Management – Perspective, Objectives and Effectiveness

What is management?

  • The core meaning of management is the act of managing human, technical and financial resources. The person who performs these tasks is called the manager,
  • It can be considered as an organized group (team) effort to achieve the set goals and targets of the organization.
  • The various other definitions are as follows

Peter Drucker:

  • Peter Drucker in his book “The Principles of Management” defines management as  “It is a multi-purpose organ that manages the business and manages the managers and manages the workers and the work.”. According to him management consists of the interlocking functions of creating corporate policy and organizing, planning, controlling, and directing the organizational resources (Men, Money, and Machines) in order to achieve the objective of that policy.

Harold Koontz:

  • It is the art of getting things done through and with people in formally organized groups.

Henry Fayol:

  • To manage is to forecast and to plan, to organize, to command, to coordinate and to control.

Mary Cushing Nile:

  • It is that which achieves a social objective with the best use of human, material, energy, and time with satisfaction for the participants and the public.

Effectiveness versus Efficiency:

  •  For management, it is important to be both effective and efficient. Effectiveness and efficiency are two sides of the same coin. These two aspects need to be balanced and sometimes management has to compromise with the efficiency.  Many times to achieve targets (effectiveness) the efficiency of the system is compromised. 
  • It is important for management to achieve goals (effectiveness) with minimum resources i.e.,(optimum efficiency). Generally, high efficiency is associated with high effectiveness which is the aim of all managers. But it is to be noted that undue emphasis on high efficiency without being effective is not desirable.
  • Poor management is due to both inefficiency and ineffectiveness


Management in Different Perspectives:

Management as a Process:

  • The process is a series of inter-related functions.
  • George R. Terry defines it as a distinct process consisting of planning, organizing, actuating and controlling performed to achieve stated objectives.
  • In this perspective, management is creation, operation, and direction of the organization through systematic, coordinated and cooperated efforts of human and machine resources.
  • Under this perspective, its functions are planning, organizing, staffing, coordinating and directing to achieve the goal of the organization.
  • As a process, management consists of four aspects:
    • As social process – Human resource is an important factor in an organization. It is concerned with developing a healthy relationship among people. It is the duty of the anager to create between people, which is productive and supportive of organizational goals.
    • As an integrating process – Men, money, and material are resources of an organization. Manager brings together human, physical, and financial resources so as to achieve the organizational purpose.
    • As a continuous process – Management is a never-ending process. It is concerned with constantly identifying the problem and solving them by taking adequate steps. Manager should be innovative and up to date.
    • A universal Process – Management is not restricted to corporate offices or boardrooms, but it is applicable everywhere in daily life for e.g. human relations, parenting, education etc.

Management as a Function:

  • Management includes set of duties, responsibilities, and relationships to set up an organization. Some scholars see them as functions to be performed by the manager.
  • Using these functions manager can decide objectives, prioritize them, prepare an action plan and expedite it to achieve the goals of the organization.
  • As a function, management consists of five aspects:
    • Planning – According to KOONTZ, “Planning is deciding in advance – what to do when to do & how to do. It bridges the gap between where we are & where we want to be”. A plan is a future course of actions and it is the basic function of management. Strategic management sets the goals of the organization. Planning chalk out the action plan to achieve these goals. Planning is necessary to ensure proper utilization of human & non-human resources. Planning avoids confusion, uncertainties, risks, wastages etc.
    • Organizing – According to Henry Fayol, “To organize a business is to provide it with everything useful or its functioning i.e. raw material, tools, capital and personnel’s”. Organizing is the process by which the physical, financial and human resources are brought together to develop a productive relationship amongst the resources so that the goals of the organization can be achieved. Organizing as a process involves: Identification and classification of activities, assignment and delegation of duties and creating responsibility and coordination between authority and responsibility.
    • Staffing- The main purpose of staffing is to put right man on right job According to Kootz & O’Donnell, “Managerial function of staffing involves manning the organization structure through proper and effective selection, appraisal & development of personnel to fill the roles designed in the structure”.  Staffing gained importance due to the advancement of technology, increase in size and nature of the business, the complexity of human behaviour etc. Staffing involves manpower planning, recruitment, selection, placement, training and development, remuneration, appraisals, promotions, transfers, layoffs, retrenchment etc.
    • Directing – This is a very important function of management because it actuates the organizational methods to work efficiently for achieving the goal of the organization. The direction is an inert-personnel aspect of management which deals directly with influencing, guiding, supervising, motivating sub-ordinate for achieving the goal of the organization. Directing involves supervision (directing and overseeing the work of subordinates), motivation (inspiring and encouraging subordinates through monetary or non-monetary methods), Leadership (manage, influence and guide activities of subordinates) and communication (transferring information, experience, suggestions and opinions from one person to another verbally or written).
    • Controlling – According to Koontz & O’Donnell “Controlling is the measurement & correction of performance activities of subordinates in order to make sure that the enterprise objectives and plans desired to obtain them as being accomplished”.  According to Theo Haimann, “Controlling is the process of checking whether or not proper progress is being made towards the objectives and goals and acting if necessary, to correct any deviation”.  The purpose of control is to make sure that everything in the organization occurs in accordance with the standards and plans. Controlling involves Establishment of standard performance, measurement of actual performance,  comparison of actual performance with the standards and finding out deviation if any and taking corrective action.

Management as an Activity:

  • According to Koontz, “Management is what a manager does”. As management is an activity it can be studied, mastered and practiced. Management as activity cannot be studied in isolation. The management is an activity because a manager is a person who accomplishes the objectives of the organization by directing and controlling the efforts of others. Management as an activity includes three aspects:
    • Informational activities – These activities involve transferring information, experience, suggestions, and opinions from one person to another verbally or in written form. The manager maintains a communication link between the subordinates and superiors. It guarantees effective functioning of an enterprise.
    • Decisional activities – Basically management is decision making. Therefore, managers are continuously involved in decisions of different kinds. These decisions become basis for the actions of subordinates and associated departments
    • Inter-personal activities – The managers have to interact with superiors as well as the subordinates.  He must maintain good relations with them and between them.

Management as a Team:

  • Management is a task carried out by a group of people who share the responsibility of guiding and coordinating the efforts of other team members. Managers have the responsibility of guiding and directing their respective teams from the different hierarchical position. Considering a team there are three types of managers
    • Patrimonial / Family Manager: Those who have become managers by virtue of their being owners or relatives of the owners of the company.
    • Professional Managers: Those who have been appointed on account of their specialized knowledge and qualifications.
    • Political Managers / Civil Servants / Military Personel: Those who manage have been appointed by virtue of training and experiences.

Management as a Science:

  • Science is a systematic body of knowledge pertaining to a specific field of study that contains general facts which explain a phenomenon. Management satisfies following criteria of science
    • Cause & Effect Relationship – Principles and laws of science put cause and effect relationship between various variables. e.g. Under the action of gravity (the cause), the apple fall down (the effect). All the outcome (effects) in management can be explained with reasons (cause) behind it. Similarly, the outcome (effect) can be predicted by studying the action (cause).
    • Universally acceptance principles – Principles of science can be applied in all situations, at all time & at all places without any anomalies. E.g. – the law of gravitation which can be applied universally. Some principles of management like Principle of Unity of Command (one man, one boss) is true everywhere.
    • Experimentation & Observation – In science new principles can be discovered, studied and implemented in laboratories on a smaller scale. Observations are made during experimentation. Its merits, demerits, and applications are studied. Then this principle can be applied on large scale.The Same thing is true for management.
    • Test of Validity & Predictability – Validity of scientific principles can be tested at any time or any number of times. Similarly, the principles of management can be verified.

Management as an Art:

  • Art has the following characteristics
    • Practical Knowledge: Every art requires practical knowledge, therefore, learning of theory is not sufficient. It is very important to know practical application of theoretical principles. In the management, mere knowledge of management is not essential but to apply effectively so as to achieve organizational goal economically.
    • Personal Skill: Every artist has his or her unique style of working or performing. The level of success and quality of performance depends on this uniqueness. Every manager has his own way of managing things based on his knowledge, experience and personality. This personal skill decides the success of the manager.
    • Creativity: Creativity is the basis of the art. Using their intuition, imagination, and intelligence they produce something which is unique and may not be present before. Successful manager combines this creativity to combines human and non-human resources in a useful way to achieve desired goals.
    • Perfection through practice: Practice makes a man perfect. After achieving success artist never stop practicing. Similarly, managers learn through the method of trial and error initially but by practice becomes perfect in the job of managing.
    • Goal-Oriented: Every artist has clear idea of what he is going to create and achieve. In the same way, the management also directed towards the accomplishment of pre-determined goals.

Management as a Discipline:

  • Any branch of knowledge that fulfills following two requirements is known as a discipline: a) There must be scholars & thinkers who communicate relevant knowledge through research and publications. and b) The knowledge should be formally imparted through education and training programs. Management satisfies both the conditions.

Characteristics of Management:

Management is a Goal-oriented Process:

  • Every organization has a set of basic goals which are the basic reason for its existence. These goals should be simple and clearly stated.  
  • Management coordinates and leads the efforts of different individuals in the organization towards achieving these goals.

Management is all pervasive:

  • A process of management is carried out in all enterprises small, medium and large. Governments, schools, hospitals need good management for their optimal performance. It is carried out around the globe in all the countries. Methods may be different but management is required everywhere. The difference in methods depends on political set up, social culture, traditions and history of that region.

Management is multidimensional:

  • Management is a complex activity it consists of management of work, people, and operations.
  • Management of work:
    • The main aim of the organization is to get work done in the form of manufacturing or service. Management converts this work in terms of achievable goals. These goals are assigned to individuals or team or bath.
    • Necessary decisions are made, planning is done, the budgetary allocation is done and responsibilities are finalized. After this responsibility and authority are delegated.
  • Management of people:
    • Human resources or people are the greatest assets of any organization. Automation has reduced the dependence on the human resource but still, people are important factors of any organization. Hence their effective management is necessary.
    • During management of people, the manager has to deal with individual and group of individuals. The people may have different natures, different likes, and dislikes, different behaviours. So managing them is a very difficult task. The manager has to create a rapport with people to achieve the goal of the organization.
  • Management of operations:
    • During manufacturing or providing services, certain operations are to be performed. The flow of input material and the technology at right time and right place is required for transforming the input into the desired output for consumption.  It involves coordination between man, machine, and money to achieve the goal at minimum cost.

Management is a continuous process:

  • The process of management is a series of continuous, composite, but separate functions
    (planning, organizing, directing, staffing and controlling). These functions are simultaneously
    performed by all managers all the time.
  • When one goal is achieved another goal is set and thus process continues.


Management is a group activity:

  • Every member of the organization has a different purpose for joining the organization. But all of them work together to achieve organizational goal. The achievement of this common organizational goal depends on the teamwork and coordination between these individuals.
  • At the same time manager has to see that the personal goals of individuals are also achieved an individual can foresee their growth in the organization. 


Management is a dynamic function:

  • Management is not a stagnant process, it has to change and adapt itself as per changing environment which is influenced by the political, cultural and economic factors. Due to advancement in technology the environment changes continuously, hence management has to change and review their strategies as per the change in environment.

Management is an intangible:

  • We cannot see the management but we can feel its presence in the organization, through the different processes carried out in the organization. Presence of management can be felt in successful organizations where the goals of the organization are met, targets are achieved, employees are happy and satisfied. Every function of the organization is clearly defined. Necessary responsibility and authority are delegated to right people at the right level. Thus the function of the organization is smooth without any chaos.

Effective Management or Objectives of Management:

To meet the challenges of changes:
  • In the era of Globalisation, Computerization, Privatisation, and entry of multinationals the changes are inevitable.These changes are critical and intense. Hence effective and professional managerial techniques can handle them successfully in order to stay afloat amidst intense competition. Complex nature of modern business can be handled only by scientific, professional and effective managerial techniques. It adapts organization to changing demand of market / changing needs of societies.

Achievement of Group Goals:

  • Organizational goals cannot be achieved individually. It requires several people to come together and work as a group (team) and every member of the group possesses some specialization of doing something to accomplish the task. Manager arranges the resources, integrate them in an effective manner to achieve goals.
  • By defining objectives of the organization clearly, there would be no wastage of resources like time, manpower, money and effort. Managers plan to convert disorganized resources of men, machines, money etc. into a useful enterprise. To achieve the group goal these resources are coordinated, directed and controlled.

Optimum Utilization of Resources:

  • By defining objectives of the organization clearly, there would be no wastage of resources like time, manpower, money and effort. Manager uses smart ways and converts disorganized resources of men, machines, money etc. into a useful enterprise. This way the productivity of the organization increases.
  • Alternate use of idle resources is found

Minimization of Cost:

  • Minimization of the cost and maximizing production is one of the ways to increase the profitability of the organization. At the same time, it may help the organization to offer their product at lower cost to beat the competition.
  • The idea of minimization of the cost is minimum input by proper planning and getting maximum output. Physical, human and financial resources are used in such a manner with the best combination to achieve cost reduction.

Survival and Growth:

  • In the era of Globalisation, Computerization, Privatisation, entry of multinationals, and Government policy, the changes are inevitable.These changes are critical and intense. Hence effective and professional manager can handle them successfully in order to stay afloat amidst intense competition.
  • Complex nature of modern business can be handled only by scientific and professional managerial techniques.

 Sound Organizational Structure:

  • Effective management on basis of clear organizational structure effectively delegates the work and finalize responsibility. Due to smooth and coordinated efforts, no overlapping of efforts takes place.
  • Proper organizational structure establishes effective authority & responsibility relationship. Manager fills up various positions with right persons, having right skills, training, and qualification.

Generation of Employment:

  • Good and innovative management results in expansion and diversification of the business. It opens many job opportunities for people of society.

Essentials for Prosperity of Society:

  •  Efficient management avoids wastage of scarce resources. By generating job it improves the standard of living of the people in the society.Organization comes with new innovative products and researchers which are beneficial for society.

Improvement in Corporate Image:

  • Good management results in quality products and services. As the corporate image (Goodwill) is directly proportional to the quality, by improvement of quality the corporate image of the organization improves.

Employee Motivation:

  • Effective management encourages initiative among its subordinates. It also encourages innovation. Incentives monetary or other improve willingness and efficiency of the employee.

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