Read the following situation then answer the
questions as part of well written essay (250-500 words) about this
hypothetical. Include sources and citations where appropriate. Include
a reference list at the end of your essay.
John Smithers learned all about leadership in the military, and he is
hoping to apply those skills to running John’s Deals to Go, his small
automobile-leasing company. One interesting feature of life in the armed
services is that considerable responsibilities are delegated to young
men and women who have very little work experience. Smithers was only 27
when he was assigned duties as a purchasing manager at Kandahar
Airport, Afghanistan, in 2003. As a young Marine, he was directly
responsible for nearly $50 million in purchasing contracts, which forced
him to grow up—and really fast!
To parallel his military experience, Smithers and his small management
team have decided to use various methods to delegate decision making to
employees at the operating level in his company. New employees are
trained thoroughly after they are first hired, but supervisors will not
monitor their work closely once they have learned their duties.
Management is willing to jump in and help if truly needed, but they
purposely leave workers alone when they take on their assigned duties.
Managers will not look over employees’ shoulders to be sure that they
are doing their jobs as assigned, and they certainly do not monitor the
work just to try to catch someone making a mistake. Smithers’s
managerial philosophy is that people work best when they sense that
their superiors trust their abilities and their business integrity.
Smithers and his team sometimes leave for day-long meetings and allow
the employees to run the business by themselves. Job assignments are
defined rather loosely, but management expects employees to assume
responsibility and to take necessary action whenever they see that
something needs to be done. To reinforce the message of trust, employees
who ask for direction are sometimes simply told to solve the problem in
whatever way they think best.
Is such a loosely organized firm likely to be as effective as a firm
that defines jobs more precisely and monitors performance more closely?
What are the advantages and the limitations of the managerial style described above?
How might such managerial methods affect morale?
Would you like to work for this company? Why or why not?