Decision making is a process of specifying the nature of a particular problem or opportunity and selecting between available alternatives to solve a problem or capture an opportunity. Decision making has two aspects; the act and the process. The act involves choosing between alternatives. The processes consists of formulating, identification of the problem or opportunity and acquiring relevant information and the solution being the desired course of action.
Objectives are end states or targets that an organisation's managers aim for. Plans are the means by which managers hope to reach the desired state. Planning is a decision making process that focuses on the future of an organisation andhow it will achieve its goals. Strategic plans focus on the broad future of the organisation and incorporate both external environmental demands and internal resources into managers' actions. They are typically 3-5 years in scale, and the most complex with high levels of interdependence.
Organisational structure is the sum of ways an organisation divides its labour into distinct tasks and coordinates them. Organisational design is the process of assessing the organisation's strategy and environmental demands and then determining the appropriate organisational structures. Organisational charts illustrate relationships between units and lines of authority between supervisors and subordinates. Differentiation is the extent to which tasks are divided into subtasks and performed by individuals with specialised skills.
Fundamentally, the objective of strategic management is to determine, create and maintain competitive advantage, the ability to win consistently in the long-term in a competitive situation. Competitive advantage is created through the achievement of five qualities; superiority, imitability, durability, non-substitutability and appropriability [ugh].
Managerial ethics is the study of morality and standards in business conduct. Corporate social responsibility is the obligations that corporations owe to their constituencies such as shareholders, employees, customers and citizens at large. Ethical dilemmas involve making a choice between two competing but valid options which both choices resulting in undesired outcomes. Ethical lapses are decisions contrary to an individual's stated beliefs and policies of the company.
Culture is defined in this course as a learned set of assumption, values and behaviours that have been accepted as successful enough to be passed to newcomers. Cultural differences may be extremely significant; for example, when asked whether managers must have at hand precise questions asked by subordinated, 73% of Indonesian and 78% of Japanese managers answered yes, whereas only 10% of Swedish and 18% of US managers did so. Cultural differences are significant in Australia; 43% of the population were either born overseas or have an overseas born parent.
The external environment consists of the forces and conditions outside of the organisation that could potentially influence its performance. The task environment consist of those forces that have a high potential for affecting the organisation on an immediate basis. The general environment consists of those forces which typically influence the organisation's external task environment and thus the organisation itself and the internal environment is key factors and forces inside the organisation that affect its operations.
The first evidence that change is a subject worthy of particular focus is how often it fails. Another factor is the rate of change (real or perceived) and the relative predictability. Finally the management competency for leading change.
The three most important management issues in a contemporary environment are change, technology and globalism. The four perspectives of management are the organisational context, the human factor, managing paradoxes and the entrepreneurial mind-set.
Responsibility accounting occurs when an entity is structured into strategic business units and the performance of these units is measured in terms of accounting results. Managers are then held accountable and rewarded on the basis of the results of their department. Assign responsibility; establish performance measures; evaluate performance; assign rewards. A cost centre is a business unit; it can be a function, activity or an item of equipment. When identified, a manager can be assigned responsibility for it.