Free Research Paper on Leadership

Free research paper example on Leadership:

There is explicit connection between management and leadership quality and economic performance – the link between the two should be tracked over time in order to achieve continuous progress.

An effective organizational leadership accounts for most of the success stories of business firms and companies worldwide. Much of a company’s success or failure rests on the kind of management capability and strategy that a company employs. However, an alarming report by the Council for Excellence in Management and Leadership found out that, “supply of and demand for management and leadership capability in the UK finds that current management and business leadership development is “a dysfunctional system”, and that the UK’s economic performance is being held back by a shortage of appropriate and practical leadership skills” (Council for Excellence in Management & Leadership).

The report is the culmination of two years of wide-ranging consultation and analysis across the UK’s public and private sectors and the professions. It says that while there is a consensus that good management and leadership skills are pivotal to quality of performance, investment, productivity and delivery of service in all enterprises, these business-enhancing capabilities are not as widespread as they should be in the UK.

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The UK market shows that retailing is the UK’s top service sector industry, employing around 2.4 million people in the UK. Its turnover rose from just over £80 billion in 1984 to £175 billion in 1998. With the continuing development of cross-border franchising, some of the UK’s world-class companies have seen considerable success in overseas markets, particularly in Central Europe. Overseas outlets of UK stores provide excellent shop windows for UK products. Many retailers are expanding internationally and in a variety of ways including franchising, acquisition and joint ventures (www.tradepartners.gov.uk).

Another sector that is fast growing and is considered to be one of the three largest sectors in UK is the management consultation business. There are estimated to be between 30,000 and 35,000 management consultants in the UK. Annual turnover by the UK’s management consultancy firms is around £5.5 billion, of which exports account for £1 billion. The bulk of international work by UK firms is in Europe, but as most export work is both market and client led, there are also opportunities in the emerging economies of Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, India and China, and especially in the fast-growing energy, insurance and electronics sectors. There is also continued demand for UK consultancy overseas – e.g. project management, and assisting governments implement deregulation/privatisation programmes (www.tradepartners.gov.uk).

This study will attempt to tackle the strategy, issues and challenges faced on organizational leadership by two retail firms and one management consultancy company. A comparative analysis between the three firms will be discussed in the context of their success in expanding and growing domestically and internationally. Further, this paper will work on the hypothesis that organizational leadership leads to faster company growth.

Conceptual Framework
This paper will use the comparative approach in determining, analyzing and evaluating the organizational leadership methods of three companies. The comparative approach will substantially explain the differences/similarities, strengths/weaknesses and explain the causes of such.

This paper will specifically use three companies as case studies, all of which is based in the UK:
A major part of the retail industry, worth over £100 billion. Although still primarily selling food, the largest companies are diversifying into non-food products. Nine retailers account for around 60% of sales:

16.5% Tesco – Tesco has some 700 stores. Its e-retailing arm, Tesco.com was promoted heavily some four years ago and currently receives 70,000 orders per week, over 50% of online grocery sales in the UK. It is currently working with a leading US supermarket to deliver groceries in California. The team overseeing its development is based at the firm’s headquarters in Welwyn Garden City. Analytical skills are particularly sought for head office roles, as opposed to team working and leadership skills for store-based positions.

2.1% Waitrose – Waitrose is the food arm of the John Lewis Partnership, with 136 stores, mostly in the South of England. Employees are partners, which means they receive a share of the profits each year and contribute to the decision-making process. Waitrose has acquired a 40% stake in Ocado, to provide an internet service to its customers.

The Red Bridge Consultancy is a modern communications company. It provides creative thinking, considered advice and high quality writing and design for on- and offline internal and external communications. The company was created by Mike Hooker, a graphic designer, and Paul Wigmore, an ex-Fleet Street journalist. They first established their professional working relationship, and their mutual love of stodgy puddings and custard, when they ran the award-winning design and publishing unit for a top London PR consultancy.
These three companies will be instrumental in the findings and conclusion of this paper.

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