The Chocolate Elephant Organisation Structure Commerce Essay


The ways in which managers arrange and allocate (divide) the work in the organization that enables them to coordinate the various activities. This is called organising and is defined as the 'deployment of organisational resources to achieve strategic objectives' (Richard Daft). This is reflected in the organisation's arrangement activities or department and jobs, formal lines of authority, and mechanisms for coordinating the various organisational tasks. It is this process of organising that establishes an organisation's structure.

Organisation structure is defined as:

1. The set of formal tasks assigned to individuals and departments

2. Formal reporting relationships including line of authority, decision responsibility, number of hierarchical levels, and managers span control

3. The design of the systems to insure effective coordination of employees across departments. (Richard Daft)

It provides a framework for control and can be expressed as an organisation chart, which is diagrammatic representation of the organisation structure that sets out the various roles and formal reporting relationships.

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Alternatively it could be described as that which reflects the chain of command, indicating departmental tasks and how they are linked, and also provides order and logic for the organisation.

Specialisation is the key aspect in organising as it enables employees gain expertise and also facilitates the selection of employees with the appropriate ability and attitude for the job at hand.


In addition, it enables control as tasks are standardised, example managers can easily monitor performance. The organisation must thus ensure that the job or tasks are large enough so to ensure a balance between specialisation and motivation.

The structure and culture of The Chocolate Elephant is pretty simple because they are a small family business venture it is basically run by two sisters Emma Harrison and Victoria Nielsen with the help of some of their family and staff.

Emma Harrison, a graduate from Oxford University and Harvard Business School, had a career in management consultancy, investment banking and retail for over 15 years, whilst Victoria Nielsen had a marketing and PR career within investment banking for over 10 years in London and Hong Kong. They felt that with their combined force and experience that they could potentially make their dream work and successfully run the business.


Even though the business is small each and every one of them has a big role in operating the business. Both Emma and Victoria manage the business from their respective homes near Cambridge and in London whilst looking after five young children, three horses, chickens, one dog and two patient husbands between them, who have been known to be knights in shining armour whether it be fielding calls, humping stock or dealing with a puncture late at night. Emma has identical twin boys, aged 13 and a younger daughter, aged 7. Victoria has two boys, one aged five and the other aged two. All mothers have busy lives, but Emma and Victoria are able to share the challenge of raising young families whilst building their business. However, they both love the fact that they can run this business from home except


when they are out selling, enabling them to still have that precious time with their young children. They are involved in number of activities, it entails fragmenting work into specialised areas (division of labour), the idea being to increase or improve efficiency.

Management styles


An Autocratic or authoritarian manager makes all the decisions, keeping the information and decision making among the senior management. Objectives and tasks are set and the workforce is expected to do exactly as required. The communication involved with this method is mainly downward, from the leader to the subordinate; critics such as Elton Mayo have argued that this method can lead to a decrease in motivation from the employee's point of view. The main advantage of this style is that the direction of the business will remain constant, and the decisions will all be similar, this in turn can project an image of a confident, well managed business. On the other hand, subordinates may become dependent upon the leaders and supervision may be needed.

There are two types of autocratic leaders. Directive Autocrat: Makes decisions unilaterally; closely supervises subordinates. Permissive Autocrat: Makes decisions unilaterally; gives subordinates latitude in carrying out their work.

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A more Paternalistic form is also essentially dictatorial, however the decisions tend to be in the best interests of the employees rather than the business. A good example of this would be David Brent or Michael Scott running the business in the fictional television shows The Office. The leader explains most decisions to the employees


and ensures that their social and leisure needs are always met. This can help balance out the lack of worker motivation caused by an autocratic management style. Feedback is again generally downward; however feedback to the management will occur in order for the employees to be kept happy. This style can be highly advantageous, and can engender loyalty from the employees, leading to a lower labour turnover, thanks to the emphasis on social needs. It shares similar disadvantages to an authoritarian style; employees becoming dependent on the leader, and if the wrong decisions are made, then all employees may become dissatisfied with the leader. The leader always leads them into brushing the floor.


In a Democratic style, the manager allows the employees to take part in decision-making: therefore everything is agreed by the majority. The communication is extensive in both directions (from subordinates to leaders and vice-versa). This style can be particularly useful when complex decisions need to be made that require a range of specialist skills: for example, when a new ICT system needs to be put in place and the upper management of the business is computer-illiterate. From the overall business's point of view, job satisfaction and quality of work will improve. However, the decision-making process is severely slowed down, and the need of a consensus may avoid taking the 'best' decision for the business. It can go against a better choice of action.

As the autocratic leaders, democratic leaders are also two types i.e. permissive and directive.



In a Laissez-faire leadership style, the leader's role is peripheral and a staff manages their own areas of the business; the leader therefore evades the duties of management and uncoordinated delegation occurs. The communication in this style is horizontal, meaning that it is equal in both directions, however very little communication occurs in comparison with other styles. The style brings out the best in highly professional and creative groups of employees, however in many cases it is not deliberate and is simply a result of poor management. This leads to a lack of staff focus and sense of direction, which in turn leads to much dissatisfaction, and a poor company image.


In their business the owners apply the Democratic style of management wherein they allow the employees to participate in decision making. In their case Emma Harrison and Victoria Nielsen always fins time to have open communication regarding the flow of their business together with their staff. On this kind of management they are building a open and harmonious relationship within the organisation. Every one of them has a free will to give suggestion, ideas and additional input that will help their business achieve their goal and objectives.

Theory of Motivation


Frederick Winslow Taylor put forward the idea that workers are motivated mainly by pay. Taylor’s methods were widely adopted as businesses saw the benefits of increased productivity levels and lower unit costs. The most notably advocate was


Henry Ford who used them to design the first ever production line, making Ford cars. This was the start of the era of mass production.


Elton Mayo believed that workers are not just concerned with money but could be better motivated by having their social needs met whilst at work (something that Taylor ignored). He introduced the Human Relation School of thought, which focused on managers taking more of an interest in the workers, treating them as people who have worthwhile opinions and realising that workers enjoy interacting together.

Mayo conducted a series of experiments at the Hawthorne factory of the Western Electric Company in Chicago

He isolated two groups of women workers and studied the effect on their productivity levels of changing factors such as lighting and working conditions.

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Frederick Herzberg had close links with Maslow and believed in a two-factor theory of motivation. He argued that there were certain factors that a business could introduce that would directly motivate employees to work harder (Motivators). However there were also factors that would de-motivate an employee if not present but would not in themselves actually motivate employees to work harder


Abraham Maslow's work was first published in 1943; his basic proposition was that people want beings, always want more and what they want depends on what they already have. He suggested that human needs are arranged in a series of levels, a hierarchy of importance.


Physiological needs include hunger, thirst, need for oxygen and to maintain temperature regulation, sleep, sensory pleasures etc.

Safety needs include safety and security, freedom from pain or threat of physical attack, protection from danger or deprivation, thee need for predictability and orderliness.

Love needs (belonging or social needs) include affection, sense of belonging, social activities, friendships and both e giving and receiving of love.

Esteem needs (ego needs) are to do with self respect and the esteem of others.

Self respect involves the desire for confidence, strength,, independence and freedom and achievement. The esteem of other involves reputation or prestige, status, recognition, attention and appreciation.

Self actualisation needs are to do with development and the realisation of one's full potential. Maslow saw this as 'what humans can be', 'they must be' or 'becoming everything that one is capable of becoming'

Once a lower need has been satisfied it no longer acts as a strong motivator. The needs of the next higher level in the hierarchy demand satisfaction and become the motivating influence; only unsatisfied needs motivate a person.

Maslow claims that the hierarchy is relatively universal between different cultures, but he recognises that there are differences in an individual's motivational content in a particular culture.



Motivation is concerned with why people behave in a certain way or choose a particular course of action in preference to others. It is the relationship between the organisation and its member that elicits co operation of staff and enables the direction of their performance in order to achieve organisational goals and objectives.

Motivation can be defined as 'the degree to which an individual wants and chooses to engage in certain specified behaviours' (Mitchell)

The purpose of motivational theories is to predict behaviour.

Motivation is not behaviour itself and it is not performance but, concerns actions and the internal and external forces which influence a person's choice of action.


Economic rewards-such as pay, fringe benefits, pension rights, material goods and security.

Intrinsic satisfaction which is derived from the nature of work itself, interest in the job, and personal growth and development.

Social relationships such as friendships, group working, the desire for affiliation, status and dependency. This is a relational orientation to work and is concerned with 'other people'.



The owners of The Chocolate Elephant are motivated by the Maslows theory hierarchy of needs. As a human being building and operating business does not only mean gaining or earning profit. They also have needs to fulfil and the pyramid of Maslows hierarchy of needs is the perfect motivator for the owner of the 'TCE'. In physiological needs having business is the way of Victoria Nielsen to help his husband provide for their daily needs such as food, water and clothing. In safety needs they have provided their own family the financial security for them to survive and live. Love needs, in this kind of business selling products with the customer is


giving them the social activities in dealing and interacting with the guest and at the same time gaining and building new friendships especially with their customers. Esteem needs. 'having a business of my own gives me the confidence, strength and freedom to do things on my own' (Victoria Nielsen). Even though they have their own family they balances their time also to run their business and it gives them the fulfilment and achievement of doing something.


Teamwork is a joint action by two or more people, in which each person contributes with different skills and expresses his or her individual interests and opinions to the unity and efficiency of the group in order to achieve common goals. This does not mean that the individual is no longer important; however, it does mean that effective and efficient teamwork goes beyond individual accomplishments.

Teamwork skills are critical for your effectiveness as a manager or entrepreneur. And even if you are not in a management or leadership role yet, better understanding of team work can make you a more effective employee and give you an extra edge in your corporate office.

The owners of The Chocolate Elephant make sure that they are always on a right track with regards to their business. They run their business not only as sisters but as a team; they always have communication and updates with regards to their business. Open communication, team goals and harmonious relationship within the members are very important factors in their organisation because of this they make there work more effective, efficient, and achieve/accomplish their objectives.


Technology has a huge impact on their business. By means of internet, mobile and emails they make their communications much convenient and faster. Because the owner of the company lives far from each other, having a hi-tech communication they can talk to one another anytime without having to travel to see each other. And it helped them decide easier and faster on what ever matter they have to do with regards to their business.