Organisational Structures

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One-way communication downwards from leader to subordinate Generally from leader downwards, though some feedback takes place Extensive two way communication between senior and junior employees Circumstances in which style may be appropriate Useful when quick decisions are required or when large numbers of unskilled employees are involved Can appear democratic, but is really autocratic leadership with a human face Useful when complex decisions are made requiring a range of specialist skills.

The style Sainsbury’s would most fall under is Autocratic or authoritarian leadership, it cannot be solely categorised in this niche as it has influences from the Paternalistic leadership and probably even some from the democratic side. They are mainly authoritarian because they tend to use one-way communication more than two ways. The senior managers will have little or no involvement with junior employees and it is highly likely that each store has its own set of targets and objectives to work towards.

How does the Organisational structure, culture and management style of the business affect its performance? Organisational Structures Business can adopt a number of structures according to the size of the organisation, the environment in which it operates and the personal preferences of the owners and senior managers. There are many ways in which the Organisational structure of a company can affect its performance, good and bad, internal and external.

Internal Factors

The size of the business – As the scale of the business increases, an entrepreneurial structure, for example, becomes unsuitable. As the business grows further, the chain of command is likely to be length, encouraging the removal of some layers of hierarchy and broader spans of control. The Nature of the Product – If the firm supplies a diverse range of products, it may organise itself traditionally – perhaps in the form of divisions reporting to the board of directors. The Rank Organisation operates in this way with key areas of the business, such as film services and leisure activities such as the Hard Rock Cafes, having some degree of independence

The Culture of the organisation

This is a major influence on the structure the firm adopts. If a business has a highly innovative culture whereby it wishes to be a market leader selling advanced products (as Sainsbury’s does), it may adopt a matrix structure to minimize bureaucracy and to allow teams to carry out the necessary research and development, and market research. On the other hand, an organisation which places importance on tradition (and would wish to appear conventional) may be best suited to a formal, hierarchical structure. This structure places emphasis on positions rather than people and this factor encourages the continuance of existing policies and practices


Planning new services that Sainsbury’s can offer is important if they are to attract new customers or get customer loyalty from existing customers. Sainsbury’s must use innovation and enterprise to get new ideas for products and service that meets the needs of the customer today. Organising departments into offering more services is important each department and employee must understand where the company is heading and what the company offers. Senior managers must lead staff and motivate them into offering more services and better customer service. There will be a budget that the development department must control and think about when offering more services. Sainsbury’s offers a wide range of services such as: This is a website were customers can order food and then have it delivered to their door. This website sells a wide range of property to customers on the Internet.

Sainsbury’s even has its own bank that customers can get a credit card and financial advise. Developing a skilled work to develop staff skills Sainsbury’s must plan what they want to achieve on a long-term basis and then set short-term task that can be achieved at store level. Sainsbury’s must organise which staff they want to develop skills and in which areas. They must also look at the time span in which they have to do this training and when it must be achieved by. Employees will need to be trained by somebody who has past experience in that field. Sainsbury’s must develop new ways in which employees can learn and develop their skills and put them into practice within their job. Each store will have a training budget that they can use to send staff on training courses.

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