Thursday, December 12, 2019
Organization Effectiveness and Structure
Question: Discuss about the Organization Effectiveness and Structure. Answer: Overview of the Organization Fizzy Feet (FF) originally started off as a partnership but now a public limited company is a shoe manufacturing company that specializes in athletic footwear for both men and women. It has been operating since the past fifteen years; but has risen into prominence for the last few years only. Customers regard its high quality service and reasonable pricing the go-to-reasons to buy FFs shoes. Women, especially, rave about how comfortable and long lasting FFs footwear is despite being priced considerably lower than what its competitors have to offer. FF currently has two operating factories in suburban cities and various other exclusive retail outlets that sell only FFs shoes. The company has opened exclusive show rooms with an advertisement slogan of Best shoe for best foot. Most importantly, word-of-mouth publicity has what has made the company rise on its popularity status- thanks to the amazing quality shoes. All in all, FF is a well-reputed and increasingly popular athletic footwear company that, if molded in the right direction, has the capacity to lead the footwear market. Organizational Structure and its Life Cycle An organizational structure(Baligh, 2006) is the internal framework of a business; it shows the way in which management and other decision-making activities are carried out in an organization. It shows how authority is passed down in an organization. Basically, it represents who has overall responsibility of the organization. FF, an athletic footwear company, runs through matrix organization structure(Knight, 1977). The matrix structure is an organizational structure that runs by creating project teams(Mary Beth Pinto, 1990) that cut across traditional functional departments. In simpler words, FF has made various has built competent project teams across its two manufacturing sites that effectively work to produce footwear. It is the same with the research and development team. There are about five project teams that come up with new marketing and production techniques. The board discusses on the pros and cons of each approach and finalizes on the beneficial ones. This method of organizing is project-focused. Team comes forward together and the sense of being together is established. FF has probably been influenced by the widely acclaimed book In Search of Excellence(Peters, 1982). Regarding FFs life cycle, the company is still in its growth stage. It plans to grow in terms of product and market diversification and its sales too. The companys focus on teams and creativity is an indicator of how the company is promoting creativity for product and market diversification. While one should note that the company heavily promotes matrix structure in production and creative processes, the board of directors takes final decision. Hence, while most of the authority is delegated, the board still has the final say on each and every matter. So, functionally based structure(Boundless, 2016) is prevalent. Role of technology in the companys organization structure The companys functioning structure is heavily influenced by technology and enterprise resource planning(Makers, 2011) is a major part of that heavy influence. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is the use of a single computer application to direct and plan the purchase and use of resources in an organization. FF particularly uses this application to order and retain information about its day-to-day purchase activities. The organizational structure revolves around this computer application as the role of various members of the company and their purposes, including something as basic as a supply chain, is engraved in the computer application. For a large and complicated network as of FFs, technology has and will play a prominent role in its everyday activities. Modern production systems use computer based technology for integrating various aspects of manufacturing process in a better and improvised manner and also allow quick and cost efficient modifications of any product(Ahmed). It has simplified the process of managing reports and enabled communication virtually in formal forms throughout its communication network. The use of advanced devices has increased efficiency and productivity for the company. The use of advanced production plants a form of technology, for examplehas positively affected the production processes of the company FF. Contingency decision making and Effectiveness of the structure and the cycle The matrix structure has allowed total communication between all members of the team and building a close-knit tight relationship among the members. Likewise this structure also supports in contingency decision making. This has often times been a form of motivation to do better among workers. Theyve felt free and boundless when it comes to their creative potential as theyve been given chances to explore their ideas. A sense of teamworka form of motivation(Mayo), (Vroom, 1964) has been created and FF has been a witness to the positive changes. The flexibility that the matrix structure offers allows and facilities contingency decision making and planning. There is a lot of environmental uncertainties surrounding a company, and a effective organizational structure supports the company during such uncertainties, therefore, matrix structure is a good structure to increase the over all effectiveness of the company. Likewise, the roles within the company have become much more clearer and project teams have a clear view of what theyre supposed to do and what they should aim to achieve- growth. The crossover of ideas with between people of specialist knowledge in different fields has created a much more productive environment in FFs various departments. For example, while discussing on what designs to launch in order to attract the market loophole old age groups in athletic footwear-- the teams came u with rational and informed conclusions on various market aspects. However, project teams have negatively competed with each other, often resulting in bad vibes in the company itself. One project team outperforming the others has developed jealousy and a sense of unfairness. Also, since there is less direct control from the top, passing down authority to junior workers has been tough to some managers. Theyve complained that some managers have lost touch with the work proceedings of some project groups due to autonomy that project groups extensively exercise. Also, some reports of clashes between members of the same team have also come across. Apparently, some members are unhappy in working in teams that allegedly dont value their thoughts and just go with what the majority says. Conclusion and Recommendations FF is one of those few companies that has an extremely well built structure, knows what it wants to achieve and has a plan within its organization and its structure to achieve it. While FF has already come a long way, it still has an uphill battle to fight if it hopes to come in the ranks of Adidas and Nike in athletic footwear. For that, the company should make functional changes in its organizationmaybe collect feedback and suggestions form its employees on the present organizational culture. It should work on addressing the minorities of the project teams, as there have been complaints as to how the minorities have felt neglected. The matrix structure is absolutely fine when it comes to inducing creativity and research. Hence, I highly recommend that FF continue using it. However, it would be better if FF establishes ground rules and benchmarks in order to measure how productive one project team is so as to encourage healthy competition and to let teams know their tentative contribution to the new-ness of the company. Project teams are okay for contingency plans too as FF always has a back up plan if the best plan doesnt follow through and that a Plan B is always present. But Id recommend that the hierarchy is disregarded and that the manager is given control of any accidents/emergencies that might occur in the organization. For instance, the department must not have to wait for the approval of the board to buy a huge plant, when the other one stopped working, to continue production processes. For contingencies, the company must have another go-to organizational structure, for example the contingency theory of organizations(Donaldson, 2001), so that production processes (or any other important processes) is unobstructed. References Ahmed, S. (n.d.). Technology in Organizations. IMPACT Journals. Baligh, H. H. (2006). Organization Structures. Springer US. (2016). Boundless Management. Retrieved from https://www.boundless.com/management/textbooks/boundless-management-textbook/organizational-structure-2/common-organizational-structures-25/functional-structure-146-3979/ Donaldson, L. (2001). The Contingency Theory of Organizations. Knight, K. (1977). Matrix Management: A Cross-Functional Approach to Organization. New York: PBI-Petrocelli Books. Makers, F. G. (2011). What Is ERP and Why Do I Need It? Mary Beth Pinto, J. K. (1990). Project Team Communication and Cross-Functional Cooperation in New Program Development. Mayo, E. (n.d.). Hawthorne Effect. Peters, T. (1982). In Search of Excellence. Vroom, V. (1964). Expectancy Theory.