This presentation includes as many as 22 pertinent universal issues governing management accompanied with examples from various sectors, followed by a brief case analyses of corporate culture at British Airways.
CONTEMPORARY ISSUES IN MANAGEMENT
Lecture Series 2013
C P Rijal, PhD
Faculty of Management Studies
July 6, 2013 firstname.lastname@example.org
Our link for the discussion today…
Nepal is in search of visionary institutional
leaders and managers, more in numbers,
for more sustainable transformation of
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So, let’s talk about a few powerful
managerial issues in Nepalese context.
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Please make sure each one of you have
your say on each issue we discuss today…
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Our national bureaucracy, defense,
politics, private and social sector –
everywhere is an immense need of
effective managers capable to
respond with the effects of
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So many successful world class
managers are time again charged for
not being adequately accountable for
what they are supposed to be.
How often do you act by shouldering
the responsibility of your team
failure? Many people love ‘passing the
failure’ onto others.
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Senior managers at BBC are time again blamed
for not working with responsiveness towards
the society for what they are expected to do.
In any business, just earning is not the end;
there starts your obligation to paying off to the
society for what it allowed you to be there at
that height; please be sincere of your
responsibility for the society.
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Mostly, the western management is blamed
for not being able to take a balanced
approach in managing workforce diversity.
What about the racial discrimination in the
UK? Isn’t it true that the Nepalese managers
are at cross-roads to empower people with
equitable distribution of opportunities?
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Even Steve Jobs, one of the world’s ever
innovative entrepreneur managers, was
shacked from the position of CEO at
Apple, which he created vesting his
blood, toil, sweat and tears; He was
charged for not being innovative;
Responding to changing environment is
always a daunting task for all managers.
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Senior management normally takes it
as a cost adding proposition to
improve quality and productivity; in
fact, it reduces the cost, if managed
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Despite having the largest business
networks throughout the country,
Nepal Bank Limited and Rastriya
Banijya Bank have been facing tough
time for their survival.
Corporate leadership is more than
managing; it is rather all about
stimulating innovation and change.
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Enron, the world’s one time largest
power generator, and a UK based historic
news agency collapsed for not being able
to improve their ethical behavior.
Momento Garments headed by one of
the former FNCCI presidents in Nepal
collapsed whilst doing an excellent
business. Why? What about Necon Air?
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Do you know, why Rato Bangla School has been
helping to transform all primary schools of
Whose ad theme is it – ‘Bhatta Khayau
Surya Nepal has supported in developing all
school infrastructure in at least 10 VDCs around
its cigarette factory at Simara.
These are a few examples of institutional social
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Do you know, the patent rights of
most of our natural medicinal herbs
are already reserved by foreigners?
So, what’s the problem? They have
won us in knowledge management for
which we will have to pay them very
big cost while using our natural
resources in the days to come.
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You may be surprised to know that most
of our ministers and high rank officers in
public institutions do not know how to
work in computer-added working
How can you be sure about their likely
contribution to come up with the
proposition to managing with the world
of ICTs, which is most essential today?
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As a result of excessive work stress and
productivity focus of the top
management, there exists the highest
rate of corporate suicides in Japan. In US,
the workplace violations are sometimes
very much critical.
Besides improving performance, top
management today faces tough time to
help employees balance their work and
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All managers are bound to create
positive tensions for innovation to
happen, productivity to excel, and job
satisfaction to prevail.
Unfortunately, our NOC employees are
put to be least bothered about
operational innovation; it is a constantly
loss making pubic entity that pays off
with the highest rate of employee bonus
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Ncell has gone far ahead improving
customer services compared to Nepal
How long can NTC enjoy its market
leadership this way?
Ncell claims itself today as the largest
happy family in the country…
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It is heard that Janga Bahadur Rana used to
take the packaged lunch supplied by
Rambhandar; Chaudhary Group was formed
quite lately; So came in existence Khetan and
Panchakanya groups. Ranas disappeared from
the power, Rambhandar has been somehow
surviving, and the later ones are on top of
national corporate sector.
Why such a disparity? May be because of
difference in their capability to adapt and
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Normally, the corporate managers
tend to take success as a permanent
proposition, as a result they fail to
survive in long run.
For example, lack of commitment and
vision to cope with temporariness
might have resulted the demise of
Hattichhap Chappal in Nepal despite
its very strong market holding.
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Corporate managers are meant to be
responsible for managing with multiple
responsibilities to lead their institutions
Anil Keshari Shah has not reached to
today’s position by just focusing on only
banking; he acts with scores of
responsibilities, everyday to sustain
himself high up there!
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At IBM, improving people skills is regarded as
one of the strongest corporate cultures. As a
result, a penny invested on employee training
and development today, goes on cashing in
many dollars till 30 years down the road.
Any cost incurred in employee training and
development may serve as a safer source of
sustainable returns forever. Unfortunately,
not all leaders realize this fact.
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This is the age of working with
business partnership, virtual
organization systems and business
All corporate managers may not feel
comfortable working in networked
organizations. As a result, they fail in
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Despite his tremendous successful
career graph for more than two
decades as a VC of Kathmandu
University, Prof. Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma
was finally blamed for not developing
the generation next to lead the
institution in the similar way that he
visioned; Now, the institution is at a
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Emerging work teams in quality work environment
2.Motivation or employee morale team
3.Safety and environmental team
4.Employee wellness team
5.Culture and communication team
Responding to changing expectations
of all stakeholders is a universal
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Finally, dear graduates, if you are
really concerned to transform yourself
into more successful corporate
managers, start counting on these
twenty two tips that I have given you
Please follow the next slide for a quick
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1. Responding to globalization
2. Managing with accountability
3. Action with responsiveness
4. Managing workforce diversity
5. Responding to changing environment
6. Improving quality and productivity
7. Stimulating innovation and change
8. Improving ethical behavior
9. Managing institutional social
10. Knowledge management
11. Managing with the world of ICTs
12. Helping employees balance work and
13. Creating positive tensions
14. Improving customer services
15. Promoting entrepreneurship
16. Coping with temporariness
17. Managing with multiple
18. Improving people skills
19. Working in networked organizations
20. Developing the generation next
21. Managing innovative work teams
22. Responding to changing expectations
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yourself as an
VISION on these
Now, the question may arise in you… How
can I act with all this?
Yes, you can! Taking these issues more
sincerely is enough…you don’t even need
to look beyond that…
It just requires you to act as a team!
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• British Airways (BA) is the national flag carrier
airline of the United Kingdom, based in Waterside,
near its main hub at London Heathrow Airport.
British Airways is the largest airline in the UK based
on fleet size, international flights and international
• BA's UK passengers originating at non-London
airports must connect via London after British
Airways discontinued all direct overseas flights from
UK airports outside London following the sale of BA
connect to British regional carrier Flybe in 2007.
• British Airways (BA) was created in 1974, when the British
Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) and British
European Airways Corporation (BEA) were combined
under the newly formed British Airways Board.
• Following two years of fierce competition with British
Caledonian, the second-largest airline in Britain at the time,
the Government changed its aviation policy in 1976 so the
two carriers no longer would compete on long-haul routes.
• Culture is highly important for an
organization today for setting
organization's direction and creating
tradition, value, and belief for its
employees to behave, and building
harmony within and beyond the
• Organizational culture plays a central
role to company's change and
revitalization. When the
environmental changes take place (for
instance, the increase in competitive
competitors), an organization must
adapt its present culture in order to
survive in the industry.
CHANGING THE CULTURE AT BRITISH AIRWAYS (BA)
• Prior to privatization, BA’s culture was considered to be technically
biased, authoritarian, bureaucratic, and the relationship between
employees and management-level was impersonal. At that time,
management levels usually encouraged formality within organization
to keep themselves away from staff. This made the organization not
believe in participative management.
• Besides, employees such as pilots and managers were recruited from
the Royal Air Force (RAF) which belongs to the government;
therefore, most employees felt they were arrogant which was against
the concept of customer-oriented approach. Importantly, the
organization tended to focus only on safety operations and lacked of
service and market orientation.
• As a result, it resulted in run into crash and faced the financial
problem. It was because not only corporate culture itself but also the
competitors in the industry which enable to provide better service to
customer superior compared to BA.
BA’s Culture: Historical/Pre-Privatization Decision
After privatization, BA replaced some of its main historical values and
beliefs by new corporate culture and mission. BA tried to introduce
new corporate and mission into the organization by launching many
new training programs and new appraisal system to stimulate new
changes in order to improve organization performance. New corporate
cultures include informality innovation, customer/commercially-
oriented, participative management, etc.
For example, BA tried to change corporate mission from, To be a safe
airline to 'To be a competitive airline in responding to the change
of the external environment. It is necessary for an organization to
adapt itself when external environment changes in order to survive;
hence, changes in culture and mission are done for transforming an
organization to be the effective organization in the industry and for
improving organization performance in order to overcome with fierce
BA’s Culture: Prevailing/Post-Privatization Decision
• Putting People First (PPF): This program urged
participants to examine their interactions with other
people. Implied in the positive relationship message
was a strong emphasis on customer service.
Approximately 40,000 BA employees went through
• Managing People First (MPF): This program
stressed the importance of, among other topics,
culture, trust, leadership, vision, and feedback.
Education and Training
• The British Airways staff are represented by a number of
trade unions, pilots are represented by British Airline Pilots'
Association, cabin crew by British Airlines Stewards and
Stewardesses Association (a branch of Unite the Union),
other branches of Unite the Union represent other
• During Bob Ayling's management, strike action by cabin
crew over a £1 billion cost-cutting drive to return BA to
profitability in 1997; this was the last time BA cabin crew
would strike until 2009; staff morale has reportedly been
unstable since that incident.
• To increase interaction between management, employees,
and the unions, various conferences and workshops have
taken place, often with thousands in attendance.
• British Airways is the world’s leading airline which has
a long history of organizational change.
• Because of internal and external pressure, BA was
forced to adapt with new corporate culture, value,
belief, and company mission in order to improve the
• Organizational change gave a huge impact on
organization both individual and organizational levels
creating both positive and negative effects. The most
popular tool to handle and facilitate change and
resistance is HR policy.
• Finally, the other ways to help any organization to
facilitate change is to use the ‘Change Agent’ which it is
better to use external consultant than internal one.