Published: 08-Mar-2018 Last Edited: 01-Sep-2018
The framework and dimension of management experienced many reforms and powerful trends in the present century. The reforms and trends provided and reshaped the composition and dimension of management in several ways. The dimension of management and gender is an example of such transformation which has transformed the terms of employer-employee relationship in the current era. The dimension of management and gender is most commonly associated and understood with the terms of employee inequality, male dominance, inappropriate ratio of men and women in the total workforce, etc. The emergence of such terms has attracted the attention of many management scholars and practitioners across the globe (Reed 2001).
The wide popularity and demand of discussion on the issue of management and gender has transformed and coined the topic as management perspective. The phenomena of management and gender is no longer considered as issue, rather it is being visualised and understood as a management perspective. The gender issue and employment inequality has been resolved and satisfied with the help of many regulatory frameworks. The government of various countries have introduced various rules and regulations aimed at resolving the gender gaps and inequality issues in the commercial world (Sweetman 2001). The concept of human rights has also attributed lot in providing new dimension and direction to the concept of gender in management.
Now-a-days, business world functions through varied workforce in order to accelerate the pace of innovations and to attain new dimension of growth and expansion. The fluctuations in market demand also necessitate the business organisation to incorporate variability in their functioning pattern to respond to such changes quickly and flexibly in the market place. The flexibility, variability and diversity characteristics enable the management of business organisations to identify and respond the needs of new markets in a quick and responsive manner (Bilimoria and Piderit 2007). The quick and immediate attention towards changes taking place in the market place demand reforms in the existing approach and philosophy of traditional management. The traditional approach of management which rely on the male dominating workforce seems ineffective and inadequate in present day environment. The business organisations having diversified workforce can cope and handle such changes and fluctuations in an effective manner and can gain foothold in the marketplace.
The present essay aims at elaborating the linkage between management and gender. The linkage between management and gender will outline the gender issues existing in the traditional philosophy of management. The gender issues will be explored and investigated through the literary sources. The study of gender issues prevailing in the traditional management world will help in determining the extent, influence and trends prevailing in the gender framework. But, with the passage of time and abolishment of male dominating society has provided new dimension to gender issue in business organisations (Collins et al. 2012). The increasing role of women and minorities has brought many changes in the realm of management. The present essay aims at presenting and summarising the changes in the gender realm and impact of such changes on the management of business organisations.
The literary sources will present analysis and investigation of the concerned topic in light of various literary sources. The literary sources that will be approached primarily for the purpose of investigation and analysis of topic are books, journal articles, research work, etc. All the literary sources will collect various facts and findings related to the underlying topic and changes emerging in the concerned topic. The literature review will collect and analyse the information regarding the linkage between management and gender from relevant and authentic literary articles. The literary sources will provide a thorough and in-depth understanding of the various aspects of the underlying topic (Wilson 2001). The investigation of the linkage between the management and gender and evaluating it in light of literary sources will help in ascertaining and drawing concluding results and observations regarding research topic.The linkage between the management and gender has been discussed and outlined in different parts such as:
Stevenson and St-Onge (2005) asserted that management and gender perspective has been visualised and understood as a means of providing heterogeneous workforce to the business organisations. The demand of heterogeneous workforce has become the basic and prime requirement of business organisations to compete and sustain in the present competitive dynamics. The author has further asserted that management and gender has been conceptualised as a new perspective on account of its ability and potentiality of providing diversified workforce to the business firms. The diversified and heterogeneous workforce accelerates the pace of innovation and development in the business world.
The changing and diversified nature of customer needs and preferences also correspond the requirement of diversified workforce to handle and cope up with such changed needs and preferences. The diversity in the workforce here implies providing equal opportunity to the men, women and ethnic minorities in the overall workforce composition of business organisations. The business firms are expected and required to offer flexible set of work arrangement, wage pay, rewards and benefits to the entire workforce in order to motivate and encourage them to adjust and function in the complex environmental setting of business organisations. The composition of diversified workforce enables the business firms to develop the foundation of delivering flexible, on-demand customer services and developing strong relationship with each employee (Stevenson and St-Onge 2005).
The era of mergers and acquisitions also facilitated the inclusion of diversified workforce in the business organisations. Various forms of business consolidations like mergers, acquisitions, takeover, etc allow the business organisations to recruit and include the employees of different origins, culture, and customs. The inclusion of employees of varied culture, customs, and origins bring a changing landscape in the dimension of management and gender.
According to Heath(2000), changes and shifts in the demographic pattern across the world fosters new theme and idea of analysing management and gender linkages. The demographic pattern of the workforce has changed considerably in the present years. The changes and shifts in the demographic pattern have been evidenced with the increasing number and proportion of women in the total composition of workforce. The women represent around 48 percent in the total composition of workforce of United States. The changing family patterns and work structure led the researchers to project an increase in the proportion of women in the total workforce composition (Heath 2000).
The author argued that changes in the family patterns and work structures led the women to participate actively in the business functioning. The women workforce are being provided with more flexible schedules and work preferences in order to encourage them towards participating in business organisations functioning. The changes in the demographic shifts demand the business organisations to include the women and ethnic minorities in the existing composition of workforce. The demographic shift has also been visualised by the business firms as step towards becoming competitive and technology driven. It becomes necessary for business organisation to keep pace with the changes in the demographic shifts to remain competitive and dynamic in the business world (Heath 2000).
The emergence of knowledge based economy demand knowledge workers to initiate and stimulate the pace of knowledge based works in the business organisations as mentioned by Phillips (2006). The changing and dynamic environment conditions require the workers and employees of present business organisations to function and operate in every environmental setting. The skill, abilities and capabilities of workers and employees should be such that they are capable of functioning in each environmental setting. Now-a-days, business organisations are in search of such manpower and workers capable of working in each and every possible environmental dynamics. In other words, employees capable of moulding and adjusting their skills and abilities in accordance with the environment needs and demand are demanded and recruited by the business firms.
This inclination and changes in the orientation of business firms in recruiting and employing workforce of dynamic skills and capabilities provided new insight to the management and gender dynamics. The emergence of knowledge based economy and demand of knowledge work provided absolute freedom to the business organisations in recruiting and employing personnel backed and equipped with dynamic skills and abilities. The realm of gender has no longer been viewed as a restrictive platform requiring organisations to recruit particular class and category of employees. Rather, it has been viewed as a broader platform allowing business organisations to recruit required class and category of employees compatible with overall organisation goals and objectives (Phillips 2006).
According to Ruxton (2004), the increased proportion and emergence of women in the workforce in the past few decades transformed management and gender linkages to a wide extent. The increased number and proportion of women in the supervisor and managerial levels led the management thinkers and practitioners to assess the management and gender linkages in a positive and assertive manner. The transformation in the management and gender linkages placed the women at higher supervisory and management levels in business organisations. The placement of women at higher managerial and supervisory levels focussed the attention of business scholars towards skills and abilities of women workforce.
The skills and abilities of women in solving business problems and issues introduced and initiate the feminist style of management in business world. The business problems and issues remained unsolved or appear difficult to be solved by the male managerial members are solved quite easily through soft skills of female managerial members. The association of management and gender has provided the business world with the new insight and understanding of women’s abilities and capabilities in solving business issues and problems (Ruxton 2004).
The linkage between the management and gender has been impacted and transformed by the three major trends-emergence of diversified and heterogeneous workforce, increased importance of knowledge work, changes in the demographic shifts and feminist style of management. The discussion in relation to management and gender has been made in light of the findings of the literature review. More specifically, underlying section of discussion makes an attempt to ascertain the impact of management and gender perspective on business world. The major discussion points related to the linkage of management and gender are:
The findings of literature review asserted that emergence of workforce diversity on account of changes in the landscape of management and gender. The increased importance and recognition of women and ethnic minorities has made the prevailing culture and workforce as diversified and multi-tasking. The workforce diversity has been visualised as a major trend of management and gender perspective and led the business organisations to shift their orientation from industrial based economy to knowledge based economy.
The knowledge based economy led the business organisations to adopt fast, adaptable and innovative method of functioning. In the past years, the standardised and uniform business model was being highly valued and recognised by the business organisations. The standardisation and uniformity in the business process was being viewed as a source of competitive advantage. Employees and personnel were considered as interchangeable and easily replaceable asset by the business organisations. The employees and personnel were expected to adhere by the instructions and were expected to maintain deliver high production efficiency (Toward Gender Equality in East Asia and the Pacific: A Companion to the World Development Report 2012).
The framework of management and gender has changes and transformed the traditional thinking and evolved workforce diversity as the major source of competitive advantage. The diversity in the workforce provides new and powerful opportunities for enhancing organisation performance. The performance is enhanced as people from varied backgrounds and skills foster new creativity and innovation method of functioning to the business firms. The diversified skills, competencies, adaptability, immediate and fast responsive abilities of diversified workforce introduce new and innovate thinking pattern and broad perspectives in business organisations (Markovi? 2012).
The changing realm of management and gender fosters the business organisations with new approaches and methods of implementing corporate strategies. The new approaches and methods of implementing corporate strategies stems from the different work shifts and work patterns of diversified workforce. The diversified workforce does not pose uniform and similar working patterns. Employees and personnel in the diversified workforce belong from varied backgrounds and skills and therefore functions in different work patterns and work shifts. This peculiar characteristic of diverse workforce and changing realm of management and gender offers the business organisations with the opportunity of selecting employees posing the skills and capabilities suitable with their respective strategic framework. The diverse workforce poses different work patterns and work shifts and thus implements the corporate strategies in an effective manner.
The changes in the demographic shifts also attributed with the introduction of new work patterns and work shifts thus provide new paradigm to the management and gender perspective. The varied and differing work arrangement is another major outcome of changing landscape of management and gender (Konrad 2005). The employees and workforce of business organisations can work for flexible hours. The business organisations of present word are in demand of diverse workforce capable of forming a cohesive team in order to attain the defined objectives. The cohesive team pose the right kind of skills and support the execution of corporate strategies. The business organisations need to provide right combination of opportunities and rewards to motivate and encourage workforce to perform optimally.
The point of discussion stems from the incorporation of feminist style of management in business world. The feminist style of management has provided new approach and methodology in solving business problems. The business problems and issues which were solved initially by the dominating and harsh skills of male managers appear no longer effective in current scenario. Business organisations seek for such skills capable of solving and handling business issues and problems in a comparative soft approach. It is due to reason that sound and positive relations with all stakeholders is of utmost importance for recording high growth and development opportunities.
The relationship management has emerged as one of the essential and significant functions of business organisations. The relations can be managed and maintained by the business personnel and employees functioning in respective organisations. The role of business personnel in managing and enriching relations with stakeholders again draw attention towards management and gender perspectives. The changing demand of relationship management demands each and every personnel of business firms to participate actively in the relationship management tasks and process. This changing demand of relationship management again draws attention towards management and gender perspectives (Ryle 2011). The traditional approach of management and gender perspective revolved only around male managerial members in developing positive relationship with stakeholders. The role of women was completely undermined in developing positive relations with stakeholders and in solving business issues.
The male and female members are assigned with the equivalent powers and responsibilities necessary to discharge their duties in an effective manner. Besides, modern perspective of management and gender emphasis and relies on soft and creative skills of female members in managing and maintaining business relations. The modern scholars and management practitioners believes that soft, creative and dynamic skills of female managers can prove more effective and will yield better results in relationship management spectrum.
This is another major implication and consequence of changing realm of management and gender perspectives. The management and gender perspective played a significant role in eliminating gender differences and gaps from commercial world. The perspective of management and gender allowed the business organisations to learn and deal with the internal differences arising on account of gender gaps and issues. This learning and capability allow the business organisations to respond and adapt more easily with the changing circumstances. The business organisations also introduce open and direct communication among all working people regardless of any gender difference. The open and direct communication provided with enhanced speed and agility and led the business firms to be more innovative in solving business problems (Bilimoria and Piderit 2007).
The overall discussion about the perspective of management and gender led to the conclusion that gender differences, wage differentials among men and women members, dominance of male managerial personnel, etc are some of the key areas brought attention towards this management perspective. The issue of gender gaps and wage inequality gained considerable attention in recent years and create negative impact on the sustainable position of global business world. Such factors attracted the attention of management practitioners and scholars towards gender issues and coined the management and gender perspective.
The management and gender perspective witnessed and evidenced the trends of changes in demographic shifts, workforce diversity, feminist style of management, and knowledge based economy (Little and Morris 2005). The emergences of these trends brought various reforms and changes in the business world. The traditional pattern and mode of functioning of business organisations has been rendered ineffective in present world. The business organisations are in demand and need of ‘groupthink’ process allowing each and every category of personnel to participate and facilitate business decisions.
The human resources and personnel are the major assets of business organisations and can drive growth and development process. The active participation of business personnel can stimulate the process of growth and development in business organisations. It is also worth mentioning that business organisations capable of innovating and identifying new solutions can sustain and improve their current positioning in the market place (Penrose-Buckley 2007). Innovation and identification of new solutions demand active participation of every individual member of business organisations. Business organisations capable of integrating and harnessing the contributions of each individual members can only gain and sustain in present scenario. This is due to fact that such organisations are capable of creating a cohesive teams and utilising synergistic power of team for enhancing their business competitiveness.
The global trends and changing dynamics of business world necessitate changes in the traditional perspective of management and gender. The global trends and business world dynamics demand perspective of management and gender to provide equal opportunity and responsibility to all members of organisations in participating and handling business issues and problems irrespective of any gender gaps and differences.