Critically Evaluate the Relevance of the Contingency Approach to Managing on the Managerial Work of the Manager You Interviewed.

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Critically evaluate the relevance of the contingency approach to managing on the managerial work of the manager you interviewed.

Jane Smith is the Director of Human Resources and Operations of a mid-sized (approx. 700 staff), ASX listed, insurance and wealth management firm – XYZ Wealth (pseudonyms have been used to respect the privacy of both the HRD and the firm involved). XYZ Wealth operates across Australia, with the management team based in Melbourne. Jane directly leads a team of seven HR and communication employees and five operations staff, and has a strong influence across the organisation. Reporting to the CEO, with both board and ASX reporting responsibilities, Jane’s role and authority at XYZ Wealth is prominent. As the HR
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In effect, Jane is using one of Mintzberg’s ‘Managing on Three Levels’ (being, information) technique (Mintzberg, 1994). Non-routine technologies, however, have high task variety and experience and technical knowledge are used to perform the work and solve problems. Using Woodward’s research, organisations with more non-routine technologies are more likely to have organic structures (Robbins et al, 2009)

Similar to many companies in finance, XYZ Wealth has traditionally had a very bureaucratic structure based around division of labor, central controls and a strict hierarchy – almost Weber’s ideal bureaucratic structure. (Robbins et al, 2009) - with the CEO at the top and the majority of staff (in processing and call centre roles) making up the bottom. Divisions were created by job role and geography and the machinations of the firm had little to do with the head office and their goals. However, since the challenge of Global Financial Crisis (GFC) companies, particularly in financial fields, have had to be leaner and more able to change and faster at doing it. XYZ Wealth has started to develop a flatter management structure, with a matrix-reporting style and business units connecting with each other (Chapman, 2001). For instance, instead of all Human Resources (HR) consultants sitting together in an HR team environment, those dedicated to a
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