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Management and Operations Assignment 

Activity 1: Relationship between Leadership and Management in M&S


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Business operations management (OM) is responsible for overseeing the generation of products and services in a corporation, according to Heizer(2016). Operational management (OM) is in charge of ensuring that the corporation’s services and products are produced without interruption. Operational management topics covered in this assignment include the differences between managers and leaders and the way their roles are implemented in different scenarios. There will be a discussion of several leadership and management theories as well as situational and contingency theories in this report.

It is impossible to overstate the relevance and effectiveness of operation management to succeed in today’s competitive business environment. The procedure is in association with the production management of the particular with the help of technology and finances. The goal of operation management is to maximise profit while minimising cost (Whiteand Flores, 1987). This particular report on business operations and management is focused on the analysis of Marks and Spencer (M&S), put in the context of different managerial and leadership theories and situations. It is a multinational retailer business for clothing items and has its outlets and stores around the world. M&Sis mainly concentrates on the fashion-concerned women with the taste and preferences of various clothing.

Part 1:Differentiation between Leader’s Role and a Manager’s Function

1.1 Different Roles and Characteristics of Leaders and Managers

1.1.1 Definition of Leaders and Managers

The process of social influence that enhances the performance efforts of other individuals to the maximum, to proceed towards achieving a goal is the focal point of leadership. In the arena of business operations, as per Adler and Laasch(2020), leadership is the capability of the management of an organisation for establishing and attaining challenging goals, making rapid decisions for actions if required, outperforming the market competition, as well as motivating others in performing the highest degree as possible. Some of the most important skills that a leader must own are self-development, strategic thinking and acting ability, ethical practice and civic-mindedness, innovation and team development etc.

On the other hand, management is the process of planning, decision making, organising, leading, motivating, and directing the human resources, financial, physical, and information resources of an organisation to achieve its goals efficiently and effectively (Bârg?u, 2015). Fundamentally, management consists of the four functions at the core of its process, such as planning, organising, staffing, directing, and controlling. These five functions are part of a larger set of practises and theories on being successful management professional. Managers within an organisation must have certain skills at a fundamental level, including decision-making skills, conceptual skills, technical skills, interpersonal and communication skills etc.

1.1.2 Differences between Leaders and Managers

Factors that Influence




Vision-centric approach

Goal-centric approach

Inspire to succeed and excel in career and life

Inspire to complete a particular project or task efficiently

Able to tackle the challenge for organisation-based development

Able to tackle the challenge for a team or unit-based development

Direct, consistent, frequent and tactful communication skill

Communication skills to ensure control of people and process




Influences sub-ordinates for the achievement of a certain goal

Manages an entire team or organisation

Sets direction

Plan details

Has followers

Has employees

Use transformational leadership style

Use transactional leadership style

Facilities decision

Takes decision

Promotes change

Reacts to change

Use conflict as an asset

Avoids conflict as much as possible

Aligns people

Organises people

Aims at development and growth of team-members

Aims at the accomplishment of the result

Do the right thing

Do the things right

Focus on individuals

Focus on procedure and process

(Source: Kotter, 2008; Szostakand Su?kowski, 2021; Bârg?u, 2015)

1.1.3 John Kotter’s Theory of Leadership and Management

A framework has been promoted by John Kotter to understand the key differences between management tasks and leadership behaviours. The author deliberately presented an argument that the functions of these two concepts are dissimilar from many aspects (Liphadzi, Aigbavboaand Thwala, 2017). Kotter has argued that leaders have the goals to promote change and fluidity within the organisation, while management attempts to the establishment of security and order. According to his proposal, the principal managerial function is driving consistency, and this, in turn, must lead to an organisation running efficiently (Kotter, 2008). Leaders, however, seek continued adoptive transformation to do the conversion to this. When individuals explain someone to be followed, the traits generally resonates with the leadership characteristics identified by Kotter. He describes leadership to be fundamental to establish direction and strategies, such as creating vision and generate excitement about the vision within the subordinates. On the other hand, Kotter described management to be a typical matter of focus on order and value. This concept can be explained to be a set of processes (Kotter, 2008). However, the author states that managers must have leadership traits as well while using their titles or power in getting employees to perform certain things, though it is more like controlling than motivating.

Part 2: Application of a Leader’s Role and a Manager’s Function in M&S

2.1 Leader’s Roles and Manager’s Functions in Different Situations of M&S

A European international retailer of clothing, M&S operates throughout the world, specifically in North America, Europe, and a few other developed countries, mostly in the United Kingdom (Mellahi, Jackson and Sparks, 2002). As one of the most successful organisations in the United Kingdom, the corporation has several professional managers and leaders to direct them. Management at M&S is in charge of developing corporate strategy and future goals for the company, while the leaders are in charge of putting those plans into action (Bisen and Srivastava, 2009). Organizational leaders in M&S work with employees to boost their productivity and direct their minds toward achieving the organisational goals defined by their managers in the organisation. Every time the context changes, as per Wilson(2016), the managers of this organisation update the performance requirements for the workers, and the leaders apply those instructions to bring forth the greatest results from the workforce. The company leaders have superior interpersonal communication strategies to influence managers’ policy decisions in a positive direction for their company and its employees.

An organization’s leader has a variety of responsibilities, whereas managers are responsible for a variety of tasks in the business functioning. Based on the opinions of Thorpe and Gold (2016), Chopra and Meindl(2016) andBowers, Hall and Srinivasan(2017), here are various situational contexts in which the role of leaders and managers are applied:

Planning: A pre-determined schedule for various situations of the designing of goals and objectives of the organisation is what planning refers to. M&S management body generate plans for goals and objectives for minimisation of the cost and maximisation of the revenue. The main responsibility of the leaders here is to bring the best performance out of them for communication with the workers and attain the pre-planned objectives with their best possible endeavour.

Organizing:Raw materials and resources need to be well organised to make the most of the resources available. This also lowers resource wastage and assures efficient utilisation of such resources. The responsibility of the leader is to organise the resources following the plan and to increase motivation to work efficiently to achieve the goals.

Directing:Managers and leaders have the most important responsibility of instructing their personnel in the appropriate order. It is entirely up to the leader to motivate his or her team in the direction that ensures the mission is completed properly and efficiently. Their primary goal is to encourage employees to attain their goals and objectives in a timely and efficient manner.

Staffing:M&S’s most valuable asset is its employees, according to the company’s leadership entities. It is up to the company’s leaders and managers to ensure that their employees are efficient and that they work together as a team to get the best outcome. Managers hire employees and assess their competence. Training and other advantages are provided to employees to help them be more productive.

Co-coordinating:In order to follow the plan, coordination is required. This ensures that units and functions work together to achieve the maximum outcome possible for the firm. Proper coordination assists the organisation in collaborating and communicating with departments and establishing their work link for benefit. M&S leaders assist in bringing the department together, while managers guarantee that the department is motivated to perform well.

Controlling:In addition to managing, managers are responsible for controlling their teams as well. Leaders and managers ought to regulate the circumstances and the personnel of the organisation to assure performance quality. As a result, planning and work are carried out properly.

2.2Theories and Models of Leadership and ManagementApproaches

2.2.1 Situational Leadership

Using this leadership technique, M&S can adapt to a variety of situations. The organization’s leaders evaluate the market conditions and make decisions based on the information gathered (Bosseet al, 2017). Because of this approach, M&S can find the finest solutions and meet the issues that arise in the marketplace.

2.2.2 Systems Leadership

To control employee performance and communication in diverse situations, M&S’s leaders use this method. Consequently, the workers are influenced to perform following organisational requirements (Macdonald, Burke and Stewart, 2018). According to this philosophy, activities are judged based on their results. Such actions are planned and then the results are matched to the expected outcome (Macdonald, Burke and Stewart, 2018).

2.2.3 Contingency Approach to Leadership and Management

An organisational department’s behaviour and response are influenced by contingency theory to achieve the desired result, according to this theory of management (Fiedler, 2015). The business employs this theory to minimise risk, and in this case, leaders play the most significant role in making adjustments and assisting staff in adapting to market conditions and changing situations.

2.2.4 Management by Objective (MBO)

Using Drucker’s “management by objectives” concept, managers and employees may identify their goals so that they can operate effectively. Employees and supervisors at M&S work together to achieve organisational goals. Based on the opinion of Drucker (1976), managers guide the team to fulfil tasks following the performance standards.




Situational Theory

· Identifies the need for flexibility

· Develops comfortable environment for employees

· Considers different development phases into account

· Enhances leader’s awareness

· Assists the team to be capable of collaboration

· Increase the routine of training

· Focused on immediate goals and long-term ones

· Potentially ineffective for task-based settings

· Challenging in defining maturity

· Does not offer sufficient information for some

· Based on leader’s skill-sets

· Generates corporate dependency

· Potential to create confusion within the organisation

Systems Theory

· Improves morale and increase the loyalty of employees

· Enhances productivity by saving time

· Assists to study complex organisational functions

· Probabilistic in nature instead of deterministic

· Used as the foundation for new types of organisation

· Enables the organisation to manage different complex situations

· Allows utilising information to identify significant facets

· Does not own enough tools for efficient management

· Has the somewhat vague and abstract approach

· Does not provide managerial techniques and tools

· Does not represent the management perspective of the organisation

· Neglects social discrimination and economic process

· Does not address social inequalities and power

· No specification of nature of interdependencies and interactions

Contingency Approach

· Gets support from a lot of empirical researches

· Widens the comprehension of leadership through forcing the consideration of situational impacts on leaders

· Predictive in nature

· Offers valuable data about the most suitable leadership type based on the specific situation

· Does not demand everyone to be effective in every situation

· Fails to explain completely the reason of some leadership approaches being effective in certain situations and ineffective in others

· Fails to guide the organisation during mismatch between situation and leadership approach

· Clumsy for applying in the settings of real-world


· Encourages and inspires management personnel to be committed to particular objectives

· Improved and better management

· Assists to clarify roles and structures of the organisation

· Devises effective controls

· Strictly follows the objectives to meet goals

· Fails drastically when managers do not understand the philosophy properly

· Cannot provide guidelines while setting goals

· Has to pass through the difficult process of objective setting

· Focus on short-term targets primarily

· Has no flexibility in objectives

(Source: Bosseet al, 2017; Macdonald, Burke and Stewart, 2018; Rana, Ali and Saha, 2016; Drucker, 1976)


The analysis of the above article has established that the phrase operation management refers to the maximisation of the output by utilising the inputs efficiently and effectively. In M&S, management of the physical process that converts inputs into outputs can be termed as operation management. The company’s products and services are developed through a complex process of planning, organising, integrating, and administering all resources. Management of operations in the organisation focuses on maximising the productivity of available resources, generate goods and services that fulfil consumer expectations, and effectively manage all activities.


Adler, N.J. and Laasch, O., 2020. Responsible leadership and management: Key distinctions and shared concerns. In Research Handbook of Responsible Management. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Bârg?u, M.A., 2015. Leadership versus management. Romanian Economic and Business Review10(2), pp.112-135.

Bisen, V. and Srivastava, S., 2009. Production & Operation Management. Word-Press.

Bosse, T., Duell, R., Memon, Z.A., Treur, J. and van der Wal, C.N., 2017. Computational model-based design of leadership support based on situational leadership theory. Simulation93(7), pp.605-617.

Bowers, M.R., Hall, J.R. and Srinivasan, M.M., 2017. Organizational culture and leadership style: The missing combination for selecting the right leader for effective crisis management. Business Horizons60(4), pp.551-563.

Chopra, S. and Meindl, P., 2016. Global Edition.

Drucker, P.F., 1976. What results should you expect? A users’ guide to MBO. Public Administration Review36(1), pp.12-19.

Fiedler, F.R.E.D., 2015. Contingency theory of leadership. Organizational Behavior 1: Essential Theories of Motivation and Leadership232, pp.01-2015.

Heizer, J., 2016. Operations management, 11/e. Pearson Education India.

Kotter, J.P., 2008. Force for change: How leadership differs from management. Simon and Schuster.

Liphadzi, M., Aigbavboa, C.O. and Thwala, W.D., 2017. A theoretical perspective on the difference between leadership and management. Procedia engineering196, pp.478-482.

Macdonald, I., Burke, C. and Stewart, K., 2018. Systems leadership: Creating positive organisations. Routledge.

Mellahi, K., Jackson, P. and Sparks, L., 2002. An exploratory study into failure in successful organizations: The case of Marks & Spencer. British journal of management13(1), pp.15-29.

Rana, M.M., Ali, M.J. and Saha, A., 2016. Contemporary Theory of Management: A Comparative Study on Quantitative Approach, System Approach, and Contingency Approach. International Journal of Business and Management Invention. International Journal of Business and Management Invention5(5), pp.14-22.

Szostak, M. and Su?kowski, ?., 2021. ARTIST, CREATOR, MANAGER, ENTREPRENEUR, LEADER: HOW SOCIETY PERCEIVE THESE IDENTITIES?. Economics & Sociology14(2), pp.209-221.

Thorpe, R. and Gold, J., 2016. Leadership and management development: the current state. In Gower handbook of leadership and management development (pp. 29-48). Routledge.

White, E.M. and Flores, B., 1987. Goal setting in the management of operations. International Journal of Operations & Production Management.

Wilson, D., 2016. Marks & Spencer: the quest to master the new millennium. The Business & Management Collection.

Activity 2: Impact of Leadership and Management on Operational Efficacy, Community and the Broader Business Environment


The following presentation contains the description of the OM and its integrations on the production status of Marks and Spencer (M&S). The role of leaders and managers in this development process of the strategy of this global retail business of clothing is included in this presentation. The organisation has come a long way of more than 135 years in establishing the deep-rooted business throughout the world and has more than 1500 stores in domestic and international markets (M&S plc, 2021). The OM activities in M&S, that has achieved this status for the company today, confirm the products to be high quality and stores to be located in the most convenient sites.

Key Approach of OM in M&S

Total Quality Management (TQM)

In assuring the efficiency of the production process, practically every multinational company employs TQM, focused on improving the quality of products and services to fulfil the actual needs of the target consumers (Machado et al, 2017). Cost-effectiveness as part of the approach with the primary goal of the strategy is to satisfy both customers and suppliers, which is why it is so important.

Kaizen Continuous Improvement

A continual improvement approach is called kaizen, which signifies change for the better (Carnerud, Jaca and Bäckström, 2018). Leaders inspire staff to work in a flexible environment with motivation and encourage them to create quality products to satisfy consumers.


When it comes to task accomplishment and performance management, the Six-Sigma approach emphasises the collective effort of the team (Heizer, 2016). Managers are tasked with creating a plan to ensure the most efficient use of global resources.

Just-in-Time Delivery

Purchasing raw materials shortly before the manufacturing process is a popular inventory approach in the company. It is possible to ensure the effective use of inventories by ensuring that they do not remain inactive for a long time (Heizer, 2016). It can save time and money during the entire manufacturing process as well.

Leadership and Managerial Roles in M&S for OM Efficiency Improvement

Total Quality Management

Leaders and managers urge workers to deliver their greatest performance to provide the best goods and services to the consumers. M&S use this method to please their consumer base and match the productsfor their demand (Brabbs et al, 2019).

Kaizen Continuous Improvement

To improve production efficiency, M&S apply this principle (Siegfried et al, 2014). To improve the product, management is trying to establish an efficiency and effectiveness strategy for it.


The Six-sigma method is used by the M&S leaders to improve team cohesion and ensure that the employees are performing at their best (Siegfried et al, 2014).

Just-in-Time Delivery

It is the manager’s responsibility in M&S to arrange orders with suppliers on time, and leaders are responsible for evaluating employee productivity and keeping the inventory schedule on track (Brabbs et al, 2019).

Importance and Value of OM to Achieve Business Objectives

Management of Capacity

Investing in capital is efficiently managed by OM n M&S. During various operating processes, all resources and capital are properly utilised (Brown, Bessant and Jia, 2018). This avoids unneeded cash from being wasted and keeps it safe for future applications.

Effective Operational Skill Development

Operational management planning can strengthen the employee’s skill set (Reid and Sanders, 2019). A strong staff base and an adequate supply of skilled workers are required for M&S to compete in the global marketplace.

Effective Resource Utilisation

Operational management ensures that resources are used efficiently. When it comes to maximising the use of the invested resources in a company’s production processes, competent OM in M&S plans every aspect (Brown, Bessant and Jia, 2018).

Product Quality Improvement

M&S pay close attention to the quality of their products and their management. One of the primary priorities of operation management is to continually improve the quality of the company’s products to make them better and more appealing to consumers.

Working Condition Improvement

The OM in M&S ensures that employees’ work motivation is maintained by providing a safe and healthy working environment (Brown, Bessant and Jia, 2018). The operations management is responsible for the workplace’s safety and comfort. The better the facilities, the greater the performance of staff.

Inventory Management

Operational management ensures that supplies are used to their maximum potential. The total quality management (TQM) inventory strategy is used by M&S to maximise the efficiency of production and sales.

Production Efficiency

Any company’s primary focus on cost reduction is in production. M&S can prevent high costs by calculating costs correctly and assure the production effectuality of their goods.

Maximization of Profit

Profit maximisation is the primary goal of any firm, and it may be achieved through optimum sales to consumers and effective operations management. If the company wants to grow their consumer base, they require compelling offers and promotional activities.

Customers Satisfaction

Consumers that are completely satisfied create a company successfully and satisfied. This indicates that consumer happiness is the key to business (Reid and Sanders, 2019). M&S must providethe customerswith the products they seek to satisfy their consumers through proper implementation of OM.

Scheduling Management

OM creates a daily work schedule for the business to follow to achieve long-term success. Scheduling allows the M&S management to keep the organization’s operations on track.

Management of Supply Chain

To assure the long-term supply of raw materials, OM strategy in M&S maintains solid relationships with suppliers. With the aim of OM, relationships with suppliers and intermediaries can be improved (Reid and Sanders, 2019).

Business Environment Factors Influencing OM and Decision-Making in M&S

Ethics in Business

There are no exceptions when it comes to business ethics, and M&S adhere to every single one of them. Because they conform to a strict code of ethics, their company policies are not affected by any negative circumstances.

Technology Advancement

M&S needs technology to make production and processing activities easier and more convenient for its employees. To expand their business, the organisation must target new markets, consumer bases, and population groups due to technological innovation (Heizer, 2016). To make the best use of technology, M&S, as an international company, needs to make its technological advancement decisions with extreme caution.

International Competition

The operation management and decision-making in M&S are affected by global competitiveness, which is a significant element. Because of the lack of an online store, they must focus on the Asian market to attract more consumers and compete internationally.

Legal Considerations

The clothing retail business needs to be aware of their law and regulations in numerous areas such as tax, vat, export-import, tariffs and government policies. Business conditions might be adversely affected by disobedience. Consequently, the decision should be made with due consideration of the existing legal status, if required.

Security of Material and Resource

In operations management, raw materials, as well as the capital, are the two most important factors to consider for M&S. A careful watch must be kept on them to ensure their safety and proper utilisation.

Customer Care, Quality and Pricing Challenge

Consumers desire a high-quality product base with exceptional customer service at a reasonable price point (Heizer, 2016). Three of them, on the other hand, increases the cost of production by a factor of three. For M&S, this means offering consumers superior product and service quality.

Social Responsibilities

To preserve a positive relationship with society, the firm is required to provide some type of social service to the local community. Since these kinds of social issues can have a significant impact on the company’s financial performance.


The administration of activities of the organisation and improvement of the quality in the organisational productivity are the reasons for organisations to have effective operations management (OM). Customers can choose from an array of apparel selections in H&M because the company is a multinational retailer, but other competitors throughout the world have an impact on their consumer base, which has been earned due to effective OM and decision-making of M&S leaders and managers.


Brabbs, J., Lohrer, S., Kwashnak, P., Bounker, P. and Brudnak, M., 2019. M&S as the key enabler for autonomy development, acquisition and testing. In Ground Vehicle Systems Engineering and Technology Symposium.

Brown, S., Bessant, J. and Jia, F., 2018. Strategic operations management. Routledge.

Carnerud, D., Jaca, C. and Bäckström, I., 2018. Kaizen and continuous improvement–trends and patterns over 30 years. The TQM Journal.

Heizer, J., 2016. Operations management, 11/e. Pearson Education India.

M&S plc. 2021. ABOUT US. Available at: https://corporate.marksandspencer.com/aboutus[Accessed on: 17thAugust, 2021]

Machado, C.G., de Lima, E.P., da Costa, S.E.G., Angelis, J.J. and Mattioda, R.A., 2017. Framing maturity based on sustainable operations management principles. International Journal of Production Economics190, pp.3-21.

Reid, R.D. and Sanders, N.R., 2019. Operations management: an integrated approach. John Wiley & Sons.

Siegfried, R., van den Berg, T., Cramp, A. and Huiskamp, W., 2014. M&S as a service: Expectations and challenges (pp. 248-257). Orlando, FL: SISO.

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