A manager is an individual responsible in running an organization. A manager plans, coordinates and direct the activities of the organization. This is achieved through monitoring the actions of workers and probably advising them to rectify their actions when necessary.
The manager can direct workers directly or else delegate the responsibility to junior staff. Though a manager may delegate some of the responsibilities, he/she must have adequate knowledge of the work done. It is better for a manager to concentrate on learning and developing better ways of managing workers than learning how all activities of a job are done.
In many instances the manager has power of firing, hiring and even promoting workers or might be the one to recommend this to next level of management. The manager has the authority to rotate workers in the organization. Bangs, David H. (1998).
The manager’s title reflects the responsibilities under his/her docket. An operational manager regulates entire operations of the enterprise while an accounting manager is responsible for running only accounting issues of an organization. All the workers reports to the manager and may request for clarification on how to carrying out their roles. The managers liaise with other departments to avoid an instance of collision of duties. The title of the manager might change but the basic functions of planning directing, monitoring and controlling people and their activities remains. (Jones and George, 2010)
Roles of a manager in a typical organization
Planning involves setting business goals and laying down the strategies of achieving these goals. Planning is therefore the cornerstone of management and forms the basis upon which the other managerial functions lie. The management assess where the present position of the enterprise then proposes where they want to take the business to after certain period of time. This is then followed by proposing course of action then implementing it. Planning is unending activity meaning that the management keeps on bringing better ways of achieving the business goal.
There are both external and internal factors which affect smooth operation of business this call for altering business plan. External factors are uncontrollable therefore it is up to the management to alter course of action to continue growing. This is called strategic planning. The management scrutinizes inside and external factors that are likely to affect the business to extend of failing to achieve specified objectives. The management studies the strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The management must be realistic and practical to carry out this analysis successfully.
There are different types of planning; each type depends on nature of goals to be achieved. Strategic plans lay down the necessary actions for achieving long range business objectives eg starting a new project. Operational plan is a plan meant for employees only it shows how the business should be run. Hence it spells out responsibilities of all the employees. Feasibility plan is the first plan laid down. It foresees the possibility of success of a project. Bangs, David H. (1998).
Advantages of continuous planning
Planning involves identifying potential business weakness and proposing the best way to deal with them. This process of deliberation enables the management to understand the business better. The identification of strength enables the organization to put itself at a competitive position.
It enables the organization to obtain external financing with easy. This is because the financiers will have faith on the management.
It enables better use of recourses. The management allocates resources to different projects and functions according to the profitability they expect. This makes sure that no unprofitable project is financed.
It prepares the organization to handle disasters. This is because the management plans in advance on the best way of minimizing losses when a disaster strikes.
Planning also enhances better coordination of the company affaires hence a voids any confusion. The process of undertaking every activity is previously determined therefore workers just follow the laid down steps. This avoids time wastage in trying to seek the procedure required.
Continuous planning can be used to motivate the employees by involving them in laying down the course of action. The worker will be implementing the plans without complains because they are the ones who proposed them. This is used to avoid conflict between the management and junior employees.
Business continuity plan helps to protect the brand name and reputation of enterprise. This is because the company customers will have confidence that the business will not fall in near future. (Jones and George, 2010)
Limitations of planning
If the data used is unreliable, the management will come up with unpractical plans. Planning without implementation is use less.
This function involves combining the available human capital with the physical and financial enterprise resources to attain the specified business objectives. Therefore it follows planning function. It determines how the business wills function. According to Chester Bernard “organization is a function by which the concern is able to define the role position, the job related and the co-ordination between authority and responsibility. Hence a manager always has to organize so as to get results” .
The following are the steps necessary to enable managers to carry out this organizational role:
Identification of activities: The management identifies the activities to be carried out. E.g. taking stoke, keeping stock, issuing stock all this activities are similar and need to be under grouped departmentalization of activities: The manager should combine the similar and related activities into units or departments. This ensures that the organization is divided in units with each unit handling certain activity.
Classify the authority in the created units (departments). The top personalities are the ones who formulate policies, the middle ones supervise to ensure activities are done appropriately. This is aimed at achieving efficiency in operation. (Gareth and Jennifer 2008)
The last step is of ensuring co-ordination between authority and responsibility. This ensures that there is smooth interaction when initiating and executing duties. Every one is aware of where to take orders from and where to report to.
This is the third function through which the management is able to influence the workers behavior towards the achievement of company’s goals as specified in the business plan. The manager influences workers behavior through efficient communication, motivation and ensuring participatory leadership in every department. Bangs, David H. (1998).
The managers come up with an effective process of incentives and rewards programs to make sure that the employees are extrinsically and intrinsically motivated. Motivated employees take their work more seriously and are efficient hence their productivity is high.
Effective communication creates positive interpersonal relationships and ensures that problems are solves as they surface. This avoids cases of fight and quarrels in work place. It also enables workers to raise concerns on the areas they think need to be reformed. . (Gareth and Jennifer 2008) Directing enables employees to be free to communicate their views and to be motivated.
This function involves establishing organizational standards of performance this is based on the goals of the organization then comparing this with the actual job performance and identifying the divergence. The management should then determine a measure to rectify the situation.
The managers should never take a step of lowering standards to show that all things are working as expected because this will only harm the organization. (Jones and George, 2010)
New problems in an organization keeps on erupting is implies that controlling process is an ongoing process. The manager needs to be attentive so that a problem is identified and solved before it grows and becomes difficult to manage. The employee can also identify the problem and inform the management.
Traits of an effective manager
The manger should be ready to work with the rest of management and employees to realize organizational goals. The manager should welcome diverse ideas of various sources before arriving at a decision. The manager should never ignore a brilliant idea from any one irrespective of the person’s position in the organization this is because everyone can help to achieve goals of the enterprise. Involving the rest in making decision motivates them to put all their efforts in realizing the objectives of enterprise.
Knowledge of the industry
The manager should have enough knowledge on working of the organization. Clients and employees may need some guidance from the manager on some issues hence he should give them an informed answer. This is why a manager who has climbed through ranks performs better than the one who gets straight to be a manager. If the manager is informed then the policies which he/she proposes are compatible with the working of the enterprise. (Gareth and Jennifer 2008)
The manager should not be pessimistic. He should instill hope in all the employees in the organization. The manager should express genuine and good feelings of work and show the rest that there is light in the end of the tunnel. Thus the manager should approach every project with hope of success. A pessimistic manager will never bring totally new project because of the thinking that things will not work out well.
How traits fits with the roles
The manager optimistic traits enable the organization to plan a head this is because only any optimistic person can plan. An optimistic manager will be able to adjust the structure of the organization to pave way for a new project. The manager will also have hope that directing the employees well can motivate them to attain the laid goals.
Team player trait the manager will involve the others in planning hence better plans will be formulated to take the organization to a higher level. This trait also assists the manager to organize the organization into departments and allow the departments to formulate policies which will allow members of the department to work together. A manager who is a team player will be able to direct employees with ease because he will involve them in formulating policies and will sometimes work along them. Such manager will also be able to control the organization with ease. While working with others he/she will discover problems which may hinder attaining the anticipated goals.
Knowledge of the industry relation ship with managerial functions:A manager who has adequate industrial knowledge will be realistic while planning. This is because he/she knows the achievable level of performance. The knowledge will also help in organizing when the organization has grown enough to allow a new department the manager will group similar activities with ease. This knowledge also helps in directing employees because he knows which tools when provided to employee can motivate him/her. It also helps in controlling in the sense that the manager will be able to propose corrective measures when unanticipated problem erupts.
The management functions are significant for smooth running an organization. These functions are critical such that if one of them is left out it will be almost impossible to run any organization effectively.
For a manager to be effective in his duties then some special traits like being a team player possession of adequate knowledge of the industry and conflict resolution are critical. These traits are also critical for any one working in management for they enable management to be efficient.
Bangs, David H. (1998).The Business Planning Guide: Creating a Plan for Success in Your Own Business. Upstart,
Jones, G. R., & George, J. M. (2010). Essentials of Contemporary Management .Newyork: McGraw-Hill.
Gareth R. Jones, Jennifer M. George (2008)(3rd ed). Essentials of Contemporary Management . Boston: McGraw-Hill.