Term Paper on Production and Operations Management

7 pages
1841 words
Middlebury College
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Term paper
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Business management plays significant roles in different contexts and is not only about giving directives but also going an extra mile to improve the well-being of employees, understand his or her consumer base, be conversant with changing trends and strive to improve the skills within the organization through expertise and design thinking. Management is thus an art, it doesnt require any rocket science to produce results, it just requires an individual who understands the environment within which he or she operates thus ensure high productivity, profitability, employee and consumer satisfaction. From the competition held, the most outstanding lessons learnt were on design thinking and expert development as discussed below:Expert Development in an organizationThe business world is very competitive such that it requires great minds, innovators, go-getters and great achievers who re able to tap into any given opportunity and make good use of it for success purposes. Success in todays competitive and technologically advanced world requires skills that are up to the task of handling the dynamic trends in the business market. These skills are numerous and vary in different firms and amongst these skills is expertise. The business market requires vigilance in taking actions in an event of dissatisfaction and taking a course of action that is geared towards better performance and meeting the needs of customers. With technological advances and innovation everywhere, provision of better services that are more polished and attractive is what customers are looking in the market.

Managers are therefore charged with the responsibility of venturing into innovative ways of providing better services to their customers to gain a greater market share and even attract more customers. Designing of products in a manner that they suit the demands of customers is sometimes burdensome and many business firms collapse as a result of this since they can no longer match up to the expectations of customers. The current business market is having customers who are well informed and value oriented, commercial businesses have the mandate to design their products innovatively and customer appealing. Entrepreneurs both in the public and private sectors are designing on daily basis, creating new opportunities and grounds for their businesses (Meier, 2013).The concept of Design Thinking Expertise is tied to management since it ensures organizational goals are achieved. Expertise enables the use of existing technological advances and innovations to grow a company locally and globally. Expertise is thus sister to design thinking in the business market. According to Karris (2009) the concept of design thinking has gained roots in many industries and many are considering it as a tool for leadership in the business world, reasoning being, in order to be competitive, the designs of their products and services must outweigh that of their contemporaries. Design thinking has become part of many firms in the 21st Century as it has inculcated in them the skill of creative thinking and are thus logical in their thinking and reasoning as well as solving problems.

The concept of design thinking has been researched on by many researchers over the years and in order to bring a better context of this concept, reviewing literature from different scholars is deemed necessary for this paper. Design thinking literature can be dated way back in the 1990s before it gained root in 2000s. The business industry requires action with pragmatic knowledge on the nature of business one runs; knowledge further breeds work and it is through work that knowledge is analyzed to gauge on the development processes basing on the success that the knowledge inculcated in the business bred. It is through designing that knowledge is applied intensively to realize success in a business. Creativity comes in two different forms which involves finding and making.

Finding involves demonstration of the ability to discover things to better performance while making involves creativity and synthesis of the known in new models, refurbishments, outlines and alignments. Makers are able to create new things out of the existing ones or new ones thus coming up with a tangible product or decision. It is in light of this that makers and finders are distinguished thus bringing in the nature of design thinking. Design thinkers are more of makers than finders as they grab new avenues given to bring out results unlike finders who are more focused on making discoveries on phenomenon and situations so as find solutions to their problems (Stutely, 2012). Additionally, design thinking can be relayed in two spaces that are interdependent with varying logic and structures. These spaces are the C which denotes Concept and K which stands for Knowledge.

Space C contains ideologies on space K that provide bases for speculations since they are neither true nor false whereas K represents all the knowledge that encompasses a designing process. Thus asserts that design thinking is something that grows out of a concept about the unknown and the ability to make it a reality through knowledge. This is to say that the concept of design thinking encompasses concepts and knowledge that must be applied interchangeably to realize success in any given business. Design thinking in addition, refers to how creators view and think. It is a process that is iterative and shared as it involves seeing and thinking where designers see what ideas, views and solutions entails, draw connections between the ideas, views and solutions and finally make a final verdict that is informed of the ideas and views that were generated (Karris, 2009).

Design thinking revolves around cognitive activities that invoke the mind to discover appropriate measures for improving ones business. It is a process that revolves around creativity. This concept has been inculcated in the business industry as a method for concrete, innovative, problem resolution and formation of solutions with the intention of improving future results. This is a concept that is solution-centered and enables business managers to carry out their activities with set goals in mind. It is a concept that has been implemented in the business industry to help identify and investigate on situations to discover parameters that are hidden and make decisions that are directly related to their objectives. This is to mean that design thinking is a means of carrying out investigative tasks in an organization so as to find solutions to problems (Karris, 2009).

Design thinking takes on two varied ways of thinking which divergent and convergent thinking, where by the former enables organizations to explore many ways of tackling problems the latter helps in narrowing down these ways in order to arrive at solutions that are substantial. Through design thinking, organizations are run in convenient environments where solutions both possible and impossible are weighed and the best resolution made through convergent and divergent thinking. Organizations are not limited to any scope of exploration for avenues and strategies for dealing with their problems and through design thinking, they are able to make decisions from varied crow's nest.

Lessons learnt from the competitionIn digging deeper on management in the business context, the workforce is an important aspect to consider. They define how a company is and to what extend it can compete with others in the ever-changing business market. Companies have different personnel who collectively assist in the growth and development of these institutions. The hierarchy of operations however differ since every individual worker in a company has assigned roles to play. A company thus has a manager and employees and both work together for the good of the company though their designation varies. A management perspective in any company represents the leadership position which involves supervisory and spotlight to the company. A manager is a leader who leads the rest in achieving the goals of the company. A manager, thus, supervises every operation within a company through the delegation of duties to the company employees. In this line of work, a manager has to ensure that employees have a conducive environment for work, employees coexist amicably, and work as a team. Additionally, a manager is the voice of command; he or she is an administrator and has to work hand in hand with employees while still maintaining autonomy. A manager thus undertakes many roles in the running of a company. Management is the driving force that gears the company to attaining its goals.

In an organization still, the employee is an important asset that a company invests in for production and service delivery. An employee perspective represents the work force who are employed in a company to help it realize its objectives. Employees have the mandate to submit to a superior position and work under the leadership of the company. Employees are thus tasked with the responsibility to perform the duties delegated to them, work collectively with the management for productive results, sell the companys brand to the world by being good ambassadors for the company and most importantly, deliver quality service to the company (Divya &Gomathi, 2015).

When employees are motivated to work without coerce and work to achieve the goals of an organization, they are satisfied with their jobs. Job satisfaction can result from Rewards, a favorable working environment with minimal pressure and stress, autonomy at work, good working relations, employee-employer understanding, engagement in stimulating assignments, employee training, etc. Conflicts are bound to happen at work and possible strategy must be in place to help solve conflicts that arise in an organization. The conflict process includes: Incompatibility that result from communication barriers, ambiguity in work structure, and, personal traits, Cognition and Personalization where emotions shape perceptions, Intentions due to ones desire to outdo the other, Behavior, where the conflict and actions are visible and Outcomes which portrays the consequences of a conflict (Allwood & Selart, 2012).

Employees are today more apprehensive of companies that offer opportunities for enhancing and developing their career than anything else in the job market. This is very critical as unremitting learning is a strategy that is key to crafting a viable career that can last a length of time without the knowledge gained depreciating. A huge number of learning and career development nowadays takes place in the job environment rather that formal career enhancement institutions or programs that are scheduled for a particular time frame. Employee development can today be gauged through assessments, progressive feedback, mentoring and conversational platforms organized by employers (Lloyd-Jones, Lewis & Eason 2012). It, therefore, means that employers are very important in developing their employees as the latter are looking for managers whom they can respect, look up to, and learn from.

The role of developing employees is solely on managers as it has significant effects on employee turnover and retention. Poor relationship between managers and employees has caused many employees to quit their jobs in the recent pasts as employees dont want to work under an employer who is not after their development, isnt interested in seeing them sharpening their skills and acquire new ones and doesnt appreciate any contribution they make in the company (Stutely, 2012) Employees will therefore give excuses for leaving offices with poor managers in disguise of having found better opportunities when in the real sense they were denied the chance to grow professi...

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