Fresh management theory prefers to use the idea of manager to portray a person who performs a related function to that of the supervisor. The dissimilarity between the two notions is not so much related to roles they perform, but more the way in which those roles are exercised. The notion of a supervisor is currently perceived as being influenced by an old management style of being autocratic. A manager on the other hand is considered to be flexible, developmental, and consultative (Wright, 2008).
Another key difference between a manager and a supervisor is that the relationship between a manager and an employee is based on reciprocity. The employee therefore takes as much accountability for his/her own developmental process as the leader. A supervisee on the other hand is perceived to take on a more passive role in his/her developmental process – where he/she expects or waits for the supervisor to take the initiative or lead (Wright, 2008).
Therefore, the notion of manager will be used rather than ‘supervisor’. A manager is tasked with the responsibility of supervision would hence be expected to develop the capacity of staff members so that they can perform tasks effectively, think independently, and find solutions to their problems. Team members will ultimately become less reliant on the manager. Instead, they have the opportunity and the skills to creatively generate ideas and implement activities independently. In this way, employees take more responsibility for their own developmental process (Wright, 2008).
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