An organization is said to be effective when it achieves the expected output as by the management. An effective organization earns profit for investors, offers satisfactory service to clients and has a potential for growth and development. Organizations are able to survive turbulent times due to their adaptability to change. The management which provides good leadership experiences employee retention and the workers are more productive than one with a demoralized workforce.
According to BTEC proposal on Factors Contributing To Effective Workforce (2007, 2) the Department for Trade and Industry in the UK highlights aspects that facilitate organizational performance. An organization has to facilitate training and continuous learning for employees, the organization has contingency methods of operation that is different situations are handled by the different appropriate ways. An organization has to engage the input of its employees in the decision making. The employees being a valuable asset should be motivated for maximum input.
British and Technical Educational Council (bized. co. uk. ) observes that managers should take cognizance of the different values and beliefs held by employees. There should be no discrimination on gender, race or religious beliefs but equal treatment for employees and recognition of the diversity of views and opinions Effectiveness is only achieved when the organizational goals and targets are harmonized. An organization achieves its objectives when all elements are working in unison and in the desired course.
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A manager should identify strategies to take an organization to its target position in the market from its current situation. Any manager in the 21st century will be expected to be more proactive than reactive. The modern organizational work is management teams with defined targets and time frame. The matrix environment calls for employees who can work in different work teams and demand multiple skills. Managers are expected to hire the best candidates with the right attitudes to match organizational expectations on a job.
The manager’s focus on human resources management is due to the fact that workers individually and collectively determine the attainment of goals. Disputes that usually arise in an organization due to the competitive use of resources should be settled quickly. The manager should provide an open forum for employees to voice their concerns which facilitate communication at the work place. Modern business environment is rapidly changing due to international competition and readily available information on the internet.
The developments in information technology have led to need for flexible managers at the modern workplaces. The organization should continuously improve the quality of commodities. Further an organization will gain a competitive edge by efficiently and effectively utilizing its resources. Major areas that have a significant bearing on organizational performance are the human resource and personnel development departments. The employees should be well trained and competent to handle consumers changing tastes and cut-throat competition in the product market.
The training of employees has been viewed by HR practitioners as an investment to develop and accumulate intellectual capacity. Armstrong (2000, 3) observes that targets, strategies and plans for an organization should strive to increase knowledge, skills and expertise of its employees. It has been observed that where employees are involved in policy formulation, their input elicits employee’s commitment and motivation which ensures productivity. Managers should inculcate integrity and trust which facilitates quicker settlement of disputes and problems at the work place.
Training and development is viewed in two aspects which are hard and soft human resource management. Hard aspects of personnel management looks at the employees’ involvement at the work place as an investment which is expected to add value to the business. This means that employees are hired on economical rationale. (bized. co. uk). Hard HRM is a business oriented view and focuses on quantitative aspects of the employees. Soft HRM aspects emphasize on the motivational, leadership and relational aspects of employees.
Soft HRM views employees as mean as opposed to mere objects in the attainment of goals. The employees are viewed as a valuable investment and their skills and commitment gives an organization a competitive advantage over its rival companies in an industry. The aspirations and interests of the management and employees are harmonized to ensure mutual benefit in the attainment of both organizational and individual goals. The erection of “Chinese Walls” around individuals should be discouraged at the job place. Since it hinders communication and delays the making of decisions.
Workers should have access to their supervisors and managers. A research conducted by Linda Bilmes, Peter Strueven and Konrad Wetzker at the Boston Consulting Group found four major areas that determine an organization’s success. The human resource think tank B. C. G using workers’ scored card viewed recruitment, assessment of performance, training and an intrapreneurial culture to be very important determinants of organizational performance. The study involved peer comparisons of over two hundred firms in Germany and America.
Entrepreneurial culture is the creation of an investing and entrepreneurial norm in an organization. Blimes formulated an eight point proposal for the effective attainment of organizational goals and objectives. The senior management should be committed to employee’s empowerment and on the job learning. The business environment should be assessed to identify needs and develop a workforce development program. The employees should be flexible and the firms must be versatile to meet the changing business needs. An individual’s personal and career progress should be factor in the training process.
There should be providing security of jobs at an organization. The remuneration should be linked to elicit loyalty and retain competent employees. Modern organizations will require major decisions to be made by the shop floor workers and employees who serve the customers. Organizations need prompt execution of orders to avoid losing goodwill when customers are dissatisfied with service. Information overload due to developments in information and communication technology will demand decentralization of power and authority in an organization.
The managers will need to encourage an entrepreneurial culture to motivate employees in the achievement of both organizational and personal objectives. The performance of employees should be considered on the remuneration scheme. Special skills and attributes like creativity, personal drive and development and team spirit should also be acknowledged and rewarded. The junior staff targets and goals should be set in together with the overall organizational goals and objectives. The matching of goals and intentions will facilitate clear focus of the wholesome organization efforts.
The cascading hierarchy found in organizations should consider the special training and development needs of different segments in the organization. The organization should ensure that remuneration and motivation meets expectations of the individual and his family’s . Only organization that are committed to training and development of staff will develop multi-skilled employees. Armstrong (2000, 13) argues that business growth strategies can only be achieved with a workforce with multiple skills to handle and cope with a rapidly changing business environment.
Since mid 1980s a number of solutions have been formulated to solve the organizational dysfunctions. Gordon (2008) noted that a major target for organizations has been to achieve maximum output, efficiency in production, best quality at minimum usage of the resources in terms of time, effort and money. A few of the new concepts include Just in Time (JIT) production, working in teams, human resource management (HRM) and customer care management. An organization dealing with voluminous products should adopt JIT technique in the management of its inventories.
Just in Time technique minimizes wastages involved from the order of new supplies and eventual sale of the goods. JIT is advantageous in that only needed stock is held business premises. Materials are only ordered where demand exists. Capital is economically invested and not tied to slow moving stocks, saves on rent for warehousing and workers are engaged productively in items that bring revenue to the organization Another trend is the adoption of Total Quality Management (TQM) in the production process.
Gordon 2008 observed that TQM method ensures that manufactured products are consistent over time and meet the required standards. Implementation of TQM will ensure that only initial products are examined for any faults and deviations from standards. This ensures efficient utilization of resources by an organization. TQM offers certainty for the investors who lend monies in the organization. The global financial market has high risks and investors demand prudent management of their investments and clear repayments of the loans.
Accountability and integrity are achieved by Total Quality Management practice in manufacturing industries. TQM and JIT methods in an organization help to ensure quality services to customer, cut costs of operation and faster solution of management problems. Major yardsticks for the quality in TQM are the application of universal standards, profession standards and standards for a sector and customers who are satisfied. Financial problems are the major causes of failure of organizations. Bad investment and operation decisions have resulted in huge losses for firms and final liquidation of companies.
An investigation in the official receiver (OR) reports under the companies act (1985) in the UK reveals major causes of closure of business. (Bezelga, & Brandon (1991, 3) At the operational level organizational failure has been caused by inadequate skills and expertise, improper supervision of staff, debt problems, inaccuracies in costs and estimates and poor managerial accounting on projects The reliance on a few major supplies, change in competitor’s behavior, dependency of few clients, reduced demand for products and overcapitalization in associate companies have caused the corporate failure at strategic levels.
Differences aid disputes among the senior manger, health problems and high salaries for executives have bee identified problems at management level which hinder organizational performance. Major problems plaguing firms operating in technologically oriented industries areas have been found be caused by the usage of inferior materials, dysfunctional plant and lack of experienced manpower to achieve the expected output The collapse of a number of publicly quoted corporations in the US due to mismanagement has led to the rethinking on the importance of values and ethics in business.
The collapse of Enron, Arthur Anderson and World Com which were large corporations has significant impact on the US regulatory authority’s competency in the mismanagement of investor’s funds . This had lead to changes in accounting principles and strict compliance to the FASB guidelines by the accountants and auditors. Ethics borders on morality and the integrity of employees to stick to the defined rules and regulations. An organization can only steer its resources to achieve desired objects when all participants effectively perform their share of the responsibility.
Frauds and omission in accounts makes planning difficult. With time the window dressing of accounts weather and a company incurs actual losses. Window dressing involves disclosure of financial statements in a better position than they actually are. Integrity calls for employees to do the right things as per code of conduct. An organization can function as a whole only when all participants are open and truthful in their duties. A worker who practices integrity does what he say in other words there is matching of speech and behavior.
The employers should not allow personal ambitions and desires to override the organizational goal. Personal and organizational goals are simultaneously achieved when managers have their principles and standards geared to realization of growth and profitability objectives of an organization. There is certainty and predictability in behavior for organizations that have employee who observe ethical standards. An employee who has integrity listens carefully to different view point and amicably resolves any diverging opinions.
Employees are expected to comply with the business norms and values to avoid conflicts. Ethical considerations demand that a person inculcates appropriate principles that meet the business requirements. This ensures that an individual meets the obligations of various stakeholders in an organization. The mission statement of an organization should link the conduct of the institution with the objectives and goals. This provides a unification of efforts and thoughts of all person involved in ensuring targets are attained.
Another recent trade in the corporate world is the involvement in corporate social responsibility ventures. These are voluntary efforts by organizations to ensure sustainable environment. The organizations involved in CSR activities project a better image to the investors and civil rights organizations. Over $2. 15 billion was invested in CSR by US firms in 2003. This ventures show corporations as civil citizens with rights and obligations. An organization should ensure that all financial, strategic operation and personnel areas are in harmony and directed to attainment of organizational goals.
A balance score card is a valuable measure that ensures all aspects of a business are unison. The aspirations and values of an organization should be reflected in the mission and vision statements. A clear business plan helps to transform the mission of an organization into actual outcome. A balanced score card helps to elicit the employees’ support. Prudent management is necessary for a firm to survive turbulent economic times. Niven (2006, 92) observes that an organization should inculcate good principles and values to guide the evaluation of alternative when making decisions.
Values are principles and priceless beliefs at workplace. A balanced score card helps gauge the achievement of organizational goals. It further shows the relevance of values and harmonizing the organization and personal goals. A clear vision helps to transform the business plan, strategy and values to the final successful outcome. A vision captures the final position of an organization and helps to motivate employees. A vision helps the work force to focus on the elements that they can influence on the implementation of a strategy.
A well defined vision will clarify the firm’s direction and coordinate efforts of all interested parties. A score card captures the desired skill and competencies for employees to create desire value in the later years of a firm’s existence. Niven (2006, 93) further observes that a score card helps to identify trends and changes in consumer behaviors which is an important aspect of a forward looking organization. Many corporations in America and Western Europe have developed a code of ethics to guide the corporate world.
A code of ethics clarifies areas of special concern like use of confidential information, economic crimes for civil servants and clarity on the private use of business assets. )Corporations in the recent times have decided to include a report on ethics at annual general meetings (AGMs) when other financial statements are analyzed . A code of ethics helps to foster fair treatment of workers and competitors. Ethic standards ensure economical and effective use of corporate assets and avoid prosecution of employees for breach of law since the role expectations for an employee are clearly outlined.
A company that adopts code of ethics is said to have a good corporate image as observed by Kaptein and Wempe (2002, 22) Adherence to a code of ethics by organization ensures the interaction of different stakeholders is clearly defined. Customers when perceived as valuable partners by corporations are motivated to do business with these organizations. This means increment of a company’s bottom-line profits. Kaptein and Wempe (2002, 23) notes that ethics are established in organizations to ensure that firms are responsible for their actions besides making of profits in the society.
Research has found that necessary legislation to regulate behavior of corporation takes long to be enacted and business ethics provide appropriate sanctions in the absence of law. Ethics provide an ad hoc mechanism to continuously guide activities of the employees and the management. In conclusion only firms that adjust their strategic plans to the changing business environment will survive and grow. References Armstrong, M. 2000, Strategic Human Resource Management: A Guide to Action Kogan Page Publishers, pp 3-5 Bezelga, A & Brandon P. S. 1991 Management, Quality and Economics in Building: Taylor & Francis, Lisbon,, pp 9-12.
Brown, M. T, 2005 Corporate Integrity: Rethinking Organizational Ethics and Leadership Cambridge University Press, pp5-11 BTEC Travel and Tourism . 2007, Factors Contributing To Effective Workforce Last visited on 20th November 2008. Available at http://www. bized. co. uk/educators/16-19/tourism/working/presentation/effective1. ppt Kaptein. , M. & Wempe J . 2002, The Balanced Company: A Theory of Corporate Integrity Oxford University Press, pp 22-23. Niven, P. R. 2006 Balanced Scorecard Step-by-Step: Maximizing Performance and Maintaining Results , For Dummies, pp 92-94.
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