Strategic planning is a business process, which entails defining a course of action, and making decisions concerning implementation of this course (Developing a Strategic Plan 2010). It entails finding answers to questions such as ‘where are we,’ where do we want to go,’ and ‘how do we get there.’ Success of strategic planning depends on the effectiveness of an organization. That is how effective is an organization in achieving its intended outcomes (Developing a Strategic Plan 2010). Some people say that organizational effectiveness is closely linked to the managers. This paper discusses the link between organizational effectiveness and organizational managers.
According to Leslie and colleagues, managerial effectiveness is the ability of organizational managers to execute their managerial roles towards achievement of organizational goals and objectives (2002). Manager’s effectiveness largely depends on the leadership personalities of the individual vested with managerial responsibilities. He/she should be able to control, direct, guide, coordinate, and organize all organizational activities (Leslie et al. 2002). If every manager in an organization is able to provide good leadership in his/her respective managerial position, it is likely that an organization can achieve effectiveness. This is because all the efforts of the managers in the organization will be directed towards achievement of the intended outcomes, thus achievement of organizational effectiveness.
Organizational effectiveness also depends on managerial performance. Managers are usually expected to demonstrate measurable outcomes of their performance. That is, at the end of a certain period, a manager should be able to produce measurable outcomes in his/her department. For instance, in cases of sales managers, at the end of every trading period, they should be able to demonstrate how the volume of sales in their departments has increased. In fact, this acts as a basis of their performance evaluation. A manager who demonstrates positive performance at the end of a given period contributes greatly in organizational effectiveness. In the case of sales department, increased annual sales may assist an organization to achieve effectiveness, if one of its goals is to achieve profitability through increased sales. Collectively, managers who demonstrate positive performance in their respective positions play a great role in increasing organizational effectiveness (Leslie et al. 2002).
The concepts of managerial performance and managerial effectiveness are closely related. The outcome of one aspect affects the outcome of the other. From the previous example of a sales manager, such a manager can be able to achieve annual sales increase in his/her department only if he/she is effective in his/her position. It means he/she possesses the relevant leadership skills to control, direct, organize, and coordinate the functions of the sales department towards achievement of increased annual sales. Lack of managerial effectiveness definitely leads to negative managerial performance.
According to Baker and Branch (2002), organizational effectiveness also depends on managers’ ability to identify the ideal position where an organization should be in the market place, and then evaluate the current position of the organization against the ideal position, in order to determine the gaps, and methods of reducing these gaps. This process is known as benchmarking. A manager who conducts routine benchmarking in his/her area of responsibility is able to identify improvement areas in his/her department, and then develop solutions to problems in these areas.
Benchmarking is also linked with managerial effectiveness. An effective manager can easily identify the weak and strong areas in his/her department through benchmarking. Organizational effectiveness can be measured using different methods such as benchmarking. The level of managerial performance and effectiveness can also be used to measure organizational effectiveness. Positive managerial performance and high level of managerial effectiveness are indicators of organizational effectiveness. Based on this, it is clear that organizational effectiveness is closely linked to the managers.