Using your knowledge of leadership styles, how would you account for the apparent low levels of motivation at McNuggets restaurants, with reference to the case study given in the image?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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One distinct reason that might help to explain the low level of motivation at the McNuggets restaurant is because of the authoritarian leadership structure.  This style of leadership features a very strict and controlled workplace setting. Such a focus of leadership is evident in the procedures that the restaurant imposes on its workers.  There is little in way of creativity and problem solving that could challenge workers to take an active role in their work.  The idea of "every single activity of the workers is laid down in company regulations" speaks to this.  The managerial structure demonstrates a commanding style of leadership in how they believe that "they have thought of everything" and that "workers do not have to show initiative."  The "set procedure" is a way to convey the autocratic and micromanaged leadership style.  The belief in efficiency and control is distinctive of such a style of leadership.

It seems that one result of this style of leadership at the McNuggets restaurant is a lack of zeal.  Employees are alienated from the decision making process.  The commanding style of leadership that represents a "top- down structure" has made employees replaceable, akin to interchangeable parts. The result of this is a high staff turnover and a lack of real connection with the company, potentially illuminated with the problem of absenteeism.  The autocratic structure does not permit any alteration to "the method laid down by McNuggets head office."  The result is that employees feel disengaged from the decision making process and from having any real and authentic sense of voice.  This condition is a direct result of the management structure that favors the institution over any real notion of employee voice.  

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