Chapter 7: Management and Leadership

Learning Objectives

By the end of the chapter, you should be able to:

  • Identify the four interrelated functions of management: planning, organizing, leading, and controlling.
  • Explain the process by which a company develops and implements a strategic plan.
  • Explain how managers direct others and motivate them to achieve company goals.
  • Describe the process by which a manager monitors operations and assesses performance.
  • Explain what benchmarking is and its importance for managing organizations.
  • Describe the skills needed to be a successful manager.

Noteworthy Management

Consider this scenario: you’re halfway through the semester and ready for midterms. You open your class notes and declare them “pathetic.” You regret scribbling everything so carelessly and skipping class so many times. That’s when it hits you: what if there was a note-taking service on campus? When you were ready to study for a big test, you could buy complete and legible class notes. You’ve heard that there are class-notes services at some larger schools, but there’s no such thing on your campus. So you ask yourself, why don’t I start a note-taking business? Your upcoming set of exams may not be salvageable, but after that, you’d always have great notes. And in the process, you could learn how to manage a business (isn’t that what majoring in business is all about?).

You might begin by hiring a bunch of students to take class notes. Then the note-takers will e-mail them to your assistant, who’ll get them copied (on a special type of paper that can’t be duplicated). The last step will be assembling packages of notes and, of course, selling them. You decide to name your company “Notes-4-You.”

It sounds like a great idea, but you’re troubled by one question: why does this business need you? Do the note-takers need a boss? Couldn’t they just sell the notes themselves? This process could work, but it would work better if there was someone to oversee the operations: a manager—to make sure that the operations involved in preparing and selling notes were performed in both an effective and an efficient manner. You’d make the process effective by ensuring that the right things got done and that they all contributed to the success of the enterprise. You’d make the process efficient by ensuring that activities were performed in the right way and used the fewest possible resources.

The Management Process

Circular management process: planning to organizing to leading to controlling
“Circular Management Process”

The effective performance of your business will require solid management: the process of planning, organizing, leading and controlling resources to achieve specific goals. A plan enables you to take your business concept beyond the idea stage. It does not, however, get the work done. For that to happen, you have to organize things effectively. You’ll have to put people and other resources in place to make things happen. And because your note-taking venture is supposed to be better off with you in charge, you need to be a leader who can motivate your people to do well. Finally, to know whether things are in fact going well, you’ll have to control your operations—that is, measure the results and compare them with the results that you laid out in your plan. The management process below summarizes the interrelationship between planning and the other functions that managers perform. This chapter will explore the planning, leading, and controlling in some detail. Organizing is an especially complex topic and deserves its own chapter.


Without a plan, it’s hard to succeed at anything. The reason is simple: if you don’t know where you’re going, you can’t move forward. Successful managers decide where they want to be and then figure out how to get there; they set goals and determine the best way to achieve them. As a result of the planning process, everyone in the organization knows what should be done, who should do it, and how to do it.

Developing a Strategic Plan

Coming up with an idea—say, starting a note-taking business—is a good start, but it’s only a start. Planning for it is a step forward. Planning begins at the highest level and works its way down through the organization. Step one is usually called strategic planning: the process of establishing an overall course of action. To begin this process, you should ask yourself a couple of very basic questions: why, for example, does the organization exist? What value does it create?

Once you’ve identified the purpose of your company, you’re ready to take the remaining steps in the strategic-planning process:

  • Write a mission statement that tells customers, employees, and others why your organization exists.
  • Identify core values or beliefs that will guide the behavior of members of the organization.
  • Assess the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
  • Establish goals and objectives, or performance targets, to direct all the activities that you’ll perform to achieve your mission.
  • Develop and implement tactical and operational plans to achieve goals and objectives.

In the next few sections, we’ll examine these components of the strategic-planning process.

Mission Statement

As we saw in an earlier chapter, the mission statement describes the purpose of your organization—the reason for its existence. It tells the reader what the organization is committed to doing. A mission statement can be very concise, see the example from ClubLink below.

Mission Statements

“Clublink is Canada’s largest owner and operator of high-quality golf courses and resort properties. One of the primary reasons for Clublink’s success is the passion our employees have for delivering excellent service.” [1]

Mission statements can also be detailed such as the one from Acushnet Holdings Corp “aka” Titleist:
Mission: Enrich the experience of dedicated golfers through products and services of superior performance, quality, and innovation. Vision: Build a family of golf performance brands that are unrivaled leaders in every category in which we compete.
Values: Passion for Dedicated Golfers | Performance & Quality Excellence | Driven to Innovate | A Spirit of Leadership | Integrity & Respect | Bridge Builder Mindset [2]

A mission statement for Notes-4-You could be the following: “To provide high-quality class notes to college students.” On the other hand, you could prepare a more detailed statement that explains what the company is committed to doing, who its customers are, what its focus is, what goods or services it provides, and how it serves its customers.

It is worth noting that some companies no longer use mission statements, preferring to communicate their reason for being in other manners.

Core Values

Whether or not your company has defined a mission, it is important to identify what your organization stands for in terms of its values and the principles that will guide its actions. In the chapter, “Business Ethics and Social Responsibility”, we explained that the small set of guiding principles that you identify as crucial to your company are known as core values—fundamental beliefs about what’s important and what is and isn’t appropriate in conducting company activities. Core values affect the overall planning processes and operations.

At Acushnet, they state “Our core values represent essential truths that drive our work every day. They serve as guiding principles for building high-performing teams, creating lasting partnerships, and fostering an inclusive, respectful, authentic culture where all can thrive and feel a strong sense of belonging.” [3]

Core values should guide the behavior of every individual in the organization. Companies communicate core values to employees and hold them accountable for putting them into practice by linking their values to performance evaluations and compensation.

In choosing core values for Notes-4-You, you’re determined to be unique. After some thought, you settle on teamwork, trust, and dependability. Why these three? As you plan your business, you realize that it will need a workforce that functions as a team, trusts each other, and can be depended on to satisfy customers. In building your workforce, you’ll seek employees who’ll embrace these values.
Conduct a SWOT Analysis

The next step in the strategic-planning process is to assess your company’s fit with its environment. A common approach to environmental analysis is matching the strengths of your business with the opportunities available to it. It’s called SWOT analysis because it calls for analyzing an organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. The next two paragraphs explain the ins and outs of a SWOT analysis. Watch this video: How to SWOT analysis by Parr and Associates [5:23] (transcript available).


Hint: Use the cog to increase the speed; the video is a tad slow-moving.

  1. It begins with an examination of external factors that could influence the company in either a positive or a negative way. These could include economic conditions, competition, emerging technologies, laws and regulations, and customers’ expectations. One purpose of assessing the external environment is to identify both opportunities that could benefit the company and threats to its success. 
  2. The next step is to evaluate the company’s strengths and weaknesses, and internal factors that could influence company performance in either a positive or negative way. Strengths might include a motivated workforce, state-of-the-art technology, impressive managerial talent, or a desirable location. The opposite of any of these strengths could signal a potential weakness (poor workforce, obsolete technology, incompetent management, or poor location). Armed with a good idea of internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as external opportunities and threats, managers will be better positioned to capitalize on opportunities and strengths. Likewise, they want to improve on any weak areas and protect the organization from external threats.
For example, Notes-4-You might say that by providing excellent service at a reasonable price while we’re still small, it can solidify its position on campus. When the market grows due to increases in student enrollment, the company will have built a strong reputation and be in a position to grow. So even if a competitor comes to campus (a threat), the company expects to be the preferred supplier of class notes. This strategy will work only if the note-takers are dependable and if the process does not alienate the faculty or administration.
Set Goals

Your mission statement affirms what your organization is generally committed to doing, but it doesn’t tell you how to do it. So the next step in the strategic-planning process is establishing goals and objectives. Goals are major accomplishments that the company wants to achieve over a long period. In order to challenge and yet manage, SMART is an often-applied acronym that guides the development of goals. A SMART goal is one that is:

Graphic is explained below
“SMART goals”
  • Specific: The who, what, where, when, why, and the which involved with the goal. Define the goal as much as possible with no ambiguous language.
  • Measurable: Can you track the progress and measure the outcome? How much, how many, how will I know when my goal is accomplished?
  • Attainable: Is the goal reasonable enough to be accomplished? Make sure the goal is not out of reach or below standard performance.
  • Relevant:  Is the goal worthwhile and will it meet your and your organization’s needs? Is each goal consistent with other established goals, plans, and timelines?
  • Timely: Your goal should include a time limit. It will establish a sense of urgency and prompt better time management.
Set objectives

Objectives are shorter-term performance targets that direct the activities of the organization toward the attainment of a goal. They should be clearly stated, achievable, and measurable: they should give target dates for the completion of tasks and stipulate who’s responsible for taking necessary actions. [4]

 An organization will have a number of goals and related objectives. Some will focus on financial measures, such as profit maximization and sales growth. Others will target operational efficiency or quality control. Still, others will govern the company’s relationships with its employees, its community, its environment, or all three.

Finally, goals and objectives change over time. As an organization reassesses its place in its business environment, it rethinks not only its mission but also its approach to fulfilling it. An example of this is the golf courses’ approach to running their business pre and post-pandemic. As the supply and demand change for tee times, golf courses may need to adjust prices and market to their customers differently than before.


In setting strategic goals and performance objectives for Notes-4-You, you should keep things simple. Because you need to make money to stay in business, you could include a financial goal (and related objectives). Your mission statement promises “high-quality, dependable, competitively priced class notes,” so you could focus on the quality of the class notes that you’ll be taking and distributing. Finally, because your mission is to serve students, one goal could be customer-oriented. Your list of goals and objectives might look like this:

Goal 1: Achieve a 10 percent return on profits in your first five years.

  • Objective: Sales of $20,000 and profit of $2,000 for the first 12 months of operation.

Goal 2: Produce a high-quality product.

  • Objective: First-year satisfaction scores of 90 percent or higher on quality of notes (based on survey responses on understandability, readability, and completeness).

Goal 3: Attain 98 percent customer satisfaction by the end of your fifth year.

  • Objective: Making notes available within two days after class, 95 percent of the time.

Consider how SMART these goals and objectives are.

Tactical Plans

The overall plan is broken down into more manageable, shorter-term components called tactical plans. These plans specify the activities and allocation of resources (people, equipment, money) needed to implement the strategic plan over a given period. Often, a long-range strategic plan is divided into several tactical plans; a five-year strategic plan, for instance, might be implemented as five one-year tactical plans.

Operational Plans

The tactical plan is then broken down into various operational components that provide detailed action steps to be taken by individuals or groups to implement the tactical and strategic plans. Operational plans cover only a brief period—say, a month or two. At Notes-4-You, note-takers might be instructed to submit typed class notes five hours earlier than normal on the last day of the semester (an operational guideline). The goal is to improve the customer-satisfaction score on dependability (a tactical goal) and, as a result, to earn the loyalty of students through attention to customer service (a strategic goal).

Plan for Contingencies and Crises

Even with great planning, things don’t always turn out the way they’re supposed to. Perhaps your plans were flawed, or maybe something in the environment shifted unexpectedly. Successful managers anticipate and plan for the unexpected. Dealing with uncertainty requires contingency planning and crisis management.

Contingency Planning

With contingency planning, managers identify those aspects of the business that are most likely to be adversely affected by the change. Then, they develop alternative courses of action in case an anticipated change does occur. You engage in contingency planning any time you develop a backup or fallback plan.

Crisis Management

Organizations also face the risk of encountering crises that require immediate attention. Rather than waiting until such a crisis occurs and then scrambling to figure out what to do, many firms practice crisis management or “risk” management. Some, for instance, set up teams trained to deal with emergencies. Members gather information quickly and respond to the crisis while everyone else carries out his or her normal duties. The team also keeps the public, the employees, the press, and government officials informed about the situation and the company’s response to it.


Image of a business man in a suit
Photo by Hunters Race, Unsplash License

The third management function is leading—providing focus and direction to others and motivating them to achieve organizational goals. As owner and president of Notes-4-You, you might think of yourself as an orchestra conductor. You have given your musicians (employees) their sheet music (plans). You’ve placed them in sections (departments) and arranged the sections (organizational structure) so the music will sound as good as possible. Now your job is to tap your baton and lead the orchestra so that its members make beautiful music together. [5] Don’t appreciate the conductor metaphor? What metaphor would you use to describe the process of leading?

Read: A Brush with Greatness – Up close and personal with Ben Cowan-Dewar, one of golf and hospitalities emerging leaders by Rob Foster for Club Management Quarterly (p. 28-33)

Which characteristics should a leader possess? You might consider a leader you know personally e.g., a boss, team captain or think of a leader on the larger stage e.g., in politics, sports, or business. Which attributes make the person an effective leader or capable of leading a team? Google this and you get 50,000,000 hits, but many of the results list common elements.

Take a look at a sound representative of the results from Brian Tracey (using this infographic does not endorse him or his product).

7 Leadership Qualities and Attributes of Great Leaders – An infographic by the team at Brian Tracy International

Leadership Styles

As a conductor, it’s fairly easy to pick up a baton, cue each section, and strike up the band; but it doesn’t mean the music will sound good. What if your cues are ignored or misinterpreted or ambiguous? Maybe your musicians don’t like your approach to making music and will just walk away. On top of everything else, you don’t simply want to make music: you want to inspire your musicians to make great music. How do you accomplish this goal? How do you become an effective leader, and what style should you use to motivate others to achieve organizational goals?

Unfortunately, there are no definitive answers to questions like these. Over time, every manager refines his or her own leadership style, or way of interacting with and influencing others. Despite a vast range of personal differences, leadership styles tend to reflect one of the following approaches to leading and motivating people: autocratic, democratic (also known as participative), or free rein.

  • Autocratic style. Managers who have developed an autocratic leadership style tend to make decisions without soliciting input from subordinates. They exercise authority and expect subordinates to take responsibility for performing the required tasks without undue explanation.
  • Democratic style. Managers who favor a democratic leadership style generally seek input from subordinates while retaining the authority to make the final decisions. They’re also more likely to keep subordinates informed about things that affect their work.
  • Free-rein style. In practicing a free rein leadership style, managers adopt a “hands-off” approach and provide relatively little direction to subordinates. They may advise employees but usually give them considerable freedom to solve problems and make decisions on their own.

At first glance, you’d probably not want to work for an autocratic leader. After all, most people don’t like to be told what to do without having any input. Many like the idea of working for a democratic leader; it’s flattering to be asked for your input. And though working in a free rein environment might seem a little unsettling at first, the opportunity to make your own decisions is appealing to many people. Each leadership style can be appropriate in certain situations.

Team Project Example 
To illustrate, let’s say that you’re leading a group of fellow students in a team project for your class. Are there times when it would be best for you to use an autocratic leadership style? What if your team was newly formed, unfamiliar with what needs to be done, under a tight deadline, and looking to you for direction? In this situation, you might find it appropriate to follow an autocratic leadership style (on a temporary basis) and assign tasks to each member of the group. In an emergency situation, such as a fire, or in the final seconds of a close ball game, there is generally no time for debate – the leader or coach must make a split-second decision that demands an autocratic style.

But since most situations are non-emergency and most people prefer the chance to give input, the democratic leadership style is often favored. People are simply more motivated and feel more ownership of decisions (i.e., buy-in) when they have had a chance to offer input. Note that when using this style, the leader will still make the decision in most cases. As long as their input is heard, most people accept that it is the leader’s role to decide in cases where not everyone agrees.

How about free rein leadership? Many people function most effectively when they can set their own schedules and do their work in the manner they prefer. It takes a great deal of trust for a manager to employ this style. Some managers start with an assumption of trust that is up to the employee to maintain through strong performance. In other cases, this trust must be earned over a period of time. Would this approach always work with your study group? Obviously not. It will work if your team members are willing and able to work independently and welcome the chance to make decisions. On the other hand, if people are not ready to work responsibly to the best of their abilities, using the free rein style could cause the team to miss deadlines or do poorly on the project.

The point being made here is that no one leadership style is effective all the time for all people or in all corporate cultures. While the democratic style is often viewed as the most appropriate (with the free rein style a close second), there are times when following an autocratic style is essential. Good leaders learn how to adjust their styles to fit both the situation and the individuals being directed.

Transformational Leadership

Theories on what constitutes effective leadership evolve over time. One theory that has received a lot of attention in the last decade contrasts two leadership styles: transactional and transformational. So-called transactional leaders exercise authority based on their rank in the organization. They let subordinates know what’s expected of them and what they will receive if they meet stated objectives. They focus their attention on identifying mistakes and disciplining employees for poor performance. By contrast, transformational leaders mentor and develop subordinates, providing them with challenging opportunities, working one-on-one to help them meet their professional and personal needs, and encouraging people to approach problems from new perspectives. They stimulate employees to look beyond personal interests to those of the group.

So, which leadership style is more effective? You probably won’t be surprised by the opinion of most experts. In today’s organizations, in which team building and information sharing are important and projects are often collaborative in nature, transformational leadership has proven to be more effective. Modern organizations look for managers who can develop positive relationships with subordinates and motivate employees to focus on the interests of the organization. Leaders who can be both transactional and transformational are rare, and those few who have both capacities are very much in demand. [6]


Let’s pause for a minute and reflect on the management functions that we’ve discussed so far—planning, organizing, and leading. As founder of Notes-4-You, you began by establishing plans for your new company. You defined its mission and set objectives, or performance targets, which you needed to meet in order to achieve your mission. Then, you organized your company by allocating the people and resources required to carry out your plans. Finally, you provided focus and direction to your employees and motivated them to achieve organizational objectives. Is your job finished? Can you take a well-earned vacation? Unfortunately, the answer is no: your work has just begun. Now that things are rolling along, you need to monitor your operations to see whether everything is going according to plan. If it’s not, you’ll need to take corrective action. This process of comparing actual to planned performance and taking necessary corrective action is called controlling.

A Five-Step Control Process

  1. Set the standards by which performance will be measured.
  2. Measure performance.
  3. Compare actual performance with the standard and identify any deviations from the standard.
  4. Determine the reasons for the deviation.
  5. Take corrective action if needed.

You can think of the control function as the five-step process outlined above. Let’s see how this process might work at Notes-4-You. Let’s assume that, after evaluating class enrollments, you estimate that you can sell one hundred notes packages per month to students taking a popular first-year geology course. So you set your standard at a hundred units. At the end of the month, however, you look over your records and find that you sold only eighty. In talking with your salespeople, you learn why you came up twenty packages short: it turns out that the copy machine broke down so often that packages frequently weren’t ready on time. You immediately take corrective action by increasing maintenance on the copy machine.

At golf courses, certain processes are crucial to successful operations. As a manager it is important to work with key staff to review processes and set up controls as the guiding principles for staff.  As a golf course superintendent, you may have processes and standards for cutting the greens.  Using the 5 step control process outlined above, here are some things to keep in mind;

  1. Cutting greens is one of the most important routines that is practiced on a daily basis. This is based on speed and quality of the cut.
  2. Performance is measured based on the expectation that 18 greens will be cut in 2 hours or less
  3. The performance expectations are measured against industry data (i.e. the estimated time to cut a green based on square footage)
  4. If the worker took too long to cut the greens, what were some potential reasons? (Weather, golfer traffic, inexperienced staff, deviation of the cutting route, mechanical issues etc.)
  5. Though weather is out of our hands… maybe tee times are set too early, the worker made a mistake on the cutting route, the machine needs to be serviced.  Regardless of the reason, the superintendent may need to provide further training or demonstrate the preferred cutting method to meet the expectations and standards


Benchmarking could be considered a specialized kind of control activity. Rather than controlling a particular aspect of performance (say, defects for a specific product), benchmarking aims to improve a club’s overall performance. The process of benchmarking involves comparisons to other organizations’ practices and processes with the objective of learning and improvement in both efficiency and effectiveness. Benchmarking exercises can be conducted in a number of ways:

  • Organizations often monitor publicly available information to keep tabs on the competition. Annual reports, news articles, and other sources are monitored closely in order to stay aware of the latest developments. The National Golf Course Owners Association provides data from golf courses in Key Performance Indicator (KPI) studies and polls to help regional clubs compare their performance to other clubs.  For example, total rounds of golf in a given season compared to the regional average.
  • Organizations may also work directly with companies in unrelated industries in order to compare those functions of the business which are similar. 
  • In order to compare more directly with the competition without relying solely on publicly available data, companies may enter into benchmarking consortiums in which an outside consultant would collect key data from all participants, anonymize it, and then share the results with all participants. Companies can then gauge how they compare to others in the industry without revealing their own performance to others. Global Golf Advisors is an example of consultants who have a strong and proven reputation for helping its clients maximize the performance of golf, club, and leisure-related assets in order to realize specific lifestyle or investment objectives. 

Managerial Skills

To be a successful manager, you’ll have to master a number of skills. To get an entry-level position, you’ll have to be technically competent at the tasks you’re asked to perform. To advance, you’ll need to develop strong interpersonal and conceptual skills. The relative importance of different skills varies from job to job and organization to organization, but to some extent, you’ll need them all to forge a managerial career.

Throughout your career, you’ll also be expected to communicate ideas clearly, use your time efficiently, and reach sound decisions.

Technical Skills

You’ll probably be hired for your first job based on your technical skills—the ones you need to perform specific tasks—and you’ll use them extensively during your early career. If your college major is in professional golf management, you’ll use what you’ve learned in your accounting class to prepare financial statements. Your marketing class will provide the skills to prepare social media campaigns for the club or proshop. Technical skills will come in handy when you move up to a first-line managerial job and oversee the task performance of subordinates. Technical skills, though developed through job training and work experience, are generally acquired during the course of your formal education.

Interpersonal Skills

As you move up the golf course ladder, you’ll find that you can’t do everything yourself: you’ll have to rely on other people to help you achieve the goals for which you’re responsible. That’s why interpersonal skills, also known as relational or “soft” skills—the ability to get along with and motivate other people—are critical for managers in mid-level positions. These managers play a pivotal role because they report to top-level managers (ie. GM’s, COO or board of directors) while overseeing the activities of first-line managers. Thus, they need strong working relationships with individuals at all levels and in all areas. More than most other managers, they must use “people skills” to foster teamwork, build trust, manage conflict, and encourage improvement. [7]

Conceptual Skills

Managers at the top, who are responsible for deciding what’s good for the organization from the broadest perspective, rely on conceptual skills—the ability to reason abstractly and analyze complex situations. Senior executives are often called on to “think outside the box”—to arrive at creative solutions to complex, sometimes ambiguous problems. They need both strong analytical abilities and strong creative talents.

Communication Skills

Effective communication skills are crucial to just about everyone. At all levels of an organization, you’ll often be judged on your ability to communicate, both orally and in writing. Whether you’re talking informally or making a formal presentation, you must express yourself clearly and concisely. Talking too loudly, rambling, and using poor grammar reduces your ability to influence others, as does poor written communication. Confusing and error-riddled documents (including emails) don’t do your message any good, and they will reflect poorly on you. [8]

Time-Management Skills

Managers face multiple demands on their time, and their days are usually filled with interruptions. Ironically, some technologies that were supposed to save time, such as voicemail and email/texting, have actually increased workloads. Unless you develop certain time-management skills, you risk reaching the end of the day feeling that you’ve worked a lot but accomplished little. What can managers do to ease the burden? Here are a few common-sense suggestions:

  • Prioritize tasks, focusing on the most important things first.
  • Set aside a certain time each day to return phone calls and answer emails/texts.
  • Delegate routine tasks.
  • Don’t procrastinate.
  • Insist that meetings start and end on time, and stick to an agenda.
  • Eliminate unnecessary paperwork. [9]

Decision-Making Skills

Every manager is expected to make decisions, whether alone or as part of a team. Drawing on your decision-making skills is often a process in which you must define a problem, analyze possible solutions, and select the best outcome. As luck would have it, because the same process is good for making personal decisions, we’ll use a personal example to demonstrate the process approach to decision making. Consider the following scenario: you’re upset because your midterm grades are much lower than you’d hoped. To make matters worse, not only are you in trouble academically but also the other members of your golf business-project team are annoyed because you’re not pulling your weight. Your golf coach is very upset because you’ve missed too many practices, and members of your hockey team and coaching staff of which you’re the captain are talking about demoting you if you don’t show up at the next team meeting. And your significant other is feeling ignored.

A Six-Step Approach to Decision Making

Assuming that your top priority is salvaging your GPA, let’s tackle your problem by using a six-step approach to solving problems that don’t have simple solutions.

1. Identify the problem:  Step one is getting to know your problem, which you can formulate by asking yourself a basic question: how can I improve my grades?

2. Gathering relevant data:  Step two is gathering information that will shed light on the problem. Let’s rehash some of the relevant information that you’ve already identified: (a) you did poorly on your finals because you didn’t spend enough time studying; (b) you didn’t study because you went to see your partner (who lives about three hours from campus) over the weekend before your exams (and on most other weekends, as a matter of fact); (c) what little studying you got in came at the expense of your team project and golf practice; and (d) while you were away for the weekend, you forgot to tell members of your hockey team that you had to cancel the planned meeting.

3. Clarify the problem: Once you review all the given facts, you should see that your problem is bigger than simply getting your grades up; your life is pretty much out of control. You can’t handle everything to which you’ve committed yourself. Something has to give. You clarify the problem by summing it up with another basic question: what can I do to get my life back in order?

4. Generate possible solutions: Let’s say that you’ve come up with the following possible solutions to your problem: (a) quit the golf team, (b) step down as captain of the hockey team, (c) let team members do your share of work on the golf-business project, and (d) stop visiting your significant other so frequently. The solution to your main problem—how to get your life back in order—will probably require multiple actions.

5. Select the best options: Options to consider are; ask the assistant captain to take over the captaincy duties on the hockey team. Be upfront with your coach on attending golf practice, find ways to get caught up on your team golf-business project, and catch up in all your other classes.

6. Implement your decision and monitor your choice: When you call, you’re pleasantly surprised to find that your partner understands. The assistant captain is happy to take over the captaincy of the hockey team. After the first week, you’re able to attend golf practice, get caught up on your team golf-business project, and catch up in all your other classes. The real test of your solution will be the results of the semester’s finals

Applying Your Skills at Notes-4-You

So, what types of skills will managers at Notes-4-You need? To oversee note-taking and copying operations, first-line managers will require technical skills, probably in operations and perhaps in accounting. Middle managers will need strong interpersonal skills to maintain positive working relationships with subordinates and motivate them. As president (the top manager), because you have to solve problems and come up with creative ways to keep the business growing, you’ll need conceptual skills. And everyone will have to communicate effectively: after all, because you’re in the business of selling written notes, it would look pretty bad if your employees wrote poorly. Finally, everyone will have to use time efficiently and call on problem-solving skills to handle the day-to-day crises that seem to plague every new company. Here is an example of an organization structure Notes-4-You might employ:

Hierarchical flowchart of an organizational strucutre for Notes-4-You. the Owner | President is at the top. Four managers are on the next level with four supervisors on the next level reporting to two of the managers. Sales staff, note-takers, and copiers each report to one of the supervisors.
“Potential organization chart for the Note-4-You company”

Key Terms

Strategic planning: the process of establishing an overall course of action.

A mission statement describes the purpose of your organization—the reason for its existence.

Clublink is Canada’s largest owner and operator of high-quality golf courses and resort properties.

Mission: Enrich the experience of dedicated golfers through products and services of superior performance, quality, and innovation.

Vision: Build a family of golf performance brands that are unrivaled leaders in every category in which we compete.

Core values are the fundamental beliefs about what’s important and what is and isn’t appropriate in conducting company activities.

SWOT Analysis: A common approach to environmental analysis to matching the strengths of your business with the opportunities available to it.

Internal factors could influence company performance in either a positive or negative way.

Goals are major accomplishments that the company wants to achieve over a long period.

Objectives are shorter-term performance targets that direct the activities of the organization toward the attainment of a goal.

Tactical plans are the manageable shorter-term components of the overall plan.

Operational Components that provide detailed action steps to be taken by individuals or groups to implement the tactical and strategic plans.

Contingency planning helps to identify those aspects of the business that are most likely to be adversely affected by the change.

Leading means to providing focus and direction to others and motivating them to achieve organizational goals.

Transactional leaders exercise authority based on their rank in the organization.

Transformational leaders mentor and develop subordinates, providing them with challenging opportunities, working one-on-one to help them meet their professional and personal needs, and encouraging people to approach problems from new perspectives.

Controlling is the process of comparing actual to planned performance and taking necessary corrective action.

Benchmarking involves comparisons to other organizations’ practices and processes with the objective of learning and improvement in both efficiency and effectiveness.
Technical skills that are needed to perform specific tasks.

Interpersonal skills are the ability to get along with and motivate other people.


Key Takeaways

  1. Management must include both efficiency (accomplishing goals using the fewest resources possible) and effectiveness (accomplishing goals as accurately as possible).
  2. The management process has four functions: planning, organizing, leading, and controlling.
  3. Planning for a business starts with strategic planning—the process of establishing an overall course of action.
  4. Management first identifies its purposes, creates a mission statement, and defines its core values.
  5. A SWOT analysis assesses the company’s strengths and weaknesses and its fit with the external environment.
  6. Goals and objectives, or performance targets, are established to direct company actions, and tactical plans and operational plans implement objectives.
  7. A manager’s leadership style varies depending on the manager, the situation, and the people being directed. There are several management styles:
    • An autocratic manager tends to make decisions without input and expects subordinates to follow instructions.
    • Managers who prefer a democratic style seek input into decisions.
    • A free rein manager provides no more guidance than necessary and lets subordinates make decisions and solve problems.
  8. Transactional style managers exercise authority according to their rank in the organization, let subordinates know what’s expected of them, and step in when mistakes are made.
  9. Transformational style managers mentor and develop subordinates and motivate them to achieve organizational goals.
  10. The control process can be viewed as a five-step process: (1) establish standards, (2) measure performance, (3) compare actual performance with standards and identify any deviations, (4) determine the reason for deviations, and (5) take corrective action if needed. Benchmarking is a process for improving overall company efficiency and effectiveness by comparing performance to competitors.
  11. Top managers need strong conceptual skills, while those at midlevel need good interpersonal skills, and those at lower levels need technical skills.
  12. All managers need strong communication, decision-making, and time management skills.

  1. ClubLink. (n.d.). Who we are.
  2. Acushnet Holdings Corp. (n.d.). Who we are.
  3. Acushnet Holdings Corp. (n.d.). Who we are: Core values.  [
  4. Safranski, S. and Kwon, I. (1991). Strategic Planning for the Growing Business. U.S. Small Business Administration. Retrieved from:
  5. Reh, J. (n.d.). Management 101. About Money. Retrieved from:
  6. Burke, S., & Collins, K. M. (2001). Gender differences in leadership styles and management skills. Women in Management Review.
  7. Perkins, B. (2000). Defining Crisis Management. Wharton Magazine. Retrieved from:
  8. Davis, B. L., et al. (1992). Successful Manager’s Handbook: Development Suggestions for Today’s Managers. Minneapolis: Personnel Decisions Inc.
  9. Davis, B. L., et al. (1992). Successful Manager’s Handbook: Development Suggestions for Today’s Managers. Minneapolis: Personnel Decisions Inc.


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Business Fundamentals for the Golf & Club Industry Copyright © 2022 by Robert Foster is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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