Read each scenario and determine:
1. Should the manager involve others? Support your reasoning.
2. If involving others how much authority should be delegated – none, some or all? Use figure 8.2 for reference.
Scenario 1: You are the office manager in a busy car-repair shop. You handle the shop’s credit functions and share a computerized accounting system with the bookkeeper and a newly hired accounts payable clerk, both of whom report to you. The owner has asked you for a recommendation, by next month, on which new accounting software package to buy.
In my opinion, I as the manager should definitely involve others. I would involve both the bookkeeper and the accounts payable clerk. I would delegate some of the power to the bookkeeper and the newly hired accounts payable clerk. My reasoning would be that I share the accounting system with the two individuals. Furthermore, the change would not only affect me but them as well, so this would need to be a shared decision. Moreover, since it is shared a system, if I left them out of the decision, it would essentially make the employees that report to me feel powerless and undervalued as an employee. Including them in the decision is a smart idea because they both have dealt with the current system so they will know what upgrades need to be seen in a new accounting software package. Even though the accounts payable clerk is new, he or she could have prior experience with a different software and know that it was a good software and could recommend it or she could know that it wasn’t a very good software and be able to steer us clear of it. Nonetheless, these are the two people along with myself that will be using the new system so they should definitely have a say in the decision.
Scenario 2: You are the manager of a gift store in the mall, supervising 10 longtime salespeople. Now that Thanksgiving is just two weeks away, your store needs more creative ways of preventing shoplifting during the hectic year-end holiday buying blitz.
In this scenario I would involve others. I would include all 10 salespeople to get their opinions. They will be better qualified due to their floor sales experiences. They are used to their customers behaviors and how to handle difficult situations such as shoplifting. In this situation I would take all their feedback attend to their needs. I would also help and support them with any knowledge that I have as a leader. The best thing I can do is to be engaging with the team to enable them to form new creative ways. It is the holidays that can bring out the best and the worst in people so it is important to be able to get opinions from every single one of my employees. No idea is too small or too big to not consider. Everyone’s ideas are important and will be a part of the decision making process.
Scenario 3: You are the operations manager in the local plant of a global manufacturing corporation. Your department has four shift supervisors (two per shift) and 80 assembly-line employees. A critical piece of machinery broke this morning, and the shift supervisor says it cannot be repaired. Your plant’s monthly production will fall considerably below forecast unless action is taken.