Case Study: Employee Resourcing Strategies Sample Assignment

Introduction

Human resource is a key element in an organisation. For an organisation to be successful, it is important that the management implement a comprehensive employee resourcing strategy. According to Kevin (n.d, p.2), employee resourcing refers to matching an organisation’s future requirements and supplying it with committed, qualified and experienced human resource at the right time and place. The source of staff can either be from the external or internal labour market. Various activities are involved in the process of employee resourcing. These include staffing, administration and performance.

Human resource administration is concerned with resourcing, relational process and employee development. On the other hand, performance and staffing processes are concerned with ensuring that an organisation has the collect number of employees with the necessary skills. Various internal and external factors affect these activities. According to Ani, Andrew (2001, p.7), there is a complex relationship that exists between variables related to resourcing processes. The management of an organisation has to ensure that harmony exists in an organisation between; the organisation’s human resource strategies, employees’ preferences and needs and job requirements. Various responsibilities face the employees. These relate to job requirement and other personal responsibilities such as caring for the family. Therefore, it is important for the management of an organisation to incorporate the concept of flexible work- work life balance. The case of Sue Fox (A Quality Assurance Manager) is a classic illustration of the importance of adopting this strategy.

The phrase ‘flexible working’ refers to a working pattern that is in line with an employee’s needs. On the other hand, work-life balance refers to the process of implementing policies that enables an employee to combine his or her employment with the various aspects of their life. According to Clinton (2009, para.12), work-life balance is one of the major aspects that is currently attracting employees to an organisation. In addition, flexible working is resulting into an increase in the rate of employee retention. By incorporating these strategies, an organisation can benefit from an increase in employees productivity. In addition, the employees become more committed in their duties. This paper is a report related to employee resourcing strategies based on the case of Sue Fox. The subject of the report relates to the various employee resourcing strategies that can be adopted to enhance flexible-working and work life balance.

The following are some of the employee resourcing strategies that the personnel manager of the organisation should consider.

Recruit more staff

Currently, the organisation has a shortage of experienced staff. This makes it difficult for the line manager to make adjustments in relation to employees’ requests. To increase the level of employee loyalty to the organisation, the personnel manager should consider increasing the number of staff. This will enable the organisation to have sufficient number of human resource in all the departments at all times. Recruitment should be perceived as a strategy of increasing human capital in the organisation. It should be aimed at meeting the future challenges. This is due to the fact that it will result into an increase in the organisation’s pool of skills and competencies (Alan, 2007).

Personnel manager should ensure that a comprehensive recruitment strategy is formulated. The strategy should consider both internal and external sources of staff. This will enable the organisation to recruit staffs that are motivated and have the necessary skills. The result is that the organisation will succeed in the long term. In its recruitment strategy, the management should ensure consider the outsourcing the services of recruitment consultants, head hunters and selection experts. Alan (2007, p.306) asserts that this will help the organisation to increase the scope of its recruitment. This is due to the fact that recruitment agencies consider both the domestic and foreign labour markets. Recruitment agencies conduct a comprehensive recruitment process to ensure that the individual is qualified.

The use of recruitment agencies will enable the organisation to increase the chances of selecting the best human resource. Randal and Susan (1987, p.207), asserts that through external recruitment, the organisation will increase the range of its employee’s experience. This will help in solving the problem of employee scarcity within the organisation. Sufficient staffing of the organisation will culminate into an increase in the employees’ level of performance. This is due to the fact that flexible working will be inculcated in the organisation enabling them to attend to other responsibilities such as child care (Alan, 2007, pp. 348-350).

Employee training

The employee staffing process should also integrate employee training. According to Geoff (1994, p.23), training will enable the selected and the already existing staff to improve on their skills and hence their performance. For example, if the organisation has enough staff, it will be possible for some employees to attend refresher courses. This will culminate into employee development. In addition, employee training will result into career development for the employees. As a Quality Assurance Manager, Sue Fox is concerned about attaining job fulfilment. Through employee training, it will be possible to attain this.

To effectively incorporate employee training, the personnel manager should conduct a need analysis. According to Sarah (2005, p.65), need analysis refers to the identification and evaluation of a particular need. Need analysis is also referred to as gap analysis. It enables the management to identify the gap between the current situation of the employees in relation to their skills and their desired position. There are various procedures that are necessary for the management to consider in the process of undertaking need analysis. These include;

  • Identification of the skills that the employees need to learn.
  • Identification of level of training required by the employees. For this to be undertaken effectively, it is important for the management to understand the current level of skills of the employees. This will help them identify the training need areas of the employees according to their preferences.
  • Determination of the cost that will be involved in training the employees.
  • Determination of the method of training to be used.

Through employee development, the level of employee satisfaction will be improved. Through employee training, the management will be able to maximise on the value of the employees.

Adjustment of working hours

Personnel policies are important elements of employee relation in an organisation (‘Employee relation process’, 2009). One of the avenues through which the personnel manager can improve this employee relation is through adjustment of the working hours. Sue Fox’s is a committed and goal oriented individual. This means that she is an important resource to the organisation. On average, her working hours are five to eight hours. Her job involves a lot of travelling which deprives her the time available for her to be with her children. This means that there are some aspects of her life that are affected by her work. Some of the strategies that the personnel manager should consider to maintain a flexible working environment include:

Working on part time basis

Part time working refers to an employee working few number of hours compared to a full time employee. According to flexible working and work life balance (Anon., 2009), full time working involves working an average of average to thirty five hours per week. Working on part time basis gives an employee the chance to balance his or her work with other personal commitments. By adopting this strategy, the management of the organisation will enable Sue Fox to effectively undertake her caring responsibilities.

To incorporate part-time working strategy, the management of the organisation may consider reducing the number of days that an employee attends job per week. For example, the management may consider dividing the working days into a set of three days. In this strategy, the personnel manager should incorporate a one day of hand over. Alternatively, the personnel manager may consider structuring the part time working program by incorporating the concept of job sharing. According to David (2006, para.1), job sharing involves splitting a full time job between two employees. This gives the employees an opportunity to control their time. For instance, the days work may be split into two basing on the number of hours. One of the colleagues may be opt to work in the morning hours while the other works in the afternoon hours.

Flexi time strategy

The personnel manager should also consider integrating the concept of flexi time. Under this strategy, a certain range of hours are set in which the employee must working. For example, the personnel manager may set the working hours to be between 10.00 am to 4.00 pm. The other hours are considered as flexi time. During these hours the employees have the freedom to be working or not. However, the personnel manager should set the monthly number of hours that the employee is supposed to attain. For example, an employee may be required to work for 35 hour a week. This means that the monthly number of hours he or she is required to work is 140. If the worker exceeds this number of monthly hours, he or she is at a credit. This means that his or her off duration can be increased. On the other hand, if the number of hours is less than 140, the employee runs at a deficit which means that the lost hours have to be compensated. Through this strategy, it will be possible for Sue Fox to balance between her personal duties and job requirements. This is due to the fact that she will be able to schedule on her travelling. In addition, flexi time working strategy will give her the opportunity to be in control of her work load.

Compressed hours

The personnel manager should formulate a compressed hour working strategy. This strategy is related to flexi time strategy. In this strategy, the personnel manager sets the given number of hours that the employee is supposed to work per week. The employee has the freedom to compress these hours by working over a few days with the requirement of meeting the set hours. For example, the employee may be required to work for 35 hours daily for five days. This means that the employee will have time to accomplish other commitments. This means that Sue Fox will be able to balance between her job requirement and life.

Through this strategy, the personnel manager will be able to improve on employee loyalty and hence the rate of employee retention. In addition, it will be possible for the organisation to attract and recruit qualified individuals who have other commitments. In the long term, this means that the organisation will develop competitive advantage in relation to human capital.

Integration of reward management

The management of the organisation should improve on its reward management. Reward management refers to a system through which the employees of an organisation are rewarded for every accomplishment achieved (Michael, Paul, Duncan & Charles, 2005,p. 5). Reward management entails both financial remuneration and non-financial remuneration. For example, an employee can be rewarded through an increase in his or her salary and also other financial benefits. Considering the case of Sue Fox, her financial responsibilities are numerous. These include paying for child care, tax and other personal financial responsibilities. By increasing her salary, she will be able to meet these needs.

In order to reward employees effectively, the management of the organisation should continuously conduct performance appraisal. Performance appraisal involves evaluating the performance of the employee. The employee is rewarded according to the level of his performance.

Sue Fox is motivated in her job which limits her from quitting the job. To increase her level satisfaction, non financial form of rewards such as promotions should be integrated. Considering her performance, the management should consider promoting her to a position of Senior Quality Assurance Manager. This will enable her to exploit her skills to the maximum considering the fact that she is goal oriented.

Other forms of non- financial remuneration that the management should consider include recognition. This will enable the employees to feel appreciated resulting into an increase in their productivity. Through recognition, the management of the organisation is able to identify behaviour that should be encouraged within the organisation. In addition, the rewarding strategy will enable the organisation to attract, recruit and maintain high job performers.

Subcontracting

The management of the organisation should consider the concept of subcontracting. According to John (2007, p.197), subcontracting involves entering into a contractual agreement with an external firm to perform certain tasks. Ken (2009, para. 7) asserts that through subcontracting, the management is able to integrate a flexible working environment in the organisation. Considering the fact that Sue Fox’s job entails a lot of travelling, the personnel manager should consider outsourcing a quality assurance firm to undertake some these tasks. This will reduce the work load to the Quality Assurance Manager. This will result into a decline in the level of stress as a result of job hence an increase in their productivity.

Conclusion

The success of an organisation depends on the quality of the firm’s human resource. Currently, employees are concerned with balancing their work with other responsibilities. This is due to the fact that employees have got other responsibilities such as caring for their families. This makes it important for the management of an organisation to develop a flexible working environment. A flexible working environment benefits both the employee and the organisation. The employee is able to undertake other personal responsibilities. The employers benefit from increased performance from the employees. This is due to the fact flexible working environment results into employee satisfaction and hence their level of performance.

To create a flexible working environment, the management should consider a various employee resourcing strategies. To ensure that the organisation has the right number and quality of staff, the management should recruit more employees. The recruitment strategy should be comprehensive. This will ensure that the firm has selects only the qualified employees. Both the domestic and the foreign labour market should be considered in the recruitment strategy. This can be achieved through the use of services of the recruitment agencies or the head hunters. Recruiting more staff will enable the organisation to have a sufficient number of staff. The effect is that it will be possible for the management to reallocate tasks to different employees. This means that there will be no hindrances for the employees in balancing their life.

The management of the organisation should ensure that employee development is integrated in the organisation. According to William and Roland (2004, p.19), this can be achieved through formulation of an employee training program. The employee training program will ensure that the employees are skills are improved. This will culminate into an improvement in the efficiency of employee performance. In addition, employee training will enable the employees to develop their careers. This will result into employee satisfaction and hence their loyalty to the organisation.

Flexible working environment can also be enhanced by the management adjusting the working hours. Strategies such as flexi time, compressed hours and part-time working should be considered. This will result into flexibility in work environment since the employees will have control over their work. This means that they can be able to balance their work with other responsibilities. However, in implementing these strategies, it is paramount for the management to set the number of hours that the employee is required to work either weekly, monthly or annually.

Employee resourcing can also result into flexible working environment through incorporation of the subcontracting strategy. Subcontracting will enable some of the organisation’s tasks to be performed by an external firm. The result is that there will be a reduction in the work load assigned to the employees. The effect will be an increase in the productivity of the employees.

Reward management should also be considered in employee resourcing. Effective reward management should be supported by performance appraisal. Both the financial and non financial forms of rewards should be considered.

A flexible working environment can form the basis through which an organisation can gain competitive advantage in relation to human capital. This is due to the fact that qualified individuals will be attracted to the firm and also the rate of employee retention will be high.

Recommendations

The management of the firm should consider the following employee resourcing strategies to ensure that there is a flexible working environment in the organisation.

  • Increase the number employees in the organisation by recruiting and training more staff
  • The firm should subcontract some of its activities that are not core to the operation of the firm.
  • The management should formulate a policy aimed at adjusting the employees working hours.
  • Career development should be integrated in the organisation. This will enable the employees to progress in their careers.

Reference

Alan, P. 2007. Human resource management is a business context. (E-book) London: Thompson Learning. Web.

Ani, B, Andrew, R.J & Richard, H.N.2001. The development of a strategic employee resourcing framework for construction.(On-line) Loughborough: University of Loughborough. Web.

Clinton, M.2009. How to achieve a perfect work-life balance. (On-line). Web.

David, J.2006.Employee management: the pros and cons of job sharing.(On-line). Web.

Directgov. 2009. Flexible working and work life balance.(On-line). Web.

Geoff, A. 1994. Model for training needs analysis. Journal of European Industrial Training, (On-line), 18(3), pp.23-28. North Carolina: MCB University Press. Web.

Gonzaga University. 2009. Employee relational process. (On-line). Web.

John, S.2007. Human resource management: a critical test.(E-book).London: John Peg Publishers. Web.

Ken, B.2009. What is subcontracting? (On-line). Wise Geek. Web.

Kevin, M. n.d. Employee resourcing. (On-line). 2009. Web.

Michael, A.& Paul, T, Duncan, B & Charles, C.2005. Reward Management. (On-line). Web.

Sarah, C. 2005. Learning need analysis: what is learning need analysis? Training journal. ABI/ INFORM Global.

Randall,S.S.& Susan, E.J.1987. Linking competitive strategies with human resource management practices. The academy of management executive.(On-line), 1(3). Web.

Victorian Women Lawyers.n.d. Protocol part time worker.(On-line). Web.

William, J.R & Roland, S. 2004. Practising organisation development: a guide for consultants. [E-book] San Francisco: John & Wiley Sons Incorporation. Web.

Business Plan Analysis And Critique Of Abaka Company

Introduction

The marketing plan is one of the most important and vital documents which determines the main strategic directions and goals of the project. As the basic vehicle for matching solutions with means, or management resources with market opportunity, management planning becomes the mechanism through which a company is brought into line with the external environment. The company, Abaka Energy Solutions, develops a unique plan aimed to support local underdeveloped societies and introduce renewable energy solutions in these regions.

For this company, marketing plans are essential functions of management, which have a forward-looking, integrated, and balanced view of total action. A marketing plan encompasses the perspective of the future, the types of objectives established, and the strategies and tactics to be employed. Through marketing planning, the fundamental strategies of the business enterprise are conceived based on market needs, forces, and opportunities; and marketing is implemented as a philosophy of business operation and a way of corporate life.

The plan’s marketing strategy and its operating strategy

The proposed marketing strategy is based on the unique needs and demands of the target community. The marketing plan allows me to say that the emergence of a marketing elite largely concerned with planning rather than marketing techniques or the implementation of marketing activity has been predicted. A new and influential executive known as a corporate planner has, in fact, evolved. Marketing planning requires sales projections for such periods as one, three, five, and ten years ahead.

These projections predict customer and competitor reactions; attempt to gauge acceptance for new products; and highlight economic, social, demographic, technological, psychological, and political changes, all of which are difficult tasks to perform -nor can they be performed with the degree of precision available in other more concrete situations. Yet, information that provides a perspective for future operations is invaluable for corporate decision-making (Drejer, 2002).

The company, Abaka Energy Solutions, develops a successful approach to emerging technology implementations proposing opportunities and benefits for the target audience. By providing the means for anticipating the firm’s future requirements along with an orderly, continuous, systematic, and sequential basis, marketing planning avoids crisis decisions and concentrates on integrated programs of action. Marketing planning, therefore, is a rational way of translating experience, research information, and thought into marketing action. It is a pragmatic, organized procedure for analyzing situations and meeting the future (Dobson and Starkey 2004).

Based on information about ends and means to determine various business relationships, trends, and patterns of behavior, it is concerned with the analysis of alternative strategies. In essence, purposeful research, experience, judgment, and decision making (all of which are directed toward guiding the corporate system and bringing it growth, survival, and adjustment) form the fabric of the marketing planning process. Management is an integrated, intelligent, rational process for guiding business change. Management is closely related to problem-solving. Planning stipulates an intentional, unified approach to the solution of various marketing problems. Although the specification of a plan for solving a problem is the first step, execution must accompany planning to achieve results.

The alternative energy and electricity market has been analyzed carefully, thus the company did not take into account their income and cultural values. It will create some problems if future if the population refuse to use alternative energy resource. Marketing planning is neither automatic nor impersonal. proceed with it in terms of goals, policies, and programs, decision-makers exercise judgments. These judgments concern human behavior as well as the motives and values of business institutions and customers.

The use of end-means analysis for planning purposes requires that the values concerning the ends themselves be clearly specified. Some of them will refer to marketing goals, others to goals dealing with the maintenance of the business system itself. Marketing plans should account for both. Still, customers’ needs were carefully researched (Drejer, 2002).

Still, the market is not well-segmented and justified. Abaka Energy Solutions singled out only the main classes of people in Karagwe. Still, management planning is a dynamic activity. In estimating future moves of competitors and actions of customers, for example, the difficulties and intricacies of estimation are evident. The fact that anticipated actions may not occur is clear. Therefore, planning is dynamic by necessity. Flexible and pliable plans that reflect unexpected and unanticipated reactions must be developed.

Because it encompasses market and sales forecasts, company plans and programs, and, of course, budgets, marketing planning carries out the marketing concept by balancing the firm’s capability with expected opportunities. Management assists in perfecting the fundamental strategies of a business enterprise through attention to market needs, forces, and opportunities. As with production and finance, it assumes that objectives can be established and that profitable strategies can be determined and implemented in marketing.

In short, marketing planning lends rationality to marketing decisions. The target market, families, and households in Tanzania are clearly stated, but the company did not separate low, middle, and upper-income consumers (Dobson and Starkey 2004). Abaka Energy Solutions has a clear positioning strategy based on unique services and products offered to the market. It positions itself as a premium brand. In a competitive economy, marketing planning is an essential element for business growth and survival. Moreover, the management strategy itself must be planned. As one of the most significant managerial functions, marketing planning is a prime responsibility of the top marketing executive.

The case of Abaka Energy Solutions suggests that the very nature of critical day-to-day operations, the pressures of time, and the tendency to act rather than plan, frequently cause executives to neglect this function. But one of the major criteria of an executive’s effectiveness is his expenditure of time and resources on creative and contemplative marketing planning, especially of a longer-range character. It is possible to say that the company’s value proposition strategy is not clearly stated and does not reflect actual customer’s needs. It is expected that citizens of Karagwe will use alternative energy resources in order to improve their financial position and improve their quality of life (Dobson and Starkey 2004).

The operations strategies are well=developed and cover all aspects of project implementation. The manager who is too busy to plan is admitting that he is too busy to manage. Management provides a business with a forward-looking view of the total enterprise. It is the basis for determining the fundamental strategies to be employed and the objectives, programs, and resources required. Essentially, planning is to a business enterprise what thinking is to an individual. It supplies the rational means for achieving maximum market-striking power and results from the resources in hand (Drejer, 2002).

The plan’s strategies are sufficiently supported with specific actions. Management and project implementation is concerned with predetermining courses of marketing action. It is based on both marketing intelligence and the assessment of opportunities since it deals with the future with respect to both perspectives and operations. They involve specific dates of completion, personas responsible for the operations, and budgets.

The strategies mentioned above allow me to say that Abaka Energy Solutions, will be able to achieve its strategic objectives and gain a large market share. Management and marketing action is its major objectives, which are achieved through organizational implementation.

The definition of marketing planning varies from an all-encompassing review of the current situation, strategies, programming, scheduling, budgeting, controlling, and installation of programs to the development of one specific plan for marketing action. The central idea of management is very simple — it is that planned marketing activity is more effective than unplanned activity; that marketing factors, regardless of their variability and situational differences, can be planned; and that Abaka Energy Solutions to a considerable degree can help shape its own destiny — it can plan its market posture. Yet marketing is a relative latecomer to the planning fraternity (Dobson and Starkey 2004).

Business Plan’s Financial Strategy

The management approach stresses that companies should plan financial resources carefully and try to predict possible changes in budgets. It underscores the fact that plans are not merely the results of objectives, but that plans affect objectives. The goals and objectives can be changed, as can the plans. Changes in market opportunities, for example, result in changes in company objectives and hence changes in marketing planning.

In addition, a company might purposely set out to change its marketing plans in the sense of improving them, as with the development of new products. Planning in this sense deals with flows, processes, rhythms, and adaptive systems. It is this concept of marketing planning that ties in with the modern perspective of marketing (Dobson and Starkey 2004). Basically, the financial budget arranges the elements of the marketing mix in such a way that the firm’s position over time will be maximized.

The arrangement matches alternative means and ends. Planners design the pattern of activity intended to achieve various goals and direct the commitment and utilization of marketing resources through time. Marketing planning, therefore, is rooted in the past, has a perspective of the future, and provides the basic directional guidance for marketing activities. It refers to the planning of human action that molds events strategies that are reached as a result of marketing planning. Corporate destinies are not merely natural events; they can be the result of planned Abaka Energy Solutions marketing activity (Drejer, 2002).

The financial plan clearly states and demonstrates how the company will achieve its goals and become profitable. Thus, financial planning might be defined as the group of activities performed to both determine and carry out marketing and company objectives, and to help specify objectives and alternative courses of action designed to achieve them in the belief that without planning activity, a less desirable event would occur. For establishing objectives, choosing alternatives evaluating situations, and estimating effectiveness, marketing planning, and programming require adequate information (Drucker 2004).

The financial projections can be logically regarded as the most probable result of the strategies and claimed outcomes presented in the business plan. Financial budgets are goal-directed and achieve a more efficient expenditure of marketing resources. Planning necessitates the classification of a company’s goal or objective, but recently there has been a change in the perception of planning. The former perception adopted a perspective that can be likened to the previously described Newtonian model.

Hence, a company first specifies goals and then develops plans to carry them out, thus being able to achieve the goals. Goals thereby determine plans -plans are ways of reaching goals (Drucker 2004). A more recent and realistic perspective emphasizes the close interrelationships existing between plans and goals. It adopts the viewpoint that companies must continuously adjust and adapt — they must plan for change. Hence, goals must be reassessed and changed in the light of changing opportunities. Thus, plans may determine goals (and vice versa), for objectives must be related to the means and inputs to their achievement (Dobson and Starkey 2004).

The amount of external funding for Abaka Energy Solutions has been stated as the company includes all operations and spending expected during the project implementation. The company requires $800,000 in start-up capital for the construction of the power station and social center. An additional $200,000 will be needed to jump-start operations. If the means are insufficient, objectives have to be scaled down. It is the corporate commitment of resources that indicates whether objectives seem reasonable. For, in reality, there is business potential for the company’s strategies (Drucker 2004).

Personal Statement

Personally, I would invest in this project by direct equality investments. This method will help me to gain control over some operations and be involved in strategic decisions of the company. Thus, a decision that at first appears to be a compromise among conflicting goals actually creates a super-strategy. This super goal is the weighted average of all corporate strategy rather than a single goal. The job of determining realistic goals and objectives is certainly not simple.

A company usually has many goals, some of which are short-run and others long-run, and some of which are compatible, whereas others engender conflict. In view of the multiple goals, confusion often arises in both planning and action (Dobson and Starkey 2004).

Having perceived its market opportunity and having developed various marketing plans and selected a generalized strategy, a company then creates its marketing program, which implements and maintains an effective plan. Marketing programming is dependent on the planning process, results from it, and is geared toward execution of major strategies and achievement of company objectives. Rooted in the resources, organizational, and personnel available, it faces the difficult task of determining the specific ingredients that will compose the marketing approach. It manages the marketing effort to the end that the marketing mix maximizes its impact on the marketplace.

By sequencing and balancing strategic directions, planning determines events not through momentary reactions to pressures for decisions, but by the logical consideration of the operations themselves. Investments are a less attractive activity for many executives than areas that involve contact with people or orders and action. Yet, as one of the key management activities, the planning process should be reviewed to increase its effectiveness, and marketing executives should learn to plan for planning.

Rather than becoming concerned only with such urgent activities as operating crises, the executive must become more concerned with the critical activities of management. Management and strategic direction stipulated by Abaka Energy Solutions is but one aspect of the broader planning function. Its role is to specify the plan in order to achieve desired strategies.

Bibliography

Dobson, P., Starkey, K. 2004, The Strategic Management: Issues and Cases. Blackwell Publishing.

Drejer, A. 2002, Strategic Management and Core Competencies: Theory and Application. Quorum Books.

Drucker P. F. 2004, Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices. New York: ] Harper Collins.

The Education Of Spartan Women

The history of ancient Greece is presented to us in writing by men who were knowledgeable at the time but had much disregard for women. According to the traditions then, women were viewed as the weaker sex, rash, irrational, less knowledgeable, and could not survive without the guidance of the men. The situation was however different in the ancient state of Sparta. In Sparta, laws governing the people followed the guidelines designed by Lycurgus who was a well-respected lawmaker during his time. He designed the laws in such a way that they encouraged collectivity in society and had much recognition of the freedom of the women in Sparta. The Spartan women were seen as an important tool in the running of the societal issues and harmonized the treatment of the girls with that of the boys with the most outstanding area being the education of the women in Sparta. AS opposed to the common belief that the freedom accorded women of Sparta gave them an upper hand to rule the men, the change of the manner of treating the women and the rules, in general, was solely meant to steer Sparta ahead while maintaining a high level of discipline and strengthen them against any potential threats, as opposed to offering education to reduce literacy, hence the incentive to educate the women and allow them certain levels of responsibility. 11

In the Spartan society, much of the rules focused on how to build a strong society, and hence the women in Sparta were subjected to education that was restricted to the domestic levels but was taught skills that would help them protect themselves. The rules clearly stated that the girls had the same right of treatment as the boys and this is what encouraged the offering of almost similar education to both the sexes. The education took place in confined places mainly at the temple where the initiation started and here the girls were subjected to a rather formal education that involved arts and athletics-related exercises. While in confinement in the temple, skills that involved gymnastics and wrestling took the center stage. Other athletic skills such as foot racing, javelin throwing, and discuss throwing were also offered. In addition to sports education, the women were also subjected to lessons on combat. These were meant to help them protect themselves in case of an attack. As part of the skills development, Spartan girls used to run outside in the presence of the boys while naked or scantly dressed as part of their athletic training. The athletic training was also meant to fulfill the Spartan’s quest for the strong women who gave birth to strong sons in a bid to stack up against their military strength. The women would stay in training until they were 18 years, after which they would go through a test involving the skills as well as evaluate their fitness level. Upon satisfying the required standards a female got the pass to proceed to the next stage in life which was to be shown a man to who would marry her. Failing the test led to the female being banned from going back home and was considered a perioikos, a term used to refer to middle-class members.2

Spartan women were also subjected to cultural training. These were offered information of poems conducted by famous poets who included Alcman. The poems contained messages of their Legends and heroes in addition to their traditional social customs and beliefs, choruses, dancing, and singing. Some competitions involved these activities meant to encourage perfection in the skills. The women were further taught to courageously address mass gatherings and to build their confidence in dealing with the public. As a testimony to the seriousness of the training that took place among the women of Sparta, several females excelled in poetry and philosophy among the Spartans for instance Megalostrata. The music and dancing skills acquired in training were meant to be applied during religious occasions. As a way of making the Sparta girls better wives, they were also taught routine household chores as well as basket weaving and spinning. A horse was a very important and symbolic animal among the Spartans. For this reason, the women were taught the art of feeding and breeding horses. The women were further trained in the art of training the horses as well as how to ride on their backs as well as while dragging horse carts.

In the Spartan society, the males went away in training for joining the army starting from when they hit the age of 7 years and stayed in training up to when they reached 31 years. Occasionally thereafter, they would be away in the war and protecting the Spartan state. For this reason, the women were most of the time left with the role of running the societal affairs. As a result, women in Sparta were highly encouraged to actively learn the various aspects of running the society by expanding their intelligence through learning. By having intellectual women, the Spartans believed they stood a better chance of maintaining a strong society since they had it that the women were the key to a successful society. The women were also required to be intelligent to intellectually handle the freedom accorded to them responsibly as well as the property they inherited. The girls were taken through a final phase of training which was for enhancing their motherhood skills. The girls were instructed on how to improve their bodily appearance for beauty purposes owing to the importance attached to physical beauty as a way to maintain marriages. This phase was often referred to as a lesbian affair. The girls remained protected and holy until they gave birth for the first time since being a mother was more valued than virginity loss as a stepping stone to adulthood.

Among the many differences that existed between the rest of the Greek city-states and Sparta, the offering of education amongst the women is one of the most outstanding. Women in 3Sparta received their education away from home in public schools which were mainly temples 4where they were together with the boys they received their various training. In other Greek societies, education for the females was rather confined to the homes where they were taught basic domestic skills. In Sparta, women receive a rather formal education where they learned skills involving reading and writing among other athletic skills as opposed to other Greek states where the women received an informal type of learning involving just the general domestic skills with the learning taking place in home confines which is a rather informal setup. As a result, Spartan women displayed high literacy owing to their system of learning while females in other Greek states can only be termed as totally illiterate. The slaves on the other hand never received any type of education whatsoever. 3

Education among the Spartan women incorporated engagement in various sporting activities. These included running and wrestling among other events which were meant to build strong females who would, in turn, bear strong offspring for defending the state. During the learning of the athletic activities, Spartan women would run outside while naked and did this as the men stared on. On the other hand, other Greek states would not allow women to participate in any sporting activity and believed these were only reserved for men only. In addition, Other Greek women would not be allowed at all to appear in public places since their form of education emphasized morality and would not even allow boys and girls to freely mix leave alone being seen naked. Education offered the essential skills required in Sparta city-state to run the society and own and guard the property when the males were away in war and barracks. Other Greek states only allowed their women to receive domestic education and would not allow them to take up leadership nor inherit or take care of the property. As a result of the time spent away in training, Spartan women took time to get married, and even after leaving training at the age of 18 years, they were supposed to wait until it was proven that they were strong enough to give birth to strong babies. As a result the Spartan women unlike other Greek females who got married at very young ages, Spartan women took a relatively long time to get married. In both Spartans and other Greek societies, music and dance formed an important part of the education process. Music and dance have used both cases to either preserve culture and teach the various traditional aspects and religious customs. Whereas the physical training amongst the Spartan women was aimed at making the women stronger for procreation in a quest to produce very strong and energetic boys who would later join the army, the Amazon’s too subjected the women to physical training too but their reason differed in that they aimed at building the skills of the women to be included in the female warriors’ movement. Both the women in Sparta and women in other Greek states received training that was targeted at improving domestic skills. They were taken through a process of training involving weaving and spinning. They were also taught the basic household chores like cooking and being better wives. In addition, both the Spartan women and other Greek women were trained in dancing and music, skills which were meant to preserve their culture as well as remind them of the heroes in their communities.

The education offered to the women in Sparta and the men had similarities and also compared differences in some aspects. In the Sparta community, the girls were said to be offered almost the same type of training subjected to the boys. As such, at the age of 7 when the Spartan boys were supposed to be joining the training schools, the girls accompanied them to the public schools to receive training too. Education among the Sparta men was aimed at preparing them for joining the military for fighting and defending Sparta. Women as well were subjected to the hard type of training meant to make them prepared for defending the plight of the Spartan people in case of attack when the men were away in the public. The men, as well as the females in Sparta, engaged in sporting activities. These included mainly footraces and other field athletics activities. These were engaged while naked amongst both the females and the males with women supposed to race in front of the men while exposing their nudity. While it is not exactly known the level of brutality applied to the women as compared to the men, the activities engaged in were similar.

The men were however further given training on the various combat tactics meant to prepare them for the military role which they were meant to take up. The women were on the other hand not exposed to such since their main reason for engaging in the physical forms of training was to make them strong women who would bear healthy and strong sons who were meant to join the army that defended the Sparta city-state. As the education amongst the men in Sparta also aimed at preparing them for leadership of the society, the rules that governed the Spartans had allowed the women to take the leadership positions, and hence the education they receive in the confined temples also prepared them to take leadership in the society as well take care of the property since the men were at most of the times out in the military camps or the war. Both the women and men received instructions on the art of dancing and music. His was meant to preserve the culture.

In addition to the similarities in the education offered in Sparta among the males and the females, there also ex5listed disparities. The girls just like the boys started their formal training at the age of 7 years. The men were supposed to stay in solitary as they trained the various military combative skills up to the time they hit the age of 31 years of age. Women on the other hand stayed in public school up to the time they attained the age of 18 years. After which upon qualifying in the various tests, a woman would be shown a man who would marry her. As part of their training, the boys in Sparta would march barefooted in a bid to harden them. In addition, the boys were encouraged to engage in the act of stealing food but were also instructed to take heed not to be discovered as those who were caught received a thorough punishment in terms of a beating. This was supposed to help them acquire survival skills. Whereas among the women of Sparta illiteracy was one of the reasons for engaging in formal education which incorporated reading and writing, this was not the case for the case of the males who were solely receiving training to become military people and hence training involving reading and writing skills was regarded as unnecessary. 4

Education among Spartan women evolved through the ages. In the 7th century B.C, Lycurgus, a respected was lawmaker, restructured the set of laws. The changes were in such a way that the women were given space for freedom which included access to education that was almost at the same level as the men. This continued over the ages with the women receiving formal education as well as gymnastics and athletics. The women in the Spartan empire continued to take leadership roles backed by the training they had acquired. It was argued that Sparta women were the rulers of their community and that they enjoyed far too much freedom. This system of education to the women continued up until the 4th century B.C when the empire disintegrated. Other Greek city-states were quick to lay a pointing finger on the fall of Sparta to the fact that they had over-empowered their women especially by educating them. 56

In conclusion, Spartans were seen as a unique city-state owing to the revised rules which brought about a change in policies including the empowerment of the women through subjecting them to formalized and athletic education. Their changed rules gave weight to having a militaristic focus and hence everything they did including the education on the women was eventually connected to achieving this. Following they’re with and they’re being outspoken, Spartan women presented themselves as influential figures in their culture taking charge of the community leadership when the men were away in the barracks. They, therefore, were able to enjoy many favors including ownership of property, a phenomenon viewed by other Greek city-states as according the women the power to rule the men. As a result, Sparta had the highest rate of literacy as compared to other city States. A combination of these factors made Sparta a strong city-state that was able to conquer other city states and win the wars.

Works Cited

Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics of Aristotle. Charleston: BiblioBazaar. 2009.

Faunt, Maureen B. Women’s Life and Greece and Rome: A source Book in Translation. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press. 2005.

Fowler, Robin. “The Women of Sparta.” Athletic, Educated, and Outspoken Radicals of the Greek World 32, no. 3. (2006). Web.

Pomerroy Sarah B. Antient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History. New York: Oxford University Press. 1998.

Yona Williams. “Spartan Education: Girls.” Ancient Civilizations 25, no. 4. (2006): 4-8.

Footnotes

  1. Maureen B. Fant. Women’s Life and Greece and Rome: A Source Book in Translation. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press. 2005, 128
  2. Aristotle. Nicomachean Ethics of Aristotle. Charleston: BiblioBazaar. 2009.
  3. Robin Fowler. “The Women of Sparta.” Athletic, Educated, and Outspoken Radicals of the Greek World 32, no. 3. (2006). Web.
  4. Sarah B Pomeroy. Ancient Greece: A Political, Social, and Cultural History. New York: Oxford University Press. 1998.
  5. Yona Williams. “Spartan Education: Girls.” Ancient Civilizations 25, no. 4. (2006): 4-8.

error: Content is protected !!