Perth Sportsworld has decided to set up a new operation in India. The project entails the design, procurement and manufacturing of sporting goods for European, Asian and Australian markets. This will be Sportsworld’s first international venture.
In 1997, the company had a turnover of about $10.2 million in Australia, and it employed about 200 people. With the new India venture, Sportsworld is looking to larger markets in Asia and Europe, and also extending its base in Australia. The company is hoping to market its products with a big promotional campaign, enlisting the support of high-profile sports personalities in the Asian region.
In India, Sportsworld would like to gain a foothold not only in selling its sporting goods but also in running training seminars for potential players, coaches and government officials.
William Brown, an Australian, has accepted the job of developing corporate strategy and operational plans for the India venture. He and his wife Jill have recently taken up residence in India. Brown has appointed Ashok Ganguli as the office manager assisting him in his initial activities.
Bob Wilson is managing director of Classic Foods in Tasmania. He has worked in the dairy industry all his life. He worked in Australia’s first UHT (ultra high temperature) plant, then went on to advise on the use of UHT technology all over the world. He is a Fellow of AIM.
AIM: What is your management history?
WILSON: I grew up in the rural industry, on a dairy farm in the Huon Valley. I trained at the Hawkesbury Agricultural College in New South Wales, then went back to Tassie. In the early days I worked with a company that had invested in ultra high temperature (UHT) technology that pasteurised milk and packaged it in sterile conditions. The Launceston factory was the first plant equipped with it outside Europe. When we started it was quite revolutionary.
AIM: What happened?
WILSON: It proved to be uneconomic, and the company, Bakers Milk, closed it. But I was keen on the technology and decided to stay with it. The best opportunities were international, so I took on jobs in Africa: Zambia, Tanzania and Kenya. The projects were quite large. Those countries were decolonising and undertaking huge capital p
CEOs in dissimilar organisations share a preoccupation with meeting the demands of stakeholders and budgets. By Christina Mowle
A decade or so ago small shareholders would have been hard pressed to recall the names of any senior management personnel in the businesses in which they held shares.
Nowadays, popular demand for transparency in management has made the names of chief executive officers more familiar. Because of the publicity surrounding big stockmarket floats such as Qantas, Commonwealth Bank and Teltra, and the proliferation of “mum and dad” shareholders, the spotlight has been put on senior people in organisations large or small that make, supply, process or manage the goods and services we depend on.
Even small investors in public or private companies have an opinion, in general terms at least, on executive salaries, accountability, and a perception of how they expect a company to perform. When we become aware that things have taken a turn for the worse, or when our dividend was not worth waiting for, we look to the chief executive for an explanation. We mutter when jobs are shed, but if the ne
Asia Trade is a Queensland company aiming to promote export relationships between Queensland manufacturers and service companies and similar businesses in Asian countries. It is a subsidiary of International Trade Australia (ITA) which has branches throughout Australia.
Asia Trade is autonomous but takes its policies on human resource management from those developed by the parent company. In particular, it adheres to ITA’s equal employment opportunity and its policies and programs for combating sexual harassment. The main objectives of equal employment opportunity are to increase the number of women working in professional occupations, improve the career opportunities of all women in the company and effectively manage the cultural diversity of the company’s staff and clients.
There have been several problems relating to human resource management in the Queensland company, largely arising from the diverse cultural backgrounds of the staff. Many of the issues that have been raised have revolved around one senior manager, Mr Woo Hong Li.
Woo has been with the company for four years. In that time he has establ
Diane McEwan is executive director of Centralian College, an integrated tertiary institution in Darwin. In 1997 she was the NT/Telstra Businesswoman of the Year (public sector), and in 1995 she won the NT Council for Education Administration Achievement Award. She was principal of Pitman Central College in London, principal of Consortium Institutions in Kuwait and chair of the NT Businesswomen’s Consultative Council. She is a Fellow of AIM.
AIM: You undertook management training in the 1960s. How much has it changed since then?
McEwan: It is much more focused on workplace relationships now. Then the management training looked more at the theoretical; now there is a greater focus on workplace applications.
AIM: How would you assess local managers?
McEwan: Only 30% of our managers have academic qualifications, whereas 90% of Asian managers do. We need a mixture of experience and academic skills. You have your entrepreneurs and people who specialise in areas like economics and financial planning, but there is also a need for generic skills. In the past 10 years there has been a call for managers to increase
A future-oriented company seeks to change its industry as much as itself. By Vic Zbar
In general, only about 2.5% of senior management time is spent on the key task of building a corporate perspective of the future. This is not to suggest that executives are lazy or lack commitment. Rather, it reflects the fact that people are running harder than ever merely to stand still, and that confronting the future requires them to acknowledge that they may not be in full control of the present.
The consequence is that senior management gets so caught up in the restructuring and re-engineering required to manage the present, they pay insufficient heed to the regeneration of core strategies needed to shape the future.
If corporations are to become and remain internationally competitive, they are not merely required to get smaller (restructuring) and better (re-engineering), but they also must become different to meet the needs of customers ten years from now as well as today.
In other words, the corporation must seek to transform its industry as much as it looks to change itself. This could take the form o
Businesses can accept Milton Friedman’s view that the only justification for philanthropy is tax avoidance or not. By Crispin Wood
Companies have one primary group of stakeholders and at least two secondary groups. The first duty of care of directors is to the proprietors of the business. In a large public company this may mean thousands of individual shareholders, some with conflicting interests. The secondary stakeholders include customers and employees. But many companies and commentators now believe in, or pay lip service to, a social obligation to support the broader community, beyond simply complying with legislation and regulation.
If United States trends give a good indication of the future of Australia, then corporate philanthropy is going to attract increasing attention. US organisations have publicly ranked listed companies according to their level of charitable donations. Corporate largess may give the chairman a warm fuzzy glow and generate public relations mileage; but how can giving away money be reconciled with the primary duty of care to shareholders?
For one thing, the maxim that “nobody
The Fresh Produce Company specialises in wholesale auctioning to the retail fruit and vegetable trade. The company has two big sales each week, on Mondays and Thursdays; the sales on the other days are much smaller. To enable the sale to start at 8am on Monday and Thursday much work has to be done on the previous day. For this reason Fresh Produce opens from 4pm to 7pm on Sundays and Wednesdays. This enables the bulk of the vegetables to be on the floor, ready for selling the following morning.
The company hires extra staff five university students on Sunday and Wednesday nights. Kevin, a permanent employee, is in charge and has been part of the team for six months. Kevin does not really get along with the others, but this seems to be his choice, rather than rejection by the rest.
Before Kevin arrived things were going well. The workers liked their work and generally did a good job. The job was basically unloading trucks using wheel barrows. The first sign of trouble appeared about three months after Kevin arrived. There were two workers on a job one night when there was little work to do. They took their time and talked m
Anne Riches is a consultant who has been in executive management positions for 25 years, including president of the NSW Women Lawyers Association and national councillor for the Australian Association of Philanthropy. A former lecturer in industrial law at the University of Sydney, she is a barrister and has published three books on law. She is an adjunct faculty member of the Graduate School of Business, University of Sydney. She is an associate fellow of AIM.
AIM: You have moved from teaching law to working in a number of corporate positions, to becoming a consultant. Is there a pattern?
Riches: Much of my career was around being regarded as a change agent. I was often asked to be involved in change or start up situations, somebody must have thought I was suited to it. When I left the University of Sydney I was the Australian Medical Association’s first assistant secretary general. Then I was the first to be in the role of education director for the Judicial Commission in New South Wales. Then I moved to a law firm and undertook a start-up role as a human resources director. Subsequently, I had a start-up role in a m
Downsizing and outsourcing create demand for managers able to deal with complexity. By James Dunn
Next time you watch an Aussie rules football game, spare a thought for the tasks the average player must perform. The first is to run around within an oval boundary to take possession of the ball, kick it or punch it to team-mates and eventually kick it between a set of upright posts; all the while keeping it away from opponents, who want to gain possession of it through the expedient of manhandling the person carrying the ball.
The second task is to swap to the opponents role should possession of the ball be lost. While doing all these tasks the player must keep running around the oval, exhibiting an aerobic fitness capacity that is world-class in terms of professional athletes.
Yes, the Australian Football League player has truly become multi-skilled. But he has also been subjected to the other management revolutions of the 1990s downsizing and outsourcing.
Each team has had its total numbers cut from 52 a few years ago to 42. The reserves (the team selected from players not required for a “senior” g