Without management, no business or organization can survive for a long period of time. Management involves several key functions which are required for an organization to run company’s operations smoothly and efficiently.
Five Main Functions of Management
Planning refers to the process of thinking in advance for actions to be performed in future. It is an important element of every business activity. Planning forms the basis for what is to be done, how it is to be done, when and by whom it is to be done.
Planning as a function of management, thus, helps in reducing the uncertainties associated with future. In absence of proper planning, all organizational activities may go haywire which may further disrupt the processes required to achieve overall business objectives.
Organizing involves bringing together human, physical and financial resources in a unified manner to achieve business objectives. It is under this function of management that tasks are assigned to different individuals and departments while providing them with adequate resources (both physical and financial) to execute the tasks efficiently.
Without proper organizing, it will be practically impossible to convert established plans into action. Organizing involves defining organizational structure, delegating necessary authority and making individuals responsible for tasks assigned to them and so on.
Staffing is concerned with ensuring that right people are selected and placed on the right job. It is an essential function of management in the sense that people forming part of an organization represent its intellectual capital. Besides recruitment and selection, staffing involves key activities like training and development, performance appraisal, promotions and transfers.
It also involves decisions as to the compensation to be offered for different job profiles and positions. Staffing helps to ensure that there is no shortage of managerial talent in the organization at any point of time. In absence of proper staffing, an organization may have to face situations like no or delayed production which may ultimately result in lower sales and net income.
Directing is a process by which work environment is controlled. Directing involves three key important elements: motivating employees to perform the activities, ensuring appropriate communication throughout the organization and guiding employees through appropriate leadership skills.
Overall objective is to influence people to work to the best of their abilities and to make maximum contribution towards achievement of organizational objectives. In absence of this function, there may be delays in communication of important decisions, employees may find it difficult to handle complex issues, there may be delays in execution of key tasks and so on.
Controlling function involves comparison of actual performance against the standards or plans. In case any kind of deviation is observed, appropriate corrective action is taken in order to ensure that business objectives are accomplished as desired.
Controlling is a continuous process and should be performed at all the levels of an organization. In absence of this function, it may become difficult to identify areas requiring immediate action which may result in negative results for an organization.