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Managing for the Future

Postgraduate Degrees
MODULE TITLE:Managing for the Future
Learning outcomes and pass attainment level:
1.Critically evaluate the impact of the changing business environment imperatives on the ability of organisations to achieve business goals.
2.Identify and evaluate appropriate management responses to changes in future scenarios
3.Critically evaluate the impact on organisations of implementing management change to react to environmental change.

Minimum pass attainment level:

– The identification and outline of a range of theoretical perspectives on management
– Critical and reflective comment on the perspectives outlined.
– Use of examples from contemporary organisations and the candidates own experience
– A well-constructed argument demonstrating wider reading and referenced according to the assignment instructions.
Managing for the Future – Individual Module Assignment 2015/2016
Assignment Brief and Purpose
Throughout the lectures and seminar sessions you have considered what the future organisational environment might look like and also theoretical contributions addressing what management can ‘do’ about it. This assignment requires you to gaze into the future and critically evaluate potential management responses to what you see. The essay title and more detailed requirements are below.

In the early 20th century one exponent of Scientific Management wrote this:

“These principles can be studied as a technical question, irrespective of the purpose of the enterprise, the personnel composing it, or any constitutional, political or social theory underlying its creation”.
Lyndall F Urwick (1933) Management of Tomorrow, London, Nisbet & Co

This quotation suggests that scientific management theorists saw their ideas as universally applicable

This assignment requires you to address the following question in the form of an essay;

To what extent are the principles of scientific management applicable to the 21st century and the cultural diversity of contemporary organisational life?

Your essay should include the following four elements

A critical evaluation of the main features of scientific management.

A detailed assessment of the extent to which they prevail in contemporary management practice.

A detailed discussion on the extent to which scientific management is relevant to contemporary managers. This will also involve a discussion on the challenges 21st century managers might face.

A critical discussion of alternative ways of understanding management.

The assignment requires you to read widely and engage in a high level of critical thought. Your essay should outline the various and competing perspectives on management of organisations and critically appraise their usefulness in the 21st century

Accordingly you should consider the theoretical perspectives offered in relation to examples from contemporary organisations. This will involve you in keeping abreast of current issues in the news.

The essay also requires you to consider your own organisational experience in the light of these perspectives. This might be where you are working or have worked but it need not be; we are all familiar with one form of organisation or another whether it is an educational organisation (school or university), a recreational organisation (football clubs or drama group), a voluntary organisation (charity or political lobbying group), a religious organisation (temple, church, mosque) and so on.

The scheme of work indicates some of the areas we will explore in lectures, your essay may also explore these areas but you are not confined to them; you can delve into areas we have not touched on in the lectures but the requirements of theoretical discussion, critical thought and contemporary examples remain.

You are not required to produce large amounts of undigested data from company reports, websites or any other source. You may use such data to help construct your argument, but sparingly and only in a focussed manner.

Structure and Writing Style – Credit will be given for a well-constructed argument demonstrating both wider reading and reflective consideration of the issues. Writing style is important; the objective is to address the question presented in an academic but persuasive manner. This involves marshalling arguments from academic sources as well as examples and deductive processes. The standard of English, spelling and grammar will be taken into account. It is essential that the essay is properly referenced both in the text and at the end in the form of a reference list. The bibliographical system required is the Harvard system and a free leaflet detailing the use of this system is available from the library.

Marking Scheme

A critical evaluation of the main features of the scientific management.

Students should present a critical discussion on the main features scientific management. This will involve demonstrating a clear understanding of scientific management, its underlying premises and history.

A detailed assessment of the extent to which scientific management perspectives prevail in contemporary management practice.

This should be a well-argued discussion and you may also include elements of your own experience. The discussion will draw on a wide range of sources and include examples from contemporary organisational experience.

A detailed discussion on the extent to which the scientific management perspective is relevant to contemporary managers. This will also involve a discussion on the challenges 21st century managers might face.

Students should directly address the question as to the extent of the relevance of scientific management. This will be achieved by considering some of the key challenges managers will face in the 21st century and by drawing together the work done to this point consider the relevance of the scientific management.
A critical discussion of alternative ways of understanding management

Students should demonstrate a clear understanding of the various alternative perspectives on the management of organisations as explored in lectures.


Word Limit:3000

Note on Plagiarism, Collusion and Cheating

When you submit the assignment you declare that you:
•Have read and understand that university’s guidance on plagiarism and cheating.
•You confirm that it is solely your own work or, in the case of a group submission, that it is the result of joint work by members of the group that you represent.
•That it contains no unreferenced material from another source.
•That you keep a copy of the assignment.
Failure to abide by the rules will result in disciplinary action against you.
•Do not copy tracts of work from printed material, the internet or another student.
•Do not share an electronic copy of your work with anyone not concerned in its production.


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