BACKGROUND OF PAPER
Knowledge management comprises strategies adopted by organizations to define, develop, enable and dispense experiences implementation. In order to work effectively and make productive decisions at workplace, an individual require to have communication talents and knowledge management too, as improper knowledge can lead to big loss for an enterprise in present environment. The below paper is explaining about importance of range of decisions for development of new retail outlet and sources from where company can get relevant information. Moreover, the reader will find content regarding strategies needed for improving skills related to personal networking and getting involved in decision making process of corporation.
This research paper is mainly considering the methods of communication used by Wal-Mart. The company is known in the region of US as biggest employer of public sector. It operates at global level including UK, China, Turkey and Japan, etc. as well as the company is attempting to open its stores in many economically developed nations. This worldwide expansion is taken as part of Wal-Mart strategy to diversify as well as grow the business undertakings. It is also observed that in its non-operating activities, the company keeps on strength and developed as market leader in US retail sector. Furthermore, the firm is enjoying high market share of retail industry. This position is occupied by corporation through strict dedication towards satisfaction of customer’s desires and wants by offering excellent quality at competitive price.
In the below report, tasks is based on identification of several manners that would support a business enterprise to enhance communication activities at workplace. Besides this, a plan of personal development is being discussed here, which would refer to many guidelines that must be used in organizational context. Wal-Mart is benefitted by appropriate system of knowledge and information adopted in organization. Moreover, the reader will find significance and implementation process of Information Knowledge System (IKM) at the place of work. The communication method recently implemented by Wal-Mart is being discussed in the following paper. It is including how appropriately every information is being conversed to all employees in the stores. Also, the researcher as corporate communication specialist has recommended some methods to improve communication among staffs and management at work. The given personal development plan will include several improvements too that must be consider while executing communication strategies. Hence, the paper will perfectly support the Chief Executive Officer of company to recognize and attain effective system of knowledge and information.
1.1 Decision making
Due to the rapid growth of information technology, retailers are required to learn about new methods of undertaking their business activities. Such new areas include creative decisions making, problem solving and innovations at workplace. Decision is referred to a choice made in between two or more alternatives. As suggested by George and Jones, taking an adequate decision can be defined as “process through which members of company choose specific actions for responding to problems as well as opportunities”. For example, for a new retail store the choice can be either to begin brick and mortar operation or completely go with the cheap prices of various commodities (Awad and Awad, 2004). Hence, the Wal-Mart manager is needed to make several decisions on continuous basis whether on undertaking new activities or performing regular jobs, such as:
Strategic decisions – These decisions are made in regards to long term actions of corporation. A manager make particular decisions in advance to leaf effectively and control overall work in set direction. However, outcomes of these decisions are only attained after the completion of fixed time.
Tactical decisions – For performing short time deeds, these decisions are taken to guide correct way of achieving it. Moreover, the results of tactical decisions are conventional as well as provide effective assistance in implementing strategic decisions at work (Anderson, 2008).
Operational decisions – Manager is also required to take decisions regarding daily operations of business. These decisions have horizon of short time, as taken continually.
The above mentioned decisions ensures not only about organization’s smooth operations on daily basis but also lead to proper execution of several activities in line of common goal attainment.
1.2 Information and knowledge
Besides above, there are some information and knowledge types that should be collected by Wal-Mart manager for making best decisions and to achieve excellent results. The following are some important information to have by manager for taking valuable decisions:
Organizational information – The manager should have complete information about each activities undertaken in business premises along with efficiency of manpower and operational strengths before making any type of decisions. The particular information can be attained by carrying out SWOT analysis of Wal-Mart. It can help the management in identifying their business strength plus weakness with regards to corporate image, market share and available capital, etc. Moreover, business expansion decisions can be perfectly made on the basis of this model results. In addition to this, manager is also able to comprehend regarding likely threats and possible opportunities available in the marketplace. Therefore, all such information’s greatly assists in employing current resources and manpower efforts at needed place to get best outcomes.
Competitors information – There are various international retail firms, like Tesco, Asda, etc. are running their operations throughout the globe. Thus, to beat strict competition of market, the manager must have awareness about its rivals strategies and policies of growing or expanding business. By analyzing rivals operations, Wal-Mart would be able to create different as well as unique policies for getting competitive edge by attracting more cliental base towards its offerings.
Market information – For developing new business and to achieve successful returns, the organization ought to have complete information in relation to desires and wants of target market or buyers. It will help the retailers in producing and distributing commodities that are actually needed by customers for meeting their satisfaction. Hence, can result in profitable results for the organization (Berger, 2011).
1.3 External and internal information
Two types of information is needed by Wal-Mart, such as external and internal. Internal information are collected and use for the purpose of decision making inside the firm whereas external data are assembled by manager, which provides a company with intelligence information about outside parties, such as society, government, competitors, customers, etc. The company uses a particular information system to create plus maintain internal bases of data. Management Information system (MIS) is used by Wal-Mart for the purpose of its information collection and diffusion. The system facilitates internal information required by decision maker. On the contrary, external information source offers most useful knowledge about environmental influences. Such information is vital for the firm, as business environment serves as an impediment in between organization and its target market (Cass, 2010).
1.4 Data gathering
With an aim to gain competitive edge in the marketplace, the above mentioned data gathering sources can be utilized optimum. For identifying buyer’s wants and desires, survey can be carry out by Wal-Mart manager through random sampling method. Moreover, to determine competitor’s strategies, competitor’s analysis can be performed by company’s senior authorities. Other than this, nowadays several consultancy agencies are rendering services to corporations by collecting customer’s reactions and providing adequate suggestions for the execution of productive methods at work. Thus, by building contract with such agency, the organization can know best suitable strategies or methods for its actions or operations as well as attain positive place in buyers mind by using creative ideas (Dyck and Neubert, 2008).
2.1 Stakeholders in orgnazation
In any business corporation, stakeholders are known as persons influenced by its varied activities and operations. The stakeholders for the retail stores of Wal-Mart, which should be adequately involved in the decision making are government, community, employees, suppliers and customers. In all of these, customers provide their support in maintaining or sustaining business functions for long period of time. Manpower facilitate productive as well as smooth operations by offering proficient services at work. Moreover, delivery of products in definite period is ensured by suppliers. In addition to this, society helps in keeping regular undertakings of company by providing needed resources. Hence, each and every stakeholders are more or less affected by different decisions made by management and due to this they should be considered first plus their interest must be fulfilled by corporation (Active Stakeholder Participation: An Agile Best Practice, 2012).
2.2 Personal contacts
As discussed in above paragraph that stakeholders are important for the success of company, therefore an effective and fair relationship should be develop as well as maintain with them by management. By making personal contacts with regular clients, firm can sustain healthy relationship to reach their satisfaction level and keep their interest in organization’s several offerings. Moreover, through personal contacts a database can be created and handover to marketing manager for establishing regular touch on special events by emails, internet and telephones (Hodge, 2011). Through this decision maker would be able to know the exact needs or requirements of potential customers and accordingly find out their best suppliers. In addition to this, face to face interactions in personal meeting can be arranged for observing their reactions on varied points as well as knowing their views regarding several activities performed at workplace. This will help in bringing their commitment and interest in firm, as they feel that their suggestions are valuable for business. Other than this, coordinators can be involved for developing and maintaining positive or useful relations with society as whole (Mikes, 2014).
2.3 Quality of decisions
In case lots of people give their valuable input in the decision making process of organization, the overall quality of taken decisions improves automatically. It is because of collective judgment, thinking and future evaluation by consolidated information that are acquired by manager with personal network. When these features presents then result in development of efficient as well as effective decisions at workplace, which can have synergistic impacts along with additional opportunities of being a reliable and fair decision (Mutch, 2008). Here, is the plan of involving identified individuals in decision making activities:
The firm will make alliance with government as well as non-government agencies for making discussions regarding environmental plus economic issues that will facilitate developing best strategies for pricing along with effective use of resources;
In order to get actual response of customer and society, decision maker of Wal-Mart can perform survey through questionnaire, which will assist in producing commodities and establishing store locations according to target market expectations;
Besides above, an informal sessions of meeting will be organized with every employee for deciding their suitable posts and duties to be followed at workplace (Nicholls, 2011).
2.4 Future improvements
The below given strategies will help in future improvements of the procedure:
- Company should concentrate on working mutually with main or valuable stakeholders in an eternal steering group through briefing them regarding whole system, so they can give useful suggestions;
- Firm must develop a technical board for stakeholders engagement and arrange meetings both formal/informal sessions to get feedbacks for establishing a proper structure of decision making;
- The company’s management should select appropriate tools plus techniques for making direct interactions with stakeholders considering further pro-active exchange of views and information that leads to best outcomes and less delays;
- Last but not the least, manager must deliver the message in easily accessible, comprehensible manner with the use of proper communication channels. Moreover, native language of stakeholders should be practiced to make interactions for ensuring the better understanding of conveyed message (Orna, 2005).
The system of transmitting ideas to somebody is known as communication. It can be take place by distinct methods and can be classified on communication style as well as channel used. According to channels, communication divided into non-verbal and verbal. Oral communication is message transmission through face to face interactions. For instance, participation of different inventory management executives in meeting of Wal-Mart inventory management department. In contrast, written communication includes receiver and sender exchanging messages in written format, however limitation of this method is that parties involved in procedure not able to give immediate response. For example, memos related to new office timings are written by Shift Manager to all functional heads (Pujari, 2015).
Besides above, communication on the basis of style can be informal and formal. Organizational channels are used by formal communication to receive or transmit messages. As the communication take place in between company’s marketing manager and vice president for deciding budget of new promotional strategies. On the other hand, informal communication occurs in Wal-Mart because of its strong culture that leads to informal relations among organizational members. For instance, discussion take place between R&D manager and marketing manager at lunch regarding store layout (SYKES, 2013).
3.2 Getting targets feedback
In any corporation, people serve as source of attaining competitive edge. Professionals are employed by Wal-Mart in its all departments and so effective communication process can be followed to ensure that target interpret exactly what is implied in message. The adequate system can be development of message by source, transmitting to audience by medium and getting targets feedback. Similarly, talented staff can be involved by company in communication system to successfully accomplish the projects, as they can decrease expenses of printing, time, telephone, etc. These savings will ultimately add to organization value and also its image can be improve by employing experts in the process (Bhatt, 2002).
3.3 SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time bound) objectives
It is vital for each entity to identify his/her personal communication skills to make necessary improvements for attaining best in their career. While evaluating my current skills, I found that there is a need of improvement in my writing skills and ability to understand. Accordingly, I have devised SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time bound) objectives to recover my weakness. By reaching such objectives I will be able to present myself as an active volunteer supervisor at workplace (Bouthillier and Shearer, 2002). The objectives are:
Improving verbal communication – By developing pronunciation level, I will be capable to attract hearers while making interactions with them.
Development of reading habits – With the help of regular reading of magazines, articles, newspapers, journals, etc. I would be able to learn tricks of writing precise message and can enhance understanding power
Enhancing technical communication abilities – I will learn about varied methods to interact with various volunteer groups as well as different languages to build competitive position at the workplace (Eberlin and Tatum, 2005).
4.1 Information management procedure
In the organization, Information management procedure can be defined as sourcing and collecting information from various resources and providing them to different members as needed.
Collection of information: Data can be collected from many different sources such as published articles, websites, journals, company’s products and services, and gathering of information from all individuals of varied departments (Hoe and McShane, 2010).
Formatting – In order to make the report, all these data will be processed and output can be formatted with the help of software like Microsoft Word and Excel, which can be in many forms such as tabular report, text report, and other readable format.
Storage – All these information will be stored in the company’s database system which can be password protected to secure any confidential data.
Dissemination – Documents containing these information can be provided for the need of different members throughout the organization (Loermans, 2002).
4.2 Measures of information
The company should implement following measures to improve its collection, storage, formatting and dissemination of information:
- It must design a standard communication process among its people and throughout all its departments. For that training events should be organized for information communication managers;
- It must ensure that data should be collected from authorized resources;
- There should be regular discussion among various departments and people which would be helpful in removing barriers in early implementation stages;
- Information should be formatted in a way to keep it short and clearly readable;
- Duplicate database should be maintained, so as to minimizing risk of losing data due to any technical errors;
- Database system should be improved to have larger space to accommodate huge data;
- Modern online file sharing system such as Google Drive, Dropbox can be used to upload information on internet, thereby allowing users to access information from anywhere they need (Martin and Metcalfe, 2001).
4.3 Threats and risks of information
The organization need to build a strategy to ensure that important information can be accessed effortlessly. In today’s digital environment, the rapid development of technology has completely changed the way information is created and used by the company. Now, information has become an important organizational resource. In the same manner, it has also developed some new threats and risks (Spitzeck and Hansen, 2010). The organization should take following measures to get maximum use of information and analytics:
- First, the company should analyse the existing system for any weakness and problems then should plan to remove those obstacles.
- All information should be stored in cloud sharing so vast information can be searched and accessed by any person on internet.
- Intranet and other automated tools are very useful to share information among various people with secrecy.
- It is necessary for the company to put efforts on training of managers in strategic and tactical decision-making. Furthermore, varying role of managers will result in change of organization structure, and finally lead to integration at middle level (Wilson and Pimm, 1996).
- To ensure effectiveness of the system, operating control is very important on the overall system’s functioning. The company must make sure that the access of data would be provided to right users only.
- External consultants and professionals may also be appointed who can suggest innovative ideas in latest technology developments. (Varey and White, 2000)
After reading above report, it can be said that an effective communication system at place helps organization to reach its objectives successfully. Both internal and external communication methods should be adequately build in firm. Moreover, management should structure the communication strategy for its proper implementation in departments. Furthermore, an adequate management of available communication skills as well as information is vital for conducing productive and profitable business. At last, communication, knowledge and information’s suitable management is significant for Wal-Mart, as present context of retail sector is becoming more dynamic.
The above report made me to grasp various strategies of developing effective and good communication at workplace. I learn about both verbal and written styles of interacting with colleagues and seniors in organization, which will help me in my future job at any sector. In my career I can perfectly perform the role of manager, as got necessary skills to writing precise messages, keep good eye contact and demonstrate several vocabulary. These skills will support me to facilitate flow of good communication in my department and allow friendly plus unbiased interactions through utilization of excellent sources. Moreover, I learned benefits and drawbacks of communication system, so would be able to select and maintain implementation of best procedure at my workplace. Through adequate skills of communication I will be able to create good image in eyes of my superior authorities as well as colleagues. Besides this, as a manager I will require to take several decisions and the report has helped me to gain knowledge of sources from which relevant information can be collected plus used for making productive decisions. Hence, the report has improved my efficiency and skills to get managerial position in my career organization, which I will definitely perform in successful way.
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