Roles of Managers

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  Roles of managers Management Concepts and Principles Management is active, not theoretical. It is about changing behaviour and making things happen. It is about developing people, working with them, reaching objectives and achieving results. Indeed, all the research into how managers spend their time reveals that they are creatures of the moment, perpetually immersed in the nitty-gritty of making things happen. Management as:    taking place within a structured organisational setting and with prescribed roles;    directed towards the attainment of aims and objectives;    achieved through the efforts of other people; and    using systems and procedures. Principles 1 Division of work . The object is to produce more and better work from the same effort, and the advantages of specialisation. However, there are limits to division of work which experience and a sense of proportion tell us should not be exceeded. 2 Authority and responsibility . Responsibility is the corollary of authority. Wherever authority is exercised responsibility arises. The application of sanctions is essential to good management, and is needed to encourage useful actions and to discourage their opposite. The best safeguard against abuse of authority is the personal integrity of the manager. 3 Discipline is essential for the efficient operation of the organisation. Discipline is in essence the outward mark of respect for agreements between the organisation and its members. The manager must decide on the most appropriate form of sanction in cases of offences against discipline. 4 Unity of command . In any action an employee should receive orders from one superior only; if not, authority is undermined and discipline, order and stability threatened. Dual command is a perpetual source of conflicts. 5 Unity of direction . In order to provide for unity of action, co-ordination and focusing of effort, there should be one head and one plan for any group of activities with the same objective. 6 Subordination of individual interest to general interest . The interest of the organisation should dominate individual or group interests. 7 Remuneration of personnel . Remuneration should as far as possible satisfy both employee and employer. Methods of payment can influence organisational performance and the method should be fair and should encourage keenness by rewarding well-directed effort, but not lead to overpayment. 8 Centralisation is always present to some extent in any organisation. The degree of centralisation is a question of proportion and will vary in particular organisations. 9 Scalar chain . The chain of superiors from the ultimate authority to the lowest ranks. Respect for line authority must be reconciled with activities which require urgent action, and with the need to provide for some measure of initiative at all levels of authority. 10 Order . This includes material order and social order. The object of material order is avoidance of loss. There should be an appointed place for each thing, and each thing in its appointed place. Social order involves an appointed place for each employee, and each  employee in his or her appointed place. Social order requires good organisation and good selection. 11 Equity . The desire for equity and for equality of treatment are aspirations to be taken into account in dealing with employees throughout all levels of the scalar chain. 12 Stability of tenure of personnel . Generally, prosperous organisations have a stable managerial personnel, but changes of personnel are inevitable and stability of tenure is a question of proportion. 13 Initiative . This represents a source of strength for the organisation and should be encouraged and developed. Tact and integrity are required to promote initiative and to retain respect for authority and discipline. 14 Esprit de corps should be fostered, as harmony and unity among members of the organisation is a great strength in the organisation. The principle of unity of command should be observed. It is necessary to avoid the dangers of divide and rule of one’s own team, and the abuse of written communication. Wherever possible verbal contacts should be used Management Process Management is essentially an integrating activity Management is the process of achieving organisational objectives, within a changing environment, by balancing efficiency, effectiveness and equity, obtaining the most from limited resources, and working with and through other people. Objectives are the desired end-results the organisation is striving to achieve. Within the framework of objectives, policy provides the guidelines for the operations and activities of the organisation. Clarification of objectives and policy is a prerequisite if the process of management is to be effective   Activities and qualifications of managers    Sets objectives  –  determines objectives and the goals for each area of objectives, and describes what needs to be done to achieve these objectives.    Organises  –  analyses the activities, decisions and relations required, classifies and divides work, creates organisation structure, and selects staff.    Motivates and communicates  –  creates a team out of people responsible for various  jobs.    Measures  –  establishes targets and measurements of performance which focus on both the individual and the organisation as a whole.    Develops people  –  directs, encourages and trains. How well subordinates develop themselves depends on the way a manager manages. Management as a set of interrelated activities:    forecasting, setting objectives and planning;    the definition of problems that need to be solved to achieve these objectives;    the search for various solutions that might be offered to these problems;    the determination of the best or most acceptable solutions;    the securing of agreement that such solutions should be implemented;    the preparation and issue of instructions for carrying out the agreed solutions;    the execution of the solutions;    the devising of an auditing process for checking whether such solutions are properly carried out and, if they are, that they do in fact solve the problems for which they were devised;    the design, introduction and maintenance of the organisational structures which are most appropriate for these activities;    the selection, training, development and management of the appropriate staff. Qualifications Technical competence relates to the application of specific knowledge, methods and skills to discrete tasks. Technical competence is likely to be required more at the supervisory level and for the training of subordinate staff, and with day-to-day operations concerned in the actual production of goods or services. Social and human skills refer to interpersonal relationships in working with and through other people, and the exercise of judgement. A distinctive feature of management is the ability to secure the effective use of the human resources of the organisation. This involves effective teamwork and the direction and leadership of staff to achieve coordinated effort. Under this heading can be included sensitivity to particular situations, and flexibility in adopting the most appropriate style of management. Conceptual ability is required in order to view the complexities of the operations of the organisation as a whole, including environmental influences. It also involves decision- making skills. The manager’s personal contribution should be related to the overall objectives of the organisation and to its strategic planning. Technical skills are most important for lower-level managers, conceptual skills are most important for top managers. Human skills are equally important for all managers. Manager’s roles  As a result of this formal authority and status, managerial activities can be seen as a set of ten managerial roles which may be divided into three groups: (i) interpersonal roles; (ii) informational roles; and (iii) decisional roles    The interpersonal roles are relations with other people arising from the manager’s  status and authority.    Figurehead role is the most basic and simple of managerial roles. The manager is a symbol and represents the organisation in matters of formality. The manager is involved in matters of a ceremonial nature, such as the signing of documents, participation as a social necessity, and being available for people who insist on access to    the ‘top’.      Leader role is among the most significant of roles and it permeates all activities of a manager. By virtue of the authority vested in the manager there is a responsibility for staffing, and for the motivation and guidance of subordinates.    Liaison role involves the manager in horizontal relationships with individuals and groups outside their own unit, or outside the organisation. An important part of the manager’s job is the linking between the organisation and the environment.  The informational roles relate to the sources and communication of information arising from th e manager’s interpersonal roles.      Monitor role identifies the manager in seeking and receiving information. This information enables the manager to develop an understanding of the working of the organisation and its environment. Information may be received from internal or external sources, and may be formal or informal.    Disseminator role involves the manager in transmitting external information through the liaison role into the organisation, and internal information through leader role between the subordinates. The information may be largely factual or may contain value judgements. The manager is the nerve centre of information. If the manager feels unable, or chooses not, to pass on information this can present difficulties for delegation.    Spokesperson role involves the manager as formal authority in transmitting information to people outside the unit, such as the board of directors or other superiors, and the general public such as suppliers, customers, government departments and the press. The decisional roles involve the making of strategic organisational decisions on the basis of the manager’s status and authority, and access to information.      Entrepreneurial role is the manager’s function to initiate and plan controlled (that  is, voluntary) change through exploiting opportunities or solving problems, and taking action to improve the existing situation. The manager may play a major part, personally, in seeking improvement, or may delegate responsibility to subordinates.    Disturbance handler role involves the manager in reacting to involuntary situations and unpredictable events. When an unexpected disturbance occurs the manager must take action to correct the situation.    Resource allocator role involves the manager in using formal authority to decide where effort will be expended, and making choices on the allocation of resources such as money, time, materials and staff. The manager decides the programming of work and maintains control by authorising important decisions before implementation.
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