Fundamentals of Management
Referential answers for assignments
2. What are the four general skills and the six specific skills that affect managerial
The four general skills are conceptual, interpersonal, technical, and political.
The six specific skills are controlling the organization’s environment and its
resources, organizing and coordinating, handling information, providing for
growth and development, motivating employees and handling conflicts, strategic
(Please refer to page 13 - 14)
4. How does a manager's job change with his/her level in the organization?
The differences are of degree and emphasis but not of activity.
Managers perform planning, organizing, leading, and controlling activities, but the
amount of time they give to each activity is not necessarily constant.
The content of the managerial activities changes with the manager's level.
(Please refer to page 10)
1. Are all effective organizations also efficient? Discuss. If you had to choose
between being effective or being efficient, which one would you say is more
The meaning of efficiency, effectiveness, and the relationship between them.
Justify your choice based on meaning of these basic concepts.
(Please refer to page 6 - 7)
2. Under what circumstances are short-term plans preferred? Under what
circumstances are specific plans preferred?
Provide basic definition and applicability of them.
Short-term plans (length of future commitments and the degree of variability).
Specific plans (clarity and predictability).
(Please refer to page 80 - 81)
5. What is a SWOT analysis?
Analysis of an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats in
order to identify a strategic niche that the organization can exploit.
(Please refer to page 89)
4. "The primary means of sustaining a competitive advantage is to adjust faster to
the environment than your competitors do." Do you agree or disagree with the
statement? Explain your position.
Some other factors contribute to the company advantage apart from withstanding
both the actions of competitors and the environmental changes. The management
has built the company their own.
(Please refer to page 91 - 92)
3. What is a satisficing decision? How does it differ from a maximizing decision?
The concept of satisficing decision and maximizing decision.
They are based on different decision making process models (perfect rationality
and bounded rationality)
(Please refer to page 106 and 108 - 110)
4. How do creativity, certainty, risk, and uncertainty affect individuals when they
make a decision?
Creativity’s most obvious value is in helping the decision maker identify all viable
alternatives; individuals can make an accurate or best decision under a condition
of certainty; under a condition of risk or uncertainty, they can only make a
(Please refer to page 106)
4. “With more and more managers using computers, they’ll be able to make more
rational decisions.” Do you agree or disagree with the statement? Why?
You could agree or disagree. The point is how to support your opinion.
The concept of rational decision can be referred.
(Please refer to page 114 - 115)
2. How are authority and organization structure related? Authority and power?
The definition of authority and power.
Authority is part of the larger concept of power.
Authority is a two-dimensional concept, while power is a three-dimensional
(Please refer to page 139 and 141 - 143)
3. In what ways can management departmentalize? When should one method be
considered over the others?
Five ways to departmentalize: function, product, customer, geography, or process.
The method or methods used should reflect the grouping that would best
contribute to the attainment of the organization’s objectives and the goals of
(Please refer to page 144 - 145)
3. Show how both the functional and matrix structures might create conflict within
The drawbacks of functional and matrix structures.
(Please refer to page 149 - 152)
3. How does HRM affect all managers?
(Please refer to page 162)
4. What is the relationship between selection, recruitment, and job analysis?
The information from job analysis is the basis for recruitment and selection.
The purpose of these three steps is to identify and select competent employees.
(Please refer to page 166 - 167)
4. Why should managers be concerned with diversity in the workplace? What
special HRM issues does diversity raise?
The environment changes. The organizational reality.
Workforce diversity will affect such basic HRM concerns as recruitment, selection
(Please refer to page 179 - 180 and Chapter 2)
2. Contrast lower-order and higher-order needs in Maslow's needs hierarchy.
Lower-order needs include physiological needs and safety needs, they must be
satisfied if the individual is to be healthy and secure.
Higher-order needs include social needs, esteem needs and self-actualization needs,
they are related to the development and achievement of one’s potential.
(Please refer to page 265)
4. What are some of the possible consequences of employee’s perceiving an inequity
between their inputs and outcomes and those of others?
(1) distort either their own or others’ inputs or outcomes; (2) behave so as to
induce others to change their inputs or outcomes; (3) behave so as to change their
own inputs or outcomes; (4) choose a different comparison referent; (5) quit their
(Please refer to page 271)
2. If you accept Theory Y assumptions, how would you be likely to motivate
The assumptions of theory Y.
Participation in decision making, responsible and challenging jobs, good group
(Please refer to page 266)
1. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the trait theory of leadership.
The trait theory of leadership is very easy to understand. But it ignores some more
important factors such as situational factors to identify effective leadership.
(Please refer to page 291)
3. How is a least-preferred coworker determined? What is the importance of one’s
LPC for the Fiedler theory of leadership?
The least-preferred coworker (LPC) questionnaire is to measure the leader’s
behavioral orientation — either task oriented or relationship oriented.
Based on the leader’s style determined by LPC, the organization can change
situation to match it in order to attain desirable leadership performance.
(Please refer to page 296 - 297)
5. When might leaders be irrelevant?
Certain individual, job, and organizational variables can act as “substitutes for
(Please refer to page 309)
2. Why are effective interpersonal skills so important to a manager’s success?
(Please refer to page 328)
4. What is conflict? Should some conflict be encouraged?
The definition of conflict and fictional conflict.
(Please refer to page 334 - 335)
1. "Ineffective communication is the fault of the sender." Do you agree or disagree
with this statement? Support your position.
Relevant thesis: communication is a process, many factors will affect the
effectiveness of communication.
(Please refer to page 318 - 319 and 321 - 324)
3. Contrast immediate and basic corrective action.
The concept of immediate and basic corrective action
(Please refer to page 353)
4. What are the advantages and disadvantages of feedforward control
Concept of feedforward control.
Advantage: Prevent anticipated problems.
Disadvantage: difficulty in obtaining information.
(Please refer to page 354 - 355)
1. How are planning and control linked? Is the control function linked to the
organizing and leading functions of management? Explain
From the view of control process: standards of performance, objective setting.
The management activities are interrelated and interdependent.
(Please refer to page 349 and 7)
Please pay attention: these are only key points for each question; any detailed
information and individual understandings to all questions will be required.