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Critically analyse the roles, functions that managers perform and discuss the challenges and risks they have to address in today's changing organisations.

Discuss the impact of values, ethics and diversity on the culture of an organisation and the role, behaviour and performance of managers within that organization.

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The primary purpose of the paper is to provide a rationale for the research methodology and organizational theory by comparing with an alternative theory. It will demonstrate an understanding of the skills that emerging leaders and managers face in creating strategies to leverage advantage and overcome barriers and constraints in organizations. The paper will critically demonstrate an understanding of the organizational theory that includes organizational ethical practice and ethics. It will also discuss the role and legitimacy of the management function and how it is impacted by politics and social environment. Therefore, the paper will critically analyze the functions and roles of the managers.

The rationale for the research methodology and organizational theory

The rational for the research is to critically analyze the functions and roles of the managers of Woolworths Supermarket. The research would help in discussing the risks and challenges faced the organizational managers. The research methodology will make use of qualitative analysis that helps the researcher to recognize the detail and depth without pre-determining the categories of analysis (Woolworths Supermarkets - Woolworths Group. 2019). It makes use of standardized measures based on experience and different perspectives of organizational members.

The organizational theory possesses various approaches that help in analyzing organizational activities. It has been observed that Woolworths follows bureaucratic theory as it entails the structure of the organization into a hierarchy and governs the organizational members by defining the rational-legal decision-making rules. It is determined to be an administrative system that governs any large organization whether privately or publicly owned. It is regarded as the centralized, hierarchical structure of a business firm (Meisenbach & Jensen, 2017). The theory states that businesses execute by professional managers that were linked through economic relationships. It is designed to ensure the effectiveness of economic and efficiency and a systematic formation of an organization. Woolworths makes use of this particular theory as it is an ideal model for administration and management to bring power structure into the organization. Based on this theory the organizational structure of Woolworths comprised of clear hierarchies, a meticulous division of responsibility and labor, requirements, procedures and standardized processes that present impersonal communications among the employees.

The bureaucratic theory is compared with other organizational theory such as scientific management theory. Both theories have different perspectives related to management. The bureaucratic management theory focuses on tight job roles and hierarchies. Whereas, scientific management theory is entirely based on using human strengths and data to maximize the outputs. The theory helps the organizations to maximize their profits by minimizing their costs. The bureaucratic approach differs from scientific theory as it focuses on dividing the organization into developing strong lines of control and authority and hierarchies. The bureaucratic theory states that organizations are a significant part of the broader and accountable social order. While the scientific approach states that decisions are made as per the exact measurement or science. The estimations made as per the convenience are inefficient and inaccurate. Every job is classified into internal analysis and smaller function (Su, 2017). With the help of the scientific approach, the organization could develop the best method to execute its function. On the other hand, by following the bureaucratic approach, Woolworths has a predictable line of communication and promotes stability.

Utilization of appropriate research strategies

Key challenges faced by Woolworths supermarket includes a reduction in consumer cycle, greater pressure from the competitors, reduction in the return on equity without de-rating, a lesser dollar of Australia, deleverage in supermarkets of Australia, a key issue in the quality of product, fighting back of Australian Competition And Consumer Commission (ACCC) and option put by Lowe over the markers (Bayne, Schepis & Purchase, 2017). The Woolworths supermarket focusses on the utilization of data, innovation of product, better service to customers and value without forgetting about the price. It has sketched a three-year strategy which can transform the firm into a customer-first business and assist in neutralizing its competitors (Woerner & Wixom, 2015). The strategy focusses on three main areas improvement of the core offer, innovation of the services and products so as to meet the needs of the customers and initiates new efficiencies by Lean Retail model of Woolworths for improving customer value and service.

As mentioned by Brad Banducci, managing director of Woolworths food group that it is quite evident that the true battlefield is the overall experience of customers keeping the criteria of low prices. The above-mentioned strategy results in a lower price, great innovation, and more convincing offers. An essential component in this new strategy is the measurement of the employees will be done according to their performances (Marquis & Raynard, 2015). Moreover, the MD mentioned that an introduction of a customer-first system to measure the in-store teams with a fresh 8-metric scorecard which replaces its old 20-metric system. For innovating new products, the organization has established a new field which is named Woolworths FoodCo that is accountable for emerging new product classes, refining fresh processing and supply of products and improves relationships with sourcing partner. Moreover, to assist the investment, Woolworths develop an operation model named "Lean Retail' that is estimated to produce over $500m in the reduction of cost in the upcoming financial year (Pulker, Trapp, Scott & Pollard, 2018).

Critical examination of the role of ethics and ethical practice of Woolworths Supermarket

Woolworths is highly committed to providing high environmental, ethical and social standards in empowering marginalized artisans and in the supply chains. It ensures its stakeholders and customers that can fulfill the basic requirements of the society by executing its work within the framework of community. The ethics and value are significant concepts as it helps the business to perform efficiently in the business world. The manager of the organization ensures ethics by following the basic rules and guidelines of the society as well as the business (Chell, Spence, Perrini & Harris, 2016). The basic concepts that are involved in ethics are professionalism, caring, loyalty, integrity, teamwork, honesty, transparency, ethical considerations, and fairness. All these basic concepts of ethics are followed by the emerging leaders of the company appropriately.

The ethical practices of the company involve providing standard services and products to its customers as per their needs. The organization source its products from different locations to satisfy the requirements of the global environment. Woolworths tries to satisfy the wants and needs of its consumers by operating its business at national and international level. However, the organization takes enormous efforts to source its products adequately. The manager of the company takes efforts to ensure ethics to its suppliers to improve social and environmental practices with them (Lehnert, Craft, Singh & Park, 2016). It takes special care to make sure that it regularly works with its suppliers to encourage them and make them feel satisfied to provide raw material on right time. Woolworths provides clear and understandable directions to its buying members so that they feel motivated and encouraged. The organization also tries to maintain its brand level to ensure that its actions do not put an impact on the corporate image and reputation of its brand.

The company provides a suitable working environment for its employees to provide full protection to its surrounding atmosphere and safeguard the basic human rights. To gain success and maintain the reputation of the organization the managers and emerging leaders meet the moral and ethical standards. The significant ethics of Woolworths involves acting responsibly, integrity and trust. To improve the labor and environmental practices of the suppliers the manager shows its full assurance towards them. The ethical practices of the organization include motivating environment, employment conditions, job security, workplace safety, and fair pay. The manager takes efforts to maintain a healthy relationship with the suppliers of the company. Therefore, it develops improvement plans to ensure that its suppliers are provided with ethical standards. Woolworths provides a hygienic and safe working environment to its employees and workers (Ogbari, Oke, Ibukunoluwa, Ajagbe & Ologbo, 2016). The employees and workers are provided security and safety against the hazardous that takes place within the organization. It clearly states that the manager takes enormous efforts to reduce the occurrence of issues in the workplace. However, the emerging leaders of the company maintain transparency and openness into its business transactions. Therefore, to maintain sustainability into its business, the company has increased its financial investment.

Role and legitimacy of the management function

Woolworths management involves the management control system that consists of various individuals like, Chief Financial Officer, Managing Director, and CEO. All these managers execute their work in their specialized areas to gather, analyze and report the data based on the performance of these particular areas. It includes comparing the performance of a particular unit and examining the organizational strategies. It helps the company to achieve the organizational goals (Christensen, Lægreid & Rykkja, 2016). For example, Woolworths executes performance measurement that includes providing detail information of the report. The manager assists the board of directors in assigning the resources for these departments and analyzing their performance. Usually, the performance is measured and evaluated by the income of the units before individually relevant items, tax, and interest. At the time of performance measurement the financial cost, expenses, and revenues of the group are assessed and reviewed.

Within the management function of Woolworths, the following components create the action controls such as definitions of acceptable actions, separation of duties and administration. It has been observed that the decisions made by the management put an impact on the actions of the employees. The organizational managers of Woolworths maintain legitimacy by following the code of conduct, procedures, policies, and rules of the business. The managers always provide information to the employees regarding the unacceptable actions of the organization. The company organizes seminars and training for its employees to enhance their knowledge related to a particular job (Lehtonen, Sébastien & Bauler, 2016). Woolworth's management determines that it is significant to admit that the decisions regarding the customers and the shopping behavior should be executed dynamically. The company has rapidly changed their concept of selling products by increasing the accessibility and accepting mobile technology through price fixation procedures.

The management function is impacted by politics and social environment

The management decisions of an organization are impacted by various politics and social environment factors. Political forces are quite strong in any organization's environment, and proper observance to the law is utmost necessary. It is vital to have a legal framework in place for a firm like Woolworths for conducting its business without any hassle (Kolk, 2016). The political factors develop opportunities for the firm by way of numerous market rules. Woolworths supermarket has an appropriate constitution in place that outlines the policies and rules of the company. It also has communication policy for shareholders, securities dealing policies and a code of conduct. These policies certify that individuals related to Woolworths obey the law. The large business of Woolworths Australia is made possible because of the Australia-New Zealand Closer Economic Relations Trade Agreement (Devin & Richards, 2016). The steadiness in politics brought about this agreement assists the business operations of Woolworths.

The culture of society and the methods of doing things affect the culture of a company in an environment. Collective attitudes and principles of the population play an important part in how the management at Woolworths Limited understands the consumers of a particular market and how they plan the message of marketing for customers of Staples and food retailing industry (Scherer, Rasche, Palazzo & Spicer, 2016). The social factors which leadership of Woolworths must analyze include attitudes, nature of society and spirit of entrepreneur, culture and level of education in the business of Woolworths Limited, power, hierarchy and class structure in the culture, skill level and demographics of the population (Dutta, Lawson & Marcinko, 2016). The customers consider purchasing products from a company prominent in corporate social responsibility practices. The factors mentioned above are outside the control of the organization but affect the way in which the Woolworths functions and take decisions.


The paper helped in critically analyzing the roles and functions of the Woolworths managers. It discussed the organizational theory that is followed by the company. It has been observed that the company follows the bureaucratic theory within its organization. The organization developed relevant strategies to address the risks and challenges of the company's changing environment. It critically examined the ethics and ethical practice followed by the company's managers within its business. It discussed the roles and legitimacy of the management function and how it is impacted by the politics and social environment. Therefore, the paper evaluated the performance and behavior of the managers within the organization.

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