Yifei Zhang In the Management Zone There’s a minute left in the fourth quarter. Your team, Magic, has been back and forth winning with your opponent The Lakers since the start of the game. Glen “Big Baby” Davis has been injured in the first half and it’s really making everyone nervous without the team’s best shooter. You wish that Dwight Howard wasn’t traded last season, because it would be a no-sweat win, if so. If only management decisions were a piece of cake (maybe in a bakery). To begin, managers are everywhere. They are needed to assure things are getting done, and in a timely manner. They range from the top level, to the lower end positions. Without managers, things may be a bit chaotic. The actual job role of a manager is to oversee what others are doing, so they can respectively meet their organization’s goals. In the organization of choice, the NBA, there are many different levels of management. First-line managers oversee, supervise, and are the lowest level of management. The highest level of management are the “top managers”. They make important decisions, plans, and goals, that affect the organization as a whole. Lastly, everything falling in between the first-line and top managers are the middle managers. Since the sport has so many different aspects of it, like most sports, there are all levels in each subgroup. For example, the lowest branch of management may be the captain of the team. This player is in charge of getting the team focused and working together. However, the captain of the teams, as well as, the other teammates, must also listen to their coach. Again, there may be an assistant coach who must listen to the head coach. Furthermore, the head coach will listen to the team owner, and so on. As you can see, the managing system is a team effort. Managers in different ranks have different roles that they do. The top managers deal with a lot of the planning and organizing: they must make wise choices when deciding who to draft and trade each season. They make critical decisions that determine the future of the team. Going down the ladder, the coaches’ main function is to control and lead: they must make substantial efforts to assure their team trains well and wins. This is important because if the manager fails at this part of his job, they may not be able to receive the necessary players needed to win the following years. They also plan and organize by setting up practices, drills, and plays. Also, the players themselves must be hardworking employees to help meet their organization’s overall goal: to win a championship. A coach is needed to have a number of skills to effectively manage his people. Technical skills, for instance, are job-specific knowledge and techniques to perform those specific tasks. This skill is crucial and mandatory for coaches. If the coach himself has no idea how the game of basketball works, he will not be successful. The coach does not need himself to be an all-star player, but he needs to have that basic understanding of what his players are possible of demonstrating. Human skills are needed so that the players will listen to their coach. If the coach lacks human skills, he will not have the patience to get through to his players. His players may lose respect or be disobedient if their coach does not run their team correctly. As discussed in class, it is good to be both loved and feared. The coach must be strict enough to have players listen, but reasonable enough so that players respect and like him. Conceptual skills include the ability to think and conceptualize of abstract and abnormal situations. This is a vital part of making up game plays and strategies that will cause an outcome of a Win. While playing some teams, more aggressive defense may be needed, more three-points shot, or a certain player not be given, or given the ball. The principle of teamwork is one of the most important principles in the management study.