What Are the Main Functions of Management?

What Are the Main Functions of Management?

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Rashmi
Rashmi Karan
Manager - Content
Updated on Nov 28, 2023 11:56 IST

Successful management involves creative problem-solving, employee motivation, and various leadership and management tasks that ensure the achievement of an organization’s goals and objectives. In this article, we will discuss these crucial functions of management.

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Management can be described as a discipline in which the operations and people of an organization must be led, directed, and controlled, but without imposing authority. The functions corresponding to management represent a good starting point for managers to find their position before beginning to fulfil their managerial positions. By understanding and managing obligations, you can work to acquire the skills necessary to run a company successfully.

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Importance of Management

The first thing to specify is that management is the last higher link in a company’s hierarchy. They are responsible for ensuring the operation of every department, supervising human talent, and taking corrective measures whenever necessary.

Management directs a group of people under its command and must report their activities daily or as agreed between the parties. In this case, the essential reason management is clearly defined: the supervision and coordination of a manager. Subordinates could do the job as specified and comply with the rest of their functions.

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Additionally, management is responsible for identifying the possible problems that a given situation could trigger and developing an action plan that provides solutions in the medium and long term.

Another function that strategic management asserts is making decisions or approving proposals from teams or project managers. Similarly, the final word is up to the manager, consistently applying metrics that lead to success.

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There are three types of management:

Wealth Management: Wealth Management is responsible for managing the company’s assets. This type of management needs to consider how qualified a person is to hold the position. Usually, the company owners are in charge of this type of management.

Political management: Political management takes place in governments and bases managerial positions on ideological or political similarities.

Management by objective: This integrates all levels of the organization and is based on making the necessary decisions to achieve the established objective.

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Functions of Management

Organizational management is a complex process that consists of the sequential execution of steps or phases, which constitute the typical work of an administrator or manager. These tasks can be expressed in a generalized way as managerial functions, which are exercised at various levels, which are – 

These are the main functions of management.

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Planning

Planning consists of establishing the organization’s long, medium, and short-term objectives and specifying the courses of action that will be followed to achieve them. There must be coherence between the various levels of objectives. 

On the other hand, it must be concrete, clear, and, preferably, quantifiable to compare the results later. It also includes the analysis of the necessary resources, their adequacy, and availability. All this must finally be specified in plans, programs, and budgets.

Organizing

It consists of designing and determining functions and tasks, establishing operating units, departments, divisions, etc., and defining the circuits and modalities of communication between these units. 

This organization must respond to two basic requirements, apparently contradictory but complementary: the need to divide tasks and the need to coordinate them. The organization coordinates tasks by establishing permanent relationships between entities, a hierarchical authority structure, and the degree of centralization or decentralization in decision-making.

The process of organizing involves:

  • Identifying tasks
  • Grouping of tasks
  • Assigning tasks
  • Delegating authority and creating responsibilities
  • Coordinating authority and responsibility relationships

It consists of guiding (“directing”) the efforts of all the organization’s employees, including managers, towards obtaining the organizational goals. The managerial function is related to the permanent, long-term objectives of the organization and the constant changes in the context to which the organization is related. 

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Staffing 

The management function also deals with the selection of the personnel, their integration into the company as a whole, the orientation of their work, training, and motivation, and establishing the most appropriate leadership system. The HR teams are also involved in planning appraisals and promotions within the teams across the organization. 

The task of staffing mainly involves –

Controlling

Controlling includes ensuring everything is done according to given business goals and targets. It also ensures that the organization’s objectives are obtained by comparing the actual and expected results, defining the level of adjustment or divergence between the two, and undertaking the necessary actions. 

The control function is thus closely linked to the planning function. You cannot control results without previous goal settings or establish new goals without controlling previous results. Controlling involves the following steps –

  • Establishing standard performance
  • Measuring actual performances of employees
  • Comparing actual performance with the set standards
  • Taking corrective actions

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Problem Analysis

In every organization, problems, incidents, and difficulties are constantly occurring. You have to detect them, analyze them, find their causes, establish their importance and priority, find their solution, and implement it.

Decision-making

Faced with environmental problems or opportunities, it is necessary to propose various alternatives of possible courses of action, evaluate them according to various criteria, weigh opinions and advice, and ultimately choose one, make the decision, and finally carry it out.  

The decision-making process is a central aspect of the managerial function. In a more systematic view, it includes the following phases: 

  • Identification of the problem 
  • Development of alternatives 
  • Identification of the criteria for deriving a solution 
  • Weighing the criteria 
  • Evaluation of the alternatives 
  • Selection of an alternative 
  • Implementation of the alternative 
  • Evaluation of the decision

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Communication

To analyze problems and make decisions, managers need a lot of information from other levels of the organization, which they can obtain if they have adequate communication channels. The same happens when they must report on their decisions to create bases for consensus and a disciplinary framework to put them into practice.

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Management Objectives

In the same way, management must fulfil a series of functions. It must fulfil a series of objectives. In this sense, the objectives can vary depending on the company we refer to. However, many common objectives could be considered valid for all companies.

Among these shared objectives, the following relationship should be highlighted:

  • Get the business objectives met
  • Motivate the team 
  • Get the job done excellently
  • Unite the team
  • Get a boost in work productivity
  • Lead the team
  • Reduce company costs progressively
  • Increase team efficiency and effectiveness

We hope this article helped you understand the crucial functions of management. Although there have been changes in scenarios and new tools for business management have appeared, the management principles of Henry Fayol are still valid today. Fayol’s idea can be summed up in a single sentence: “Creating a plan and ensuring success is one of the greatest satisfactions a manager can experience.”

FAQs

What are the main functions of management?

The main functions of management are planning, organizing, leading, and controlling.

What qualities make a good leader?

Good leaders possess effective communication skills, the ability to inspire and motivate others, strong decision-making abilities, empathy, and a vision for the future.

Why is organizing important in management?

Organizing involves structuring tasks, allocating resources, and establishing authority relationships to facilitate the coordinated effort towards achieving objectives.

What is the purpose of planning in management?

Planning involves setting objectives, determining actions to achieve those objectives, and developing strategies to accomplish organizational goals effectively.

About the Author
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Rashmi Karan
Manager - Content

Rashmi is a postgraduate in Biotechnology with a flair for research-oriented work and has an experience of over 13 years in content creation and social media handling. She has a diversified writing portfolio and aim... Read Full Bio