Starting a new business is very difficult operation to perform, as it involves lot of thought processing and planning and arranging of funds from various sources for initial investment (Belasen, 2000). In the first part report will focus on new company which wants to enter into retail sector for their future functioning. Report will focus on various decisions that need to be taken by the management and various impacts of stakeholders in decision making. The second part report will focus on the political activist group whose communication environment was analyzed and furthermore report will highlight how a company can improve its access to manage information and knowledge.
ASSIGNMENT 1: Understanding to Assess Information Need and to Create Strategies to Increase Personal Networking
Starting up a new business:
At initial stage several decisions that needs to be evaluated before starting up business venture. Initial stage of business requires critical evaluation of market knowledge in order to make important judgment (Philipp and Kuhl, 2005). Decision making is an essential part of business operations, because on the basis of resolution taken future functioning of the company depends. Before starting retail business following verdict should be taken such as:
Finance – For proper functioning of business Operations Company requires finance. Top level management needs to make conclusion regarding the sources that they will consider for raising funds.
Location – For setting up a retail store, location is a major assessment that needs to be taken by the top level management. Location of store will make huge impact on the sale of goods and services offered by the company (Hargie and Tourish, 2009). There are several palaces in UK which are highly populated and managers need to make correct choice regarding the placing of store.
Human resource – Recruiting staff members is a major decision that needs to be taken by the managers. Employees are the one who directly interacts with customers and having effective staff members assist in improving performance of the store.
For making above mentioned judgment, information’s will be required by the company in order to implement those results. Managers need to analyze the market in order to make resolution regarding the type of business operations to operate (Mankins and Steele, 2006). For making financial decision various assessments such as which kind of source they need to use in order to raise funds, for that managers needs to analyze the internal; sources first and then external. Because internal sources will be more appropriate for the company at the initial stage. For making choices regarding location, managers needs to analyze the market and on the basis of highly populated place would be suitable for them as they will be dealing in retail store in which they will offer variety of products and services (Mumby, 2012).
There are two types of sources of information available to the company for gaining vital information related to starting up a business, internal and external source of information.
Marketing information – This information is related to the marketing and promoting of products and services offered by the company. Through this information marketing manager can identify and evaluate the needs and wants of targeted customers and according to that making judgment regarding production of goods (Belasen, 2000). Marketing information is a document which contains data which is collected at the time of market research.
Sales information – Sales information required to keepa track of previous sales in the company. For entering into new market, top level management of organization will have to keep records of sales that it does from its outlets. Company can understand about which product is in demand and on which product measures should be taken for their future sustainability.
There are several other internal sources of information which can be used such as supplier’s information, and resources information etc.
Government – Every company have to operate according to the rules and regulations formed by the government. Manager’s needs to evaluate vital information related to entering into new industry and have to perform their functioning according to law or policies only (Nothhaft, 2010).
Trade unions – Another source through which information can be collected and evaluated is the trade unions. This source can prove to be good for the company because in retail sector many conferences will be held and through which valuable data and facts can be used by the enterprise such as current and future trends, environmental conditions etc (Quirke, 2006).
There are several other external source of information can be magazines, news paper, print media, digital media etc.
From the above selected method of gathering information in order to make essential decisions regarding the starting up of business operations. Though the methods which are suggested have benefits but therefore there are pros and cons also which could affect in the functioning of retail store operations. So it is recommended that managers should firstly critically evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of sources of information. Business enterprise can improve their functioning if they emphasis more on making market surveys because in their field product offered needs to be according to the needs and wants of customers and it can be achieved through market survey.
Stakeholders area essential part of an organization. As they perform the most important task of making decisions regarding the future functioning of business enterprise (Chan, 2006). There are several stakeholders that take part in making decisions which are as follows:
This above mentioned stakeholder’s plays a vital role in making decisions regarding the future functioning of a company. Furthermore, other stakeholders that needs to be treated well by top managers such as trade associations, customer’s suppliers and media etc (Jo, 2011). Top level managers can make either formal or informal communication relation according to the type of stakeholders. Company use stakeholder engagement strategy in order to involve them into the functioning of business.
It is very essential for any company in making efforts to enter into new market to make healthy relations with selected stakeholders, because doing that will ensure the long run of business survival. Stakeholders such as employees and customers, manager should keep in mind the basic needs and wants of the employee needs to be fulfilled, so that staff member will work more effectively and efficiently in order to attain overall volunteer organization goals(Whittenberger, 2014). On the other hand customer is always focused on the quality and quantity of products and services offered to them at cheaper prices. Manager should make valiant effort to cut the cost of production which decrease the price of products and will achieve the loyalties of targeted customers. Furthermore, company can engage government in framing policies and strategies regarding the future contingency of business operations (Gagne and et.al, 2006). Another stakeholder such as supplier can be engaged for the long term period as contract can be made regarding the flow of acquiring raw material for producing finished products and services which will be offered to the targeted customers.
Top level management should indulge stakeholders in decision making process and there are several methods through which it can be achieved. Government rule,regulations and other trade union policies will assist the company in making several choices regarding formation of major strategies such as pricing and marketing (George, 2003). Furthermore, through these guidelines selection of location can be resolved. Bank as a stakeholder can assist in providing loans regarding the initial investment of business operations which includes location, equipments, human resources and raw materials.
Operating business in retail sector is very difficult as it is a very competitive market to enter in. Even if store doesn’t make profit at initial stage manager should focus on doing market research because volunteer deals in retail sector which is customer oriented company and according to them only products and services are offered (Hargie and Tourish, 2009). By performing market research managers could understand the pros and cons of market and on that basis make strategies for future contingency. Moreover, managers can indulge new technology regarding selling of products and services as they can prepare online website which will offer customers to buy products and services online and payment can be made when product is delivered at home (Nothhaft, 2010). This strategy will provide another dimension to the selling and distribution of retail store and also assist customers in their comfortability.
ASSIGNMENT 2: Develop Communication Process and Improve System Relating to Information and Knowledge
Communication process is an essential part of an organization as it assists proper functioning of company’s operations. This process helps the company to have better flow of communication so that individuals can perfume their task effectively and efficiently. According to the case study, communication channel currently adopted by the organization is horizontal top down communication which indicates that the staff members receive order from their supervisor (Mankins and Steele, 2006). On the basis of situation given in case study it was stated clear that there was no proper communication in between employees and supervisor which indicates that managers were only fulfilling their responsibilitiesand on the other hand employees were unable to revert back to the supervisor as she was busy in treating her top level managers and ignoring the needs and wants of the employees. Supervisor majorly focusing on communicating with outside world as she was lacking in communicating with employees and this can be justified by the fact that there were no mutual goals set by the team.
There are few communication processes available for a small voluntary organization which can be used by them in order to improve their communication. Following are the communication process:
Formal communication refers to the flow of information which is based on hierarchal structure. In this structure information is circulated in step by step formation from top level management to subordinates. Whereas, informal communication refers to the process through which information can be floated by anyone individually (Carminati, 2013). Through this method informally every individual can speak to its superiors and discuss their needs and wants.
There are several communication process discussed above which can be compared on their advantages and disadvantages. Formal communication can be termed as the process in which communication is floated in a very formal manner (Fernie, 2009). In other words, volunteer company having formal communication process means employees and subordinate communicate in a particular manner like hierarchal manner in which communication flows for top to bottom in a sequence. Advantages of communication process is that top level managers can communicate to its middle level managers and through them every information is given to subordinates regarding the functioning of business operations. In this communication process, information can be provided in two manners either verbal or written (Quirke, 2006). The message flows in this process is called chain of command and information is keep on circulating until it reaches its last point. In formal communication generally information is transmitted regarding goals, policies, instruction, memoranda and reports, scheduled meetings etc.
There are several organizations which is operated in informal communication structure. This process of communication is supplement to the formal process as it assists in fulfilling gaps or omission. Successful managers possess informal communication as they communicate to each member of the team and explain them about their task or job they need to perform (Mumby, 2012). Advantage of this process is that there is no restriction regarding interacting to any subordinate or supervisor.
Political activist group should adopt formal communication process as it is more effective than informal process. Companies having informal process of communication should make efforts balance both formal and informal communication process.
According to the case study, supervisor is unable to communicate to its subordinates or employees because she is busy in communicating with outside world (Belasen, 2000). For improving the communication level in the company it can be suggested that she should indulge formal communication process, that will help her to communicate with subordinate and assists them to explain their task and job which they have to perform in order to achieve desired goals and objectives (Chan, 2006). Through formal communication process supervisor can circulate information in verbal as well as written, in which information regarding goals, policies, strategies and specific task is given. Due to current communication structure employees are unable to work properly and furthermore there were no mutual goals set by the supervisor in order to achieve the overall organizational goals and objectives. Supervisor was assistant marketing and communication director and was always involved in very extensive awareness campaign. Due to this she was unable to spend time with the employees and even though skills of volunteer’s were not helping her in controlling or managing things (Galvin and et. al., 2013). She (supervisor) was just delegating the roles, responsibilities and task to employees and was not taking any kind of feedback from them regarding their problems in performing the tasks.
Adopting formal communication will assist to communicate with all other employees in effective and efficient and even if she is busy in outside work than also can manage internal needs and wants of employees.
According to the problem that volunteer organization is facing measures taken by top level managers to collect, format, store and diffusion of information and knowledge. In this process company’s information can be collected, formatted according to the needs and wants of every employees or staff members and then disseminated to them so that they can perform their task or duties in a specific manner and lastly information needs to be stored so that if there is a requirement of such information than company can re-use it (Barrett, 2002). Till now the communication process used in volunteer organization is horizontal top to down which is not helping superiors to communicate with subordinates. Furthermore, there was no vertical communication used so far Due to this lack of efficiency is created in operations of an organization as employees were unable to communicate with supervisor individually regarding their problems in performing task or understanding the task. So far only verbal communication used to collect information and through that desired results were not achieved. Nowadays, employees have developed a feeling of frustration because there is no such personal interaction between them and top level management (Nothhaft, 2010). Even though various technologiesare used in colleting, evaluating and disseminating information and knowledge, there outcomes were least effective.
For improving the process of collection, formatting, storage and dissemination of information and knowledge, volunteer organization should take several actions such by appointing an IT professional who has expertise in creating new ways to collect and share the information. Having such person in organization can also help as they will work towards developing firm’s computer system (Fernie, 2009). On the other hand, if volunteer organization has to change their dissemination than it is important that they focus on changing their culture. Proper time management skills should be indulged in the organization so that spot discussion can be stopped and proper planning can be made to improve the approach towards collecting, storage and distribution of important information.
There are several methods by which organization can improve its assess to system of information and knowledge by involving various tools like emails, software’s relating to storing of database base and shared project files. These techniques include various strategies and practices that can be used to manage flow of knowledge in the organization. Through these methods groups can improve or enhance the way in which firm manages its knowledge and information. In political activist group, there may be many databases about several matters which have been performed over the years (Barrett, 2002). While in shared project files employees can work together on various projects. By indulging such methods organization can improve its flow of access to knowledge and information.
Communication always helps in improving the skills and ability of an individual. Moreover, communication process adopted by an individual will always has the scope for improvement. There are several steps that I would have taken if I was a volunteer in the organization, these are as follows:
By believing in myself and maintaining positive attitude will assist me to present my point of views and opinions with other employees or top level management in order to improve my efficiency as well as others.
Preparing a result oriented approach through which I can easily convey information to other colleagues and I will share only that information that is relevant to the task to be performed in the organization. So that task can be performed more effectively and efficiently in order to achieve desired goals and objectives.
I always focus on having open minded approach because it will be beneficial for me to be supportive and being clear or open to the feedbacks and suggestions from top level management of subordinate level. Furthermore I should convey a message to every individual that I am always open for any kind of discussions regarding task or duties assigned to an individual. If there is any problem related to it they can straight come and I will make efforts to resolve that issue.
As a volunteer I should always follow up with my listeners as they are getting my point of view or not doing so will allow me to interact with them individually and understand their problems and requirement on that note I can provide them various alternative solutions and moreover it will help me to improve my communication skills. By performing follow up activity, I can make action plan and task performed regarding that action plan than I will be accountable for that.
Furthermore I can improve or develop my interactive abilities is that by collecting and conferring information that it is genuine or not. If it not genuine and harmful for the organization in future functioning than that information needs to be dispatched at that moment only. Through this I will be clear about the distribution that whether I have to further communicate the information or not.
During the report it was found that there are number of decisions relating to financial, production, human resources and infrastructure etc that management have to make to start up their retail business stores. Report focused on various stakeholders that can impact on the functioning of new enterprise. In the second part, report focuses on political activist group in which supervisor was not focusing on communicating with volunteers. Through the study it was found that company was lacking in having professionals to perform the task effectively and efficiently. For that company needs to hire IT experts so that it can easily access and enhance the information and knowledge management.
Barrett, J. D., 2002. Change communication: using strategic employee communication to facilitate major change. Corporate Communications: An International Journal.
Belasen, T. A., 2000. Leading the Learning Organization: Communication and Competencies for Managing Change. SUNY Press.
Carminati, B., 2013. Computer Standards & Interfaces. The International Journal on the Development and Application of Standards for Computers, Software Quality, Data Communications, Interfaces and Measurement.
Chan, C. D., 2006. Core competencies and performance management in Canadian public libraries. Library Management.
Fernie, J., 2009. Logistics and Retail Management: Emerging Issues and New Challenges in the Retail Supply Chain. Kogan Page Publishers.
Gagne, G. and et.al., 2006. OPERATING SYSTEM PRINCIPLES. 7th ed. John Wiley & Sons.
Galvin, B. P. and et. al., 2013. Operating System Concepts. 9th ed. Wiley John.
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