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Roles and Characteristics of Leader and Manager: M&S

University: Mont Rose College

  • Unit No: 8
  • Level: Undergraduate/College
  • Pages: 18 / Words 4439
  • Paper Type: Assignment
  • Course Code: D/508/0488
  • Downloads: 808
Organization Selected : M&S


In today's business scenario of immense competition management an operation forms the key competency for a firm to attain growth and sustainability. Management forms foremost function of a firm which can be describes as the ability of getting work done through people by coordinating their efforts towards one objective and to attain it with proper focus within deadlines. Operation function is related and specific towards managing whole process of conversion of raw material into the end finished goods and to handle any issues or problems that relates to a product design and its production. M&S is an international brand dealing in clothing, home products, food products etc. It was establishes in 1884 and with its headquarters in London, UK (Botton, Cavalletto, and Marmeggi, 2013). The assignment will explain about the contrasting and complementing functions and roles of leaders and mangers along with implication of them in reference to the organisation. It will also explain the application of operation management and various factors impacting business environment.


P1 Define and compare the different roles and characteristics of a leader and a manager

M&S is one of the top and biggest brand in retail industry and specialises in its clothing range, luxury food products, cosmetics, furnitures, home products etc. It has business operations running in more than 30 nations which company manages with its proficient team of more than 84939 employees and 2000 suppliers across the world. Its has around 1035 stores which generates a revenue of 9.60 billion pounds every year for the company.

M&S applies and follow a flat organizational structure which implies limited levels in hierarchy of operations i.e. between top management and their front line employees. M&S in recent time has also introduced new committee of four executive’s directors that are responsible for company's four major divisions comprising food, women wear, beauty and cosmetics and international operations and for successful commencement of their day to day operations (Expósito and et. al., 2016).

Manager: A manager is a person who is responsible for combining efforts of all its work force guiding them to achieve organization's pre set objectives. Manger is also accountable to undertaken various functions initiating from planning process to its execution and controlling.

Leader: A leader is an individual who is having ability to influence its followers by motivating them to work with best of their efforts for successfully completing their assigned task.

Role of manager

Informational Role: M&S mangers is responsible for analysing all the information related to firm's micro and macro environment and to handle and communicate it to all its stakeholders comprising its employees, shareholders etc.

Interpersonal role: It forms one of the most important role of managers of M&S where in they coordinate the efforts of their workforce by guiding them in right direction essential to attain firms objectives. He is to act as a figurehead by taking various decisions in response to market dynamics to maintain and enhance growth of firm (Eyal and Haim, Clarizen Ltd., 2014).

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Characteristic of managers

Knowledgable: One of the main and essential characteristics for a manger of M&S is to be well versed with all the knowledge related to his field of operations so that he can make necessary tactics for achieving strategies formulated by top management , can handle the issues arising in business or to be proactive in making relevant changes in company's strategies in reference to changing occurring in its market.

Team building : Another important characteristics of M&S mangers for which they are known is their team building quality. Mangers encourages its team by providing them opportunity to interact with each other, addressing their issues and recognizing their good work and efforts.

Role of Leadership

  • As a role of Motivator: The most prior and prominent role of a leader in M&S is to motivate its team mates for efficiently completing their assigned job by putting their best efforts and dedication towards it. For fulfilling this role a leader asses the personal aspirations and objectives of its employees, induce them with necessary skills and knowledge through proper training and development and align firms goals with their personal aims. This motivates employees to work with full dedication and enthusiasm to attain those assigned objectives.
  • Change Agent: Another major role of a leader is to act as a change agent for the organization. A leader is responsible for formulating and implementing the policies , procedures and guidelines that are formulated by the management into operations of the business and also to monitor ad ensure that all instructions are been followed by every employee.

Characteristics of a Leader

  • Inspirational: One of the most important characteristics of a leader is to be capable of inspiring others to have faith in its vision and to encourage them to attain that. The leaders in M&S motivates its team members by guiding them to take best course of action for efficiently complementing their tasks and provide them with proper tools and techniques that are requisite for converting present things s into something distinctive.
  • Collaborative: Leader in M&S pays immense attention in maintaining good relations, collaboration and mutual trust with their employees They by applying various motivational theories tries to encourage them to work with full enthusiasm for attaining their objectives. Through various approached of leadership, they try to get connected with their employees so as to make them comfortable to share their issues, views and ideas (Handschin and Petroianu, 2012).

Difference between leaders and managers:





  • Managers focuses on measuring and attaining the goals and objectives that are formulated by top management
  • Leaders inspires and engage its team members to work together working autonomously for attaining organizational objectives


  • Managers works towards minimizing risk as much as possible and seek to avoid ant problem by being proactive in formulating alternate course of actions.
  • Leaders are the risk takers who innovates new things and encourages its team mates to big challenges.


  • Mangers are responsible for undertaking basic business functions comprising planning, organizing,staffing and controlling all activities that are undertaken by its various division.
  • Leaders by applying various motivational theory is responsible for motivating its workforce to execute tasks assigned to them with best possible way.


  • Mangers majorly focuses on organizational structures, systems to ensure to get the desired outcomes
  • Leaders focuses on people and spend time with them to build up their trust and loyalty by motivating them to achieve their personal as well as professional goals .


  • Managers assigns duties and tasks and direct people to accomplish goals
  • Leaders guide employees by showing them the best methods to complete their assigned job with proficiency and efficiency.


P2 Role of leader and function of manager in various situational context

For a well planned organizational structure and successful commencements of various business activities it is essential for a firm to have a perfect sync between the working style of its mangers and leaders. Management is all about controlling business operations, forecasting future complexities and formulating probable course of actions whereas leadership is about influencing behavior of employees by analyzing their needs, motivating and showing them the right path for successfully attaining their personal and professional objectives (White, 2016). Although there is contrast in the functionality of both leaders and mangers however they both compliment each others as they have common visions, missions and objectives to achieve for the firm. In M&S managers and lea

SITUATION: M&S being a international brand having good company portfolio requires to maintain and enhance its position in the dynamic business environment full of uncertainties in which it deals. For this, firm maintains a proficient team of manger ad leaders who keeps on formulating new and distinctive strategies and programs by scanning its market environment. This assist organizational to efficiently mange any adverse situation in most desirable and effective way thereby reducing effect of threats. Role of leader and functions of mangers in different situations are mentioned below:

Providing proper training and development: Leaders of M&S together with mangers works towards building a professional team for the firm. Leaders by identifying professional requirements and personal needs finds out areas of improvement in an employee. Mangers of M&S by reviewing training requirements of employees designs and conducts most appropriate training and development programs for its new as well as existing workforce in order to improve and enhance their knowledge, skills and capabilities. Managers and leaders work together to motivates their staff to be confident in taking bigger challenges and make them proficient for carrying out their present and future job responsibilities (Johnstone, 2016).

Upgrading firm's technology : M&S to maintain its lead over its competitions keeps a close watch on new emerging technologies and other business related up gradations that are introduced in its market environment. Thus, it time to time adopt new technologies into its production, design and various other functions. Leaders in this situation acts a change agent and communicate benefits associated with these changes and encourages them to absorb them and to adhere by them to contribute in organization's success. Thus they assists management in effectively applying these new modification without encountering any resistance from its employees.

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P3 Theories and several approaches of leadership

M&S implements various leadership theories and approaches that assists mangers and leaders to maintain discipline among its employees and to motivate them by providing proper line of guidance and support for doing a particular task in most appropriate manner. M&S key competency lies in its qualified and professional team of leaders that through their capabilities apply various approaches and theories according to contingencies and situations that prevails in it current market environment (Liu, Yin and Fu, 2011). Leaders in M&S before applying nay theory systematically plans out its execution. For this, they first evaluate a situation and then implement most suitable theory or approach that can give maximum outcome in that specific circumstances. Mentioned below are certain leadership theories and approaches that are applied by M&S:

Situational Leadership : This approach of leadership implies that there is no perfect way or leadership style that could be be implemented by a leader in every given situation and it totally depends upon the capabilities, knowledge and efficiency of a leader alter or change its leadership style according to an individual or group he is dealing with. Therefore , M&S leaders by applying this approach self alter and self adjust their course of actions in relation to the intellectual level and development level of its employees. Thus, leaders by analyzing existing skills, capabilities and intellectual level of its team members guide and give directions that are easy for them to understand and follow. Apart form this , leader in M&S carries out various other functions like guiding, motivating,mentoring, delegating and coaching.

Participative Leadership Style: In this leadership style leaders encourages its team members to take initiative and participate in decision making process by sharing their innovative ideas, opinion, suggestion on a particular business related subject matter. However the final authority to take a decision remain reserved with the leader only. Leaders in M&S follows this leadership style to encourage its suppliers to own agenda, to understand audits and set compliance. By collaborating with its key suppliers company provides them training for handling latest technology like online business operations and guides them by providing them with advice, case studies and toolkit on implying practical changes within factories and farms.

Consultative Leadership Style: M&S follows consultative style where in mangers /leaders before taking and implementing any major decision discuss it with its employees. In this, the mangers/leader organizes a group meeting to know their view point, opinion of employees and encourage them to give their suggestions for improvement. The right to take final decision remains with the manger/leader only. This style is ask oriented where the manger/leader adopts right channel to consults its employees and other people (Mendis, Muttaqi and Perera, 2014) . This leadership style helps M&S to develop loyalty and improve level of dedication in its workforce as they feel associated and belonged with the firm which develops their trust towards the enterprise.

Therefore Mark & Spencer follows these styles and approaches to successfully induce its employees to work with zeal, enthusiasm and coordination to achieve their objectives as per set standards within specific time frame. However company occasionally switch to implement a mix of various leadership style. For instance, besides consultative and participative styles firm also adopt Democratic leadership style depending upon a particular market situation.

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P4 Key approaches to operation management and role which leaders and managers play.

M&S is a British multinational retail chain in UK that offers a variety of stylish, branded clothing apparels with high quality. The other product line of company includes food, home appliance, furniture, beauty products and other luxury products. Company have an team of around 2000 suppliers that forms the key components of its efficient operational management. M&S key competency lies in its strong and dedicated supply chain management that assist in curbing out its cost and expenditure incurred by eradicating waste in terms of product, process and techniques. M&S operational management comprises handling three supply chains i.e. lean ,agile and hybrid. This efficient management benefits company by efficiently delivering quality products to its end consumer within specif time period by reducing lead time taken in the process, by designing and implementing innovative tools and techniques that helps in enhancing productivity and performance of its operational management unit. Mentioned below are certain approaches that are followed by operational management department of M&S :

Total Quality Management: It is a continuous procedure of detecting and reducing errors or defects in its production, streamlining its supply chain management, enhancing its consumers experience and making sure that employees are well trained. It aims at making all parties that are involved in the process of production accountable for the overall quality of the finished product or service. M&S by applying approach aims at maintaining and enhancing quality of its goods and services. For this company concentrates on reducing and eliminating defects and errors in its manufactured products or services that are been delivered by regularly monitoring each and every phase of its product development cycle. M&S being an international brand concentrates specifically in maintaining its brand quality in every product that it manufactures. For avoid lacking behind from its competitors company on regular intervals revises its technology that is been used, process that are been manufactured besides timely organizing training and development programs for its employees to maintain their competencies and proficiency. This helps company to maintain its market position and fulfill its customer expectations by giving them top quality products (Moghaddam, Seifi and Niknam, 2012).

Lean Production: Lean production is a process for minimizing or reducing waste from the manufacturing without sacrificing productivity of the particular procedure. It involves various methods to eliminate any wastage of resources initiating from designing phase to production, distribution and all the other associated processes. M&S utilizes this method for eradicatiing waste which can be explained as anything that does not add on or enhances values of company' output being it material, process or worker.

Role of Manger

  • One of the most important and critical role of manger of m&S is to efficiently allocate resources to different divisions of an organization. A manger by evaluating the requirements of each department distributes the limitedly available resources making sure that they are utilized to the maximum level for generating higher returns (Strande and Brdjanovic, 2014).
  • Another major role played by managers of M&S is that they are responsible for fixing the deadlines of tasks, to sanction budget for a particular project and to make sure that they are accomplished as per the pre determined quality standards for giving higher returns.
  • M&S mangers are also expected to play another significant role of being figurehead in fulfilling various duties comprising attending several corporate functions and ceremonies on behalf of its team members, to welcome official dignitaries etc.

Role of Leader

  • The most important and foremost role of leader in M&S is to set up a vision for its team and to communicate it to its entire workforce to encourage them to attain it with beast of their abilities .
  • M&S Leaders also plays a major role in developing job satisfaction among its workforce. It is as they identifies the personal and professional need and aspirations of its team members and provide them with necessary training to develop their knowledge, skills and abilities. This helps in building up their confidence to take higher challenges to proficiently carry put their present as well as future job responsibilities.
  • Leaders of M&S also plays other roles like to maintain discipline among employees, to encourage and inspire them , the role of liaison etc.


P5 Value and importance of operational management in achieving business objectives

Operations management is an effective area of management which is concern with controlling and designing the production process and redesigning operations of business in the production of services and goods (Moghaddam and et. al., 2011). It is concerned with exchanging labour and materials into services and products as efficiently as possible in order to increase profitability of enterprise. Operational management in the M&S benefited to them to maximise their performance and profitability within predetermined period of time. There are different importance of operational management which are explained as below:

Reduce the cost of service and products: Operational management is more essential and significant part for the M&S to reduce their product ad service cost. It benefited to the organisation to accomplish long term goals and objectives as well as gain competitive advantages within predetermined period of time. It will also support them to attract large number of customers by providing quality in its product and services.

Maximise Revenue through increased customer satisfaction: Operational management also support the M&S to maximise their revenues and turnover by providing better quality in its services and goods. It help the organisation to satisfy basic needs and wants of the customers and achieve better outcomes easily.

Reduce Needs of investment: By maximising the effective capacity of the operations or transaction and by being innovative in how it apply its physical resources. Further it support them to increase their development and growth within predetermined period of time. Thus operational management is useful and essential for the success of organisation at global level.

Improving quality standards: Administrator of Mark and Spencer by using different tools including like lean management and total quality management that decrease all unwanted process, characteristic of a goods etc. that outputs in reducing its production cost and improvement in the product quality. This directly assist an organisation in maximising its customers base by gathering their necessity of affordable goods.

Gives innovation by building a strong base of knowledge and operation: Operational management is essential and significant for the business because it give innovation in building strong base of operation and knowledge. With the help of this concept M&S easily expand their business operation and activities at different level. Such operation management is significant for the development and progress of company and benefited them to achieve their long term objectives and gaols in given time period (Mohammadi and et. al., 2013).

Cooperation among departments: Operation management of Mark and Spencer ensures a smooth and an effective communication among its different departments and employees. This support an enterprise in maximising the productivity and efficiency level in its entire operations and activities thereby leading to punctual accomplishment of its preset objectives and targets.

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P6 Factors which impact upon operational management and decision-making

There are mainly two types of factor such as internal and external that highly effects on decision-making and operational management in a direct or indirect way. Both factors are determined as below:

Internal factor: It is more essential and valuable factor which impacts on the operation management and decision making process of M&S. This factor includes some aspects which are shown as under:

Employees: It is an individual who has different roles and responsibility to maximise profitability and productivity of company by providing quality in its product and services. This factor highly effects on the decision-making while recruiting and selecting knowledgeable people.

Customers: It is another important factor in the each and every organisation because entire growth and success of the company at marketplace is highly depend on them. This factor effect on the business sales and profit which is the main part of operational management. In order to satisfy basic needs and wants of the customers, company provide better quality in its services and products at affordable price (Nakamura and et. al., 2015). Thus, it benefited to the company to maximise their growth and success at international and global marketplace.

Suppliers: Main role and responsibility of this internal factor is to giving raw material to the company. With the help of this they can make their goods and services is more effective and essential way. It will also impacts on the decision-making of company while choosing effective process to provide goods to the end user.

External factor: It is another main factor which impacts on the operational management as well as decision-making process of an organisation in direct way. Such factors cover PEST analysis which are explained as under:

Political: Mark and Spencer has been preferred via EC's free trade statements and have led to reduced sourcing costs. Higher structure of cost has main disadvantages for the company in global marketplace. Thus it highly influence on the decision-making process and operational management of the organisation in direct manner. Some rules and regulation which are framed by the government impacted on the entire performance and sales of business (Ruiz-Alvarez and et. al., 2012).

Economical: Mark and Spencer impacted by competitors discounted pricing strategy. Business entity mainly emphasis on better quality which can lead to minimum loss and audience were attracted to product quality with value. Thus, it will also effects on the business growth and development in a direct manner.

Social: Modification over from baby boomers and many other products into the X generation and millennial needs changing scheme in order to cater for the unique class. Such product are now generally retired and no large the prime circumstance. Interest in the green and organic produce need reconsideration with brands to push. Therefore it highly influence upon the operational management while providing effective goods for the welfare and development of company within predetermined time duration.

Technological: It is another main factor which is highly depend on the digital technology that effect on the business performance and productivity. In M&S, there are different number of workforce in which some are knowledgeable and some are uneducated that influenced on the productivity and performance of the organisation. Further, it also effected on the operational management while providing training program to the unknowledgeable workforce. Therefore it effected on the decision of the manager about selecting best method of training (Shuxin, 2011).

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The project undertaken concludes that both managers and leaders plays significant role in the success of the firm. They adopt various approaches and theories in order to motivate their employees so that they can work in cooperation with zeal towards accomplishing the set objectives. Also operational management forms an integral part in attaining long as well as short term objects of a company within specific time frame. There are various roles and functions that are carried out by the leaders and managers of M&S that add ons to company's effective management in fulfilling its customers requirements. Further, there are several internal as well as external factors that have a major impact on the sustainability and performance of M&S.

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