This week our team decided that we needed to do something a little different, take a risk. We seem to have sat just behind the main leaders for a while and without changing anything we were never going to catch them. At present our decisions we made don’t add much value to our team but the way we planned it, the next rollover will be key to seeing if our risk paid off and whether we made the right decisions!
Davies and Easterby-Smith (1984) say that “change and turbulence experienced in a company’s environment leads to opportunities for managers to develop from.” I feel as if up to now, we haven’t had much change or turbulence in our team’s decisions. We’ve had a strategy, stuck to it and made decisions each week that keep us in line with that. However this week, as mentioned, we changed things up a bit. And already I can see that whether it works or not, our team will develop from these decisions. And we’ll learn and develop in three skill areas, technical, human and conceptual as mentioned by Katz (1955).
Our risk this week will show us a lot in terms of the technical side of Mikes Bikes and in particular aspects of our own individual roles. Looking into how the decisions affected each area compared to the last few rollovers where things were kept pretty constant. I feel like the lessons we learn in these aspects will help with these last few roll overs and allow us to further develop our role.
In terms of human skill, which Katz (1955) describes as the “executives ability to work effectively as a group member and to build cooperative effort,” I think we will have developed our skills. Obviously a decision to take a risk involved all members of the team and talking everything through, respecting different opinions and views and collectively coming to a decision. I feel as though it wasn’t so much as learning something but developing what we already know and understand in theory, especially for me having done numerous management papers.
Lastly, conceptual skill. I think this is where we will gain the most. Katz (1955) explains conceptual skill as the “ability to see the enterprise as a whole, including recognising how various functions of the organisation depends on one another and how changes in one part effect all the others.” Looking through the reports we will inevitably learn how the changes we made effect the other areas, and therefore develop our understanding of how the various functions within the simulation effect each other. I think our team already has a pretty good understanding of the organisation as a whole as each week, while the individual role works out the finer details and makes recommendations for there areas, we make decisions as a whole, therefore developing our conceptual skill, albeit unknowingly until now!
So the problem with taking a risk this week is if it doesn’t work out, but while that may affect our SHV in this course, the amount we have learnt from it and the opportunities it has given us to develop surely outweigh the short term loss in SHV. And being more optimistic, if it does work out, not only will our SHV improve, we still would have learnt something, and developed our skills!
Davies, J., & Easterby-Smith, M. (1984). Learning and developing from managerial work experiences. Journal of Management Studies, 21(2), 169--182. doi:10.1111/j.1467-6486.1984.tb00230.x
Katz, R. L. (1955). Skills of an effective administrator. Harvard Business Review, 33(1), 33--42.