This article throws light upon the 7S model developed by McKinsey for understanding the framework of management. The seven S are: 1. Strategy 2. Structure 3. Systems 4. Style 5. Staff 6. Skills 7. Shared Values.
Strategy making is an important variable that affects managerial excellence. Strategy means determination of objectives and allocation of resources to achieve these objectives through continuous interaction with the environment.
It is a single-use plan made to achieve the objective, for example, strategy to adopt a low cost technology in order to be competitive in the environment. Strategies provide useful guide to managerial planning and excellence. They are useful means of integrating the organisation’s internal environment with its external environment.
Strategic planning refers to planning for long-run survival and growth of the firm. It helps in adopting courses of action that enhance managerial effectiveness in adjusting the organisations to changes in the external environment.
Structure refers to arrangement of work amongst units and members of the organisation, assigning responsibility and providing authority to perform the assigned tasks. Structure provides foundation to the organisation. Organisation structure represents a formal pattern of interaction and coordination amongst various people and departments that gear the activities towards organisational goals.
The structure consists of division of work, departments, authority, responsibility relationships, delegation, decentralisation, communication etc. Organisation structure affects managerial effectiveness by coordinating internal activities with the external environment. A well designed organisation structure increases managerial effectiveness.
Systems refers to procedures and processes like management information systems, performance evaluation systems, technology systems, manufacturing processes, control processes etc. that help in smooth conduct of business enterprises. Companies develop well- designed systems and processes to increase managerial effectiveness.
It is the way of managing the organisation. It is the way management interacts with members. Understanding of human factors, suitable motivators, leadership styles, committee formation, group decision-making, communication networks and media etc. affect the style of management.
More and more companies are managed by professional managers who adopt entrepreneurial, innovative and creative management styles. They use a style that can adapt to environmental changes. People are the most important asset of business organisations and management styles must correspond to satisfaction of their needs and desires.
Amongst the management styles ranging between task-oriented to people-oriented, the most suitable style is the one that corresponds to the situation. Not one style can be described as the best. How well a management style is adopted determines how effective managers are in developing the organisation culture in terms of values, beliefs, customs, perceptions, norms etc.
Staff represents the human resource. Human resource management, accounting and appraisal are important areas of human resource. The staff should be satisfied, young, dynamic, innovative and creative. This pre-supposes a well-designed staffing procedure that helps in appointing people most appropriate to fulfillment of organisational goals.
There should be proper balance between job description and job specification and people should be placed at the jobs most suitable for them. A well designed staffing procedure, with policies related to requirement, selection, placement, training, development, compensation etc. affects effectiveness of an organisation. Most satisfied staff will be most effective staff. People are part of the organisation culture and there should be complete harmony between organisational and individual goals.
Skills are distinctive capabilities of an enterprise. Every organisation has common strengths and distinctive competence. While common strengths are possessed by all organisations alike, distinctive competence is possessed by a small number of firms. Every organisation should enhance its distinctive competence by enhancing its organisational skills – technological, managerial, marketing, human skills etc. Organisation with high level of distinctive skills is an effective organisation. Increasing the skills to meet the future requirements makes the organisation successful and effective.
7. Shared Values:
Shared values refer to superordinate goals and values commonly shared by members of the organisation. They represent the culture and system with specific set of goals and direction. They result in optimum allocation of resources keeping in mind values, beliefs, attitudes and aspirations.
An organisation whose members share common values about its objectives and plans is an effective organisation. Shared values represent organisation climate, structure, culture and dynamics. Management styles, strategy, systems, skills etc. are largely determined by its shared values.