Functions of management at Target Corporation

Research Paper 10

Functionsof management at Target Corporation

Theprincipal goal of the research is to evaluate the functions ofmanagement and their application in the organizational settings. Afield research was carried out on the Target Corporation. TargetCompany has been recognized as one of the largest discount retailersin the United States. The success of the company reveals goodmanagement in the organization. The company also ranks the fittestwhen it comes to the competitive strategies. Target has been capableof decentralizing its managerial structure where nearly every brandhas sustained brand manager employees. Appropriate human resourcemanagement has also contributed to the success of the company(Williams,2015).This is as evidenced by the company’s high employee’s retentionratio. Target Company is also capable of creating a motivatedworkforce and hence ensuring value creation to their customers aswell as any other stakeholder.

However,just like any other organization the company is also faced by somemanagement flaws that the researcher also intended to investigate. Bythe fact that the organization does not operate in vacuum exposes allorganizations to high risks especially in their management styles(Saylor, 2013).


Thecompany was founded in 1902 as Goodfellow Dry, and its first storewas opened in 1962. The store acquired the largest portion of theDayton – Hudson Corporation and the year 2000, it was renamed as itis known today as The Target Corporation (Sanil, 2006). Currently,the company is having 1,000 locations throughout the United Stateswith its headquarters located in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

TargetCompany has got a series of stores that supply products such asclothing, cosmetics, jewelry, shoes, electronics, kitchen supplies,hardware devices, automotive supplies and non-perishable groceriesand many others. The company has been able to capture a significantmarket share than any other company operating in the same industrythis is due to its high competitive advantage.


Managementrefers to the way of getting things done. There are four primaryfunctions of management and are summarized as the principlesof management. A theorist by name Henri Fayol described principles ofmanagement as the process of creating means of getting things done byindividuals or groups in an organization (Saylor, 2013). The fourmanagerial functions can be explained in the model P-L-O-D. That isplanning, leading, organizing, and controlling.





Vision and mission setting

Organizational design/structure

Leadership style

Strategic human resource

Strategic planning

Organizational culture

Decision-making process

Internal control system

Set goals and objectives




ManagerialFunctions at Target Corporation


Saylordefined planning as a function of management that incorporatessetting vision, mission, goals and objectives by identifying thecourse of action that will help in achieving them. Target Corporationhas been able to apply its vision and mission statements in such away that it will help them in realizing their desired success. Visionstatement refers to the future intended state of a company (Sanil,2015). For instance, the Vision of the Target Corporation is “to bethe best in all areas of our business and in everything we do.”This is a strategic setting of the vision as it will help to keep thecompany working hard to achieve their best in their nationwidestores. Through effective human resource planning functions, thecompany is trying to bring out more motivation to the workers andenabling them deliver more.

Onthe other hand, the mission statement of the company is to expandtheir worldwide quality and cost leadership position to ensurecustomer satisfaction. The Company guarantees attainability of themission through the integration of human resource and moderntechnology. Through effective planning, the corporation has set thefollowing components to accompany their mission statement products,markets, technology, corporate image, customers, self-concept,philosophy, employees’ concern and after sale services.

Theplanning process in the Target Company consists of the systematicprocess that begins with scanning the organizational environment bothinternally and externally (Sanil, 2015). After doing so, the companyis capable of identifying the contingencies and assessing thecustomers’ needs and want and eventually developing the means tosatisfy the needs through strategic planning. The planners are alsocapable of forecasting the future condition of the corporation anddeveloping strategic plans for dealing with the condition. Theplanners much also come up with effective goals and objectives thatwill help the organization in achieving its vision and mission.Goals/ objectives are statements that explain what needs to be doneand when it should be done.

Themanagement team has established their goals and objectives that theyeventually develop strategic plans on the measures to achieve them.Planning at Target Company is categorized into three levels. Theyinclude strategic planning, tactical planning, and operationalplanning. Strategic planning involves the process by which externalenvironment is analyzed in assessing the success of the organization.On the other hand, tactical planning includes the moves affecting themiddle-level managers. Lastly, the operational planning involvessetting the short-term plans that are applicable to the dailyoperation of the company.


Leadingrefers to the way of getting things done right by people (Mintzberg,2009). It involves influencing and inspiring the actions of theindividuals and groups in an organization. Most of the employees ofTarget Corporation are enthusiastic in adding more effort to achievetheir set goals and targets. This is a clear evidence of effectiveleaders in Target Corporation, which is believed to have contributedmore the success of the organization.

Observingthe employee behavior at Target Company played a vital role inunderstanding the type of leadership as a function of management. Thestudy also involved assessing the employees’ personality and theirattitudes towards their bosses/ leaders. The inferences were thatleaders in Target Company frequently take a considerable amount oftheir time in understanding the emotions and personalities of theirsubordinates. This helps the managers in deciding on which leadershipstyle to apply. Most leaders in the Target Corporation use democraticleadership whereby every employee is involved in everydecision-making process. However, things are not always runningsmoothly with this leadership style as the situation is clear thatnot all employee will behave in the same manner. Just as McGregor’stheory explained it, some people who belong to Generation Y willalways dislike work and can only accept responsibilities if coerced.Such employees can only perform well if dictatorship style ofleadership is applied.

Encouragingteamwork is another strategy used by Target Company to increase theemployees’ productivity. This acts as motivation since every workerwill strive to achieve equality as per the members he or she isworking with in the same group. Effective communication is alsoimportant in the leading function of management (Saylor, 2008).Communication refers to the means through which information flowswithin the organization. The information at Target Company wasobserved to be flowing both from top to bottom and from bottom totop. This is a clear indication of a well-decentralized managementand decision making.


ThisFunction of management involves setting effective organizationalstructure with the appropriate allocation of human resources help inthe achievement of the organizational objectives (Lamond, 2011).Organizational structure refers to the framework within which theresources of the organization are coordinated. It is represented as agraphic chart that reveals more about the management style. It alsocommunicates more about the decision-making process within theorganization (Saylor, 2006).

Theorganizational structure of Target Corporation is horizontal one thatindicates that the decision-making processes are well decentralized.The organizing function as described in the structure of the companyshows how various duties and responsibilities are delegated to theorganization. Target Company uses multiple departmentalizations justlike any other large organization.

Theorganizing function also involves the culture applied by theorganization recruiting new employees and how human resources aremanaged. It also consists of the organizational designs of variousjob analysis that is more applicable when recruiting new staffmembers.

TargetCorporation has strived to balance the need for workersspecialization that is most essential in improving their productivityand eventually the quality of the products manufactured. Themanagement emphasizes on the principles empowerment through jobenrichment.


Thisfunction of management involves the processes of ensuring that theactual performance does not deviate much from the set standards(Mintzberg, 2009). The process of controlling involves three majorsteps. That is, setting performance standards, comparing the actualperformance with set standards and finally, taking appropriatemeasures to investigate the cause of deviations. In TargetCorporation, the performance standards are established in the processof budgeting and are expressed in monetary terms such as revenue,costs, and profit. Also, the standards are also shown as per thenumber of units produced or the level of customer feedback andsatisfaction.

Controllingfunction in Target Corporation takes place at all levels ofmanagement. The company has ensured a high level of control byinvolving managers at all levels in setting performance standards.This involvement helps in ensuring that measurable standards havebeen set and is attainable. It also acts as a motivating tool byreducing the employees’ resistance since employees can hardlyoppose what they had set for themselves.

Thefunction also ensures that the system in the organization is wellintegrated to help in achieving the set goals and objectives (Sanil,2015). The managerial function of controlling should not be used asan attempt at manipulating the personality and attitudes of theemployees’ but it should be viewed as an initiative of trying toinspire the worker to work towards achievement of the organizationalgoals.

Themanagers play a vital role in taking appropriate measures in ensuringthe creation of a conducive working environment. A good work- relatedactivities between subordinates and their respective contributiontowards the attainment of the organizational goals. Strategicplanning in the Corporation helps to create effective controlmeasures (Sanil, 2015). Target Company make use of both traditionalcontrol measures and modern control measures. Budgeting andperformance audit are the primary tools applied for managerialcontrolling. The budget helps in predicting the future expected stateof the company’s operations. Organizational policies and proceduresare also used in Target Corporation for control measures.


Fromthe above analysis of managerial Functions at Target Corporations, wecan conclude that the firm is employing right principles managementthat has contributed to its great success. The company hascontinually grown wider and wider by gaining huge market share in theindustry. It has become well- known countrywide with many branchesacross the country. Target is more competitive in this industry, andit is not comparable with any other firm in the market.

Theorganization put the value creation to the stakeholders on the frontline. The human resource management also understands the value of theemployees motivation that keeps them focused towards theaccomplishment of the organization objectives. Therefore, one canconclude that the success of any organization will majorly rely onthe management. This is because we have seen and evidenced manyorganizations falling due to poor management. It is also advisablefor the management to ensure proper understanding of their workforce.

Themanagerial functions that include planning, leading, organizing andcontrolling are regarded as the best ways of describing the roles ofa manager. Even though there might be tremendous changes in thebusiness environment, managers are helped by these functions inperforming their tasks and ensuring accomplishment of the setorganizational goals and objectives.


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