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It is better that Spectrum Brands could use the matrix organizational structure for a single project if needed, or when designing or developing new products and services. Because this type of organizational structure provides flexibility, enhanced cooperation, and creativity, and enables the company to respond quickly to changes in the environment by giving special attention to specific projects or problems. If utilizing a matrix structure for the organization, then the organization could hire various employees from different specialized areas and they could work in the team together on a specific project. All members of a team would have common purpose, goals and approach on the specific project and the completion of the project would be overseen by a project manager. This makes the matrix organizational structure flat with decentralized authority. However, this type of structure is expensive and complex to implement and employees may be confused as to whose authority has priority - the project manager's or the immediate supervision's (Ferell, Hirt & Ferell, 2009).
Explain how the firm could operate using a Multidivisional structure
The Spectrum Brands has already capacity to form the multidivisional organizational structure. Because on the business situation, David Jones emphasized a strategy, introducing more diversified product line and comparing in several different markets. He restructured his company and organized his employees into divisions or departments. If the Spectrum Brands operates and uses this type of organizational structure, then the company can exceed the benefits, because this type of organizational structure makes easily handle in coordinating the company, making decisions and settling the communication problems between the employees. By using a multidivisional organizational structure, David Jones's restructure could enable his employees to make decisions for their product line without having to convince multiple levels of management for each product and maintain a level of support and recourses of the company. This would help to increase integration between division and corporate managers. At the same time, Spectrum Brands could also benefit from decreased reaction time in problem solving and decision making and quicker responses to customer needs. While there may be some overlap in new product design efforts, each will aim to provide satisfaction to their customer's needs. If David Jones's restructure was regionally organized, then the company could concentrate on meeting the needs of customers in their area, so customer need not go to another location and can find that product very easily. In order to find more customers, the company focused on the distributing its products to different markets geographically. This strategy will help to tap into more customer demand. David Jones's team oriented style and diversified production strategy helped the Spectrum Brands to expand the business by starting up production of new products, such as pet products, personal grooming, lawn and garden care products. The combination of all these efforts - product diversification, distribution restructuring and product innovation - led to company's large increase in annual sales (Ferell, Hirt & Ferell, 2009).
Discuss which structure would be more effective?
I think, the multidivisional organizational structure would be more effective for Spectrum Brands in the long-run, because this structure provides a corporation with multiple businesses. David Jones's diversified production strategy helped the company to expand its business by adding more flexibility and innovation to the business. They manufacture many different products which are sold in different markets. I suggest, a matrix organizational structure should not be right decision for Spectrum Brands, because once the new product lanes are established, the matrix organizational structure might be complex and too resource-intensive, as well as the benefits are lost when the division has its own business and the employees confused when they have multiple managers. But the multidivisional organizational structure is appropriate for Spectrum Brands, because using this type of structure means that each division will be independent with individual support functions and will allow the company increased organizational control which means corporate managers can monitor the mangers in each division and make comparisons. Moreover, each division of the company can focus on its market, rather than having a marketing team focused on many projects all across the country, each division could have its own dedicated marketing effort knowing the customers in the area. Also, there can be more focus on a geographic location in a multidivisional structure and better decisions can be made at that level of how to take advantage of the market to make more profits by knowing one division's market well.
For each of your two organizational structures, give three examples of potential communication problems the structure might cause. Recommend corrective actions the company can take to address these issues.
If Spectrum Brand Company were organized as a multidivisional organizational structure, then communication would probably be more limited and focused on the tasks, because each division of the product acts independently and therefore causes distorted information, resulting in communication problem. For example, long delays may occur as messages move up and down numerous levels and ultimately lead to confusion. Another reason for communication problems is that the large number of levels leads to differing perceptions of the meaning of the messages. To avoid and reduce such communication problems, managers should reduce the level of command hierarchy to the minimum as well as use the minimum number of hierarchical levels required for implementing a strategy (Hill, Jones, 2003).
To address these things corporate managers will have to monitor and measure divisional performance more closely.
For each of your two organizational structures, recommend the degree of centralization that would be most effective. Explain.
I think, a matrix organizational structure for Spectrum Brands should be more decentralized than the multidivisional one, so that decisions are made at the project level and this structure is good for high level of group coordination where the teams have joined to find the best solution for their project, market and customer base and to respond quickly to the changes in the market. The level of decentralization for this type of structure would have to be high in order to be effective.
The company based on a multidivisional organizational structure would find the centralized power to be more beneficial if the divisions are organized by support function and control. Moreover, if the divisions of the company are organized by territory (such as East or West), then an increased level of decentralization may help them to better coordinate the division activity, because lower level employees can make their own decisions with little supervision, thus minimizing the need for expensive, high-level managers.