Leading and Managing Organizations - NACCO Materials Handling Group and Sonoco – Case Study Example

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The paper “Leading and Managing Organizations - NACCO Materials Handling Group and Sonoco" is a potent example of a case study on management. NACCO Materials Handling Group (NMHG) which is considered to be one of the world’s largest manufacturers found itself experiencing severe difficulties during the global economic crisis that caused economies to experienced unprecedented levels of turmoil. The business problem that NMHG faced was that the company found itself in the precarious position whereby the company’s sales quickly fell as the level of volatility and ambiguity continued to rise (CCL, 2013). Another business problem that the company experienced was that it was still experiencing a lingering effect of the crisis three years after economies had started to recover.

There are two main critical issues affecting the company:
The market’s rapid change of pace and on-going complexities necessitated that the company build’s highly effective relationships with all its key external stakeholders. The second critical issue was that the executive needed to learn how they could focus more on the needs and experiences of each of the company’s dealers (CCL, 2013). The proposed solution focused on the delivery of a multi-layered initiative that would target the sales leaders and their direct reports. The solutions sought to help the company employees to build up their personal leadership skills while helping leaders to increase their confidence. In addition to this, the solution also sought to build an understanding among the company’s executives on how they could be able to maintain results during an economic downturn while all along managing to maintain key relationships in a more effective manner and deliver on the company’s overall business strategy. The solutions were effective as interviews conducted on the key stakeholders after the program showed a number of positive results for teams, individuals and NMHG’s overall business (CCL, 2013).

I would recommend that the company employs strategies that will be designed to motivate its employees. When a company performs poorly, its employees often feel demotivated and this can serve to negatively impact their performance and that of the company in general. Employees can be motivated by being offered bonuses and cash reward if they are able to meet the set targets.

In the case of NMHG, the proposed solution will be directly communicated to the concerned parties during the course of the training programs. This approach is effective as it will ensure that the stakeholders obtain the necessary firsthand information.

Sonoco Case Study
Sonoco company is primarily engaged in being a global provider of packaging solutions. The company attributes its success to its employees who have worked with the company for over 106 years and in the process helped it to expand to more than 300 operations that are spread out in over 35 countries. Sonoco’s main challenge was to establish how the company can best be able to develop future leaders from within (CCL, 2006).

The critical issues listed in the case include:
The need to stimulate an increase in the leadership capabilities of the company’s mid-level managers.
Help the company build up coaching capacities.
Provide Sonoco’s HR managers with the skills and tools necessary for the provision of coaching as an in-house resource.
Develop a coaching culture within the company
Continue to emphasize the HR department’s proactive role.
The proposed solutions included the establishment of the Coaching for Development Program. This solution, which involved the creation of classroom and coaching sessions to equip the HR manager with the appropriate leadership coaching skills, was effective as it directly tackled the issue of helping Sonoco in building up its leadership coaching capabilities. An evaluation conducted after two program runs also indicated that the solution had yielded very positive results based on an assessment of the impact that the coaching had had on the managers being coached (CCL, 2006).
In addition to coaching the company’s managers on leadership, it can be suggested that the coaching program be adopted as part of the company’s basic orientation and training as this will help the company in improving the leadership attributes of all its employees. This will make it easier for employees to make the appropriate decisions and take responsibility in the event that their leaders happen to be absent for some reason. The solution will be communicated to the executive as part of a report for approval and to the employees during the training program. This approach will be suitable as it will ensure that the executive is aware of what the program will entail, in addition to also ensuring that the employees are aware of the program’s intended objectives (CCL, 2006).
The benefits of these case studies as pertains to leadership and management in organizations is that they outline just how important appropriate leadership is if a company is to be able to eventually achieve its objectives. The case studies also help in highlighting the fact that it is important for companies to implement measures designed to help its employees to continually develop their leadership attributes and capabilities as well as address employee leadership needs (Philips & Connell, 2003).

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