1. When looking at the example of “Friedmans microwave and Kitchen Specialists”, I tend to see elements from all of the leadership styles listed in question one. The University of Iowa which promotes the Democratic Leadership style contains the most elements of Art Friedman’s new direction for his company. Allowing the workers to control their scheduling, pay, discipline nearly all issues concerning their employment is the essence of a Democratic Leadership style. Now the University of Michigan and Ohio State leadership theories are essentially the same idea with a different application procedure.
Art Friedman’s new leadership style is without question an employee centered leadership style, present in both Michigan and Ohio States theories. However where I am conflicted by the competing theories in regards to Friedman’s Microwave is if the Michigan/Ohio State business style allow for a democratically controlled employee scheduling, pay, merit etc. 2. Without question Content Motivation theories are at play in our case study concerning Art Friedman’s employees. Unfortunately I feel we are not given enough information to fully answer the question as it is proposed.
We are not told why Friedman’s employees production was lackluster. Was the previous management style highly autocratic? Were lower level employees concerns and suggestions routinely ignored? Perhaps so. I will use the assumption that Friedman’s employees were not empowered under the previous management scenario. If we are to believe that happy employees are productive employees than the empowerment of individuals by Friedman’s new management style obviously had the desired result. We also are not given enough information regarding the two factor theory.
Have Friedman’s employees designed a system in which higher level needs are addressed? Are promotions and rewards distributed on merit or cronyism? Friedman states “It did work, it still works, and it will always work”. I cannot disagree with Friedman’s statement I would simply like more information as to how employee conflict and resolution is dealt with. 3. Examining the information provided in the case of Friedman’s employees Equity Theory would encompass the Guiding Management Principle exercised in this case. Although Expectancy theory must be present to some degree or it would be hard to fully implement equity theory.
Friedman’s staff has been empowered to create scheduling, pay, petty cash oversight and a host of other typically management implemented business decisions. This type of empowerment has its roots in the equity theory business application. An employee would be hard pressed to be disgruntled with work, pay etc. if the employees inputs are factored into these type of decisions. I sincerely wish our case study gave more information regarding pay and reward structure. How many years has Friedman’s employee centric design been implemented?
If equitable distribution of pay is crucial to organization’s (as we have learned from our text) have there been issues with employees of the same rank perceiving they are over/under appreciated? How have these disputes been resolved under Friedman’s system? Do employees handle conflict on their own, or is their a mediator? Although I like Friedmans approach I find it hard to believe there hasn’t been any drawbacks to his management style. If this were the optimum management style many if not all industry would implement Friedman’s approach to business.
Again we are not given enough information to adequately answer the reinforcement question asked here. I would naturally assume that giving employees the flexibility to make their own schedules, set pay etc. would fall under the realm of “self reinforcement” if this is an accepted theory. Were I an employee of Friedmans and knew I had worked extra hard the last several weeks and wanted to reward myself with say a Saturday off wouldn’t this be a form of self reinforcement? It would also be my assumption that Friedman’s staff knowing they are responsible for their actions (and therefore the health of the company) practice a t