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Management Process

A process is a systematic way of doing things. We refer to management as a process to emphasize that all managers, irrespective of their aptitude or skill, engage in some interrelated functions to achieve their desired goals. In this article, we will briefly describe the functions that comprise the process of management. 
 
1. Planning: Planning may be defined as making decisions in advance as to what is to be done in the future. It is a future course of action. It implies that managers think through their goals and actions in advance and their actions are based on some method, plan, or logic rather than on hunch. Plans give the organization its objectives and set up the best procedures for reaching them. 
 
Planning involves selecting missions and objectives and the actions to achieve them, it requires decision-making, i.e. choosing future courses of action from among alternatives. In short, planning means determining what the organization’s position and situation should be at some time in the future and deciding how best to bring about that situation. Planning helps maintain managerial effectiveness by guiding future activities. 
 
Plans may be of various types covering various periods and are usually set by top-level managers. Anyway, they are the guidelines by which (a) the organization obtains and commits the resources required to reach its objectives; (b) members of the organization carry on activities consistent with the chosen objectives and procedures; and (c) progress toward the objectives is monitored and measured so that corrective action can be taken if progress is unsatisfactory. 
 
Planning reflects the vision of an organization. It means formulating the management’s future course of action to achieve the organization’s objectives and goals.
 
Planning involves several steps - the first step is the selection of goals for the organization. The second step is the establishment of goals for each of the organization’s sub-units, departments, divisions, etc. The third step is to establish programs for systematically achieving goals.
 
Planning requires an ability to foresee, visualize, and look ahead purposefully. In short, planning is essential and is a fundamental function of management.
 
2. Organizing: Once a manager has developed a work plan, the next phase of management is to organize the people and other resources necessary to carry out the plan. Organizing may be referred to as the process of arranging and allocating work, authority, and resources among an organization’s members so they can achieve the organization’s goals. Organizing involves work distribution which is guided by considerations for such things as component activities – the members of the group, and the physical facilities available. These component activities are so grouped and assigned that minimum expenditure or maximum employee work satisfaction is attained.
 
Organizing includes arranging and distributing work, authority, and resources among the members of the organization to accomplish the goals best. Organizing produces a structure of relationships in an organization, and it is through these structured relationships that plans are pursued.
 
Organizing, then, is that part of managing which involves establishing an intentional structure of roles for people to fill in an organization. It is intentional in the sense of making sure that all the tasks necessary to accomplish goals are assigned to people who can do them best.
 
The purpose of an organizational structure is to help people create an environment for human performance. The structure must define the tasks to be done. The roles so established must also be designed in the light of the abilities and motivations of the people available.
 
However, designing an effective organizational structure is not an easy managerial task. Many problems are encountered in making structures fit situations, including both defining the kinds of jobs that must be done and finding the people to do them. All these fall under the definition of organizing, which is a fundamental function of management.
 
Staffing is related to organizing and it involves filling and keeping filled, positions in the organization structure. This can be done by determining the positions to be filled, identifying the requirement of manpower, filling the vacancies, and training employees so that the assigned tasks are accomplished effectively and efficiently. The managerial functions of promotion, demotion, discharge, dismissal, transfer, etc. are also included with the broad task “staffing.” Staffing is important because it ensures the placement of the right person at the right position and this is closely related to “organizing” as a function of management Staffing is the effective and efficient deployment of manpower across the organization.
 
3. Leading: Leading is an important job of the manager. It involves directing, influencing, and motivating employees to perform essential tasks. To lead these people to contribute to the organization and group goals constitutes an essential function of the manager. The manager has to get on intimate terms with them if he wants to lead them successfully. The manager leads in an attempt to persuade others to join them in pursuit of the future that emerges from the planning and organizing steps. By establishing the proper atmosphere, managers help their employees do their best. Leading draws all the members working in the organization into an intimate relationship. The manager also persuades others to join in the common pursuit of the enterprise’s future goals.
 
Efficient managers need to be effective leaders. Since leadership implies fellowship and people tend to follow those who offer a means of satisfying their own needs, hopes, and aspirations, understandably, leading involves motivation, leadership styles and approaches, and communication. 
 
Coordinating is also essential in leading. Most authors do not consider it a separate function of management. Rather they regard coordinating as the essence of managership for achieving harmony among individual efforts towards accomplishing group targets. Co-ordinating helps achieve harmony among individual efforts towards accomplishing group targets.
 
Individuals in any organization often interpret the same interests in different ways, and then efforts toward mutual goals do not automatically mesh with the efforts of others. Thus, it becomes the central task of the manager to reconcile differences in approach, timing, effort, or interest and to harmonize individual goals to contribute to organizational goals.
 
4. Controlling: The final phase of the management process is controlling. As the organization moves toward its goals, management must monitor its progress. It must make sure that events conform to plans. Controlling involves measuring performance against goals and plans and helping correct deviations from standards. Controlling facilitates the accomplishment of plans. Although planning must precede controlling, plans are not self-achieving. They guide the manager in the use of resources to accomplish specific goals. Activities are evaluated to determine whether they conform to the plans.
 
Through the controlling function, the manager keeps the organization on track. Increasingly, organizations are establishing new ways to enhance the quality of the control function. One popular approach is Total Quality Management (TQM) which focuses management on the continuous improvement of all operations, functions, and, above all, processes of work. Meeting the customers' needs is a primary concern.
 
Controlling steers the organization towards its goals according to the guidelines set by planning.
 
Control activities generally relate to the measurement of achievement. Some means of controlling, like the budget for expenses, inspection records, and the record of labor hours lost, are generally familiar. Each measure also shows whether plans are working out. If deviations persist, correction is indicated. Whenever results are found to differ from planned action, persons responsible are to be identified and necessary actions are to be taken to improve performance. Thus, outcomes are controlled by controlling what people do.
 
Controlling is the last but not the least important function of management. Thus, it is rightly said, “Planning without controlling is useless.” 


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2024-07-11 17:13:18
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