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Managers are often challenged to achieve organisational objectives. It is critical for management to select an effective approach to improve the efficiency of daily operations and not be “swallowed” (Thomson, 1998) by the change. Steve’s management style appears to align closely with the human relations approach, which highlights the importance of understanding human behaviours and needs in the workforce. This is evident as he involves workers in decision making, uses informal communication and encourages teamwork with the intention of motivating employees. For instance, he produces
“Steve’s Seven Secrets of Successful Sales” and states that workers are not required to get his approval of providing discounts to customers. By the same token, if workers encounter difficulties, they can seek assistance from other staff before informing Steve. Steve also emphasises that employees should have “fun” with their colleagues as well as customers. Therefore, individuals are able to interact with each other in an “informal” way. Consequently, workers are likely to be emotionally invested in Hardly-Normal and devote themselves to their tasks, and develop new ideas that could help the organisation in the long run.
Conversely, Scientific Management approach stresses rational changes in management practices to improve labour productivity. In this case, it can be shown that Kylie has adapted the scientific management approach as she believes that “pay for performance” (Freedman, 1992) is the main motivator for work performance. After she becomes the manager of Hardly-Normal, she tries to stimulate employee motivation by offering financial rewards of $10,000 based on the number of sales that the teams produced and offers training for workers. Additionally, Grönroos (1994) states that despite the scientific management approach focuses on the final performance of the teams, it does not consider the worker’s wellbeing. Thus, workers may enhance their knowledge and competency of technological products. Job Design and Managerial Control [319 words] By adapting the human relations approach, Steve lacks emphasis on designing specific jobs for workers and only comes to a decision if workers are unable to do so. For example, Steve allocates individuals to “rotate around” product lines on a daily basis. This can be seen as job rotation; where workers are moved between different departments to increase the variety of work and create a flexible workforce. Also, it may improve the skills of the employees and generate “personal satisfaction”. Similarly, since there is decentralised decision making between management and employees, therefore they share problem-solving tasks and responsibilities of ensuring customers are satisfied with their electronic products and services. As Steve takes part in the day to day operation, hence he is able to observe and make any necessary changes. Also, McShane et al (2016) declare that diversity such as offering an “inclusive” workforce can satisfy workers’ needs for recognition and respect due to their belief of being the valuable team members of the organisation.
Nevertheless, Scientific Management approach underlines the importance of managers obtaining full responsibility and control and using centralised decision making. For Hardly-Normal, Kylie has undergone the processes of planning, organising, leading and controlling to break down tasks that were originally performed by individual employees. As a result, she provides training for sales assistants to become “product specialists” for only one product line. This is envisioned to reduce employees’ confusion of being familiar to the “wide range” of products which leads to requiring less time and effort in future. Moreover, Kylie has the desire to be in control and retain authority. An example could be Kylie has supplied a “standardised script” to workers regarding their methods of interacting with consumers. It declares that the interaction with customers is restricted to a maximum of five minutes. Accordingly, the act of implementing an efficient and effective method can ensure staff are working at their optimal capability and minimise cost. Most effective Management Style in a retail setting [401 words] In hopes of increasing individual contribution and achieving organisation’s goal of keeping “abreast” of technological changes and product updates to satisfy customer’s needs, the human relations approach is more beneficial for Hardly-Normal. Human relations approach can lead to an increase in employee motivation. This involves manager and employees being part of the decision-making process. As they believe that the outputs produced will contribute to achieving organisational objectives, therefore this can increase individual’s productivity and causes improvement in the quality of goods and services supplied.
Likewise, Steve creates “satisfying” (Hackman, 1980) tasks for workers in Hardly-Normal by offering job rotation across the product lines. Consequently, the number of customer complaints would be reduced, and staff can be found to be more friendly, polite and willing to help others due to employees are engaged in their current job. For this reason, the human relations approach could restore Hardly-Normal’s reputation of being the “Best Branch” of customer service. Furthermore, Human relations approach allows management of retail organisations to receive instant feedback. This approach keeps individuals informed about factors that could influence their performance. As consumers of Hardly-Normal may have electrical problems or want to purchase products such as laptops, therefore they will prefer professional assistance and recommendations from the staff. Hence, Managers must be able to communicate with their staff “directly” and “immediately” (Baker, 2002).
During Steve’s daily operations, workers are permitted to interact with each other in an “informal” way, which results in individuals feeling “comfortable” working in such an environment. Thus, this approach enables individuals to communicate without restrictions and adjust their behaviour accordingly from the responses received from customers and colleagues. Similarly, the human relations approach focuses on the interaction between management and employees. In comparison to Scientific Management approach, human relations approach can stop viewing the organisation as a “machine” (Freedman, 1992) and permits workers to have an interactive way to complete tasks while being provided with a sense of belonging. Similarly, staff can formulate teams or “communities” (Freedman, 1992) to accomplish tasks that cannot be achieved by a single individual. Refer to the article, Steve has acted as a coach who gets his team of employees to work together and enhance the overall performance of Hardly-Normal. Also, Miller (1964) discloses that based on researches, organisations should focus on smaller groups of individuals in daily “intimate work association” with each other. As a result, this can improve retention and reduce staff turnover, which could save operation cost and time.