Thursday, February 27, 2020

Managers learn better from experience or theory Essay

Managers learn better from experience or theory - Essay Example Hence, management development programmes are conducted by organisations to update the managers on any new managerial behaviour. In the competitive environment managers often have to face difficult situations in the workplace. To handle such kind of situations, it is extremely important for the manager to have sufficient knowledge backed by theories and prior experience behind him. But in the most difficult situation, bookish knowledge will help to some extent and practical experience and instincts of managers will become more effective in handling the situation with utmost care. But the importance of theory cannot be underestimated since it is the theory that will show the path for the manager, and the experience will pave the path. An organisation also needs to look at educating the present managers. It is expected that whatever may be their formal education requirement, it will not be able to meet the job demands during their tenure in the organisation. Hence, providing continuing education for the managers is important. Learning by doing matters for professional investors. Most of the organisations today believe in ELT, or experimental learning theory, which has been the foundation of management learning over the years. It has been seen that there have been improvements in the efficiency of the output produced from the existing technologies, though the inputs remain the same. It shows that inputs are an important determinant of total productivity. So the organisations have started realising that ‘on-the-job-training’, or learning by doing, is as important as formal education received, which forms the base of human capital. Discussion Every practice by managers is based on theory itself. Management theory gives an overall view of managers’ role and the competencies which the managers need. It acts as a guide to understand the process to help the managers learn (Mailick and Stumpf, 1998). But management practice is more specifically concern ed with task selection and performance delivery, which defines the manager’s contribution to the organisation. Management practice basically utilises management theory to help managers determine the process which they need to follow in specific situations (Bell and Goldsmith, 2013). Every manager has their own way of handling things, which they might feel is the optimal and efficient one. But the real world does not go by that logic. It is only when they are faced with real world solutions that they realise that they need to change their strategy to come out with new solutions (Levitt, List and Syverson, 2013). For example, a sales manager must be able to handle the team under their leadership. Team dynamics is the most important factor which they cannot neglect. Team dynamics will vary with the composition of members in it. Each team has to be handled differently. Experiential learning theory (ELT) gives a holistic model of the learning process. Learning is best viewed as a process, not as an outcome. Hence, improving the performance of managers by engaging them will enhance their learning and performance. All learning is re-learning. It is a process through which the manager’s beliefs and ideas about a topic can be examined, applied and integrated to form more new refined ideas. Learning is a holistic process of adaptation. It involves the integrated functioning of thinking, perceiving, feeling and behaving apart from cognition. Learning is

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