'It deals with the most fundamental and basic question that involve the very existence of the whole organisation and guide the whole company's future.' (Napuk,1999). Strategic management entails both strategic planning and implementation, and is "the process of identifying and executing the organization's strategic plan, by matching the company's capabilities with the demands of its environment."(Arit Gadiesh and James Gilbert, 2001)
In layman's term strategic management provides overall direction to the organisation. This in turn entails specifying the organisation's mission, vision and objectives, developing plans etc.
Leadership is defined as 'influence, that is the art or process of influencing people so that they will strive willingly and enthusiastically toward the achievements of the group's mission. Visionary leadership inspires the impossible: fiction becomes truth. (Corporate strategy 1997 Richard Lynch)
In leadership, people run the organisation to one place or another for the achievement of its objectives. Leadership is a great tool in achieving success for the organization, not just through charisma, but through good judgement, proper motivation of employees & effective utilization of materials.
1.1.3 LINK BETWEEN STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT AND LEADERSHIP:
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Due to a rapidly changing world, organizations face incredible pressures in delivering immediate results. This necessitates for strategic management because there is a great need to maximize every available resource to achieve the organization's goal.
To manage an ever increasing demand for company effectiveness, there is a great need for strategic leadership to approach these conditions & priorities. For any ongoing business, it is mainly important to implement strategies through effective leaders.
Real strategic leadership means taking responsibility for the future as well as what is happening today. A primary goal of strategic leadership is gaining a better understanding of the business conditions, the environment and the leading indicators that identify new trends and situations that may arise. According to the situation, leadership styles can be varied like autocratic, democratic and charismatic and so on. In any organisation it is required to have a good strategic management with good leadership skills. These two must be in parallel positions for the organization's success.
1.2 LEADERSHIP STYLES ON DIFFERENT SITUATION IN MCDONALD'S
As I have taken McDonald as case study, I would like to discuss the management style that operates in this company. Based on my understanding, McDonald operates with a Democratic style of management. This realisation comes to me while I am working with the company and it gives freedom and flexibility of change according to different situations. In this style, the employee and people associated with the company have more participatory role in the decision making process.
McDonald has a democratic style and there is a less gap between manager and employees. They have two way relationships between them. They have a comfortable working pattern. So the manager can easily get the feedback from the employees. Also on the other hand, the employees understand the situation and they follow the rules without any difficulty. There are same levels of working. According to the different situation they have a different style of leadership. In this particular approach, the store manager has all power to run the branch but still allows employees to share their ideas and insights.
Also in McDonald, every employee has a participative role in the decision making process. All employees have to work with their strengths and provide input on how to delegate work within the team. The management gives more importance to work in a team rather than doing individually. In McDonald, ideas move freely amongst the group and discussed openly thus ultimately achieving their objective. This works both ways for the company by fulfilling individual objectives in line with the overall objective of organisation.
The management of this organization motivates the employees to do more work by involving them into decisions which really affects the objective of the organisation.
This particular approach influences the productivity of employees and they feel important to be a part of the organisation by providing a value. They lead all the employees to the same level and the manager always tries to know the strengths and weakness of employees. To overcome these difficulties, they provide appropriate training & career development programmes.
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McDonald has flexible working hours which provides stress-free environment. They are free to ask with the manager about schedules. The way McDonald management adapts to different situations, a strong relationship is being formed between the subordinates and the managers.
1.2.1 OBJECTIVE OF MCDONALDS:
The main objective of McDonald is to make people aware of each product on offer, feel positive about it and remember it. The right message has to be communicated to the right audience through the right media. Because of this, McDonald need to give importance & understand the value of both employees and customers. Happy employees serve well and results to satisfied customers. This serves as a win-win situation for both organisation and employee. McDonald has continuously done internal marketing & this is important as it precedes external marketing. It goes in line with the ultimate aim of creating not just service leadership but management service. This delivery process is the key to achieving the aim of the company.
1.3 IMPACT OF LEADERSHIP STYLE ON STRATEGIC DECISION:
Good leadership is adapting to any changes at any time & doing the right things at the right time. Because of democratic style of leadership, employees can work comfortably and they can share their ideas and insights with the management. Also in McDonald, managers effectively delegates work to their subordinates and give them full control and responsibility to the tasks. Managers welcome feedback on the result of initiatives and the work environment. Strategic decision has to be made by leaders who have the ability to take effective decisions and adapt to changes in any situation.
Because of democratic leadership, employees and managers easily understand the situation and cope with it. They work freely and comfortably. In McDonald all employees have a right to participate in the objective of organisation. McDonald has a strategic decision which is implicated and formulated by leaders and managers of the organisation. First they decide the future plans and objective of McDonald and
how to get there in minimum time. They also motivate people to do more work and they appreciate their work by giving the performance award at the end of month.
From above discussion, I came to a conclusion that in adapting democratic style McDonald is really effective in providing value to employees. Although this style may bring out differences in ideas, it still ends up with formulating a common decision. McDonald's management & leadership style is useful as well as to other organisations where managers and employees easily understand the situation and work accordingly. Strategic management and leadership correlates with each other. Without making any effective strategic decision, leadership cannot work and it cannot reach to the final objective of an organisation.