• 21Mar
    Categories: Uncategorized Comments Off on Quality Management Framework for Educational Institutions

    Introduction

    Management is the ability to create, organize and utilize resources, economically, efficiently & effectively. Management is essential aspect of human life, both personal as well as collective. Personal management shapes effective individuals, while collective management is required for well-performing institutions. Management is either good or poor. Poor management plays a decisive role in institutional failure or ineffectiveness. Educational institutions provide knowledge, build character and enhance wisdom level of students. They prepare students for practical life. An inefficient-ineffective educational institution will produce harmful individuals for society. There are multiple reasons of inefficiency or ineffectiveness of an educational institution such as mediocrity of teachers, irrelevancy of syllabus, ineffective headship and poor management system. However, poor management is decisive drawback of non-performing educational institutions. Poor management means – traditional management techniques by educational entrepreneurs, imitative leadership approach by academicians, micro management style by head teacher/principal, investor mindset by owners, and dictatorial approach of classroom management by teachers.

    There are three major areas of Quality Learning Process – Key Activities Area, Performance Area, and Relations Area. Firstly, the key activities revolve around knowledge absorption / knowledge dissemination. Generally, the key activities include learning goals, course planning, learning schedule, teaching methods, and classroom management. Secondly, the performance area concentrates on learning outcomes. It studies learning performance of students, teaching performance of subject teachers, and managing performance of class teacher/principal. Thirdly, the relations analysis addresses multiple relations among students, teachers, parents, and educational managers. Dominantly, it deals with effective management of all learning events. The ultimate target of relation analysis is to realize synergistic outcomes from learning process.

    Quality Management Vs Micro Management

    Governance is inevitable aspect of collective life. It may adopt two courses – good & bad. Good governance is based on Quality Management while bad governance is outcome of Micro Management. Primarily, Quality Management is a system that pursues relentlessly excellence towards improvement of services offered, while Micro Management adopts cosmetic approach towards improvement. Quality management differs with micro management on countless dimensions however the prominent differences are:

    Quality management is modern management, while micro management is traditional management. Traditional management is very hierarchical, organized, and disciplined. It is the military style of management, so that it only works in the military or in a micro set up. On the other hand, quality management is democratic management; it is against dominating tactics of individuals. A quality manager derives its powers from the principles she/he follows while the micro manager derives its power from the position she/he enjoys.

    Quality Management utilizes talent of people at all levels (learning, teaching and management) optimally, while Micro Management concentrates on talents of leader only, it is forgetful towards talents of everyone or collective talent based on healthy competition or cooperation. At institutional level, an achievement or failure is dominantly team phenomenon. The phenomenon of individualism means massive flattery of leaders / seniors. In nutshell, quality management means meritorious interaction, while micro management means massive institutional politics.

    Quality Management is based on humanistic philosophy. It begins with the belief that all people can be trained for the betterment of system. People want to do a good job and expect respect. The philosophy behind the approach values the self-esteem of those who teach and learn. It is Micro Management that deals with teachers/students, wrongly. The situation nurtures apathetic mindset among students/teachers. On the other hand, quality management develops empathetic mindset among students/teachers.

    Quality Management postulates that the system of an institution is vital for staff performance. At the time of crises, the quality framework advises a system approach, it is the system that overwhelmingly is the main source of problem. The quality framework gives special attention to the processes that produce substandard services. It is a comprehensive and cooperative management so that it is against managing each component as though it were separate from the others and warns steps that pit the person against the system and against other persons. In micro-management processes are ignored and persons get undue importance. A micro-leader adopts generally the policy of ‘divide & rule’, so that workers are derisive towards each other.

    Quality Management believes in personal responsibility, but goes beyond that concept to consider the especial responsibilities of those who manage for optimum system performance. A proactive concern for how people respond to managerial actions is crucial to the success of quality management, which is why the theory emphasis the need for managers to understand elementary principles of psychology, statistics and decision analysis to analyze the ground realities during some decision-making/interactive process. In micro management, there is gulf between thoughts, words & deeds of leader. A micro-manager manipulates persons/situations for optimum performance, so that performance is unstable and volatile. A consistent performance of students/teachers is inevitable requirement of educational institutions, so that micro-management means failure.

    Law of Causation is universal phenomenon of life. The law categorically states that an outcome is inevitably based on some antecedent, that is, there is mean-end duality. Means are antecedents; they are necessary precondition for ends. An end can be materialized through right or wrong mean. Human life repeatedly faces the dilemma of right mean vs. wrong mean. Sometime, an end become unachievable, seemingly or really, through right means consequently means are generally comprised by effort-makers. For example, profit is an essential end for institutional viability; it can be achieved through wrong means such as rent-seeking, kick-backs, manipulation of teachers and manipulation of students. Quality management proposes wise mean-end framework for goal materialization. In micro-management means are not decisive during goals realization process so that means are compromised now and then. Micro Management is derisive towards law of causation so that it breeds mistrust among stakeholders and fails ultimately.

    It is generally said, justice delayed is justice denied / justice hurried is justice buried. At institutional level procrastination or haste are two great menaces that disturb institutional performance, now and again. Micro Management is unable to tackle these issues due to non-system thinking. The solution lies in systematic thinking towards time efficiency / information efficiency, these factors are vital tools of quality management against haste or procrastination.

    The end-user of a service is always decisive for the survival of institution. Parents are decisive for the continual existence of educational institution. Quality Management gives due importance to the requirements of all parents especially responsible parents. On the other hand, Micro Management gives importance only to reactive and affluent parents. The situation is not tenable, so that institution fails eventually.

    Elements of Quality Framework

    An institution is contractual arrangement of interdependent individuals to realize some goals and objectives; it works under the direction of some leader. Institutions are multiple, both quantitatively and qualitatively, and multilateral, both operationally and structurally. The orientation of an institution determines its course of action. For example, a specific group of some individuals assimilated to provide knowledge and to shape behavior-pattern of children give shape to schools, school is a social institution. Similarly, we can observe countless social, economic, and political institutions working in a modern society. A well-performing institution needs some success factors/performance indicators. An effective educational institution generally practices ten elements for quality management. Each variable has a functional significance that cannot be ignored. The elements are:

    MISSION, VALUES, VISION, STRATEGY, SKILLS, RESOURCES, ORGANIZATION, EVALUATION, REWARD STRUCTURE AND ADJUSTMENTS

    The efficacy of each element is tested on three grounds – foundational, structural, and operational. The first three elements – mission, values, and vision – have foundational significance. The next four elements – strategy, skills, resources, and organization – erect stable institutional structure. The last three elements – evaluation, rewards, and adjustment – have operational significance. The foundational, structural and operational aspects jointly shape a well-performing educational institution.

  • 21Mar
    Categories: Uncategorized Comments Off on Positive Change in the Management Will Change the Organization Positively

    Management was considered a skill and art. People said leaders are born. Then people said leaders could be inspired. Now people say that leaders could be trained. It is true that we could be trained and taught to become leaders. Management is a leadership skill. The best leadership ever is the leadership by example. If the example is right then the understanding will be full. If the example is not right then the understanding will not be right.

    Companies and organizations have managers and management levels. Smaller companies might have only one level of management and there might be only one individual as a manager. Larger corporations have different levels of management. There might be junior managers who directly deal with base level employees. There might be middle managers who interact between the junior managers and the senior managers. There might be a higher management team which would be at the top of the organizational structure.

    If an organization is established to be bigger, the management would have been planned and structured beforehand. Most organizations that are worldwide and famous now, were not planned to be so when they were initiated. If you take any of the gigantic businesses, corporate companies or organizations, most of them were not meant to be grown into worldwide entities. In fact, some of the current successful and worldwide businesses were opened up for fun. We can consider the United Nations Organization as one of the very few organizations which were meant to be worldwide as they were established.

    The change becomes necessary when the organization transforms from a small group of people having fun to a larger entity of importance in the society. When Facebook was launched, it consisted of only one manager; the founder himself. Now it has over 10,000 employees with different levels of management. Google was started with two people. Now it has more than 57,000 employees worldwide. This is the transformation that takes place when a company or organization grows.

    All companies had to face the issue of transforming from a smaller stage to a bigger stage. Once they transform, the organizations which changed their structure of management accordingly were able to survive. The management of whichever organization was resistant to change had to pay the price of losing the organization. If an analysis is done on the organizations, companies or corporate businesses which were closed or sold, then the management would be held responsible for ending up in such situations.

    The most effective mode of management is to lead by example. A military is a controlled system that runs by orders. One of the most important aspects in the military is that the leader who is giving an order also carries out that order. For example if a soldier is required to wear a uniform, then the chief of the battalion is required the same. If a soldier is required to carry out training exercises, the commander is required too. In other words, militaries are successful organizations not because the leaders or managers have much authority but because they lead by example.

    As a simple fact, if a manager keeps his table clean all the time, he can ask his subordinates to keep their table clean. There will be no opposition. Since the subordinates know that their manager always keeps his table clean, they will have no excuse or reason to give him. The leader gets his authority through his example behavior and not through shouting at people.

    Since management is essentially leadership, it should lead by example. The duty of higher management is to make sure that there are example leaders in the middle management. The middle management consists of the most sensitive links with most critical positions. The middle management of any organization is the bridge between the workforce and the managing force. If the bridge is not right, then the journey wouldn’t be fulfilled.

    As organizations transform from small to big, the gap for a middle management arises. The top managers might be able to manage 10 staff but not 100. If the top management decided to manage all staff without middle management, it is like building a suspension bridge without any poles in the middle. It will work for up to a certain length. If the bridge exceeds the optimum length, then the strength would be in question.

    It is the same with a growing business. There have to be changes to address the needs of tomorrow. Most organizations fail because they try to address the problems that took place yesterday and they forget to think and make a plan to avoid problems tomorrow. In the long run, this kind of organization will have problems piled up from the past and will be facing problems in the future as well.

    The aspects of the management should change in a way that the management should be able to think, anticipate and identify potential problems in the future. They should then be able to get ready to face and solve the problems before the problems hit the organization. If this is not considered by the management, then the day to day problems will keep all the staff occupied in problem solving. While everyone is busy trying to solve the problems, the intended regular tasks will be missed. The missed tasks will seed for new problems in the future. Since the management is not willing to change, the same will take place in a loop.

    A few managers don’t consider themselves as examples. The manager might not think that he is not supposed to be an example, but the employee will always look at the manager as an example. If the manager is not punctual, then the employee will either become like the manager or will not like the manager. If people don’t like other people, it is hard to take tasks from them. If you are a manager and your employee doesn’t want to take tasks from you, then you are in trouble.

    Every single aspect of the manager is critical to the organization. If there are five different managers in an organization, all of them should be together and be leading by example. The employees who look at the managers should get an impression to become like the managers. In a few organizations the founders or the owners make sure that the staff will like the management. If someone in the management is spoiling the name of the entire management, that person would usually be fired.

    Some say that the only job of a manager is to hire staff. I strongly disagree. The only job of a manager is to manage. Managing is a leadership aspect. The best leadership is to lead by example. To be a positive example, the manager has to be positive in all qualities. If the manager is positive in all senses, the employees will like the manager. If the employees like the manager, then they will listen to the manager. If the manager asks them to do something, they will do it. A positively qualified example manager is going to ask only something good for the organization. At the end, a positive change in the management will change the organization positively.