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Effective and efficient organizations conduct their respective activities under intense scrutiny. This is because of the available limited resources which are expected to assist in the process of growth and development. Small businesses have no exception in this rule and they are expected to operate at an upper edge taking into account utilizing available opportunities and materials needed for expansion. It is assumedly clear that small businesses overlook this fundamental aspect and, as a result, fail to implement their respective operations. Therefore, this assignment tries to examine the need of introducing, implementing and maintaining an effective working environment through the provision of skills related to the four functions of management that are, controlling, planning, directing, and organizing.

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Planning is the area within the functions of management that is considered fundamental in building other areas of management. It is the fundamental platform upon which management uses to evaluate a current position of a company and compares it with the position it will hold in the future. Further, it is used as a favorable level upon which crucial decisions concerning a company are based in respect to the attainment of its goals and objectives. Effective and efficient planning processes are considered to be continuing in nature. However, it is assumed that companies undergo this process, while still facing both internal and external challenging situations which are unfavorable, as well as uncontrollable. Whenever it is noted that a certain course of action proves difficult and negative in that matter, efficient management personnel is expected to understand the need of altering and adjusting the aforementioned course of action to fit in with the current situation, in order to accomplish a firm’s set of goals and objectives (Daft, 2010). This form of planning is referred to as strategic planning. In order to conduct effective strategic planning, management is expected to utilize its skills in identifying and evaluating both internal and external factors which are unfavorable for continued operations, as well as meeting the company’s goals and objectives. Subsequently, they determine strengths and weaknesses which are attributed to the company. These strengths are used as a platform for establishing a firm’s fitness to continue its operations or close its operations (Daft, 2010).

Organizing: in order to use available limited resources, an organization is expected to bring together its resources for the purpose of meeting its course of action. It is through the function of organizing that particular management is placed at a fair position, upon which it is important to establish and develop internal organizational composition, maintaining various relations which are established within the organization, as well assign and distribute resources required for conducting the ongoing operations (Daft, 2010). In the course of establishing and determining its internal composition, a firm is expected to devise ways needed for differentiating between the different divisions, coordination its immediate workforce, as well as establishing methodologies used for effective task-handling and information-disbursement activities.

Afterward, management is expected to differentiate between the tasks which need to be done, established, developed and maintained for appropriate divisions within the organization, as well as delegate duties and authorities to different employees.

Directing: this function of management allows for the smooth overseeing of employees’ mode of behavior which is considered to be fundamental in attaining a firm’s goals as well as employees’ individual goals. Another methodology used in directing involves the constant influence of management to assigned duties. Different firms use different modes of influencing which range from employee motivation, direct and indirect forms of communication, departmental vibrancy, as well as divisional forms of leadership.

Employee motivation is considered to be far the most effective form of management influence. When employees are motivated they are placed in a fair position upon which they use to master their respective skills which are used to conduct the fair job performance. In the long run, qualitative job performance leads to the attainment of both personal and company-based goals.

It is assumed that management of both small and large businesses develops strategies that are motivational-based to its employees. The aforementioned strategies are reflected through employees’ reward and incentive programs which are attributed to the work performance and are tailored to satisfy the employees’ needs. Communication is a tool used in ‘directing’ functionality of management to develop and sustain an effective working environment, construct efficient interpersonal relations, as well as solve various problems arising out of a firm’s operating activities. The ability to differentiate between a communication process and improving on areas that need positive advancements assists relevant management personnel in developing into effective conversationalists (Daft, 2010). The effective and efficient methodology used in developing a working communication platform is through the constant review of employees’ work performance. This is achieved through management asking themselves, as well as others, within the organizational setting and the state of their respective activities.

Controlling: this function of management is attributed to the development of an evaluative criterion used in determining the work performance standards which are associated with the goals and objectives of the company, while still making arrangements to report the actual work performance. Effective management ensures that the company’s goals and objectives are compared to the immediate work performance. Flexibility is also an aspect worth noting, since it allows management to deploy effective strategies needed for correcting or preventing the unfavorable course of action. In order to resolve emerging work performance challenges, the management is not expected to lower work performance standards. It is encouraged that they embark on addressing the source of the problem directly. These sources could result from underperforming employees as individuals, as well as part of departments within the firm at hand. Work standards are only lowered whenever it is determined that the firm is operating under the limited resources or is influenced by external factors over which management has no control.

Controlling functionality of management is also continuing in nature and efficient managers are expected to utilize it whenever it is established that there is a possibility for potential problems, for which preventive strategies are put in place, to curb the situation. Also, it is through the ‘controlling’ ability of management that they are equipped with skills needed for identifying and developing challenges that need to be addressed through a selection of an effective course of action (Daft, 2010).

Amanda’s failure to recognize the best way for which to identify and organize resources within the organization Smith’s Accounting and Tax Service: this issue lies within the organizing function of management. Resources in any given firm, whether small or large, are of great significance to the operations of the firm. Resources within an organizational setting are diverse and cover such facets as human capital, financial resource, as well as land. These resources are considered to be limited and management is expected to utilize them in a manner that will facilitate creation of maximum wealth.

It is unfortunate to indicate that Amanda has injected both human and financial resources into the organization, while overlooking the need for incorporating the organizational compositions. The fact that the small business is divided into two functionalities does not assist in checking for the effective utilization of resources. Consequently, there is an evident piling up of tasks that are performed poorly by the existing accounting personnel.


I) Amanda should begin with differentiating the staff into different sections within the Company so that the overall task is broken down into manageable components. Within these components, the task is passed under intense scrutiny before it is pronounced completed. This involves arranging the professional resource into either two groups for which one is mandated with filing tax returns, while the other would be involved with control checks to make sure that little or no files are submitted with error. In this case, a departmental arrangement is favorable.

II) It is also fair that Amanda embarks on formulating strategies that would assist in disseminating relevant information to different sections within the firm. It is easier to identify and rectify errors when these accountants are allowed to share information pertaining to the tax returns’ filling. It is possible that some of the accountants were not competent in task-handling and needed further help and training in that matter.

III) It is fair for Amanda to embark on dividing the task herself between the accountants since it seems that while some are over-burdened with heavy tasks, others had few tax return files to submit. In this manner. She is placed in a fair position for which to delegate and assign different duties and responsibilities to different individuals.

Underestimation of the recruitment process is a fundamental aspect that both large and small businesses conduct recruitment process under thorough analysis since the abilities and skills of new recruits determine the level of production within an organizational setting. It is unfortunate that Amanda assigns Lisa the task of finding and selecting new talents into the firm, yet she is not a qualified accountant, as such. Problems which are experienced within the firm are a result of poor planning process. Also, Amanda chooses to employ Lisa not because of her credentials, but for the sake of friendship.


I) Amanda should embark on strategic planning so that she is able to change the action for the current position of the firm. In strategic planning, management is expected to identify and establish such facets as opportunities and threats, as well as strengths and weaknesses, while remaining realistic and comprehensive at the same time. In that case, the Company’s strengths are that, it is still growing and managed by Amanda who possesses relevant credentials and experience needed for determining the favorable course of action. There is an insignificant level of competition within the area since two of the accounting firms which used to operate within the locality shifted their operations to a distant location. Further, the Company is flexible and can move from place to place providing services, hence clients enjoy cut-down expenses needed for traveling. The Company’s main weakness is that it failed to attract the experienced talents needed for handling the tasks.

The opportunities attributed to the Company include the fact that it has established a large customer base that is not ready to spend on travel expenses in order to receive the tax filing services.

Threats: there is a likelihood of some of the clients opting to seek for alternative sources of services from other tax accounting firms. The financial resource is becoming limited and the firm risks closure of its operations.

In this case, Amanda should utilize the aforesaid analysis to take a formidable step needed for meeting the Company’s initial goals and objectives. This means that she should be ready to change the course of operation and embark on a new one.

Failure to identify the job design and description, and training: when Amanda advertised for the vacant accounting posts, it was assumedly clear that she failed to provide an extensive work design and description to attract new qualified talents in that matter. It is evident that Lisa conducted interviews in a traditional approach, despite the technicalities involved in the posts.


I) Amanda should choose between conducting a fresh interview process to the existing personnel to determine the magnitude of the problem or conduct a training program aimed at improving the skills of the personnel at hand.

II)  She can also choose to outsource interviewing services from a professional firm. This means that she will replace the existing staff with a more competent one, hence, increasing the productivity level of the firm.

Negative assumption that motivation process will occur naturally: with the event that the recruitment process took an amateur approach, it is safe to indicate that Amanda’s ignorance to conduct the process raises more questions than answers. This issue is postulated under the ‘directing’ functionality of management. In directing, employers oversee, as well as influence the activities of the staff in a manner which allows for the attainment of both goals and objectives.


I) Amanda should embark on widening her way of appreciation to the entire staff. There is a likelihood of the accountants undergoing demoralization since the motivation was one-sided. Amanda is perceived to be issuing gifts to Lisa at the expense of the accountants and even promising her appraisal the Company should grow. Motivating employees increases production and it should be done in a way which satisfies employees’ personal needs. Effective ways of motivating employees include the provision of incentives, as well as rewards which should be geared towards the work performance (Gomez-Mejia, Balkin and Cardy, 2008).

Failure to define standards and other measurable outcomes is an issue that arose out of the fact that Amanda overlooked the competence of her workforce and assumed that they were competent in their work performance. The issue is addressed in controlling the functionality of management.


I) Amanda should not lower standards in the effort to work out for work performance challenges. She should address the source of the problem directly and provide the necessary corrective measure. This may include sacking or suspending of the employee involved with poor performance.

Constant ignorance of negative information, despite Amanda’s overhearing the conversation made by Lisa to clients’ pertaining to tax filing information, is chosen to remain adamant and she hopes that the situation would change for the best. This issue is addressed in the ‘directing’ functionality of management.


I) Amanda should devise effective ways of communicating to the workforce, since it is a crucial tool for establishing favorable working environment. It is fair that she develops interpersonal working relationships between the accountants and Lisa.

II) Amanda should also focus on finding new areas within the tax filing exercise which need progress. An effective way of performing the exercise is by way of asking the accountants and Lisa how well or worse they are doing (Management Study Guide, 2012).

Delayed actions to improve organizational outcomes are an issue which arose when Amanda chose to ignore the demanding calls from clients. As a planning issue of management, Amanda is advised to perform the following activities:


I) Amanda should devise ways through which she can manage all the activities within the firm. She should deploy strategic planning models which will assist her in selecting an effective course of action.

In failure to delegate duties and responsibilities, it is evidently clear that Amanda chose not to differentiate the accountants into appropriate departments. As an organizing issue, it is fair that Amanda should embrace organizing of the staff into departments which hold certain duties, such as control checks and counter-checking the filled tax documents before submission.

In failure to lower standards needed for measuring work performance, it is evident that Amanda failed to embark on deploying the minimum standards which could have been used to measure the work performance for each and every accountant therein.  Amanda should embark on lowering standards for performance, especially because of the limited professional resource which can inhibit achievement of the company’s goals and objectives (Raine, 2007).

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