Organizational culture and value of strategic leader

Sainsbury is one of the biggest organizations which have been selected to study and determined the management and leadership. Sainsbury was started in the year 1869and showed progress slowly with the passage of time and known to be the third largest supermarket in UK. It followed its career from its parent company “J Sainsbury and then created number of different branches and the way of business namely Sainsbury’s Local, Bells Stores, Jacksons Stores and JB Beaumont, Sainsbury’s Online and Sainsbury’s Bank.

The report is consists of three segments. The first part covered the Organizational culture and value of Strategic Leader. In second part consists of Leadership style and in third part the discussion is about organizational involvement and objectives obtained by leaders.

The main objective of this report is to explain and express the useful skills of retail leadership at our own or any other different occupation. This report will keep a record of the type of personal leaderships used and established and to use them to resolve different critical circumstances.

1-Ethical and value based approach to leadership

1.1Organizational Culture and value of strategic leader

In this section I have covers the detail on Organizational culture and value of Strategic Leader.

It has been observed that the lives of organizational culture have been affected by the leaders and they are responsible for playing a dynamic role for organizational culture. There are many hurdles and problems, good and bad approach in an organization, things tends to follow suit “down hill”. An organizational culture is under the control of the leader and he has the authority responsibility to make changes and maintain the processes of the organization. And this is the very sensitive and chief task for him.

The organizational culture is also affected by the working style of J Sainsbury as a supermarket and it’s campaigning through advertisements using media. “Making Life Taste Better” is the slogan of quality which expresses the culture of the J Sainsbury and what it is trying to do for its customers. Many of the “loyal” customers of J Sainsbury has a believe on the slogan and they support this organization because it gives product with a high quality standard, fresh and delicious taste with reasonable price as compared to other supermarkets and retailers.

The team members of J Sainsbury are very cheerful helpful and devoting and they always ready to tell about the special offers in order to increase their sales and creating the interest of the customers. The team of Sainsbury gives a super customer service with a quick response. The store display contain an attractive look and a lots of leaflets that describes the types of services provided by other J Sainsbury stores like bank and initiating of the property agents.

These advertisements help to encourage and attract the customers to think and take advantage of using the other services of J Sainsbury organization. This organization always work for the better quality services and there supermarket consists of a couple of Customer service desks where staff is available, that are always ready to help the customer who is in need, so that the customer don’t need to look for the staff themselves without wasting of time.

This is the way of J Sainsbury in providing the best services to their beloved customers keeping the family value and help to increase the research and development in the organization. This approach to customers gives a feeling love and care for them and the performance of J Sainsbury is different from the other retailers which showed a special feeling to their customers as they are treated as single individual in a supermarket.

Leadership is always a hot topic for discussion like love, death, money and politics. While this topic remains under attention and its significant value in every business but it gives an unclear and puzzling theory. The definition of leadership is explained by countless numbers of different theories which explain the various aspects of leadership, but the problem is there is no full and common theory explaining the whole mission of leadership easily. One of the best ways in which

We can enhance our understanding of leadership is to see how various students of the subject have defined leadership (Dessler 2001)

In my opinion leader’s influence plays a main role in an organizational culture. However it has been observed that the leaders are being controlled by the set and strong culture. But this type of culture could harm the leadership taking to a negative result. These driving forces may include for example, “union behaviour.” (Shivers-Blackwell, 2006, p. 1). So therefore the leader should not leave the organization while under the control of the pre-existing culture.

For the new leader it is important to know and understand the main aim of an organizational culture this will help to prevent from being controlled by the culture. He should know the “in and out” of the organization and these factors are useful in maintaining the even flow of culture.

To ensure an organization culture stays healthy I believe that the leader must take an active role. There are a number of ways in which a leader can accomplish this. Communication and planning is a key amongst all efforts to ensure a healthy culture. If these issues are left unrecognized, it can become too late for the leader to have an influence.

1.2 – Legal, regulatory and ethical impact:

The ethical and legal standings are regulated by the companies as they have been growing epidemically.

The three separate entitles have been explained with backgrounds in different format including the process of regulation so that the organization could run smoothly.

The J Sainsbury is known to be one of the leading retailers of UK should also take part in ethical business practices; this will help to achieve the belief and reliability of their customers. The establishment of Amazon .com has helped the consumers to shop online keeping their information in a privacy and confidentiality. Therefore the consumers can review and understand the process of using the information that J Sainsbury Plc uses.

While considering the legal matters, the company’s Terms of Use require the use spells out and what the consumers wants to use and expect from the organization website providers and in turn, and what will be the expectation gain from the consumers. There is an unstated approval for the Term of Use and other rules and guiding principles which could be seen in the website of company (such as the Privacy and the Security Policies.

These Terms of Use include:

Online conduct

Privacy policy


Content (proprietary rights; distribution/uploading of third-party content; third-party content; and export)

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Age of Users

Termination of Usage

Password Security

Disclaimers and Limitation of Liability



Binding Arbitration

Acknowledgement; and


Being the leader of online book industry, it is important that the company I chose should convene all legal requirements, ethical and regulatory guidelines and policies and make every attempt to certify the safety and privacy of its users/customers. . J Sainsbury Plc Terms of Use as well as its Privacy, Security and Copyright Policies, are the most effective policies which are reviewed and revised (and this is clearly stated in each of the policies) everyone deal with these matters and give guarantee to use the site under a legal and ethical manner.

1.3 – Current and emerging social concerns and expectations :

“Bentley Hoffman of Honeywell ‘the computer conglomerate’, states that when companies are drafting codes of ethics they must strike a balance being sensitive to foreign cultures and their own internal sense of right and wrong. Those that do so will reap rewards (Davids, 1999). The need for a comprehensive, cohesive, and universal code of conduct for multinational corporations doing business internationally is paramount as it can help foster business contacts around the world, resulting in a facilitation of trade and an increase in profit (Payne, Raiborn and Askuik, 1997). Levi Strauss have set standards for working conditions in their foreign manufacturing facilities. Richard Woo a Levi company spokesman stated that in so doing it would help them meet their overall mission, which is to achieve responsible commercial success (Cottrill, 1996). Social capital is important for multinational corporations especially in Asian countries like China (guangxi) and Japan (kankei). Multinationals which develop this social structure will gain potential competitive advantages in global markets (Hitt, Ho-uk, and Yucel, 2002). In terms of business ethics, Richard Bay Minerals (RBM), a Rio Tinto subsidiary are pro active by sending out a team of community development workers each day to support community development projects in the adjacent Mnonambi community so fostering good community relations (Kapelus, 2002). (Richter, and Buttery, 2002), argue that the gap between the “haves”, and the “have nots”, is widening – therefore global firms are obliged to deal with “ethics” in cultural diverse areas.

One of the personal factors shows a vital role which is social characteristic in every person. This factor help to create a link with others.The characteristics and communication plays a main role. The whole work and social exchange depend on communication. It also describes the giving out of ideas sharing with others, there feeling and resources.The result of misunderstanding and disagreement takes place when communication breaks. The listening and speaking are the main elements of communication. These two words make an equal part in the establishment of communally skilled information exchange.

2 – Leadership styles

2.1- Strategic management and leadership:

According to Useem (2001, p 297), “Leadership is a matter of making a difference. It entails changing an organisation and making active choices among plausible alternatives, and depends on the development of others and mobilising them to get the job done.”

Warren Bennis states “Managers are people who do things right and leaders are people who do the right thing.” (Bennis, 1997). Similarly, a proverb says that leadership is doing the right thing; management is doing things right. The difference between the two is not as sharp as the saying would suggest, and both are required for effective corporate growth: leadership risk creates opportunities while management strictness turns them into tangible results. (

 There are many arguments which suggest that managers and leaders are essentially one in the same thing, but I feel that an important distinction should be made between the two – Leaders decide where to go, managers are the ones who facilitate the following.  This is supported by the likes of Bennis and Nanus (1985) and Kotter (1990) – Kotter produced a useful table to highlight the differences between the two

Management                                                                 Leadership

Planning and Budgeting                                                          Establishing direction

  Making detailed steps and timetables                              Developing a vision for the future

  for achieving results                                                       and plans for achieving the vision

Organising and staffing                                                          Aligning people

  The allocation of tasks and staffing                                 Communicating the vision so that

  To carry them out; also delegating                                   others understand it and agree with it


Controlling and Problem-solving                                 Motivating and inspiring

  Monitoring the results of a plan,                                      Energizing people towards the vision

  Identifying problems and solving them                             so that they overcome barrier

Outcomes: order and predictability                             Outcomes: Change

  Produces predictability so that others                              Produces definite changes such as

  can rely on consistent results                                          new products, or new directions

This is an important distinction to make as it helps us understand what sort of person is required to be an effective leader and following on from that, what then are the different traits of leader and what impact do different leaders with different styles have on different situations?

2.2 -Leadership styles and strategic decisions






Senior managers take the decisions with little involvement of junior employees

Dictatorial, but decisions are taken in the best interests of the employees

Running a business on the basis of majority decisions

Key Features

Set objectives

Allocate tasks

Leader retains control throughout

Explain decisions

Ensure employees’ social and leisure needs are met

Encourages employees to take part in decision making

Uses delegation

Communication used

One-way communication downwards from leader to subordinate

Generally form 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


There are three main styles of leadership. These are:




The autocratic style of leadership is the first style which gives approach in a controlled process means the leader is under the control and there is no thought of the students to run anything. This type of leadership style has its own ups and downs. The good of this is if you have a good strength of young and difficult students; then have to give a brief lesson to them or if the students won’t reply to any type of leadership styles. The drawback of this style is if the student become stressed and scared with your style. It is useful if your level of confidence is less because if this is the remaining thing then they would not get down if they are already in this position.

The other style of leadership is the democratic approach and this includes the involvement of the students in making of plans and decision and how their lesson could be run.  The positive point of democratic approach is that it always involves students and the leader will see what they like to be done and how to be done and whether the student has the ability to become a better leader. But on the other hand democratic approach is not suitable for it there are a number of students in one class or the time of lesson is really short. Therefore if the lesson is short then you have to extend the time of it. If you asked for the student’s contribution then you would not be able to start.

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The third style of leadership is the Lassez-faire approach. The Lassez-faire approach is not really leading. In this approach the students basically get to do what they want to do. They get little direction from the leader. This is an effective style to use when you are working with very good students (ability), when the students really want to do well for themselves and if you can trust the students. It should not be used if there are people in the class with limited experience, a big group or if there is difficult people in the group.

2.3 – Adapting leadership styles:

All these styles of leadership work in different situations and as a leader you have to change your style to suit the group that you are leading. For example if you are leading a group with limited experience you use the autocratic style, but if you have a really experienced group then the Lassez-faire style is the best.

Now I will look at how you have to change your style of leadership when involved in different activities like racket, team and individual activities.

When you are leading a racket sport you are really only working one on one. This allows you to use a democratic approach because the person you are leading is going to want to succeed. This allows you to let them look at what they want to do in the training session, and then you can put your own input into the session saying what you believe they should look at.

If you are leading a team activity on the other hand you need to use the autocratic approach the reason that you will use this approach is because you need to get the whole team doing the same thing. This is important because you have to get the team working as a team at all times. Also if you are in charge of a whole group of people you need to be respected and maybe even feared. The best way to do this is to use the autocratic style of leading. 

Finally if you are leading someone in an individual sport that you can use the Lassez-faire approach because in an individual sport they will know what they have done wrong. They may need a little input from you as the leader but ultimately they will know how to improve their own performance.

I think that all of the leadership styles are effective in different situations, but I would choose the autocratic style over the others if I had a choice. The reason that I would choose this is because an autocratic leader gets things done quickly and efficiently. If you are using the autocratic style you will get more things done. The reason for this is that everyone will be doing the same thing, so you will be able to get through more drills or exercises without people with the group.

3.1 – Professionalism, mutual trust, respect and support

In order to meet the service user’s needs, you need to establish  open, accurate and responsive communication with the service user’s and the staff as well as reviewing service delivery with continuous focus on improved communication, effectively and efficiently, which I believe I have become quite good at.

Whilst on my article ship I have learnt to act in a professional, prompt, caring and respectful manner, basing my relationships with service users on trust and mutual respect.

I believe in aggressively striving to identify and meet the individual needs of all of the service users.

By working together for the common good to accomplish tasks and deliver the services to the client, while striving to make every individual within the department part of my team.

You also really need to respect and embrace human differences, be non-judgemental and respect the client’s wishes and beliefs.

Whilst on my placement I have also learnt to take the client’s needs very seriously and paying attention to the details that build a strong relationship between student and client.

You always have to be available for any questions, respect the departments concerns and seek sensible practical solutions to any problems that arise.

As a student you need to learn to be responsible for making sure phone calls are returned promptly, updating service user’s on the progress of their query or problem, and anticipate upcoming needs and issues.

You have to evaluate any risks, and then devise strategies to deal with them in a manner which is consistent with the service user’s exposure and risk tolerance. This approach ensures that the service users operate from a position of confidence – rather than one of anxiety.

The size and organisational structure easily accommodates the service user’s specific needs and all of the staff are knowledgeable in many fields and can collaborate with other agencies as part of the team.

The departments approach is straightforward, as they examine the objectives of each service user and allocate the necessary skills and resources to manage the matter effectively.

Over the years, the department has demonstrated exceptional depth and skills in responding both individually and collectively to the changing and complex needs of the client.

3.2 -Leader focus and the achievement of objectives:

“Where there is no vision, the people perish” Proverbs 29:12

  The strategic vision is the heart of an organization. The strategic vision gives focus, meaning, direction and power to everyone within in the organization. The strategic vision tells the members of the organization “where we are going” The strategic vision gives life to the organization as the members walk in the vision. Without a strategic vision there is no direction, no purpose, no motivation and the members within the organization perish and die because the welfare of the organization becomes unfocused. The strategic vision provides a glimpse of possibilities and it is the capacity to look beyond the moment into the vast potential of tomorrow. It evokes deeper meaning and deeper commitment than the goals.

The vision and the mission statements are the critical elements of a successful business.  The vision and mission are linked together.  The vision addresses the where the mission is.  The vision is a goal and the mission is a strategy. The vision and the mission are the guiding principles and values of the organization.  The values that the members have give direction to the organization and define the spirit in which things in the organization should be accomplished.  A commitment flows from the values because of the organization’s commitment to the members, the members in turn, become committed to the organization. An organization can reach the future by focusing on where the organization is headed. Every organization must have an end to which they are headed.  To be an effective organization there must be a strategic vision because “Where there is no vision, the people perish.”

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3.3 -Developing support and understanding:

Being one of the most predominant styles of leadership, democratic style of leadership is more likely to produce effective group performance. However, there is no one best style of leadership. Different types of leadership may also be needed at different stages of business. Effective leaders use a collection of distinct styles, in the right measure, at the right time. National culture may also influence choice of leadership style. There are many variables which underlie the effectiveness of leadership in work organisations. The most effective form of leadership behaviour is a product of the total leadership situation. Leadership development should be long term issue for any business organisation.

Now that we know leadership is a crucial ingredient through which people in all the company’s relationship are inspired. It takes good leaders to set a direction for the company. It takes good leaders to stimulate the whole organisation to understand what success looks like and how it will be achieved and measured. Leaders set the tone, by their deeds as much as by their words. They ensure that the organisation behaves in line with its purpose and values.

However, if leaders lack the confidence to achieve and carry out these approaches it will ultimately result in poor leadership. Employee job performance and satisfaction are heavily influenced by the levels of direction and support employees receive on a day-to-day basis. Poor leadership does not just hold employees back from reaching their full potential within an organisation; it sends them in the wrong direction and seriously impacts morale, employee retention, and financial performance in the process.

3.4 -Adapting strategic leadership styles to meet change:

If an organization allows for a learning environment, the future competency potential of the employees and capacity for adapting to change will be unlimited. The Leadership-Participation Model states that open participation and a specific set of guidelines helps employees become a part of the corporate decision-making process. The Path-Goal theory states that leaders assist their workers to reach their own personal goals, as well as those of the company. By using the path-goal concept as a framework, managers can achieve many tasks, and their self-esteem needs will be satisfied. One of the leadership challenges faced by many managers is transactional leadership, which involves having to identify what are the employees’ needs and how to help them achieve the level of performance that results in satisfactory rewards (Robbins, 2003, 325-326).

Transformational leadership is how managers encourage employees to earn self-actualization by providing individual attention and logical incentives. Efficient managers create dynamic leadership policies to gain employee commitment and loyalty. Managers who use interpersonal communication skills are more sensitive to employee needs, and provide ways for them to voice their opinions. Transformational leadership motivates employees to achieve results greater than originally planned for internal rewards like achievement and self-actualization (Bolton, 1996, 34-37).

According to Fiedler’s psychological reasoning, most employees focus on task completion and have a sense of accomplishment, so they follow task-oriented leadership. However, some employees also value supportive associations with managers, so they follow relationship-oriented leadership. Managers who use corporate task structure allow jobs to be structured according to problem-solving and feedback on success The most successful leaders care about employees’ personal advancement, growth and achievements, so they use an initiating structure where the manager defines the relationships, keeps the channels of communication open, focuses on goals, and explains how to do the jobs (DuBrin, 2000, 142-148).

The five disciplines that Peter Senge (1990) says are the core disciplines in building the learning organization: personal mastery, mental models, team learning, shared vision, and systems thinking.

Personal mastery is what Peter Senge describes as one of the core disciplines needed to build a learning organization. Personal mastery applies to individual learning, and Senge says that organizations cannot learn until their members begin to learn. Personal Mastery has two components. First, one must define what one is trying to achieve (a goal). Second, one must have a true measure of how close one is to the goal. (Senge, 1990)

Mental models are the second of Senge’s five disciplines a mental model is one’s way of looking at the world. It is a framework for the cognitive processes of our mind. In other words, it determines how we think and act.

Team Learning Starts with ‘dialogue’, the capacity of members of a team to suspend assumptions and enter into a genuine ‘thinking together’.

Shared Vision As people talk, the vision grows clearer. As it gets clearer, enthusiasm for its benefits grow’.

System Thinking System thinking is useful because, among other reasons, it can be diagrammed.  There are three simple system processes that can be easily defined and understood. Reinforcing Feedback Loop, Balancing Feedback Loop, Delays.


Summing up all discussion I conclude that the pattern in which leadership and management react with each other is like leadership being centre of management and management being its circle. It is the obligation of every manager to be at the same time an inspiring leader. Being an efficient manager has actually proved to bring successful for the organization results whereas being an inspiring leader has not yet proved its importance. So an organization can progress if its manager is efficient but cannot progress, if its manager only relies to leadership characteristics. Leadership is an art that can be obtained and learned via experience. It is the difficulties via the years that one would face that will transform him into a leadership figure. In addition I consider leadership as nominal obligation of each and every manager. This is why in my conclusion I differentiate the term managers from administrators. A manager should be a leader. Should be able to inspire and motivate without using his power. He should be visionary whereas at the same time very detailed oriented.

       I would suggest that a word like Management ship or Leadership should describe the actions of the 21st century manager, because our time calls for managers to be leaders.

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