This essay consists of two parts. In Part One, it identifies three management functions that Apple used at its workplace, which are planning, organising and controlling. Then, it describes how important these functions are to Apple in regard to the company's management development. In Part Two, focus is shifted to Apple's communication between its top management team and employees, and between the company and the stakeholders. Effectiveness of the communication is explained.
Part one: Management functions at Apple
Apple development of its series revolutionary electronic products like iPod, iPhone and iPad shows the company's great business planning skills. As the case describes, from its market research, Apple realised that consumers had the demand for a device that could play music, watch movies and surf the Internet. On this basis, Apple decided to develop much more advanced products compared to the existing ones with integrated functions, to meet the potential customer needs. According to Schermerhorn and Davidson (2009), planning is to set target or goal and determine what actions need to take to achieve the goal. The materials highlighted above therefore, clearly show how planning function is carried out in Apple, to help the company to enhance its market performance. Moreover, it is mentioned in the case that "Apple hires people who are never satisfied, who are emotional about technology, and who collaborate in the spirit and pursuit of perfection". This explains how Apple ensures achieving goals by looking for the employees who fit its organisational goals and values, which could be regarded as an approach to management planning from the human resource perspective.
As the first step to do business, planning is the most fundamental function in the management process. Ideally, firms need to be clear about the goals they aim to achieve and what needs to be done in order to reach the goals. Apple's case lends support for this theoretical logic by showing how the company came up with the new product concepts and then leveraged its resources to develop the products. Arguably, in such a context, managers in Apple are less likely to make mistakes in their decision making process and all the managerial activities tend to be consistent with the goals. This could permit the company to compete effectively with other rivals in the market. It further corresponds with Bateman and Snell's (2007) statement that, one of the differences between a successful and unsuccessful manager lies within the planning procedure.
The second function discussed in this essay is organising. According to Schermerhorn and Davidson (2009), organising is to create structures by clear jobs and working relationships, arrange all useful resources to support them and ensure them follow the plan. In this case, evidence of organising is that Apple empowers its staff, and clarifies their responsibilities in terms of production and sales. For instance, managers have regular reviews on Mondays for the previous week work performance. This is crucial to not only ensure satisfactory progress of the new products, but also adjust subsequent management activities based on the update information and feedbacks.