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Democratic Leadership in Education - Assignment Example

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In the paper “Democratic Leadership in Education,” the author identifies and discusses the structural issues that impeded and facilitated the Agency's IT Project Implementation. The purpose of the structure is the division of work among members of the organization…
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Democratic Leadership in Education
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Download file to see previous pages The finance department was considered by many as superfluous to the Agency, but the government was demanding more financial information, so the Agency was “forced to broaden their focus to make a bigger role for financial reporting.” Even without the Finance Branch, the Agency was able to function in a manner consistent with world-class standards both in its core business and in other areas of its business. In this case, the Agency felt that it would have done well without the finance department, but it is a subjective and therefore imbalance point of view. The imperative to form a new department enhances the function it discharges – in this case, financial reporting and management – according to the needs and strategies identified by the higher unit (i.e., the government). What the Agency considers its “world class” performance may only be in its view, which a balanced financial reporting system using accrual accounting should provide an impartial view into. Issue Two: The existing system had to be upgraded, according to the senior financial officer, but it would result in a non-standard system. Furthermore, it was perceived as risky due to the fact that “so much money had already been spent on the existing system without providing a satisfactory system.” Establishing a new system would necessitate new substructures; for it to pertain only to the finance department would necessarily create a system not consistent with the rest of the Agency, but this should not deter the move where it is deemed necessary. As Alfred Chandler (1993) put it, a structure must support strategy, not impede or constrain it. Issue Three: The new Finance Director formed a small project team including Mark Black (MIS) and Henry Tell (senior financial officer) to determine requirements for the new financial management system. She also requested funding for the team. Consultants were not used for this assessment, but latitude and confidence were given to the existing staff and their technical background, with inputs drawn from key stakeholders through interviews. This appeared to be a wise move. In the development of new structures within an existing organization, it is important to build a sense of legitimacy and acceptance. Bringing in outside consultant who hardly knows the Agency would have been a mistake; although the resultant system might have been superior, if it were prejudged as unacceptable for being irrelevant, then the new unit may not get the chance to prove its system’s merits and the benefits it may provide the organization. The benefits of taking a structural perspective are that it focuses corporate activity to the specific goals it wishes to achieve, organizes and coordinates the efforts taken towards this effort, and therefore optimizes the firm’s resources. Resources should be organized to support vital functions, and organizational units seen as superfluous should be taken out (Lievegoed, 1973). The usefulness of the structural frame, in this case, is to realign roles and responsibilities according to a new (accounting) environment, as well as to transmit facts and information. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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