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The term “management” is centuries old. But it is specifically American who appy management to the governing organ of an institution and particularly to a business enterprise. it is extremely difficult to find a standard definition for management. The meaning of management has changed continuously with the development of management theory and practices. In 1980, the President of the American Management Association (AMA) defines management that “management is getting things done through other people”. However, this definition simplifies the meaning of management.
Some of the more recent definitions of management are given by the scholars. Terry and Rue (1982, p.I) define management as “a process or form of work that involves the guidance and direction of a group of people toward organizational goals or objectives”. Stoner and Wankel (1986, p.4) suggests that “management is the process of planning, organization, learning and controlling the efforts of organization members and of using all other organizational resources to achieve stated organizational goals.” Koontz, O’Donnell and Weihrich (1980, p.18) states that “management is the establishment of an environment for group effort in such a way that individuals will contribute to group objectives with the least amount of such inputs as money, time, effort, discomfort and materials.” Johnson and Stinson (1978, p.15) point out that “management is the process of working with and through other people to accomplish organizational goals.” The definition given by Koontz and Weihrich is regarded as the highly suitable to the modern commercial world. “Management is the process of designing and maintaining an environment in which individuals, working together, in groups efficiently accomplish selected aims”.
The definitions about management above highlight four aspects:
Management is a systematic process of doing things involving planning, organization and controlling. Other scholars also added other tasks of management, such as marketing, innovating, forecasting, commanding, motivating and coordinating. These activities are not implemented in a sequential way. The managers in practice engage in more than one activity at a time and often move back and forth between those activities in unpredictable manner. From this perspective, management denotes both a function and the people (managers) who discharge it. Every achievement of management is the achievement of a manager; every failure is the failure of a manager.
Management is about organizing human, physical and financial resources in the organization in order to achieve results. If the managers can utilize the available resources appropriately or get the maximum with the least amount of investment and accomplish the results, the managers successfully organized the resources.
Management places greater attention on the objectives to be achieved. Although management is a process, the achievement of the objectives is always viewed as the final measure of success.
The objectives include the members’ personal goals as well as the overall organizational objections. It highlights the integration of these two objectives and that giving up the personal objectives when it conflicts with the organizational one.
Describe the characteristics of management
Management has several obvious characteristics: goal-oriented, continuous process, group effort, multidimensional, and intangible.
Management is goal-oriented (Bose, 2004). This is to say, management is a purposeful activity. Management has the task of attaining certain objectives. The success or failure of management is measured the extent to which it attains the desired goals are attained. Therefore, it is essential that the organizational goals mush be well-defined and appropriately understood and communicated by the managers throughout the three levels.
Management is a continuous process (Sager, 2007). Management is viewed as a process because it consists of planning, organizing, controlling and leading the resources (human, physical and financial) of an organization. This continuous process is a series of dynamic, ongoing and composite. This means that managers can simultaneously perform these functions at one time continuously.
Management needs group effort instead of an individual’s effort (Singla, 2010). All organizations are made up of people with formally assigned tasks and roles. These people work together to achieve a common objective. For example, a firm wants to plan a learning initiative. The human resource manager will consult the managers in other departments to analyze the learning needs of employees. These line managers also need to communicate with their employees to ensure their learning need. Finally, the HR manager should consult with the senior managers with this learning initiative. Thus, management needs to involve a group of concerned person rather than an individual activity.
Management is multidimensional. Management is complex that has three main dimensions: management of work, management of people, and management of operations (Sager, 2007). All organizations exist for the performance of some work. The function of management is to translate this work and to assign the means to accomplish it. In order to do it, management is about solving the problems, making decisions, establishing plans, preparing the budgets, assigning the tasks and responsibilities and delegating the authority. Human resources are the greatest asset of organizations. Despite all improvements in technology “getting work done through people” is still the major task for managers. For example, networks create the advantageous condition to information flow throughout the organization. How to motivate people to share knowledge and how to promote people’s abilities to acquire knowledge are the major tasks for managers. Management of operations interlinks the management of work with the management of people. Any type of organizations has products or services to provide to customers. This requires a production process which entails the flow of input material, the technology and the desired output.
Lastly, management is an intangible, invisible force (Jain, Khanna, Grover & Singla, 2006). Management can only be felt or realized on the basis of the success or failure of an organization. For example, if the organization has a popular e or quality service, it will be taken as a sign of good management. However, if an organization loses the competitive advantage, or it goes bankrupt, it will be viewed as unsuccessful management.
Recognize the three levels of management and list the functions of management.
Three levels of management: strategic management (chief executive, board of directors), tactical management (all types of middle management, line managers, departmental managers, functional managers), operational management (foremen, supervisor, chief clerk, charge hand) (Lucey, 2004).
Strategic management is also called top management which represents the relatively small group of managers. They lead the organization with the final authority for executing the management process. At the meantime, top management is responsible for the organization as a whole, as well as for determining its overall vision and mission and overall strategies of the entire organization (Smit, Brevis, Cronje & Vrba, 2007).
Tactical management is also called middle management which is responsible for specific departments of the organization. Middle managers are primarily concerned with implementing the initiatives, polices and plans formulated by strategic management and commanding them to the operational management (Smit et al., 2007).
Operational management is responsible for the daily activities of their departments or sections. Their primary task is to apply policies, planning commanded by the middle management. The operational managers spend a large portion of their time on supervising the work of subordinates (Smit et al., 2007).
Four basic functions of management: planning and decision making, organizing, controlling and leading (Griffins, 2012).
Briefly, planning is about setting an organization’s objectives and deciding how best to accomplish them. Hence, decision-making is viewed as a part of the planning process, even a core of planning. Decision-making is a process of selecting a course of action from among alternatives (Griffins, 2012). The accuracy of it determines the success of the following steps and the achievement of the objectives. That is to say, planning and decision-making is the prerequisite of other functions of management
The next function is to organize human, physical and financial resources to carry out the plan. Specifically, organizing involves grouping and coordinating the resources and activities effectively. Coordination is regarding orderly arranging group efforts to provide unity of action in the pursuit of a common goal (Ghuman, 2010). Some scholars view coordinating as the separate function of management due to its importance. Some scholars argue that coordinating is a hidden force which binds all the other functions of management instead of a separate function. In my opinion, I agree with the second opinion because achievement of balance between individual efforts and achievement of group goals is basic as well as essential to success of management.
Leading is a process used to get members to work together in order to the interests of the organization (Griffins, 2012). However, this process is complicated, including motivating, communicating, managing work groups and teams and directing the big picture.
Controlling is the final phase of the management which concerns about monitoring and evaluating the activities and progress towards the goals (Griffins, 2012). It plays a key role because manager must ensure that it is performing in a correct way to arrive at the destination. Besides, in today’s changing context, the original planning may become inappropriate to the new trend. Controlling keeps the pace with the times.
Other functions are also mentions by other scholars, such as marketing, innovating, command. However, the four functions analyzed above is the most basic ones.
Outline the basic principles of scientific management, and enumerate Fayol’s general principles of management.
Scientific management is proposed by Taylor, which lasted from about 1900 to the mid-1930s (Gitman & MaDaniel, 2007). There are four basic principles of scientific management (Taylor, 2008): (1) the development of a true science; (2) the scientific selection of the workers; (3) scientific education and development of workers; (4) intimate and friendly cooperation between the management and the men (Rao, 1991). Specifically,
The first principle means that develop a scientific approach for each element of a person’s job (Gitman & MaDaniel, 2007).
Secondly, scientifically select, train, teach, and develop workers.
Thirdly, encourage cooperation between workers and managers so that each job can be accomplished in a standard, scientifically determined manner.
Finally, divide work and responsibility between management and workers according to who is between suited to each task.
Fayol stated 14 general principles of management (Mishra, 2008).
Division of work. It means specialization. Specially, each job and work should be divided into small elements and each element should be expert of the element. Division of work enhances efficiency because it assigns the specific task to the specific expert thus developing specialization and saving time.
Authority and responsibility. Fayol stressed that right and obligation should go together in order to balance with responsibility for performing necessary functions.
Discipline. Fayol viewed discipline as obedience, application, energy and respect to superiors.
Unity of command. A subordinates should accept commands from only one boss, otherwise the unity of command is violated, authority is undermined, discipline is in danger, and order is disturbed.
Unity of Direction. Each group of activities with the common goal must have one head and one plan in order to create dedication to the purpose and loyalty.
Subordination of individual interest to general interest. When the interest of individuals conflicts with the overall organizational interest, the latter should come before the interest of the individuals.
Remuneration. Remuneration including financial incentives as well as non-financial incentives is supposed to be fair and adequate in order to achieve the maximum job satisfaction of employees.
Centralization. There should be one central point in the organizational which implement the overall direction and control of other parts.
Scalar chain. There should be a scalar chain of authority and communication ranging from the highest to the lowest level in order to ensure each communication and command to flow through each position.
Order. An organizational is supposed to be managed on the basis of an orderly and rationally thought out plan.
Equity. Each subordinate is equal so that managing them should be just. This is conductive to creating loyalty and devotion among all employees.
Stability. Stable workforce promote efficiency, thus maintaining competitive advantages.
Initiative. This principle encourages the ability of thinking a fresh and innovative ideas and behaviors.
Esprit de Corps. The whole organization should act as a team and each team member should cooperate to best accomplish organizational goals.
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