Concrete Experience and Reflective Observation
The 13-year leadership experience allowed me to see that without the establishment of clearly defined rules, policies, and procedures, an organization cannot reach its objectives to the full extent. Procedures refer to the sequence of steps a company must follow consistently, for example, responding to policy violations through punishing those who fail to follow them. The utilization of both policies and procedures within the process of decision-making is expected to ensure that the management of the organization is consistent in the decisions that they make. However, as a leader, I must mention that all policies and procedures are considered useless if the management fails to adhere to them themselves or does not communicate rules to workers. The issue of communication is challenging because, in my experience, not many managers understand how to inform their subordinates about changes, the introduction of new rules, or the enforcement of punishments for not following the established guidelines.
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An example of my personal experience from past occupation refers to the issue of harassment in the workplace. One of my subordinates reported to the company’s HR manager that she was harassed based on her gender by another employee. The HR manager investigated the report and encountered some opposition from other workers who were unwilling to share their knowledge with the higher-standing manager. He decided to hire an independent investigator. It was found that the alleged harasser exhibited some problematic behavior for a long time and in regards to numerous employees. However, the organization could not enforce any work-related penalty since it did not have a clearly defined policy regarding harassment in the workplace. The case exemplifies that the management of the organization ignored the inappropriate behavior exhibited by an employee and failed to address the issue. It is highly likely that even if the company had a clearly established anti-harassment policy, the absence of communication and efforts to ensure that the rules are widely understood would have a limiting influence on resolving the problem.
Theories and Principles/Abstract Conceptualization
The comprehensive description of the job that I, as a leader, am expected to perform daily allows me to have a clear idea of where I should direct my subordinates. Having this understanding will eliminate any possible distractions, avoid the abuse of power, and the assignment of responsibilities that should not be applied to my position whatsoever. The importance of job descriptions, mission statements, and organizational policies will be described in further sections.
In my experience, when conducting an interview, job descriptions serve as foundations for the development of interview questions. They are helpful for determining the necessary areas of training and development in the case when the expectations are not being met to the desired extent. Regarding compensations, having a distinct job description allows for the development of payment plans that ensure that workers receive the deserved salary.
Mission statements are important for leaders and their followers in organizational settings. They help to understand the direction in which a company is heading to ensure long-term success and profitability. During my work at Bridgestone, I have found that a clear mission statement offers a template for decision-making and enables the delegation of both authority and responsibility. Also, updating mission statements is also important because business directions can shift depending on the environment. Thus, the management should be aware of the nature of mission statements and how they can affect both reputation and effectiveness.
Organizational policies are important because they may address pertinent problems in the workplace, such as how the management of an organization decides what behavior of employees is acceptable. As a leader, I have personally initiated easy access to the policies of an organization in which I worked, as well as provided training to ensure that workers understand their responsibilities and know how to comply with them. In my opinion, such transparency enhances the loyalty of customers to their organizations and strengthens communication between departments.
Thus, policies, rules, mission statements, job descriptions, and procedures are all helpful for supervisors who prioritize effectiveness in their work. My personal experience shows that every company should be serious about developing a set of rules and policies that will protect workers while also communicating expectations that they should fulfill. Also, measurable goals are established through mission statements, allowing organizations to recognize their strengths and weaknesses in the long run. There have been multiple instances in which the clear definition of the mentioned concepts within organizations has helped to eliminate misunderstandings and ensured that workers are respected and treated according to their responsibilities.
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Testing and Application/Active Experimentation
In my professional career, mission statements have been shown to play several critical roles. As my current span of control encompasses 191 workers, presenting them with a clear mission of the organization is crucial to enhancing their understanding of where Bridgestone is heading as a company. The statement should inspire employees to do their work well, and if they are well-crafted, they can aid workers to see how their efforts can enhance the quality of the business in general. In my view, a mission statement is also a perfect tool for helping a company stand out from competitors since modern markets are highly concentrated in the number of companies. Today, mission statements such as “providing the highest quality products and services” will not work on the target population; a company needs to create a statement that will communicate that what they offer is different, unique, and more valuable if compared to competitors.
Discussing the importance of job descriptions is also necessary because they represent steps in planning the staffing programs of an organization. As the Section Leader for our Mixing Department at the Bridgestone Aiken (BA) plant, I am currently managing the team of giving supervisors, overseeing all components of Personnel, Operations, and Customer Satisfaction. To reach the objectives of quality and enhance the standards, I am responsible for developing and implementing Standards of Practice, Working Standards, and Process Control Plans. At the same time, the higher management expects that I offer necessary training for process capability, the analysis of defects, and other standard practices.
Other responsibilities pertinent to my job description include the development of countermeasures and the monitoring of departmental results, as well as the direction of activities in problem-solving and production enhancement. The theories and concepts illustrated that I, as a leader, was expected to ensure cost-effectiveness through conducting flexible work assignments to relieve some of the responsibilities from the Area Business Manager and other supervisors for accomplishing division objectives. The direction of personnel and the provision of leadership to Crew Leaders and production employees is another responsibility.