Ikea is particularly concerned with the quality management. At any rate, when I worked at Ikea, the quality management was one of the primary concerns of the company. In this respect, it is important to lay emphasis on the fact that the company focused mainly on several control systems which allowed Ikea to maintain the high quality of its organizational performance and the high quality of work of employees. In terms of this strategy, the company used benchmarking to improve the quality and maintain the high quality of operations and organizational performance. However, in my opinion, benchmarking was not very efficient because it motivated employees simply to follow the lead of the industry leaders but it did not motivate employees to improve the quality for the sake of the consistent improvement of the organizational performance to take the leading position in the market. To put it in simple words, in my opinion, benchmarking breads certain backwardness and low self-esteem of employees because they do not learn to be leaders but they learn to follow the lead of other companies. This is why it is hardly possible to speak about the high effectiveness of benchmarking in the context of the quality management implemented by Ikea.
In this regard, the knowledge management and total quality management are consistently more efficient compared to benchmarking. In fact, the company used a very effective knowledge management strategy. At this point, the executives of the company were conscious of the importance of knowledge management to the modern organization such as Ikea because knowledge management allowed the company to improve the professional level of its employees consistently without outsourcing certain jobs or employment of new employees. In terms of knowledge management, Ikea developed the system of training within the company and, what was more important, the company had a well-developed system of sharing knowledge. The training allowed the company to use the full potential of its employees and to involve them in the training process. At the same time, sharing knowledge implied that professionals working within Ikea shared their knowledge, their new approaches to work and management, their innovative ideas with each other in terms of training programs. As a result, the personnel of the company did not only increase its professional level and qualification but also it could generate new knowledge. In such a way, employees were motivated to introduce innovations, develop innovative ideas which they could share with other employees and which could be implemented not only in their department but also in other departments within the company. As a result, employees felt their significance to the company. They grew conscious of the fact that the company needed them and, thus, they grew more and more motivated to work better, to extend their professional knowledge, skills and abilities and share their knowledge with other employees.
Conclusion: the anticipated impact on my personal and professional life
Thus, my experience of work in Ikea is very important in terms of my personal and professional development. In fact, I worked at the company where managers were definitely concerned not only with the effectiveness and productivity of work of employees but also with the quality of their work and, what was probably the most important to me, they were particularly concerned with the training and professional development of employees. The latter was very helpful to me because I learned how important the training and improvement of professional skills and abilities is in the contemporary business environment. In actuality, I understand that it is impossible to be a successful professional if you fail to keep progressing, if you do not extend your professional knowledge, if you fail to improve your professional skills and abilities.
At the same time, I have learned that motivation is a crucial factor that determines the overall success of my professional performance.
In fact, being motivated, I can improve my performance consistently and high motivation makes me interested in positive outcomes of my work and in the high quality of my performance. In addition, I am conscious of the fact that control systems are very significant and essential to modern organizations because through control systems they can not only control but also motivate employees.
On the other hand, my professional experience and my acquaintance with actual control systems and motivators used by Ikea contributed not only to my professional development but also to my personal development. It proves beyond a doubt that the job satisfaction influences the personal development and psychological state of employees. While working at Ikea, I learned how to be motivated and how to get satisfaction from my work. As a result, I felt being successful and this feeling had expanded on my personal life. In fact, my personal life has become balanced, purposeful and success-oriented.
Royse, D. et al. (2006). Program Evaluation: An Introduction 4th edition, Belmont: Thomson Brooks/Cole.