Supervision: Chapter 1

Supervisor
A manager at the first level of management, which the means the employees reporting to the supervisor are not managers.
Managing at the supervisory level means ensuring that the employees in a particular department are preforming their jobs so that the department will contribute its share to accomplishing organization’s goals.
Frederick W. Taylor (1856-1915)
“Father of Scientific Management” believed that in order to improve efficiency, it is important to consider the best way in which a job could be completed.
Henri Fayol (1841-1925)
a French industrialist, often regarded as the pioneer of administrative theory. Fayol asserted that all managers have primary management functions to perform in organizations. These functions include:
Planning, Orginizing, Leading, and Controlling
Planning
Setting goals for an organization, and developing an overall strategy for achieving the goals.
Organizing
Assigning tasks to specific members of the organization.
Leading
Motivating the employees of the organization to achieve the tasks that were given to them, as we as handling conflicts as they arise.
Staffing
Identifying, hiring and developing the necessary number and quality of employees. Performance is judged on the basis of the results that the employee has achieved as an individual, a supervisor’s performance depends on the quality of staffing is crucial to the supervisor’s success
Controlling
Overseeing the various tasks that are being completed and ensuring that they are done in the expected manner.
-Abraham Maslow (1908-1970)
A pioneering psychologist who is perhaps best-known contributor of the people focus, recognized that people have different sets of needs that are met in a hierarchical pattern. Based on his findings, supervisors much help workers to satisfy their personal needs while being productive in organizations
Basic Needs
Food and shelter
Safety Needs
Job, family, health, and property.
Social Needs
Friendship, family and intimate relationships
Psychological Needs
Self-esteem and confidenc
Self-Actualization
Attitude to acceptance, a lack of racial biases, and creativity
Four Basic Skills include:
Technical, human relations, conceptual, and decision-making
Technical Skills
Specialized knowledge and expertise used to carry out particular techniques and procedures. Example: A mechanic’s ability to bring an automobile engine back to life, or a company’s ability to persuade executives to write big checks.
Human Relations Skills
Skills required to work effectively with other people. These skills include the ability to communicate with, motivate, and understand people. Supervisors use their human relations skills to impress their supervisors, inspire employees, defuse conflicts, get along with co-workers, and succeed in many other ways.
Conceptual Skills
The ability to see the relation of the parts to the whole and to one another. For a supervisor, conceptual skills include recognizing how the department’s work helps the entire organization achieve its goal and how the work of various employees affect the performance of the department as a whole.
Decision-making Skills
The ability to analyze information and reach good decisions. Someone with strong decision-making skills can think objectively and creatively.
A relative importance of each type of skill depends on the level of management
Human relations are important at all levels of management. However, supervisors rely more on technical skills than higher-level managers because employees who have a problem doing their jobs go to the supervisor and expect help. Top managers tend to rely more on decision-making skills simply because they tend to make more complex decisions.
Typical Manager Activities:
Task-related activities
People-related activities
Change-related activities
Task-related activities
Efforts to carry out critical management-related duties, such as planning, setting objectives for employees, and monitoring performance.
People-related activities
Efforts to manage poeple, such as by providing support and encouragement, recognizing contributions, developing employees’ skills, and empowering employees to solve problems.
Change-related activities
Efforts to modify components of the organization, such as monitoring the environment to detect a need for change, proposing new tactics and strategies, encouraging others to think creatively, and taking risks to promote needed changes.
Clarifying Roles
Assigning tasks; explaining job responsibilities, task objectives, and performance expectations
Monitoring Operations
Checking on the progress and quality of the work; evaluating individual and unit performance
Short-term Planning
Determining how to use personnel and other resources to accomplish a task efficiently; determining how to schedule and coordinate activities efficiently
Consulting
Checking with people before making decisions that affect them, encouraging participation in decisions
Supporting
Being considerate; showing sympathy and support when someone is upset or anxious; providing encouragement and support when a task is difficult or stressful
Recognizing
Providing praise and recognition for effective performanc, significant achievements, special contributions and performance improvements
Developing
Providing coaching and advice; providing opportunities for skill development, helping people learn how to improve their skills
Empowering
Allowing substantial responsibility and discretion in work activities; trusting people to solve problems and make decisions without getting approval first
Envisioning Change
Presenting an appealing description of a desirable outcomes that the unit can achieve; describing a proposed change with enthusiasm and conviction
Taking risks for change
Taking personal risks and making sacrifices to encourage and promote desirable change in the organization
Encouraging innovative thinking
Challenging people to question their assumptions about the work and consider better ways of doing it
External monitoring
Analyzing information about events, trends, and changes in the external environment to identify threats and opportunities for the work unit
True or False: A supervisor’s human relations skills refer to the ability to see the relation of the parks of the whole and to one another
False – Conceptual Skills
True or False: Successful managers should refrain from challenging people to question their assumptions
False
True or False: Organizing includes among other things, setting up the group and allocating resources to achieve goals
True
True or False: Planning is the firsts process in the management function
True
True or False: Authority is the ability to do certain things
False – Power
Specialized knowledge and expertise used to carry out particular procedures is defined as:
technical skills
When supervisors and other managers allow substantial responsibility and discretion in work activities and trust people to solve problems and make decisions without getting approval first, they are relying on which of the following sets of managerial skills?
Empowering
Letting employees know what is expected of them and inspiring and motivating them is known as:
Leading
A supervisor’s performance depends on the quality of results that the supervisor achieves through his or her employees. Therefore _____ is crucial to the supervisor’s success.
Staffing
Power is defined as:
The ability to do certain things
Henry was an engineer for an aerospace company. He had excellent technical skills, and he thoroughly enjoyed his job. He was not interested in making plans and inspiring others to achieve goals. Due to his superior technical ability, he was offered a promotion to supervisor. He turned out to be an unsuccessful supervisor. Which of the following characteristics of a successful supervisor did he lack?
Desire for the job
Which of the following is the most important skill for top-managers?
Decision-making skills
Which of the following is a change-related activity?
Proposing new tactics and strategies
A manager at the first level of management is known as a(n):
supervisor
When supervisors and managers challenge people to question their assumptions about the work and consider better ways of doing it, they rely on which set of managerial skills?
encourage innovative thinking
Which of the following acts states that a supervisor is “any individual having authority, in the interest of the employer, to hire, transfer, suspend, lay off, recall, promote, discharge, assign, reward or discipline other employees, or responsibility to direct them, or to adjust their grievances, or effectively to recommend such action, if in connection with foregoing the exercise of such authority is not of a merely routine or clerical nature, but requires the use of independent judgment”?
The Taft-Harley Act
Higher-level managers usually spend most of their time on which of the following management functions?
Planning and organizing
When supervisors and other managers need to assign tasks, explain job responsibilities, task objectives, and performance expectations, they rely on which of the following set of managerial skills?
Clarifying Roles