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The Process of Corporate Decision Making

Corporate decision making happens at various levels in organizations and can be top down or bottom up. The difference between these two styles of decision making is that the top down decision making is done at the higher levels of the hierarchy and the decisions are passed down the corporate ladder to be implemented. On the other hand, bottom up decision making is done by giving autonomy to the middle managers and the line managers to take decisions based on the conditions and circumstances existing in their teams. In many organizations, what we see is a top down decision making in the realms of policy, strategic focus, direction in which the organization has to proceed and bottom up decision making about the day to day running of the teams.

It needs to be remembered that the middle management is often called the “sandwich” layer because they have to implement the decisions made above and at the same time have to decide about how to run the teams and have to communicate them to the lower levels as well.

The point here is that in any process of corporate decision making, the actual implementers play a critical role since the best laid plans of the top management can go awry in case there is no commitment from the middle management. Hence, many organizations organize off site meetings at resorts and other places where the senior management briefs the middle management about the decisions that they have taken and how it would impact the organization.

Corporate decision making is also characterized by consensus or the lack of it. Like in the real world, corporations often have power centers and groups that have their own agendas and hence arriving at a consensus can be cumbersome for the CEO or the Chairman of the Board of Directors. It is because of this reason that many corporations witness periodic restructurings with regards to organizational structure and with regards to turnover among the top management. In recent months, Infosys has seen rapid and often turbulent situations in the company because of the power struggles at the top as well as lack of consensus among the top management about the direction that the company ought to take.

The other aspect related to corporate decision making is that many organizations thrive on leaders who have a “halo” around them and hence decision making is smooth because the rival power centers often concede to the leader’s charisma or his or her ability and vision. Again, Infosys has seen this happen when with the retirement of its legendary founder, N R Narayana Murthy; the company is going through a bad phase with competing factions jostling for control. Abroad, Apple is an example of a company that relied on the halo effect of its founder, Steve Jobs and once he passed away, there is some uncertainty about the way the company should take in the market.

In conclusion, corporate decision making is successful as long as there is a “glue” to bind the organization together in the form of charismatic leaders or an organizational culture that values coherence and imposes stability. Once any of these conditions are removed, then the organizations fall into a self-defeating trap wherein the process of corporate decision making is impaired leading to the loss of competitiveness of the company.

Originally posted 2013-10-05 08:52:13. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Implementation of an appeals process

Also see templates/examples for “appeals process”

Some guidelines towards the implementation of an appeals processes within an organisation or training provider.

-Implement the policy and templates by documenting this in your QMS Policies.
-Notification and communication toward the excising stakeholders to notify them about the changes or implementation of new policies. (recording keeping of notification is very important).
-Referral/reminders of appeals process in the roll-out of learning material and assessment guides.
-Record keeping during pre-assessment meetings to confirm the appeals process was discussed.
-Templates of the appeals policy and template should be implemented and provided with any learning material – SETA policy.

Originally posted 2013-09-26 14:57:24. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Leadership and Motivation

Motivation is a goal-oriented characteristic that helps a person achieve his objectives. It pushes an individual to work hard at achieving his or her goals. An executive must have the right leadership traits to influence motivation. However, there is no specific blueprint for motivation.

As a leader, one should keep an open perspective on human nature. Knowing different needs of subordinates will certainly make the decision-making process easier.

Both an employee as well as manager must possess leadership and motivational traits. An effective leader must have a thorough knowledge of motivational factors for others. He must understand the basic needs of employees, peers and his superiors. Leadership is used as a means of motivating others.

Given below are important guidelines that outline the basic view of motivation:

Harmonize and match the subordinate needs with the organizational needs. As a leader, the executive must ensure that the business has the same morals and ethics that he seeks in his employees. He should make sure that his subordinates are encouraged and trained in a manner that meets the needs of the business.
Appreciation and rewards are key motivators that influence a person to achieve a desired goal. Rewarding good/ exceptional behavior with a small token of appreciation, certificate or letter can be a great motivator. If a certificate is awarded to a person, it should mention the particular act or the quality for which the individual is being rewarded.
Being a role model is also a key motivator that influences people in reaching their goals. A leader should set a good example to ensure his people to grow and achieve their goals effectively.
Encouraging individuals to get involved in planning and important issues resolution procedure not only motivates them, but also teaches the intricacies of these key decision-making factors. Moreover, it will help everyone to get better understanding of their role in the organization. The communication will be unambiguous and will certainly attract acknowledgement and appreciation from the leader.

Developing moral and team spirit certainly has a key impact on the well-being of an organization. The metal or emotional state of a person constitutes his or her moral fabric. A leader’s actions and decisions affect the morale of his subordinates. Hence, he should always be aware of his decisions and activities. Team spirit is the soul of the organization. The leader should always make sure his subordinates enjoy performing their duties as a team and make themselves a part of the organization’s plans.
A leader should step into the shoes of the subordinates and view things from subordinate’s angle. He should empathize with them during difficult times. Empathizing with their personal problems makes them stronger-mentally and emotionally.
A meaningful and challenging job accomplished inculcates a sense of achievement among employees. The executive must make their employees feel they are performing an important work that is necessary for the organization’s well-being and success. This motivational aspect drives them to fulfill goals.

Remember, “To become an efficient leader, you must be self-motivated”. You must know your identity, your needs and you must have a strong urge to do anything to achieve your goals. Once you are self-motivated, only then you can motivate others to achieve their goals and to harmonize their personal goals with the common goals of the organization.

Originally posted 2013-09-21 17:18:33. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Individual Decision Making – Pros and Cons

Individuals have a tendency to think and question before performing. This is fruitful in analysis and forecasting of individual’s behaviour. Individual decision making has certain pros and cons, few of which are mentioned below:

Pros of Individual Decision Making

    *An individual generally makes prompt decisions. While a group is dominated by various people, making decision-making very time consuming. Moreover assembling group members consumes lot of time.
    *Individuals do not escape responsibilities. They are accountable for their acts and performance. While in a group it is not easy to hold any one person accountable for a wrong decision.
    *Individual decision making saves time, money and energy as individuals make prompt and logical decisions generally. While group decision making involves lot of time, money and energy.
    *Individual decisions are more focused and rational as compared to group.


Cons of Individual Decision Making

    *A group has potential of collecting more and full information compared to an individual while making decisions.
    *An individual while making any decision uses his own intuition and views. While a group has many members, so many views and many approaches and hence better decision making.
    *A group discovers hidden talent and core competency of employees of an organization.
    *An individual will not take into consideration every members interest. While a group will take into account interest of all members of an organization

Originally posted 2013-10-05 08:52:14. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

The weighting of Learning Programmes

The weighting of learning programmes refers to the percentage of time allocated to a specific learning programme. The Mathematics and Languages Learning Areas would be distinct learning programmes and will form the basis from which all other learning will take place. Other learning programmes could also address some of the learning outcomes and assessment standards required in the Mathematics and Language Learning Areas, thus facilitating total integration of the learning process across the eight Learning Areas.

Purposes for weighting is to:
• Give learners optimal opportunity to show their competence in achieving the learning outcomes, and
• Provide groups of learners who need intervention of a temporary nature the opportunity to engage with certain aspects of the curriculum.

Originally posted 2013-10-06 00:03:03. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Development of a Training Program

Development of a training program is the next step after the training need analysis has been conducted and there is a clear consensus on the need of training within the organisation. The next vital question to answer is whether the training should be conducted by an in house expert or from a consultant outside.

Many of the fortune 500 organisations around the world have their in house learning centers and many have even gone ahead to have their own training universities where they train people onboard and those who aspire to join in the future. Companies like Xerox, Good Year Tyres, Kodak, Mahindra and Mahindra, Birla etc have such setups for generating prospective employees with the requisite skills and also for training the existing employees. There are other organisations too that have tie ups with the best academic institutions for employee exchange programmes.

Nevertheless the prerequisites for development of a training program remain the same. We start with the development of a conducive learning environment, followed by a choice of the training methods and techniques.

Designing the Environment – every individual is unique. One style of learning may not be applicable to each of the participants in a training program. Therefore ‘how do various individuals learn’ is what should be kept in mind while designing the training program. There are certain who learn the experiential way by doing and yet there are many who like the lecture based learning method. There are however pros and cons of both and the appropriate learning style is generally the discretion of the trainer / facilitator.

Establishing the Variables – trainability is one factor that must be taken into consideration before developing any training program. It is the duty of the trainer to ensure that the employees are actually willing to sit and learn something in the training program. This is especially very true of sensitivity training that is not viewed positively by many. Trainabality also implies that the employee is sufficiently motivated to learn apart from just the ability to do so. Before any training program sets off, it is the responsibility of the trainer to build hype about the event and such that it attracts all types of employees from target audience within the organisation.

There are both formal and informal ways of doing the same. Formal ways would be by sending mails to the employees who are supposed to attend the program. Informal ways would be just creating conditions for discussion in the cafeteria or the lounge where employees sit together, discuss and hear things on the grapevine.

Finally, once the training program has been delivered the evaluation of the same provides inputs for improving the process of training. These are called as the ‘post learning inputs’. This evaluation which is conducted at various levels may be utilised accordingly. Most of the organisations evaluate training on the basis of Kirk Patrick Model. The feedback at each level – learning, reaction, behaviour and results can be used for effective design of training in future.

Originally posted 2013-10-04 22:45:52. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Key assessment terms

Key assessment terms

Assessment

The collection of information about the nature and extent of learning outcomes/any procedure used to estimate learners learning. The term is derived from the Latin (assidere meaning “to sit beside”).

Measurement
Representation of assessment information by a number or grade on a scale of some kind. Answers the question, How much?

Evaluation
The making of judgments about the value of a grade and/or the nature and extent of learning outcomes. Answers the question, How well?

Assessment task
An instrument or systematic procedure by which assessment information is collected.

Formative assessment
Ungraded assessment task used before or during learning to support planning and/or diagnosis and/or to provide feedback about learning progress/offers advice and feedback which does not contribute grades towards the final result.

Summative assessment
Graded assessment task used following learning which counts towards the final result.

Validity
Degree to which the assessment task measures what it is intended to measure.

Reliability
Degree to which the assessment task consistently yields the same result.

Norm-referenced
Uses the performance of a group of learners to rank order learners or ‘grading on the curve’. Number of learners who can receive distinctions, credits, passes or fails is set.

Criterion-referenced
Establishes the criteria for performance and any learner meeting the criteria receives the associated grade. Every student can potentially achieve the highest grade.

Standards-based
Establishes the criteria for performance as well as articulates the various levels of quality in performance that is associated with a grade. Grades are awarded to students based on the level of performance they have achieved.

Authentic assessment
Assessment tasks which test whether a learner is able to demonstrate their learning outcomes in a situation which is as close as possible to a real world context.

Originally posted 2013-10-03 21:31:35. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

What kind of information can a safety representative get from an inspector?

Any employee, including the safety representative, can obtain two kinds of information from Health and Safety Authority inspectors:

▲ factual information to do with safety and health in that particular place of work, except any information revealing a trade secret

▲ information about any action the inspector has taken or proposes to take in connection with the place (e.g. whenever the inspector serves an Improvement Direction, Improvement Notice or Prohibition Notice, he or she must provide a copy to the safety representative and in turn inform the representative whenever any of these enforcement actions are withdrawn)

The inspector must also give this information to the employer at the same time.

Originally posted 2013-10-06 10:09:33. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Who can accompany the safety representative?

To make the inspection more meaningful and to help ensure that the necessary improvements are made, the safety representative might usefully be accompanied by the employer or employer’s representative during inspections. It might be appropriate, for example, for the safety and health manager/safety officer/adviser to be present to give advice on technical safety and health matters. It might also be necessary to protect the safety representative’s own safety and health during inspection.

Following inspection, the safety representative should have the opportunity to discuss safety and health matters in confidence with the employees that he or she represents.

Originally posted 2013-10-06 10:09:41. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Organizational Leadership

Organizations need strong leadership for optimum effectiveness. Leadership, as we know, is a trait which is both inbuilt and can be acquired also. Organizational leadership deals with both human psychology as well as expert tactics. Organizational leadership emphasizes on developing leadership skills and abilities that are relevant across the organizations. It means the potential of the individuals to face the hard times in the industry and still grow during those times. It clearly identifies and distinguishes the leaders from the managers. The leader should have potential to control the group of individuals.

An ideal organizational leader should not dominate over others. He should guide the individuals under him, give them a sense of direction to achieve organizational goals successfully and should act responsibly. He should be optimistic for sure. He should be empathetic and should understand the need of the group members. An organizational leader should not only lead others individually but also manage the actions of the group.

Individuals who are highly ambitious, have high energy level, an urge to lead, self-confidence, intelligence, have thorough knowledge of job, are honest and flexible are more likely to succeed as organizational leaders. Individuals who learn the organizational leadership develop abilities and skills of teamwork, effective communication, conflict resolution, and group problem solving techniques. Organizational leaders clearly communicate organizational mission, vision and policies; build employees morale, ensure efficient business operations; help employees grow professionally and contribute positively towards organizations mission.

Tips for Effective Organizational Leadership

    • A leader must lead himself, only then he can lead others. He must be committed on personal and professional front, and must be responsible. He must be a role model for others and set an example for them.
  • A leader must boost up the morale of the employees. He should motivate them well so that they are committed to the organization. He should be well acquainted with them, have concern for them and encourage them to take initiatives. This will result in more efficient and effective employees and ensure organizational success.
  • A leader must work as a team. He should always support his team and respect them. He should not hurt any employee. A true leader should not be too bossy and should not consider him as the supreme authority. He should realize that he is part of the organization as a whole.
  • Organizational leadership involves all the processes and possible results that lead to development and achievement of organizational goals. It includes employees’ involvement, genuineness, effective listening and strategic communication.

    Originally posted 2013-09-21 17:18:31. Republished by Blog Post Promoter