback then an ‘individual positive feedback statement’ can be given, which does not direct a behavioural change or improvement. The final example given in the course literature is that of ‘constructive criticism’, which does not contain any positive feedback and directly instructs an improvement or change without the positive reinforcement; significantly, care should be taken with this approach due to the harshness which can be conveyed with such an approach.

 

 

WORD COUNT – 930

 

 

 

Reference List

Brookhart, S. (2008) How to Give to your students Effective Feedback. [online] - http://perino.pbworks.com/f/Effective+Feedback.pdf Accessed 2nd October 2017.

Charles Sturt University (2008) Leading People Resource Management. [online] – http://www.csu.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0007/51946/Resource-Management.pdf Accessed 2nd October 2017.

Hersey, P. and Blanchard, K. (1977) Management of Organizational Behavior (3rd Edition) – Utilizing Human Resources. New Jersey/Prentice Hall.

McNamara, C. (2017)  Guidelines to Conducting Effective Meetings. [online] - https://managementhelp.org/misc/meeting-management.htm Accessed 2nd October 2017.

Myers, S. (2017) Definitions of Leadership and Management. [online] – http://www.teamtechnology.co.uk/leadership/management/definitions-of-leadership-and-management/ Accessed 30th September 2017.

Ratcliffe, R. (2013) What's the difference between leadership and management? The Guardian. 29th July 2013. [online] – https://www.theguardian.com/careers/difference-between-leadership-management. Accessed 30th September 2017.

Tracy, B. (2017) 5 Tips for Running Effective Meetings: Improve Meeting Management Skills. [online] - https://www.briantracy.com/blog/leadership-success/improve-meeting-management-and-management-skills-for-effective-meetings/ Accessed 2nd October 2017.

 



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