The A SDA Way of Working

Posted: October 23rd, 2013





The ADSA Way of Working











The ADSA Way of Working


Leadership plays a critical role in any organization. No company operates effectively without a strong, focused and able management team. When this lacks, the organization fails in nearly all its operations. The staff, shareholders and customers all look up to the management to provide guidelines and answers to ineffectiveness of the business. When the company performs well, the managers earn credit. When the contrary is the case, they are required to provide reasons and solutions to the problems. A well-organized and structured leadership is the only key to quality performance of the corporation. The organization’s internal and external communication processes lay barely on the top management. The ASDA way of working formulated by Archie Norman provides an insight into the best strategies to overturn an organization’s misfortunes. However, more remain undone on the upward communication and the leadership style.

Purpose of Paper

This paper discusses the methods used to correct the failure in the upward communication process of ADSA. It discusses the various leadership characteristics that will help report customer information to the top management. Finally, it describes the best leadership program that would be effective to keep the manager aligned to the needs of their customers and staff.


ADSA’s way of working introduced by Archie Norman provides lessons to how a company can manage its top officials’ relation with the staff and customers to ensure quality production. Upward communication is a challenge that management systems ought to reform as discussed. Therefore, the management system must come up with programs to ensure they account for the needs and wants of their customers and workers.


Upward communication considers the flow of ideas and information between the lower staff to the top executives of an organization (Sehgal, Vandana, 2006, p. 34). ASDA has a failed upward communication since the grocery chain stores’ managers do not have a well-structured system to help them supervise the activities of the stores, and the managers lack an appropriate channel to report to the top management. With 65000 employees in the 205 chain stores and another 2000 at the various branch head quarters, communication is a significant challenge. With an operational upward communication process, the top leadership gets the feedback from their staff and customers alike. The staff is able to relay to the directors their constructive views regarding the challenges they face and the steps that can help to reduce them. ASDA, management should put in place an open management that will stimulate the morale of the store officials to maintain contact with the leadership.

Moreover, the organization leadership must get the staff involved in the day-to-day operations of the business. They ought to always be available to the chain store staff to advise and give a hand in the decision making process. Previously, ASDA had managers who preferred to pursue their own prestige at the expense of the company. Increased involvement of top executives will give space for talks with the employees and the customers, thereby getting feedback on the negatives and the positives of the company’s activities (Spector, 2010). In addition, the business must consider allowing the store to operate on them without close supervision, as this will reduce the fear of making a mistake.

A wide gap exists between the top executives and the ordinary customers. However, this gap must not exist if the company wants to create a strong corporate image. An alliance with customers and the staff will influence the customers’ input in the business. The leader will realize they are pivotal to the successful realization of the goals and objectives of the company. An all-inclusive leader earns the trust of everyone. The leader must identify senior members of the board, representatives of the customers and keep contact with them. The ground plan for an effective interaction must be in place. The leader should not face difficulty in monitoring the actions of the employees and shareholders. A new leader collaborates with the existing board members and chairs regular assimilation meetings. For example, ASDA’s new chief executive organized various meetings to explain the new ideas to the staff and shareholders. Customers will be free to report to the leaders if the above is in place.

Most leaders remain unresponsive to their customers and staff needs. This makes the business unable to earn profit. The managers must ensure they align to their shareholders and employees. To achieve this, the executive should embrace participative leadership programs where each one has a voice. The decision-making must consider every thought of the employees and the customers like the case in an annual general meeting. The workers and the shareholders will be satisfied with their job; thus, productivity of the company will rise. This style builds the skills of the employees and gives them the ability to control their own destiny. However, to keep the managers with the needs of the customer, servant leadership is the best. The leader will not view him/herself as superior to his/her employees but rather their servant. Customers want to be treated nicely. The management will only achieve this by a servant-leader program. This will set a good example to the workers and, therefore, the needs of the customers will be met. Workers needs will be met when the leader is that who listens and involves the workers in the decision making process of the organization.


In conclusion, leadership is crucial to effective management of an organization; one needs the knowledge of the various leadership styles. Knowledge of the ASDA way of working will give one insight into the possibility of recovering from declining performance. Effective upward communication will improve the performance of the company. Moreover, leaders possessing visionary, all inclusive and interactive qualities will ensure customer information gets to the top management. Importantly, democratic and transactional leadership programs will enhance the ability of the management to meet the needs of both customers and staff (Kane, Patapan, 2012, p. 27).

Lessons Learnt and Recommendations

            The ADSA’s way of working encourages other leaders that, successful business operation lies with their ability to create a team that can run the organization, even in his/her absence. However, the workers must keep a close touch with the top executive. The structure of communication must be in a manner that there is a constant interaction between the employees and customers with the top management. This is the only way the leaders will get feedback which is essential to the growth of the company. I recommend that ADSA embrace an inclusive upward communication. ADSA new leader should also consider employing democratic and transactional leadership to meet their customers and staffs’ needs.



Kane, J., & Patapan, H. (2012). The democratic leader: How democracy defines, empowers, and limits its leaders. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Sehgal, M. K., & Khetarpal, Vandana. (2006). Business communication. New Delhi: Excel Books

Spector, B. (2010). Implementing organizational change: Theory into practice. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

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