1.0 IntroductionOrganizations whether government, healthcare, entertainment, military, business or educational are made of people. They are the lifeblood of an organization as they provide followership, stewardship and leadership to the organization. It is people who formulate and implement policies and strategies to help the organization achieve its goals. Besides that, people use their knowledge and skills to innovate new ideas so as to place the organization on a competitive edge. To expect success of an organization without understanding how to manage people is like trying to understand how a vehicle moves with no knowledge about an engine.
As a matter of fact, organizations and institutions can be defined as the most prominent social units that have been devised or designed to get things done (Armstrong 2008). People can have productive and counterproductive behavior towards the organization which can either lead to its success or failure. Surprisingly, people are the most neglected resources in the organization and managers are more focused on the improving processes and operations to increase productivity (Kelloway 2004). In some organizations, workers are grossly mistreated and even singled out for failure of the organization.
Accountability, stewardship and motivation are long forgotten concepts. Apparently, these come amidst the current outburst of employee empowerment, knowledge management and information-based economy. This eventuality therefore, raises the question of how organizations are able to satisfy external customers if they are unable to satisfy internal customers. People have feelings, faces, and aspirations and would like to be treated unfailingly. As such, paying attention to the working people might just be the easiest way of increasing an organization’s profitability (Kline 2007). This report attempts to shed light into critical issues underlying people management.
It is intended to serve as a reference material for managers and other leaders within organizations who intend to attain success through proper management of people. The report makes reference to IKEA, a company that has demonstrated outstanding and exemplary people management skills over the years. Right after reviewing IKEA’s company and people management profiles, the report will discuss pertinent concepts underlying people management. 1.1 IKEA- Company profile IKEA (Ingvar Kamprad Elmaryd Agunnaryd) is a worldwide furnishing company with over 42 operations across the globe.
The company has employed over 70, 0000 workers with over 60% of them working in Europe. It was started with the intention of producing a wide range of home furnishings at the lowest prices possible that will be affordable to a vast majority of customers. The company was started in the 1940’s under the control of the INGKA foundation. A great bulk of the company operations lies in retail business with the company owning about 165 retail stores in 22 countries. This retail business holds about 75% of the total employees.
Although the company purchases goods from other suppliers, it does produce some of its own through the IKEA industrial group. The business strategy of IKEA is to ensure that its proximity to customers is enhanced; stores are where customers are. In addition, the company strives to establish cost-effective and joint design distribution processes that will enable customers to receive goods in a timely manner and in good condition. Management within IKEA emphasizes on maintaining organizational culture, which is, not just focusing on external markets but also ensuring that all external activities are aligned to the company’s internal actions.
Part of the company’s mission is to ensure that IKEA remains one. One of the strategies to achieve this goal is to engage all employees in the running of business. As such, there are employee representatives at all levels of the organization and management emphasizes less influence form external forces especially with respect to financial and economic matters. According to the company, engaging employees will make them aware of the company’s mission, goals and strategies (Tengblad 2004).