My team and I have been steadily increasing our SHV since the first rollover. As a group we have justified this every week by saying that we have a long term strategy so we need to wait a few rollovers before we see results. But this week it was disappointing to see our SHV slightly decreased. We also have a tendency to underestimate our competition and consequently over-estimate sales – creating many additional costs and lost profit. Following on from last week, my team focused much more on where we went wrong in the previous rollover and why it went wrong so that we could learn from our mistakes or do something even better. We reached conclusions about what we were going to do this rollover to avoid making the same mistakes. So, considering we realised our previous failures and tried to correct as Argyris () suggests, it seems that the reason for our slight set back this week was probably an issue of technical skill.
In our team meeting we discussed what we did well and will continue to do, and what we needed to change. We thought critically and in depth about several strategic moves and weighed the cost vs the benefit. I thought our discussions were very focused and everyone was contributed, and once a consensus was reached everyone was happy with it (or so it seemed when there were no objections). Our human skills, which are our abilities to work effectively as a group member and communicate well (Katz, 1995), are not the problem. Each time a decision is made we go through different departments and analyse how each will be affected, therefore I can’t see conceptual skill being a significant issue as we all understand how that our mikesbikes firm operates as a whole (Katz, 1995). An executive’s technical skills rely in his understanding of, and expertise in, a specific activity which require specialised knowledge and analytical ability (Katz, 1995). I know myself that I could be more knowledgeable about my role as marketing manager. And I’m sure others in my group could each be better at their role. This simulation is still relatively new to us, and given the fact that I haven’t devoted my life to it, there are still many components to mikesbikes that I have not mastered or don’t fully understand.
With little time to left to get our SHV up as high as possible I think it would be wise for each individual in the team to specifically analyse the results in their department and see what needs to be changed or what could have been done better. Instead of myself looking at how we had too much idle time, my analytical thoughts would be better directed at my own department. I think my group sometimes has an issue of looking at every other issue or decision outside of their specialty. Most of our time is spent on all looking at operations decisions. Our OM is very competent, so we need to trust her and the CEO to make decisions, otherwise we are ignoring important aspects of our company outside of operations. For example I think our staff decisions have not been given enough attention. I have learnt this week that if we forget to focus specifically on the decisions in our department and get distracted looking at bigger decisions such as product launch or buying/selling capacity, and ignore smaller but still important decisions, our SHV suffers as a result.
I need to work on making better decisions for my own department and encourage my group to all look at how each of their decisions could have been altered to give better results.
Katz, R. L. (1955). Skills of an effective administrator. Harvard Business Review, 33(1), 33–42.
Argyris, C. (1991) Teaching smart people how to learn. Harvard Business Review, 4(2), 5-15