Question: Case Study: BuySmart Pty Ltd You work for a progressive and result focused online shopping business called “BuySmart Pty Ltd”. The company works with many fashion retailers to offer their clothes and accessories at a significant discount via their discounted online fashion outlet. It is a very busy and at times hectic office. The company’s core business is negotiating contracts to on-sell fashion goods from both manufacturers and retailers and to sell the stock at a heavily discounted price. Each Monday the company obtains up to 50 new product lines, and it is the responsibility of your sales team to ensure that these new product lines are displayed and sold during the week. The company copied an overseas business model and entered the Australian online retail market with no real competitors. To-date it has been highly successful, offering other businesses a way to sell their excess or unwanted stock to a new target market of customers. In the last six months two new competitors have emerged as direct threats to the business. The company consists of a General Manager, Sales Manager, IT Manager, Marketing Manager, Accounts Manager, Warehouse Manager, Sales Executives, IT Officers, Accounts staff, and Warehouse staff. There is no administrative staff as the General Manager believes in everyone looking after their own administrative work. In total there are 30 staff members who have their own responsibilities and personal KPIs to reach. You are a newly appointed supervisor in charge of the five sales executives in the Sales Team. You report to the Sales Manager. The current process of conducting business in the sales area includes: Cold call prospective retailers and manufacturers. Call existing clients for repeat business. Secure goods for sale on the website at the agreed commission and schedule. Negotiate additional price for social media advertising to push products through social media advertising, model for photography and prime promotional placement on the site. Exchange contracts with set delivery schedules. Collect website information which includes copy, images with description, size availability, price, estimated delivery, and size charts. Arrange delivery of good and services from client. Monitor sales from website, keep customer informed of progress; and request more stock if required. Prepare sales report for client. Arrange for unsold stock to be returned to client. Consult with client on results, try to secure another sale. A strong sales ethic is expected at BuySmart driven from the top down. The managerial positions in the organisation are made up of men only. In fact you notice that there are only three women in the organisation who all report to you. Each sales executive is expected to secure five new sales each week. Additionally the KPI for the executives is measured by sales generated from their clients. This also pressures executives to promote brands that sell well. Sales executives have found it increasingly difficult to lock in sales due to their competitors now providing a 20% discount on sales commissions. They have also had difficulty with some of the software that they are required to use to edit the businesses website which has resulted in staff working many more hours each week. You also notice that your staff seem unmotivated, stressed and under immense pressure. The Sales Manager expects everyone in the office to work long hours working Monday to Friday from 9-6 as a minimum. Your sales team consists of: Mary Koustaboudis – a consistently high performing executive who has recently revealed to you that she is considering resigning due to the long hours and administrative work. She has had issues with the IT software such as Adobe InDesign and Photoshop to modify web information for the website. Lucia Allegro – a previously high performing results driven individual who has recently had a child and would prefer to job share. Lyn Brown – has consistent good results but has recently been burdened with looking after her sick mother and would also like to job share. Recently her sales have been questioned by the sales manager resulting in her being under stress. Eddie Wong – an executive who aspires to climb the ladder and is bitter he has not succeeded in the supervisory role you have just received. He is young, often misunderstood as he has a strong accent and is very direct with his approach often offending colleagues unintentionally. Sam Young – a good performer who has two children in primary school. His wife works part time and does the majority of the running around for the children but Sam sometimes is required to help. You realise your management style needs to address operational concerns and improvements and help address the work life balance of the staff. What you have to do You are required to answer all of the four (4) following questions. In answering the following questions, please relate all answers to information contained in the case study as it applies to BuySmart Pty Ltd Q 1. Good teams have good leaders. Good leaders give their team a clear vision of the team’s goals, provide their team with the resources needed to reach their goals and display behaviours that promote team effectiveness. As the newly appointed Sales Supervisor, identify and comment on one aspect of the workplace culture that exists at BuySmart Pty Ltd and how the perceived culture could promote or hinder your ability to participate and facilitate the work team? Q 2. What are SMART objectives? From the case study can you write two SMART objectives for the Sales Team? Q 3. In your position as Sales Supervisor you have decided to consider implementing a work/ life balance strategy to help address your concern about the potential for staff to burn out and perform poorly. By implementing this strategy you feel that it may help individual team members gain control and help build a more cohesive working environment. Describe one (1) factor at BuySmart Pty Ltd which has lead you to consider that work/life balance needs to be reviewed. Then identify a leadership style from the Hersey Blanchard Leadership Model that would help the Sales Supervisor improve internal communication and to lead the implementation of a more balanced work/life environment? Q 4. All teams will be faced with issues, concerns or problems at some stage. From the case study, identify an issue that is affecting the Sales Team. Use an issues log to record your example from the case study.
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