How To Achieve Competitive Advantage By Improving Employee Welfare

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Ryanair’s competitive business strategy offers lots of benefits to customers. Over the years, the airliner’s effective price mechanism reduced its price to an industry-lowest, a source of sustainable competitive advantage which was, however, weakened by the rising cost of aviation fuel, poor investment in fleet maintenance, and dissatisfaction among employees. Lingering management issues at the UK-based company are responsible for low productivity level, decline in profits and loss of competitiveness against major contenders like EasyJet and Virgin Express (Zou et al., 2016; Klindokmai et al., 2014; Macário et al., 2019).

This feasibility report was prepared for the top management of Ryanair. It aims at investigating issues in the company’s business environment, particularly the recent loss of revenue caused by incompetent leadership and total disregard for quality delivery and customer satisfaction. This objective report therefore aims at identifying the major causes of systemic problems at the airline and proffering effective solutions that are capable of transforming business activities, processes and outcomes (Cook & Macaulay., 1997; May et al., 2014).

A mix of analytical frameworks such as the Leader-Member Exchange model, Fielder’s Contingency model and SWOT analysis were used for a clear understanding of Ryanair’s current business position (Macário et al., 2019).

In September 2017, the Ryanair cancelled over 2,000 flights for lack of the minimum number of staffs required to be on standby at the airports in case of emergency situations. According to Michael O’Leary, Ryanair CEO, the costly operational decision was unavoidable because a large number of pilots were on annual leave. The chief executive subsequently apologised at Ryanair’s Annual Meeting, noting that such acts of neglect caused by rostering issues would not occur in the future. Although the SWOT analysis identified a list of other problems caused by managerial incompetence, Graham (2017) said Ryanair pilots were offered a bonus valued at $14,282.00 for 10-day overtime jobs, adding that a total of 125 pilots were also employed within two weeks to boost performance (Thomas., 2015).

Similarly, the Fielder’s Contingency model showed poor relationship management at Ryanair, including negative corporate culture, bureaucratic bottlenecks and low task structure, which are considered reasons for the pilots’ alleged rejection of cash rewards. The company’s high rank on the LPC scale highlights a need for purposeful leadership, one that sees workers as the biggest assets in any organization and is skilled in strategic relationship management (Leitch & Richardson., 2003; Milmo., 2006).

Further, the Leader-Member Exchange Model showed the huge benefits accruable from managers with skills in staff motivation. Ryanair has an inefficient management processes and a poor work culture, a dire situation which requires change and innovation strategies which, in turn, demand commitment and collaboration between management and staff. Moreover, the company needs to restructure investments in people, process and technology to enhance productivity, close communication gaps, provide a conducive work environment, involve workers in decision-making activities, offer more opportunities for career growth and improve welfare packages (Rao., 2010).

With its adaptation to change and innovative leadership strategies, Ryanair can achieve competitive advantage, especially through smart scheduling and commitment to organizational goals. Strict application of proposals provided in this report will boost productivity, profits and sustainability. However, disregarding the recommendations will, most likely, diminish earnings and erase hopes of competing favourably against industry giants like Virgin Airways and EasyJet as collaborated by research findings from Strategic Direction (2016).

TABLE OF CONTENTS
TITLE PAGE ——————————————————————————————————————————————————1
TABLE OF CONTENTS —————————————————————————————————————————————-2
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY ————————————————————————————————————————————3
SECTION 1: THE COMPANY CONSULTANCY REPORT —————————————————————————————–5
1.0 INTRODUCTION ——————————————————————————————————————————————-5
1.1 TERMS OF REFERENCE ———————————————————————————————————————————5
1.2 RYANAIR’S SITUATIONAL ANALYSIS ————————————————————————————————————-6
1.3 SWOT ANALYSIS OF RYANAIR ———————————————————————————————————————-8
1.4 FIELDER’S CONTINGENCY MODEL —————————————————————————————————————-12
1.5 THE LEADER-MEMBER EXCHANGE MODEL —————————————————————————————————14
1.6 CHANGES TO BE ADOPTED BY RYANAIR ——————————————————————————————————16
1.7 CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK ————————————————————————————————————————21
1.8 PLAN TO BE IMPLEMENTED BY SPORTS DIRECT ——————————————————————————————–23
1.9 BENEFITS OF IMPLEMENTING THE PROPOSAL ———————————————————————————————–24
1.10 RISK ASSOCIATED WITH RYANAIR NOT IMPLEMENTING THE PROPOSAL ——————————————————–25
1.11 RISK OF IMPLEMENTING PROPOSAL ———————————————————————————————————–25
1.12 CONCLUSION —————————————————————————————————————26
SECTION 2: EVIDENCE REVIEW ———————————————————————————————————————-27
2.0 INTRODUCTION ——————————————————————————————————————————————27
2.1 SWOT ANALYSIS——————————————————————————————————————————–27
2.1.1 AN OVERVIEW OF THE SWOT ANALYSIS ———————————————————————————————- 27
2.1.2 INTERNAL ANALYSIS ————————————————————————————————————————-28
2.1.3 EXTERNAL ANALYSIS ————————————————————————————————————————29
2.1.4 HOW THE SWOT ANALYSIS WORKS —————————————————————————————————–31
2.1.5 ADVANTAGES OF USING SWOT ANALYSIS ——————————————————————————————-32
2.1.6 DEMERITS OF THE SWOT ANALYSIS —————————————————————————————————-32
2.2 FIELDER’S CONTINGENCY MODEL ——————————————————————————————————32
2.2.1 HOW THE FIELDER’S CONTINGENCY MODEL WORKS —————————————————————————-33
2.2.2 BENEFITS OF FIELDER’S CONTINGENCY MODEL ———————————————————————————–36
2.2.3 FAILURES OF FIELDER’S CONTINGENCY MODEL ———————————————————————————–36
2.3 LEADER-MEMBER EXCHANGE (LMX) MODEL —————————————————————————————-37
2.3.1 AN ASSESSMENT OF THE LEADER-MEMBER EXCHANGE (LMX) MODEL —————————————————37
2.3.2 THE IMPORTANCE OF LMX MODEL ——————————————————————————————————39
2.3.3 CRITICAL ASSESSMENT OF THE LMX MODEL —————————————————————————————-40
SECTION 3: REFLECTION FOR EMPLOYABILITY ENHNACEMENT ———————————————————————40
3.1 INTRODUCTION ———————————————————————————————————————————40
3.2 CRITICAL THINKING & CORE CAPACITIES ——————————————————————————————–41
3.2.1 DESCRIPTION ————————————————————————————————————————————41
3.2.2 FEELINGS —————————————————————————————————————————————–42
3.3 SELF-EVALUATION OF CURRENT KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND COMPETENCIES FOR THE TASK ——————–43
3.3.1 EVALUATION ————————————————————————————————————————————43
3.3.2 ANALYSIS (SKILLS) —————————————————————————————————————————43
3.4 CONCLUSION ————————————————————————————————————————————44
3.5 LEADERSHIP SKILLS REQUIRED FOR FUTURE PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT AND CAREER ACCESSION ———-44
3.5.1 ACTION PLAN ———————————————————————————————————————————–44
REFERNCES ————————————————————————————————————————————- 46