Winnie-the-Pooh on Management 1. What are the duties of a manager? Define management and How to do it.
Management is the act of getting people together to accomplish desired goals. Management comprises planning, organizing, resourcing, leading or directing, and controlling an organization (a group of one or more people or entities) or effort for the purpose of accomplishing a goal. Resourcing encompasses the deployment and manipulation of human resources, financial resources, technological resources, and natural resources (from Wikipedia).
Management is an act of getting important things done in accordance with accepted policies by directing effort and resources. Management is neither good nor bad. In other words, it is not about being moral or ethical. It is just about accomplishing desired goals. We can have either good or bad management, depending on how managers do their job. According to the author, the duties of a manager can be summarized into six function functions in the work of a manager. First, a manger should establish objectives. What do I want to achieve? How much do I want to achieve? Second, a manger should organize resources and jobs that are required to achieve the objectives. A manager need to analyze what have to be done and made decisions based on the evaluation of the employees or colleagues talents and abilities. Third, a manager should motivate the people involved by giving incentives or having good relationships with them. Fourth, a manger should develop abilities of the people engaged. Fifth, a manger should communicate with the people involved by telling what is going on and by the way of acting and working with them. Last, a manger should establish measures of how things are, both in terms of progress toward the objective and in how each individual is doing. Unless individuals know how they are doing and what they are doing, they can’t improve their performance.
2. What are X and Y theory? Look them up on Wikipedia.
Theory X and theory Y are about motivation of workforce. There are two ways of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic. Theory X is a way of extrinsic motivation; Theory Y is a way of intrinsic motivation. McGregor's work was based on Maslow's hierarchy of needs. He grouped Maslow's hierarchy into "lower order" (Theory X) needs and "higher order" (Theory Y) needs. He suggested that management could use either set of needs to motivate employees.
A manager who believes in theory X tries to control the people involved by giving incentives and punishments. One major flaw of this management style is that there is a limit of satisfying people by giving incentives and blaming is discouraging the people in the long run.
On the other hand, a manger who believes in theory Y seeks for encouragement of people’s own motives to be a good employee or member by establishing a good relationship with the people.
3. Which theory do you agree with more with regards to your students? Give examples.
I always think about this question throughout my career, even as a parent of my own children, but I could not find a definite answer. There are always two kinds of people or every person has two aspects inside depending on the situations. Some, but rare, students have intrinsic motivation to study (that is they are self-motivated); majority of my students need extrinsic motivation to study because study is not entertaining in itself. School work is an endeavor for them. Sure, they find some subject interesting, but most of requisites are burdens for them.
Thus, my management usually is based on theory X. For example, when the midterm or final test drew near, I asked them to make a plan for the preparation of the test. Then I check what they did according to their plans every day. If they didn’t finish, they had to stay in the school until they finish or I have to go home. I know it sounds crazy, but I intended to teach how to manage their lives and be responsible for their own lives and to make them study more. After the tests, we had picnics together and I bought some food for them.
However, I don’t want to hurt their ego or to lose their self-confidence. So, in private talk with an individual I try to encourage them by finding out their talents.
After all, it is really hard to take the golden mean for me as teacher and mother.
4. How is management like teaching?
In America, there are counselors for advice about academic work and homeroom teachers for managing paper works (sorry I feel like this from my son’s homeroom teacher). However, in Korea, the homeroom teacher is very significant figure in a student’s school life because s/he is a both counselor and manager. I am a kind of parent for my students in school because my students stay in the same classroom all day with the same classmates. They are my children. Therefore, it is important to make the classroom environment comfortable and goal-directed. In the beginning of the school year, we set a goal together for their growth. I organize the class by assigning roles to the students, motivate them to improve their school work or to be mature in their lives, find out their talents and give advice for their academic courses or future jobs, have talks with them to establish good relationships and thus encourage them to do better, and analyze their records and give feedback. Being a teacher is like a manager in the classroom. Even as a chemistry teacher, I act like a manager to get my students to achieve what I think important for them to learn.