When I was in junior high and high school, I worked at a local retail store. During the school year, I worked at the store every day after school and on Saturdays. During the summer I would work every day (except Sundays). This job was very essential to my growth as a person. The owner of the store was a very effective manager and leader. The manager role involves many different functions, but it can all be summed up as: “managerial work involves interpersonal roles, informational roles, and decisional roles” (Mintzberg et al., 1998, p. 1) which requires several skills including “developing peer relationships, carrying out negotiations, motivating subordinates, resolving conflicts, establishing information networks and disseminating information, making decisions with little or ambiguous information and allocating resources”(Mintzberg et al., 1998, p. 1-2). Leaders focus on creating a better future. Leadership goals are active and shape ideas rather than responding to them. “The influence a leader exerts in altering moods, evoking images and expectations, and in establishing specific desires and objectives determines the direction a business takes” (Mintzberg et al., 1998, p. 66). Good managers and leaders are able to effectively plan, organize, lead and control. These four functions of management were something that this manager was very successful performing. “Planning is the managerial work of analyzing situations and making plans to move in a certain direction” (Lehman, 1997, p. 13). The manager set a plan in place because he wanted the store to be known for its excellent customer service.
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“Organizing is the managerial work of lining up people or processes to carry out the plan” (Lehman, 1997, p. 13). One way he organized the workplace for this was by hiring people who had the willingness to work with customers, patience for difficult customers, and who were faithful and loyal. It was essential for the employees to have willingness and patience with the customers. Customer referrals are very important to small retail establishments. If there was poor customer service, the customers may not come back to the store or they may tell their friends and families about their experience. The loyalty and faithfulness of the employees was important because the manager counted on the people being there when scheduled. If all of the employees were not there when they were scheduled, the store would not be able to provide a high level of customer service to its customers. Leading the employees in the direction of excellent customer service was something that this manager was very effective at performing. “Leading is what managers do with people on a day-to-day basis to carry out the plan” (Lehman, 1997, p. 13). He would be out on the sales floor himself speaking with the customers and making sure that they were completely satisfied with the level of service they were receiving. This manager would also lead by example to show the employees how they should act and speak to the customers. “Controlling is measuring progress in carrying out the plan” (Lehman, 1997, p. 13). The manager controlled the store by observing the customer service being given and by speaking with the customers about their specific experience. The times that a customer was not satisfied
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with the service or the product they received, the manager would do all he could to make it right by that customer. The motivational practices used by this manager are based on the theory of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. The manager wanted to make sure that his employees were having their physiological needs, safety needs, social needs, esteem needs, and self-actualization needs met. The physiological needs are the basic “needs...