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Introduction

Companies all over the world desire leaders with skills and competency that is beyond reproach in order to successfully maneuver in this dynamic era occasioned by the effects of globalization. Approaches to leadership and management styles differ from one organization to the other. Some companies have failed to be productive and stagnated in the same place for years due to the kind of people they hire to run their businesses. Leading as a concept is quite different from management since the two are motivated by different goals and achievements in the company (Noe et al 2006, p. 76). Leaders motivates and influences people to work and achieve their goals while managers administer authority and draws the rules that should be strictly adhered to achieve particular desired results. This business report discusses the various approaches to leadership and management that are used by the various organizations in order to appropriately manage and run their business in a global competitive environment.

Organizational functions

There are various levels of an organization and each level has functions that demand certain threshold of responsibility. The ground especially under the business environment is shifting at an accelerating speed and in the wake of digital connectivity change has become inevitable (Nahavandi, 2016, p. 87). Information technology has fueled globalization thus reducing the time at which organization used to transact business and aging out the geographical boundaries that characterized international business. A good example of a company that has been able to adapt to the business climate trough maintenance of a long business culture that has characterized its tradition is Nike through the CEO Mark Parker.  The different levels of an organization can be categorized into three; these include the process, organizational and activity levels.

The organizational level of a business brings together all the functions that support each product family in the entire manufacturing process. It is at the organizational level that important decision are made and at Nike, the CEO has created a climate of collaboration where people are encouraged to continuously seek advice from each other. The organization constantly looks for ways to be innovative and improve from the previous position. Adaptation to new environment brought about by globalization and the use of technology to ensure much is attained. The culture of sports is at the core of Nike and that has enabled the company management to focus the energy of the workers towards improving the image of their merchandise.

The process level includes all the major activities that support the work of the organization. It is at this level that experts are able to analyze how the business works and what needs to be put in place to ensure the business achieves what it desires. Leaders need to inspire their employees at this level to constantly improve their products to increase efficiency with the ultimate goal of benefiting the customer. The size of the business at this level does not really matter since various processes could be broken into small functional components that can be used to accelerate success (Caligiuri, 2006, p. 219). The activity level is considered to the basic unit of survival for every business process undertaken by the organization. It is at this stage that the nitty-gritties are worked on to assist in creating a more detailed task, employees brainstorm on various improvements that could make their product more attractive to the customers. Nike through Parker has been able to utilize the potential of its workers by encouraging and incubating creativity and innovation. Parker does not give directions for employees to follow blindly but ensures that each idea generated by the employees is factored in the production process and that is why the company was able to create FlyKnit (Scullion & Collings 2011, p. 112). Through continuous improvement and close collaboration of the employees made possible by the company CEO, Nike has been able to make a breakthrough in the technology world and remained competitive in the market by creating niche products.

Styles of leadership

Leadership and management is not the same thing but a good leader can be a perfect manager just as a good manager could make a good leader. Various leadership and management styles are used in companies to ensure that they remain profitable and oust their rivals in business. One of the styles used is participatory which is often referred to as the democratic leadership style. The leader’s perspective in this style is to tell the employees what is expected of them and let the team members make their own informed decisions that will be passed to the team leader. The morale of the employees is boosted through this kind of leadership since they feel they are part of the whole process of coming up with original ideas that have value in the company (Helfer, 2006, p. 649). Participatory leadership ensures that change in the company is easily accepted and employees feel comfortable to share ideas thus improving customer service delivery.

Transactional leadership is one that provides a system that rewards or punishes the employees depending on their performance. The manager and team members set goals to be achieved and then an agreement is reached to strictly follow the guidelines in order to achieve the desired results. The manager is the overall person and has the power to review and correct the team members rewarding those who have successfully followed through entire procedure. Transformational leadership on the other side is highly dependable on constant constructive communication from either party in order to meet certain goals. In this type of leadership, leaders constantly motivate their employees through various communication strategies to enhance their level of productivity. It is the focus on the big picture in the organization by the leaders that drive them to delegate small duties to their employees to ensure their goals are accomplished.

Parker has been able to create excellent business opportunity through involvement of the junior staff on idea creation and generation. The style he has adopted throughout his leadership period is transformational since he believes that a little side project could be enhanced to become a billion dollar franchise (Lim & Tsutsui 2012, p. 72). He also recognizes that the world is not perfect and people are not always straight but it is through the mistakes that valuable innovations are created. He believes in empowering the employees to think out of the box and when they come up with even the slightest of ideas, he ensures those ideas do not go unnoticed.

Effects of globalization

Globalization has been in the center of attention to many companies and corporation that have wished to maintain a competitive edge in the market. Its effects in the diverse sectors of the economy are very evident and the world has had to embrace the fact that it is here to stay. Globalization is said to have resulted in diminishing of certain markets for goods and services while ensuring the economical giant still maintain a leading advantage as far as global market is concerned. Many companies that considered themselves big and dominant in certain markets have had to rethink their strategies after the world has become a global village. Effects of globalization can be seen in every aspect of business in the world today whether in economic structure or the business operations in terms of entry and growth strategies in new markets. Through globalization, technology has been transformed and information sharing made easy making the cost of transacting business relatively cheap (Lim & Tsutsui 2012, p. 74).

One of the consequences of globalization is free market which creates unprecedented competition from all over the world. Nike had been enjoying dominance in the shoe industry and especially in the sporting industry for long period of time. It has had a successful formula all through but it could no longer hold water due to the fierce competition from other companies that used the power of technology to manufacturer more timeless shoes at a reduced cost hence drastically lowering the selling price (Antràs & Rossi-Hansberg 2009, p. 52). Nike has been able to remain timeless due to the culture of sports inculcated to the employees by Parker. He has been able to encourage his staff to constantly find ways of adapting to the new environment due to the pace of change the world is experiencing. Coming up with new technology ‘FlyKnit’ was one of their greatest strategy to suit into the challenging and ever dynamic business world occasioned by globalization (Safian, 2012, par 2).

Resources that were otherwise difficult to secure or cost a lot to possess have been made available due to globalization. Organizations can now be able to store their files and important documents in remote servers through cloud computing, some of the services could be outsourced significantly reducing the cost of doing business while also resulting in loss of jobs. Nike  through Parker had to cut down the number of ideas they had from 350 to 50 which made sure that more time is allocated to the most important and productive ideas for the growth of the company. Rather than the company focusing on all ranges of shoes it created a niche around sports shoes and used all the resources available to make sure people recognize them as such (Safian, 2012, par 3).

Globalization has made companies refocus on creating formidable brands and do everything they can to manage those brands. Branding in the era of globalization has really helped tem Nike to ensure they remain on top of the game even when competitors emerge from all faces of the world. Nike was the first company to initiate a no limit spending on branding a move that allowed it to stay in the radar of its customers and penetrate other markets with a lot of ease. Most of the resources in Nike are directed in product designing and marketing in order to maximize what they sell even when that means they own little and that is where the future belongs (Safian, 2012, par 2).

Globalization and CSR

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has greatly changed in light of globalization and its effects in transforming the business world. Organizations are usually required to give back to the society in terms of environmental conservation measures and or enhancing the economic status of the people who have hosted it. Globalization has led to increased pressure on the environment and the resources; it has also led to expansion of market for the various services and goods. Due to the negative effects of globalization to the environment and reduction in the number of job opportunities in the run to cut down on the cost of production, organizations have had to come up with CSR activities in order to redeem their image in the general public (GARITA & MARTINEZ 2016, p. 20). CSR activities make the company have a positive image in the community and gain acceptance as one that promotes the welfare of the people.  The activities can be towards environmental conservation, promoting human rights or even hunger reduction strategies.

Companies that understand their market well also know what to do in order to ensure they remain in good terms with the communities of the world by promoting positive values while doing business. Parker has been transforming Nike from a company that was being castigated for child labor to a super brand that is admired all over. Due to advanced technology and the emergency of web 2.0 where information is shared instantaneously, companies do not want to find themselves in the wrong side of the law. There are various strategies that Nike has employed in order to improve their CSR activities including a focus on water in their supply chain and improved transparency (Safian, 2012, par 4).

Nike has been able to collaborate with other stake holders to conserve water crisis its entire value chain in order to reduce wastage that results to shortage of the commodity. It has been able to improve the conditions of its workers and reduce the negative environmental impact that its supply chain could poss. They have been able to partner with DyeCoo and adopt carbon based dyeing process thus reducing the usage of water. The company through Parker has committed to sustainable innovation solutions that that would continue to improve the quality of the products while reducing the usage of already constraint material like water. It has been in the fore front in eliminating shady business by expanding to other Asian countries like China.

Conclusion

Organizations that want to remain global giants in the market and relevant in their field of operation should learn the art of reading their market. Having a large consumer market and high quality goods is just one part of the success cycle, making sure those goods are produced in a serene environment that is ethical and does not go against human rights is the other. It is absolutely important for companies to embrace globalization by being prepared to change and move with technology. CSR is a very important component of the any business that wants to expand its market and maintain a good reputation as a brand. Those in the position of leadership in various companies like Nike should work tirelessly to ensure employees and everybody else in the company knows the value of a brand and the importance of maintaining that value through CSR. Once Organizations realize that change is part of their growing process and works a round the clock to innovate and improve their brand, then it will be easy for those organizations to remain competitive even in the face of globalization.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

Antràs, P. and Rossi-Hansberg, E., 2009. Organizations and trade. Annu. Rev. Econ., 1(1), pp.43-64.

Caligiuri, P., 2006. Developing global leaders. Human Resource Management Review, 16(2), pp.219-228.

GARITA, M. and MARTINEZ, S., 2016. A Sociological Approach Concerning Leadership: How CEO and the Masses Behave. Nile Journal of Business and Economics, 2(3), pp.15-24.

Helfer, L.R., 2006. Understanding change in international organizations: Globalization and innovation in the ILO. Vand. L. Rev., 59, p.649.

Lim, A. and Tsutsui, K., 2012. Globalization and commitment in corporate social responsibility cross-national analyses of institutional and political-economy effects. American Sociological Review, 77(1), pp.69-98.

Nahavandi, A., 2016. The Art and Science of Leadership -Global Edition. Pearson.

Noe, R.A., Hollenbeck, J.R., Gerhart, B. and Wright, P.M., 2006. Human resource management: Gaining a competitive advantage.

Safian, R. 2012. Leadership: How CEO Mark Parker Runs Nike To Keep Pace with Rapid Change, Retrieved on 27 January 2017 from: http://www.fastcompany.com/3002642/how-ceo-mark-parkerruns-nike-keep-pace-rapid-change [Accessed 3 Aug16]

Scullion, H. and Collings, D., 2011. Global talent management. New York: Routledge.

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