Leadership Case Study New technologies and world globalisation restructure the hospitality industry to provide higher standards. According to International Hotel and Restaurant Association?s White Paper Paris 2000, the industry is entering the ?age of excellence? that is expected occurring after 2005. In that age, a new vision has been created by focusing on gaining more value for stakeholders including employees, customers and shareholders. Knowledge and competencies will become parameter of thriving leadership performance. Obtaining higher responsibilities is not relying on how long a person works in an establishment, but how he retains excellent performances within. Organisational hierarchy is flattering as multiskilling takes place in the industry. Establishing an innovative vision is aimed to create a best practice organisation. The best practice can reduce staff turnover, which is extremely high in the hospitality industry. It also increases job satisfaction, quality assurance, customer service and reduces absenteeism. This paper portrays leadership analysis and recommendations based on workplace relationships in Baudin?s Restaurant.
The analysis will fundamentally investigate the role of Self Directed Work Teams, Performance Management, Management by Objectives, and the most appropriate leadership styles and theories. Recommendations are provided to improve leaders? performance as the best practice for achieving the vision.
Baudin?s Restaurant is a Food and Beverage outlet of Novotel Darling Harbour Sydney. The outlet employs a Restaurant Manager, an Assistant Manager, two supervisors, and twenty casual staff. There are many problems within the outlet, which are caused by poor leadership. Lack of information and empowerment are two major issues in the organization. Hiring too many casual staff is potentially reduced staff performance and morale. Employees do not implement their knowledge and skills to meet the organisation standard. Those problems arise as most of staff members do not recognize and understand what the vision of the workplace is.
Leaders in Baudin?s Restaurant are inflexible as they mostly use a discipline hierarchy than self directed work teams. The managers and supervisors have absolute control and power of information, decision making and one-way communication. The staff members have to be supervised because the leaders always consider that they are not competent and lack of intelligent. Working on a team is a difficulty in Baudin?s Restaurant as the organisational culture has promoted independence, self-sufficiency and competitiveness. Accordingly, the outlet needs a fresh perspective and new skills to make collaboration work. It would be appropriate if the restaurant start forming self-directive work teams to develop collaborative thinking and key skills to be more effective.
In self-directive work teams there are lines of communication between all team members. It does not have a single leader within the team, but all team members share the authority. The team manages every aspect of its activity, including day to day operations and long term goals. Leader will have little interaction with the team to act as a coach and a champion for the team. The leader also acts to acquire corporate resources needed by the team. Subsequently, team members exercise the organisation?s vision to develop their purpose, which must be important and beneficial to the company. It might include problem solving, increasing sales and staff productivity, training programs and restaurant?s standard. The members must agree on the rules and deadlines for accomplishing their purpose. When problems arise, all team members have to work together to provide a solution. The organisation must have a clear vision to empower the team to take actions and train the members with appropriate skills and knowledge to accomplish their purpose. Having a self directed work team in Baudin?s Restaurant can facilitate them to complete complex tasks at faster rates and higher quality. As the results, decisions are improved and its implementation is faster and more effective.
Performance management is another significant concern that any organization must implement and pay more focus on. Employees are one of the key factors in order to run a successful business. Five key elements are necessary in order to create an effective performance management plan, which are planning, monitoring, developing, rating and rewarding. These factors have a strong link in conducting leadership roles in the organisation. Relating performance management to the case on Baudin?s Restaurant is an issue that must be emphasized. Each key element will be analysed in order to have a better understanding of the restaurant?s performance management issues. Baudin?s Restaurant needs more planning in their organisation, which means setting performance expectations and goals for the team and its members. It is aimed to channel their efforts toward achieving organisational objectives. Getting employees involved in the planning process will facilitate them understand the goals of the establishment including what needs to be done, why it needs to be done, and how well it should be done. Currently, most of its employees do not have right thoughts of the restaurant?s goals and how it must be conquered. Some new staff have not got orientation for months, thus, they seem blind folded without knowing the organisation?s vision and mission. In order to help their staff, Baudin?s leaders must set a well established plan, comprehensible elements and standards of the performance management plan. The performance elements and standards should be simple, measurable, achievable, reliable and time-bound.
Secondly, supervisors and managers of the restaurant do not monitor employees in certain time. Therefore, often the managers direct a staff member two or more tasks at once, when another member does not get any task to be done. The outlet?s leaders should conduct a continuous monitoring process. Monitoring is important to the restaurant because consistently measuring performance and providing ongoing feedback to employees. The feedback could assist staff on progressing toward reaching the goals that also will enhance employee?s motivation and performance. Ongoing monitoring provides the opportunity to check how well employees are meeting predetermined standards and to make changes to unrealistic or problematic standards. Having many casual staff is another essential Especially in Baudin?s restaurant because employees come and go which is very important to provide enough training.
Thirdly, development of employees, developing in this instance means increasing the capacity to perform through training, giving assignments that introduce new skills or higher levels of responsibility, improving work processes. Providing employees with appropriate training is essential in order to provide guests with better service and keeping standards consistent. Baudin?s Restaurant desires to treat each customer equally and with highest standards of hospitality. Thus, appropriate training programs and constructive performance appraisals are extremely needed. Some of Baudin?s managerial staff are not consistent and have different standards, especially when approaching problems. Each leader has their own style, but they do not apply the best practice of leading. For example, the restaurant manager directs all waiters to charge additional amount for more than two children, while the assistant manager does not. They would not give appropriate answer when the staff asks for clarification. Therefore, employees always work differently depending on who they are working with. The outlet should have one standard way of managing all steps in running the restaurant. Providing employees with training and developmental opportunities encourages good performance, strengthens job-related skills and competencies, and helps employees keep up with changes in the workplace, such as the introduction of new technology. A main problem with Baudin?s Restaurant is future job promoting. Promotions are only given to employees who have stayed and worked the longest. It does not matter how good your work performance is, if you have not stayed with the establishment for a long period you do not qualify for the promotion. Promotions should not be given to employees with a system like this. Promotions should be given to employees who are capable and willing to perform. There should have equal opportunity with in the organization.
Fourthly, Rating and appraisals are ways so that employees know what to expect and know what they are capable of doing. In Baudin?s restaurant, there is a standard where an appraisal is given to employees of the first three months of work but not all get appraised. This shows the management of the restaurant is not good and promising. The restaurant manager should find enough time to appraise the employees so that the organization knows who their best performers are.
Lastly, rewarding is the final phase of performance management planning. Rewarding usually comes with hard work and good performance employees. In Baudin?s restaurant an employee is always chosen each month as the employee of the month. Having such a reward increases staff moral and motivation in result, better performance. Employee of the month is based on the performance and hard work of the individual but in Baudin?s case this does not always happen. Sometimes favouritism is the cause factor which destroys the system. An employee who does not deserve the reward might receive it but it causes a lot of jealousy and gossip with in the organization.
Performance management planning is important in any organisation especially in Baudin?s Restaurant. The restaurant is not at the moment managing extremely well and up to standard. Some of the problems stated can be fixed and changed in order for the restaurant employees to be satisfied and willing to achieve excellence and highest quality of service.
Baudin?s Restaurant still use traditional objectives setting, which does not show any success. Objective setting apply top-down approach that is supported by highly using of discipline hierarchical structure. The restaurant manager receives an objective from top management, which is then supplied and interpreted on his own. The objective is then passed down to lower subordinates and line staff members. This setting is not a successful way of leadership because one objective can be very ambiguous and have to be turned into specific. Consequently, the objective loses clarity and unity as it has been filter down through the organisation. Lack of communication between managers and employees lead to poor understanding of company?s objectives. When the Baudin?s manager tells his assistant to improve quality assurance, the assistant has thought of higher productivity of each team members. Since the objective is passed to supervisors and line staff, it is then changed as task oriented. The traditional method reduces staff performance and motivation because they do not realise the actual objectives that are trying to achieve. The employees do not feel the restaurant and its managerial staff consider of each individual goals. Thus, Baudin?s Restaurant should change their method of objective setting into management by objective.
Management by objectives setting use both bottom up and top down approach, which encourage employees? involvement from any level to set the organisational goal. Aligning personal goals with the organisation goals will then motivate staff members for excellent performance. It is enormously suitable for Baudin?s restaurant because it empowers each employee to see the ?big picture?. Then, the restaurant leaders have to measure, evaluate and monitor the objectives implementation in ongoing basis. Management by objectives will create the performance feedback process easier as it comes from all levels. It also helps leaders to identify employees? contributions, in particular, Baudin?s Restaurant hire many casual staff. This method is intended to reduce staff turnover and increase quality of service.
Each managerial staff in the outlet has their own leadership style, but they do not apply the best style to suit the team?s needs. The restaurant managers and supervisors implement autocratic style because they always establish leadership roles at all times. Employees have to perform every task given following how they want it to be done. They do not involve their staff in decision making and barely give them opportunity to ask questions. Sometimes the leaders are showing more authority than persuading personal empowerment. For example, the assistant manager asked a staff member who was polishing cutlery to vacuum the restaurant at once. Before she finished vacuuming, the assistant manager gave her another task to reset the waiter?s stations immediately. Therefore, two tasks were not done completely that also caused confusion and reduced staff performance. If the staff member questioned whether she has to finish polishing before starting vacuuming, the manager would say to always follow his direction. He actually seems unconfident with his position even though he has been working for years in the restaurant.
Baudin?s Restaurant is recommended to be more aware and improve their leadership style. Heron?s alternative approach on facilitating group would be the most suitable leadership style for the outlet. He suggests that leaders could move from autocratic to democratic, then laissez-faire. Since the restaurant employs many casual staff, the leaders have to train them following the organisation standard. All managerial members in the restaurant may act in autocratic ways, but still consider employees? prior knowledge and experience. Then, the leaders move into democratic style that allows staff members to involve in decision making. It is followed with laissez-faire style, when the staff members have a high commitment to the organisation and high level of competencies. It lets the leaders to move approach as what they need in different situations. Tannenbaum and Schmidt?s behavioural approach of continuum of leadership style supports Heron?s alternative one. It implies leaders to move towards from telling, selling, consulting, and sharing to delegating. Another supportive approach is Hersey and Blanchard?s situational leadership, which is essentially comparable. In addition, this theory recognises two key elements of leadership that are task behaviour and relationship one. The last theory can help to enhance the organisational relationship, because Baudin?s managers more focus on the upper part of Iceberg culture. In fact, the lower part of Iceberg still many things happen in order to get the job done.
Adair?s functional leadership approach is another significant theory that is appropriate to implement in Baudin?s Restaurant. The managerial staff should combine three main needs to satisfy all stakeholders. Task needs, team needs and individual needs must give similar proportion of attentions. The leadership process will be more successful if leaders ensure in accomplishing the task, structuring the team and individual work satisfaction. Implementing this leadership approach can assist them to determine the best practice of leadership style.
Baudin?s Restaurant should put all of those appropriate leadership styles into practice to accomplish the ?age of excellence? vision. Therefore, the outlet could create a best practice organisation. New standards are being specifically continued to accomplish various levels of acceptance. Baudin?s restaurant employees and managerial staff importantly should be consistent, on the go and professional. They all should be trained with the appropriate skills needed to accomplish and tackle problems which may come in future. In the age of excellence, leadership is a key factor that will lead the organisation into successful performance.