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Management and Leadership Paper

Essay by   •  January 21, 2012  •  Research Paper  •  2,076 Words (9 Pages)  •  1,250 Views

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Management and leadership are needed at every company or organization. At Wal-Mart, these two things must co-exist in order for the company to run smoothly and efficiently. The management at Wal-Mart consists of a combination of controls and standards where individuals have some freedom to express them and to advance in the company. The company which was founded by Sam Walton is comprised of a team concept. When Walton started his company, he had simple ways of management that all the employees were pleased with; however, today, unions for workers want Wal-Mart to allow its employees to join without any repercussions. This paper will examine the difference between management and leadership, describe the roles and responsibilities that organizational managers and leaders play in creating and maintaining a healthy organizational culture, evaluate the affect of globalization and management across borders and look at two strategies that organizational managers and leaders can use to create and maintain a healthy organizational culture at Wal-Mart.

What is management? According to Bateman and Snell (2009, p.19), "management is the process of working with people and resources to accomplish organizational goals." Managers of any company including Wal-Mart must be efficient and effective to manage a group or individuals in a company. Management is how managers enforce the rules, policies, goals, and procedures that a company has in place for the people that work in the company. When there is proper management in a company, the plans and goals of a company can be carried out in such a way that everyone can benefit. When managers have employees that are highly skilled and knowledgeable, managers can trust them to do even a much better job than what they are already doing for the company. Management has a lot to do with how Wal-Mart operates on a day-to-day basis. Individuals that are hired at Wal-Mart go through orientation and training processes before they interact with the customers. This good management because new employees or associates as they are referred to at Wal-Mart will have time to ask important questions and get immediate feedback to clarify any misconceptions about their job. Also, this training and orientation will help them in handling difficult situations that they may encounter. The overall concept of management is that it requires planning and budgeting routines, structuring the company, employing capable individuals, and the activities of the company (Bateman & Snell, 2009).

Leadership, on the other hand, is getting others to do things within the company. Leadership has a lot to do with motivating and influencing the others in the company to carry out a specific task or assignment. According to Bateman and Snell (2009, p. 434), "outstanding leaders combine good strategic planning and effective interpersonal processes to formulate and implement strategies that will produce results and sustainable competitive advantages." Leaders have a clear vision and values about what they want and give others that information about the vision to help accomplish the desired outcome. Leaders are also role models in the company. Wal-Mart has a type of leadership called servant leadership. Servant leadership is simply leaders who serve others while helping the company become even stronger. The leaders at Wal-Mart listen to their partners as well as their associates in such a way that generates a climate of good morale that will help the entire team accomplish the overall goal (Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.). To help with leadership skills and development, Wal-Mart has ongoing training and development classes to help associates improve in their careers to reach their full potential. Sam Walton believed in servant leadership and this type of leadership is still incorporated at all locations of Wal-Mart.

Although management and leadership are different, they are both needed in an organization. Both the organizational managers and leaders have roles and responsibilities that will help them to create and maintain a healthy organizational culture. To maintain a healthy organizational culture, managers must show the employees support, encourage, and provide additional training for the associates to be successful. Another way to maintain a healthy organizational culture is to make sure that all customers are given excellent service when they enter and leave any Wal-Mart store. The leaders know what they want for the customers. The managers and associates must implement this vision to ensure that all customers are satisfied. Striving for excellence is also a way to maintain a healthy organizational culture. When leaders, managers, and associates at Wal-Mart work together, the company will exhibit a certain degree of excellence.

At Wal-Mart, organizational managers and leaders help to create and maintain a healthy organizational culture by teamwork. Teamwork is what makes Wal-Mart stand out from its competitors. The managers, leaders, and associates give the best service to the customers as well as to each other. In order to achieve this kind of teamwork, everyone follows the guidelines that have made the culture at Wal-Mart a healthy one. The company has three basic beliefs that everyone abides by. The first of these beliefs is respect for the individual. Although the people that work at Wal-Mart have different backgrounds and personal beliefs, the company encourage them to express their thoughts and ideas. They work hard at showing that belief of respect. Wal-Mart also believes in the service it provides for its customers as well as strives to be the best in the business. The company tries to finds ways that will be beneficial to it, the customers, and the different communities it is located in (Wal-Mart, 2009).

Managers, leaders, and associates ate Wal-Mart also maintain a healthy organizational culture by two rules that exist at the company, the Sundown Rule and the Ten Foot Rule. The Sundown Rule was created by Sam Walton. The Sundown Rule is a simple rule that means getting things done today and not putting them off until tomorrow. If something needs to be done, it will be handle the same day regardless if it is a need from another store or giving the customers the best service. The other rule known as the Ten Foot Rule is the reason behind the customer service that is provided at Wal-Mart. Sam Walton relied on this rule to help build the success that Wal-Mart has. The Ten Foot Rule simply means that whenever an associate (employee) is within ten feet of a customer he or she should speak and ask the customer if he or she needs any help. Although these rules were established several years ago by Sam Walton, the company still applies these rules today at all stores.

Wal-Mart has a strong, healthy organizational culture. As within any company, there can be a certain degree of weakness.

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