HOMEWORK

Assessment Guidance for Assignment #2
Discuss how an awareness of management theories can influence the practice of management.
Use as many examples, or counter examples, as you see fit. Make sure that you write a theoretically
rich assignment which demonstrates a critical and reflexive approach to the relationship between
theory and practice.
Submission: Thursday 1st April 2021 at 12pm (12.00) through Turnitin only – do not submit a paper
copy.
Ensure that your name, ID number, and Tutor’s name are on your cover page. When submitting
work through Turnitin, students using Apple devices with the default browser (Safari) should
switch to Google Chrome or use a non-Mac OS or device such as a PC in a HWU computer lab. If
you have any difficulties uploading your Assignment on the day of submission then please email it
to the course coordinator before the deadline.
Marks will be released at the same time as the exam grades for your other courses, after the
Summer Exam Board has met.
Word limit: 1,750 words (± 10%) excluding reference list.
You are being asked to ‘discuss how an awareness of management theories can influence the
practice of management’. You could draw on your own direct experience of managing or
organising tasks and it is also legitimate for you to reflect on experiences of being
managed/organised by others. In either case, you are being asked to choose some aspect of
managerial practice, and discuss how an awareness of relevant theories such as those covered in
this course might inform and/or improve such practice. We have not specified how many theories
you should use, but we are expecting it to be ‘theoretically rich’ meaning if you choose fewer, we
are expecting a deeper level of analyses. You can use any theories taught within the course, but
we will be expecting you to move beyond the theoretical focus chosen for your first assignment.
Remember when we talk of managerial practice, it is managers in organisations doing managerial
and organisational things. Examples of managing are almost limitless but might include issues such
as delegating tasks to members of a team, coordinating activities, reviewing performance, training
colleagues, redesigning tasks, recruitment, disciplinary issues, developing new products/services,
handling complaints, dealing with customers/suppliers, etc. How might an appreciation of relevant
theories help improve the delivery of these tasks?
When it comes to ‘a critical and reflexive approach’ we are asking you to demonstrate that you are
not just thinking in the abstract about other people as managers but that you can ground your
discussion in your own experience. This may take the form of reflecting on your own experience
of managing or being managed. Focus on your own attitudes and responses. How has your own
thinking changed? Be critical in your selection of examples and ask what does this reveal about the
nature of management practice? What assumptions are being made, which theories might suit
which situations, what do your reflections tell us, what can’t they tell us? Please note this is not an
invitation to tell an anecdote about your experience of managing or being managed. Clear, critical
and theoretically informed reflections on your experience are more important than telling us a
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long story about what happened. Build an argument and take a point of view on the subject. The
reflexive element of your assignment might reasonably constitute 200-300 words and is not the
only task you have to undertake in this assignment.
Simple searches through Business Source Premier will show various reputable articles which apply
theories to certain managerial practices. These articles will likely apply a critical lens to the theories.
Read them and use them.
In the assessment process we will be looking at:

  1. Structure
     To structure your writing in a way that is clear and helps the reader follow your argument.
     To provide comprehensive, appropriate and connected sets of ideas that flow together
    well.
     To provide accurate references (e.g. Harvard style, number of journals such as web-based
    or other published materials).
  2. Knowledge
     Explain relevant theories accurately
     Show good evidence of understanding of key ideas, concepts, definitions, etc. from a
    thorough review of relevant literature.
  3. Application
     Informed reflection account of the relationship between theories and managerial practice.
     Apply how the theories explain what is or what should be going on in a managerial
    situation.
     Account reflexively for your own managerial practice and/or your experience of being
    managed.
  4. Criticality
     Application of a critical lens to managerial practice
     Provide well-reasoned argument