You are the new General Operations Manager for Australian Hardware. Your Store Manager has had a stressful month. It is the end of the financial year and sales revenue in the Timber, Plumbing and Electrical departments are not on target, almost certainly due to increased competition from smaller operators competing for trade contractors’ business.
Just this week, the Store Manager held a meeting in which she shouted at all the department managers (including you) and instructed them to work out a way to improve revenue. Obviously, the outburst did not make much sense, as the department managers in such a large business do not have the capability to raise much revenue directly. Marketing and distribution innovations that could have an effect are mainly a head office responsibility. The Wollongong store’s inability to counter the threat from smaller, more nimble trade suppliers has been the main reason for the revenue deficit.
Naturally, the atmosphere around the store and in the management team is quiet, and a few managers have discussed leaving the organisation; other managers have responded by pushing unreasonable sales demands onto their sales staff.
You are now feeling pressure to do something to address the concerns expressed by the Store Manager. You don’t wish to act contrary to budget planning nor increase pressure on the team to offset poor performance in areas beyond their control.
In your opinion, this leadership behaviour was disrespectful to all the managers, created unnecessary concern about job security and undermined trust. There has been a clearly negative flow-on effect down through the store, which is now affecting people at a lower level. You are justifiably angry at the manager’s behaviour and blame her for making a bad situation worse due to poor leadership and poor emotional awareness.
Based on this scenario, provide responses to the following:
- Outline what may have occurred in the Store Manager’s emotional journey and her subsequent response in the meeting.
- Describe at least 2 of the principles of strong emotional intelligence that the Store Manager did not demonstrate in this scenario.
- Discuss at least 2 strategies that she could have considered while planning the meeting, and link these to probable productive results for the business.
- Managers reporting to you have asked if you would approach the Store Manager on everyone’s behalf. List sequential bullet points that would provide a well- planned approach to guide this conversation with the Store Manager.
- Outline at least 3 potential benefits for store performance if morale could be lifted across the team.
- Describe how you would model positive leadership behaviour in this situation, based on emotional intelligence theory.
You are the new General Operations Manager for Australian Hardware.
It is the end of the financial year and sales revenue at the Wollongong store in the Timber, Plumbing and Electrical departments are not on target. This issue is almost certainly due to increased competition from smaller operators competing for trade contractors’ business; nevertheless, some action should be taken by management to lessen the effect of this issue on the store overall.
After management discussions, it has been decided that some employee performance targets will be increased where capacity exists, and some programs (such as training) will be delayed. These measures will have the effect of potentially increasing revenue and reducing costs to compensate for overall poorer-than-expected performance in the Wollongong store.
Each manager will have responsibility for implementing this group decision in their area of responsibility. It will be important to consider the emotional impact on staff and any consequential impact on health, safety and wellbeing, as well as the impact on performance and the achievement of organisational goals.
In your response to the above scenario:
- Discuss the relationship between emotionally effective people and the attainment of business objectives.
- Discuss how considering the emotional impact of decision-making could lead to better decision-making (with respect to business objectives).
- Discuss what a decision-making process that takes emotional impact into account could look like. Decisions in this case include, for example, setting performance targets, or selecting what programs can be delayed.
- Identify policies, procedures or legislation that will need to be followed to satisfy internal and external requirements related to managing emotions in the workplace.
Discuss how health and safety legislation is relevant to managers’ implementation of business decisions.