The field of management is a vast sea of techniques, tools and approaches for different groups of managers around the globe. The sector of strategy implementation is always given priority owing to its significance in the success of the firm’s strategies and plans to accomplish those. So, the voyage through the matter becomes valuable for a management student as a part of academics. The investigation thus performed has identified the factors and elements of the strategy implementation along with the identification of various tools and approaches used in better implementation procedures. The MBO, MBE, etc turn out to be the heart and soul approaches used by the managers accompanied by the evaluation and monitoring of the employees through various appraisal techniques.
Management can always be considered as one of the most significant aspects exhibited by humans due to the fact that it is the basis of all human actions in life especially in business or any organization as a manager. “The General Management Unit is concerned with the leadership and management of the enterprise as a whole. This concern encompasses:
- The personal values and qualities of effective general managers and enterprise leaders;
- The philosophies, values, and strategies that inform successful enterprises; and
- The relation of enterprise to the broader community and other external constituencies.” (General Management, n.d., para.1).
Management values are functional in every field of life while an individual is performing his daily routine as well. A housewife keeping a house is considered as the best manager ever seen because of the successful completion of the entire household work within the budget and time. Same matters in the case of the business management sector; the success of the management is under the proper strategic formulation and implementation. The formulation without effective implementation of zero use, and thus the significance of the strategy implementation comes into the picture. The approach of the manager accompanied by the entire staff is in fact vital for the success of the firm and product or services.
Strategy implementation identifies the activities involved in accomplishing the set goals of the firm without fail. “Organizations successful at strategy implementation effectively manage six key supporting factors:
- Action Planning
- Organization Structure
- Human Resources
- The Annual Business Plan
- Monitoring and Control
- Linkage.” (Birnbaum, 2009, para.1).
The diverse stages of management should guide the industry to victory, through effective measures to adapt to the ever-changing external factors.
The success in the strategy implementation involves the efficient approach to the six supporting factors stated above. Each of those is explained below.
The action planning describes what is to be done by whom within what time. It is this that actually maps out the steps and course of action of each individual of the firm. All the activities carried out in the firm are based on the action plan developed after the identification and formulation of the entire strategies of the firm.
The setup of the organization is always responsible for the success of any strategic approach of the firm. The identified strategies should ever match the organizational availabilities. With the strange options available it is impossible to succeed in any target set.
The strategies set for the action are to be handled with the required percent of human resources so that the essential goal is achieved. The human resources involve the abilities of the entire staff including the management level to the lowest grade level of unskilled workers.
The Annual Business Plan
The entire strategy implementation depends on the budget allocation for the whole year of the firm. The economic backup for each strategy and purpose of the firm is planned and allocated at the beginning itself so that they never fail in funding the organizational decisions and activities. The annual business plan identifies the budget and helps in the efficient allocation of finance for the entire organization’s activities and.
Monitoring and Control
This factor of the strategy implementation always helps in evaluating the status and mode of the firm’s activities and getting the pan amended in the course of execution to achieve an increase in the probability of success. The changing environmental situation of the contemporary market can be observed to see the newer requirement for the strategic plan.
The victory of the firm in the strategy implementation can be attained only if a link is present between all the factors described above. The entire factors in the management sector should have a co-existing approach for the success of the implementation. The linkage infirm is either in a horizontal approach or vertical. The link between the individuals of the same level is identified as the horizontal relationship while the relation from the top to bottom or vice versa is the vertical linkage. The successful implementation of the formulated strategies requires the hormonal performance of individuals of all levels at work in a firm.
The elements of the strategy implementation are identified as “structure, leadership and business culture. To be able to implement the chosen strategy, the following three important elements should be present.” (Kroon, 1995, p.159).
The structure of an organization and its strategy are interdependent. The organizational configuration always helps in defining the strategies of the firm which in turn affects the setup of the firm’s construction including the entire internal factors. The human resource available and the work environment are the major internal factors of a firm.
Leadership is the utmost requirement of any organization. The quality of entrepreneurship is the one that can write the future of the firm to large extent. A group of lower potential individuals with a brilliant leader can lead to excellence than a group of experts with a lack of proper leadership. The ability of a manager should never be calculated with the help of his experience or academics but should be based on the skills and then followed by other supporting elements. A person with skill can gain experience from observation and analysis. This does not imply that experience is unnecessary, but stresses the strong necessity of skills and brilliance.
Business culture is another important element of strategy implementation. The requirement is identified by the sector of management worldwide. “Culture is a powerful component of an organization’s success, laying the tracks for a strategy to roll out on. It is the foundation for profit, productivity and progress.” (It’s a choice-organizational culture by design or by default, 2008, para.1).
The culture of business prevailing in the environment of the firm helps in the acceleration of the execution of various strategies of the organization. “Culture-Strategy Fit is a leading organizational culture consulting firm conducting groundbreaking culture diagnosis and change projects to help organizations leverage their culture to drive strategy and performance.” (It’s a choice-organizational culture by design or by default, 2008, para.1).
The co-existence of the business culture and the implementation procedure becomes clearer with the above quote which describes that the best outcome is possible with the best fit of the strategy and culture. (Kroon, 1995, p.159-160).
Various tools and Approaches of Strategy Implementation
There is a number of management tools and approaches employed in the strategy implementation of an organization.
Management by Objectives (MBO)
The first and foremost discussion can be performed on the management by objectives approach in management. “Management by objectives (MBO) is a systematic and organized approach that allows management to focus on achievable goals and to attain the best possible results from available resources.” (Drucker & Kotelnikov, n.d., para.1).
The idea identifies the maximum utility of the available resources of all aspects of the organization. The entire concentration is on attaining the goals and objectives however and how sooner. “The managerial focus is thus on the result, not the activity. MBO is about setting objectives and then breaking these down into more specific goals or key results. Managers delegate tasks by “negotiating a contract of goals” with their subordinates without dictating a detailed roadmap for implementation.” (Ravindran, 2009, para.10).
The whole project is not revealed to the entire group but the splits and shares for them are explained to them. This requires the division of the entire plan set to different modules of work. The employees remain totally ignorant about the final outcome of the project. They are made to work on the activities given while the managers keep track of their work.
The management by objectives has both merits and demerits as is the case with any other approach. The main advantage of MBO is that it “is a tool which measures performance against objectives set.” (Dale, 1965, p.93). Staff obligation towards the job and firm is assured with management by objectives approach. The linkages, both vertical and horizontal, are achieved with the help of management by objectives. The exploitation of human and other resources of the firm becomes possible in this approach with better involvement of the entire staff of the organization. Effective monitoring and evaluation are possible in this case. But, the management by objectives is wearisome in the matter of planning process. The splitting among the strategies can lead to inefficiency in the execution phase of the plan.
Management by Expectations (MBE)
Management by expectations can be viewed as a developmental outcome of management by objectives. “Management by expectations combines the theories of management by objectives and self-fulfilling prophecy in order to create a corporate environment that encourages high expectations in others and emphasizes future opportunities.” (Field, Richard, Van Seters & David, 1988).
The self-fulfilling prediction in management by objectives removes the major redundancies of it, thus making the new approach better than its mother approach. The approach identifies the position of Expectancy Theory of Motivation and Management proposed by Victor Vroom. “Vroom’s theory assumes that behavior results from conscious choices among alternatives whose purpose it is to maximize pleasure and minimize pain.” (Vroom, 2009, para.1).
The problem of the lured image of the outcome at the end is eliminated by the introduction of expectancy theory in the management by objectives approach of strategy implementation.
“An individual’s opinion is formed by a combination of three factors which Vroom categorized as follows:
- Instrumentality.” (Victor Vroom’s expectancy theory, n.d.).
The belief of the employee in reaching the goal assigned to him.
The belief of the worker on the output of his activity to be advantageous or harmful to him.
The possibility of attaining a result that is preferred by him.
The expert presentation certificate is given to the management by expectation approach in the management sector.
The skills and presentation of the individuals are different in a firm. This necessitates the evaluation of individual employee performance of a firm. “Performance appraisal is a formal management system that provides for the evaluation of the quality of an individual’s performance in an organization.” (Grote, 2002, p.1).
The capabilities, competencies and comparative value and significance for the organization of every staff are important as concerned with an organization.
The major advantages of performance appraisal are:
- “Motivation and Satisfaction
- Training and Development
- Recruitment and Induction
- Employee Evaluation.” (Performance appraisal: Benefits of appraisal, 2006).
Motivation and Satisfaction
An inspiration and approval for the employee and employer.
Training and Development
The requirement of the model, method and field of training for the employee can be defined.
Recruitment and Induction
The efficiency of the organization’s employment and training is detected.
Major purpose identified is to set the value of an employee.
There are a number of performance appraisal techniques available in the management field for an efficient approach to the action. They are,
- “Essay appraisal method
- Graphic rating scale
- The field review method
- Force choice rating method
- Critical incident appraisal method.” (Management of agricultural research, n.d., performance appraisal, para.8).
The term essay appraisal method is given to defining the essay mode description of appraisal of the performance of the individual employees, usually done by the person who rates the same employee all the time. Another method of rating used is the graphic rating scale which utilizes any one of the excellence among job or private qualities. The field review method always orchestrates various ratings of an employee. “The rater chooses the best-fit and worst-fit statements from a group of statements in the force choice rating method.” (Management of agricultural research, n.d., performance appraisal, para.8). The best value and the worst value of an employee are stated with the case of force choice rating method. The decisive occasions are evaluated for performance in the approach of the critical incident appraisal method.
The methods of performance appraisal are selected according to the requirement of the firm. “The essentials of an effective performance system are,
- Practical and simple format
- Evaluation technique
- Personal bias.” (Pre-requisites for effective & successful performance appraisal, 2007, para.1).
Documentation for consistent noting with standards/goals set by the firm to achieve. Practical and simple format for the performance appraisal accompanied by a suitable evaluation technique with effective communication, both vertical and horizontal, and taking up and giving away the feedback essential for the betterment of the performance. The in-charge of performance appraisal should never be influenced by any factors other than the performance; that implies he should not have any personal bias. (Pre-requisites for effective & successful performance appraisal, 2007). An effective performance system only can evaluate and monitor the employees for identifying their potentials and flaws.
The usage of various techniques including the management by objectives, management by expectation and different appraisal techniques will contribute to the efficient execution of strategy implementation. Formulation and identification of the strategies are done by the managers, but the strategy implementation requires the dedicated involvement of entire employee groups including the skilled and unskilled workers. “An important step is to realize that, in large organizations, commitment tend to have different foci and bases.” (Flood, 2000, p.179). The obligations may vary from person to person as well as from position to position. So, the implementation has to be carried out with harmony and motivation of the entire organization, observing the structure and environment of the organization.
The research on the topic of strategy implementation recognizes it as an important part of the management in the firms which is responsible for the successful execution of the formulated strategies. The strategies identified are of no use if a failure is met in between the strategy implementation process. The strategy implementation can never be successful by the efforts and abilities of the manager alone but the commitment of all the employees is equally essential. On the other hand, the necessity of an efficient manager exists for achieving the requirement. So, the hormonal co-existence becomes the star in the case of the strategy implementation process.
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