|Section : Module 3: - Management of Enterprises|
Management of Enterprises
While globalisation has meant an opening of markets to international competitive forces, it has also led to the adjustment and restructuring of the economic activities in many countries, by shuffling the rate of growth and rising importance of certain sectors at the expense of others. More and more, managers have to play a dynamic role in a rapidly changing environment. To this end, they need to mobilize not only the human energy available, but above all to liberate to their full potential the creativity and commitment of their staff to the enterprise goals of survival and growth. In the Caribbean region, lower labour costs if coupled with energised and creative manpower at all levels, then that could give these enterprises a comparative advantage in the global market place.
In such an environment, expertise, knowledge and calculated risk taking has assumed greater importance and idea generation and creative thinking have become the hallmarks of entrepreneurial behaviour. As such, enterprises must now leverage the human capital which has become its most sustainable and competitive advantage. In leveraging human capital, enterprises are now challenged to decentralize decision- making and to give more responsibility to the lower echelons. Organisations must strive to create environments which prosper on individual and collective learning and critically monitoring, disseminating and using new knowledge. In other words, the creation of the knowledge/learning organization is of prime importance in the new productive drive. This approach almost guarantees success by facilitating enhanced intellectual growth and performance from the worker and the long-term sustainability of the enterprise, by building on the human resource. In fact, it is from such an environment that the knowledge worker is born and nurtured.
To encourage the formation of the learning organisation, management practices have evolved and are critical to the ability of enterprises to be competitive. To nurture and maintain this dynamic knowledge structure, communication channels between people must not only remain open but unimpeded and stimulated. In as much as knowledge may be transferred by prescriptive rules and steps, and further aided by emerging technologies, it is as important to recognise that it is through common interchange between workers that most work processes are learned and perfected and through which a great deal of knowledge is transferred. People are also central to culture and an aggrieved workforce does not lend to a sound and facilitative corporate culture. This is why the managerís role has assumed such importance and as will be demonstrated later, why the ILS has become such an important managerial tool.
As organisations have developed, so too have managersí roles evolved along with it. The contemporary manager is now required to: