Organizations need to assist their managers to develop skills and competencies that are relevant to their area of operation if they expect to maintain profitability and sustain competitive advantage. Skills and competency development have been traced back to a wide range of issues, which include organizational structure, type of management style and culture, but management must always strive to understand what encourages and curtails managers from developing and internalizing the skills and competencies that are inarguably needed for optimal productivity (Bagelow, 1991). This paper purposes to use Chapman (2006) management skill set assessment to demonstrate how the behaviors included in the assessment might be influenced by a different organizational structure.
It is imperative to first note that the scores indicated in the attachment are for a human resource manager in an organization that utilizes a hierarchical functional organizational structure. Bagelow (1991) argues that while a functional structure may be credited for enhancing operational efficiencies within a group, it has often been accused of perpetrating a lack of communication between two or more functional groups within the organization, resulting in slow delivery of service and inflexibility.
Many of the skills and competencies mentioned in Chapman’s (2006) skillset assessment, in my view, are bound to be promoted If the organizational framework is changed to that of a matrix structure mainly because this structure uses teams of employees to accomplish organizational tasks (Bagelow, 1991). In a matrix structure, it is expected that I should perform better in each of my most important skills, namely: motivation and leadership; performance appraisal and coordinating; counseling and handling of grievances; training and development; recruitment and selection; employment and HR policy; and self-development.
I should also be able to improve on other competencies that are developed better when individuals work in teams, namely: communication skills; planning and organization; task delegation; relationship management; planning and running meetings; innovation and creativity; creating an effective presentation to groups; and environmental and social responsibility. Other behaviors, including customer care, quality awareness, and managing, creating an effective presentation in groups, administration and financial performance, and financial and commercial understanding, may remain relatively unchanged under a matrix organizational structure as these skills will not be perceived as critical in the organizational team that deals with human resources.
From the assessment, it is clear that some behaviors that are core to human resource management, which include communication skills, questioning, and active listening, performance appraising, delegation of duties, innovativeness, and creativity, and active listening, need to be improved. These behaviors can be improved by attending seminars and discussion forums that encourage and mentor managers on communication skills and the use of imagination to solve employee challenges (Patsula Media, 2007). On-the-job training is necessary to enhance skills in performance appraising while increasing managerial space and independence could go a long way to spur innovation and creativity (Bagelow, 1991).
Some conditions existing in the workplace may either promote or curtail managers’ skills and competencies development. Inflexible leadership closed communication channels, lack of social support and absence of personal and career growth opportunities have all been accused of stagnating skills and competency development in the workplace (Bagelow, 1991). In this context, a manager in the human resource department may optimally perform or even outperform in conditions that guarantee flexible leadership, open communication networks, opportunities for personal and career development, support from other members in the team, recognition of achievements, cooperation from employees, job satisfaction, and open and independent managerial space to spur creativity and innovation.
Bagelow, J.D. (1991). Managerial skills: explorations in practical knowledge. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.
Chapman, A. (2006). Management skill set assessment. Web.
Patsula Media. (2007). The entrepreneur’s guide book series. Web.