Managerial roles are primarily reactive and based on getting results or fixing a problem. The situation often dictates the role a manager takes on. However the employees, the organizational culture including skillsets and character makeup of the workforce, as well as the needs of the client or customer all play a part in the manager's influence and success. The need to restructure an organization to meet market demands often causes changes in the cultural makeup which in turn require an adjustment in the managerial style or role. During the industrial revolution and up to the 1990s, for example, the authoritarian management role, based on control was the primary mode of the majority of organizations. Today, management is often based on empowerment and teams working together. The role of managers is often given to those with technical expertise who then coordinate and lead the tasks or processes of team members who often lead teams working within the same business or technical function. Managerial roles are now directed by technical or business professionals within those teams who function as mentors, experts, facilitators and team leaders. At JPKenny, this is the case as most of the managerial function is under the direction of project managers.
Success in management comes from the ability to build a highly functional team, network leaders in the industry, and develop as well as motivate others (12Manage 2010). Current management theory emphasizes people skills and the participative management style is important in order to have a healthy and productive organizational culture. Other theories that promote successful management are Total Quality Management, McGregor's Theory X, Y, Theory Z, Management by Objectives.
Leaders of organizations are primarily based on a power role or style. Psychologists that studied the various forms of power in the 1960s are John French and Betram Raven who researched and developed the theories into five forms (French & Raven, 1960). These five power roles are the basis for the leadership roles in organizations around the world today and some are characteristic of JPKenny leaders today. The power roles include coercive, legitimate, expert, reward, charismatic, and referent types. Following is research on both the roles of management and leadership and a discussion on how these apply to JPKenny.
Introduction and Company Background
JP Kenny (JPK) is a London-based company that specialises in pipeline and subsea engineering; JP Kenny started up business in 1978 and has diversified locally and internationally over the past thirty three years, now employing more than one thousand professional staff on four continents. The London office, which is the focus of this report currently employs approximately three hundred employees.
JPK is a project-based company, creating solutions based on several products which are sold as a packaged solution in the oil and gas industry. This involves identifying project requirements one-on-one with clients, to develop designs to meet those client requirements in areas such as shown in the table below.
Subsea production systems -- full range of lifecycle services from earliest conceptual studies, through to detailed design.
Offshore pipelines -- design of trunklines, export pipelines, in-field flowlines, pipe-in-pipe, bundles, i.e.-in and riser systems for the transportation of oil and gas
Onshore pipelines -- strategic analysis, project planning and techno-economic evaluation
Project management -- activities supported by a set of project management processes and systems
Development studies -- assisting customers evaluate subsea and pipeline system opportunities
Customers include BP, Shell, Chevron and Total.
JPK has a task culture in which the emphasis is getting the job done. The task culture generally requires self-motivated personnel that will need little or no supervision, personal commitment and team work. The task culture brings together employees with different skills to form a team in order to complete the task/project. Each team formed to complete a project is assigned a project manager. Task teams are made up of professional (who form the largest cluster of employees) and administrators.
Project managers are all professional engineers none of which have any formal management training.
The main objective of this report is to review activities relating to the roles of the manager and leaders, and how these activities relate to the different models of leadership, and how the style of management and leadership relate to the context of JPK.
In effect all project managers are given the task of being a leader and a manager. They are required to lead the team to achieve the main goal of the project team which is to complete the project with a set budget and successfully design a functioning pipeline. Project managers are required to cover all the prescribed management functions and lead the team.
Relates to open communication and sharing of data within and between teams to assist decision making at the managerial and leadership levels. Team members are professionally educated and trained to perform at a high performance level with little managerial involvement. The day-to-day issues and policies are handled by the team who has a team leader that facilitates meetings and is often a subject matter expert of the department or functional business area. Participative management allows employees to contribute their skills and expertise in the area where they have the greatest talent or ability. This boosts morale and increases productivity by giving ownership of the tasks to individuals who take responsibility for the work being done. At JPKenny this is termed a high performance project team and the company is made up of many such professionals. This form of management is part of the JPKenny culture. Since the work is highly technical and requires extensive training of specialized tasks, it works well for the global company. For example, if a new product is being introduced, the use of technology allows data sharing among project teams around the globe in minutes which raises productivity in multiple locations where the company operates simultaneously. The employees that participate in the data gathering, design, technical specifications, testing, and implementation of the new product can do so with a single pass, saving hundreds of thousands of dollars in resources. The employees in participatory management are expected to have the right technical skills, good communication, and business intelligence to make quality decisions without managerial oversight. However, the culture must be open to taking this type of self or team managerial role and willingness to step up and support the project and resolve issues that are relevant to their work (Robbins, 2002).
One of the leading organizational theorists Douglas McGregor presents Theory X and Y. Theory X makes very negative assumptions about employees such as laziness and that they lack desire to work. The role of management is to coerce employees to perform duties. Theory X is based on three premises. The first that people do not want to work and will choose to perform as little as possible. The second is that work performed has to be forced by threatening punishment. Thirdly McGregor's theory X states that people have little ambition to perform unless job security is threatened and they require micromanagement to complete assigned tasks. Therefore all motivation must be provided by management control. If an employee is unable to perform, this is considered the fault of the worker. All reward systems of motivation are related to cash, getting promoted or benefits associated with tenure (12Manage 2010).
McGregor's Theory Y on the other hand supports the case that employees will have more professional behavior if they are treated as such by management. People with highly specialized skills and education are considered candidates for Theory Y management. The top six premises are first that people enjoy work and it is as attractive and natural as play (12Manage 2010). Secondly, workers do not need micromanagement and are able to self-manage themselves to meet project or company objectives. Thirdly that the primary rewards sought after are those of satisfaction achieved by doing an excellent job and putting forth their best effort. Fourth people are willing to accept responsibility and often will look for opportunities in the workplace to perform if given a chance. Fifth that people are very innovative and able to create new products and services, they are very capable of solving issues without management intervention or oversight. Sixth people have the potential, they just need the right tools and opportunity to show their intelligence and resourcefulness. Unlike Theory X, under Theory Y if the employee fails or is unproductive, it is because the support of management was inadequate. In many business units Theory Y is the managerial style that works for JPKenny.
Organizational Development thinker William Ouchi researched management traditions in both Japan and the U.S. The result of his studies produced a new theory, Theory Z It is a culmination of McGregor's X and Y. The assumption of Theory Z is that people should work alongside management in every level of the organization (12Manage 2010). The first quality refers to career development and considerations for employees that ensure longer term employment. Secondly…