In this assignment, students are given a scenario in which the shipping manager who has worked for Recycled Furnishings since the inception of the company is getting ready to retire. The scenario serves to set the stage for students to demonstrate how management theories have changed over time. For example, managing 30 years ago is different than managing in the 21st century.
: Read critically and analyze the following scenario:
Recycled Furnishings is a division of an international home furnishing company called Thor Enterprises. Recycled Furnishings makes glass sofas for outdoor use from recycled bottles and glass. The business has grown rapidly in the last thirty years and now that it has become a division of Thor Enterprises, the company is going international. The shipping manager for Recycled Furnishings, Robert, has been in his job since the start of the company. Prior to coming to Recycled Furnishings, Robert worked as a container manufacturing engineer at Damco, a local shipping company and worked his way up to supervisor prior to joining Recycled Furnishings. Robert, a baby boomer, quickly rose to supervisor at Damco because of his ability to optimize the way tasks were performed and his knack to implement processes so workers could be trained to perform their specialized sequence of motion in one best way. He brought this management style to Recycled Furnishing and helped to improve the methodology of furniture assembly as well as the shipping processes.
A major shift in management occurred in the late 1980’s and early 90’s that caused Robert to reconsider his management approach. For example, advances in technology, the organization joining a union, change in the value systems, organizational design and globalization all affected the culture of Recycled Furnishings. Robert was successful with this transformation and contributed greatly to the company’s success.
In answering the following questions, make sure that the facts of the scenario and the course readings support the reasoning of the answers provided.
Discuss the school of thought that best describes Robert’s management style when he first joined Recycled Furnishings.
Discuss the theorist under the identified school of thought that best depicts Robert’s management style. What contribution did this theorist make to management and why was his or her contribution important to the field of management?
Select and discuss the school of thought that best describes the management style Robert used once the shift took place? Why is this school of thought the best choice?
Select and discuss one theorist who supports this school of thought. Address the principles of the theory and how a manager would do his job and interact with his staff. How does what the theorist proposed support the facts in the case study?
Compare and contrast the current management thought with Robert’s early thinking;
Recently Robert announced his plans to retire. You have been hired as his replacement and with the international launch on the horizon you have big shoes to fill. You feel you are more than capable of handling the shipping manager position and characterize yourself as a 21st century manager.
As a 21st century manager, compare the way you will manage versus the way of Robert;
What implications do the changes in management have for the future of Thor?
How will the new approach to the job likely change the shipping division?