Management is a ubiquitous term that is applied to a range of human endeavor. This make sometimes makes it difficult to discuss the topic given the number of potential meanings and definitions applied to the concept. This paper is structured to offer a workable definition based on the functions of management and then describe these functions in broad terms.
Definition of Management
Management, like many other terms or titles, has a few definitions depending on the orientation and knowledge of the person crafting the definition. One example can be drawn from a desk top dictionary:
“Management/ noun. 1) The process or an instance of managing or being
“Management is the planning, organizing, leading, and controlling of resources to achieve goals effectively and efficiently”
The elegance of this definition is that it encompasses the concept of management whether applied to an individual, a sole proprietorship, a partnership, or a corporation in either the public or the private sector.
For the purposes of this discussion the definition offered by Jones will form the working foundation.
What is to be done?
Who is going to do it?
How are they going to complete the task?
These are the types of question management must ask under the banner of planning. Using all of the intelligence gathered from data analyses the function of management is to create a ‘road’ map’ to success for the organization.
The second principle function of management is to organize the workplace in a manner that allows people and groups of people to work together to achieve the goals of the organization. To succeed on both the effectiveness and efficiency scales the organization must deploy resources, both human and material, in a manner that aligns these resources to produce the greatest possible outcome.
Amongst other benefits the importance of organizing includes (Hubpages, 2014):
• Allows organizations to reap the benefit of specialization
• Provides the optimum utilization of resources
• Helps in effective administration
• Provides channels for expansion and growth
Creating exceptional plans, developing the perfect organizational matrix and finding the perfect leader is of little value unless you can measure performance and ensure the organization stays on track. This is the domain of the controlling function.
The leadership task includes creating a vision, focus and direction for the organization that will encourage employees to work at high levels and to ensure their activities are coordinated to achieve maximum results for the organization. Leadership has and will continue to be one of the most studied aspects of human activity. Without leadership, in some form or function, there would be no pyramids of Egypt, Great Walls in China, lunar landings, or any other achievement of note, either good or evil. Although one can examine the past and make a statement like this, it rests on an intuitive approach to state the same conditions will apply in the future. Great achievements will not be accomplished without leadership, in some form or function.