Monday, 14 July 2014

Expansion of Management Knowledge

Management is an applied technique and a closely to many allied fields e.g. economics. Disciplines devoted to studying people, e.g. psychology, sociology and political science, have grown and generated an expansion of management knowledge.

The development of management thought can, for convenience, by considered to comprise four main periods – early influence, the scientific management movement, the human relations movement, and modern influences, e.g. the revisionist movement.

Early influences

Ancient records in China and Greece indicate the importance of organization and administration, but do not much insight into the principles of management. Outstanding scholars have referred to management activities in the running of city states and empires.

The Administration of the Roman Empire was a complex job. The Romans effectively used many basic management ideas, e.g. scalar principles and delegation of authority.

Scientific management

In the years after 1900, conventional management practices were found to be inadequate to meet demands from the changing economic, social and technological environment. A few pioneers examined causes of inefficiency and experimented to try to find more efficient methods and procedures for control. From these basic experiments a system of management thought developed which come to be known as scientific management.

The method was to investigate every operating problem and try to determine the “best way” to solve the problems, using scientific methods of research. The concept involved a way of thinking about management.

Administrative management

The role of administrative management and concluded that all activities that occur in business organization could be divided in to six groups, i.e.:
  • Technical (production, manufacturing)
  • Commercial (buying, selling, exchange)
  • Financial (obtaining and using capital)
  • Security (protection of property and persons)
  • Accounting (balance sheet, stocktaking, statistic, costing)
  • Managerial (planning, organizing, commanding, co-coordinating, controlling)
 The six groups of activities above are interdependent and that it is the role of management to ensure all six activities work smoothly to achieve the goals of an enterprise.

Human relations movement and behavioural science

Industrial psychology emerged a specific field about 1913, it was concerned with problems of fatigue and monotony and efficiency in work, as well as in the design of equipment, lighting and other working conditions. It later dealt with problems of selecting and training employees and developed techniques of psychological testing and measurement. Industrial psychology emphasized the study of large and small groups in industry. The basis of the human relations movement was the integration of various disciplines, i.e. industrial psychology and sociology, applied anthropology and social psychology, and was concerned with the human problems which management encountered.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Management to be a Profession ?

In recent years there has been further consideration as to whether management can be regarded as a profession. The conflicting arguments can be considered only if a profession is defined. The following main points seem relevant:
  • There must exist a body of principles, skills and techniques and specialized knowledge;
  • There must be formal methods of acquiring training and experience;
  • An organization should be established which forms ethical codes for the guidance and conduct of members.
 If the above standards are considered, the management cannot really be a called a profession. There are no licenses for managers, nor is there an accepted code of ethics. Management is a practice, rather than a science or profession.

Economic performance and achievement are the proper aims of management and that a manager’s primary responsibility is to manage a business. A manager should not, therefore, devote time to objectives such as professionalism which lie out-side the enterprise.

The solution may lie in a balanced approach. At present there are trends towards professionalism, seem in the development of skills and techniques, more formal training facilities and the greater use of management consultants and specialized associations.

Managers have to balance their obligations to the undertaking which employs them with the community at large, with other employees, suppliers, consumers, and their own conscience.

Because of the growing professionalism of managers there is a need for such a code of conduct as brief below:
  • To act loyal and honestly in carrying out the policy of the organization and not undermine its image or reputation;
  • To accept responsibility for their work and that of their subordinates;
  • Not to abuse their authority for personal gain;
  • Not to injure or attempt to injure the professional reputation, prospects or business of others;
  • Always to comply strictly with the law and operate within the spirit of the law.
Other points refer to dealing honestly with the public, promoting the increase in competence and the standing of the profession of management, and recognizing that the organization has obligation to owners, employees, suppliers, customers, users, and the general public.

Guides to good practice include:
  • Establishing objectives for themselves and their subordinates which do not conflict with the organization’s overall objectives;
  • Respecting confidentially of information and not using it for personal gain;
  • Making full disclosure of a personal interest to their employer.
Other points refer to helping and training subordinates, ensuring their safety and well –being, honouring contracts to customers and suppler, ensuring correct information is produced, not tolerating any corrupt practices, and finally to setting up a disciplinary structure to implement the code.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Administration being part of Management

Administration is sometimes used to refer to the activities of the higher level of the management group who determine major aims and policies. This can be called the broader use of the term which is often used in government departments. It is also used in the narrower sense, of controlling the day-to-day running of the enterprise.

An administrator can also be a manager, this occurs when the administrator is concerned with implementing policy in dealings with employees to whom responsibilities have been delegated.

Defines of administration is the part of the management process concerned with the institution and carrying out of procedures by which the programmed is laid down and communicated, and the progress of activities is regulated and checked against targets and plans.

Management has even more meanings than administration. Management can mean:
  • A process by which scarce resources are combined to achieve given ends. This describes and activity which can be better described by the word managing;
  • The management referring to those people carrying out the activity. This should really be the managers;
  • The body of knowledge about the activity of managing, regarded here as a special field of study, i.e. a profession

Of these three, the first is preferable, management referring to the process of management.

A useful approach is to consider management to be a process whereby a suitable environment is created for effort to be organized to accomplish desired goals.

Management can define as:
A social process entailing responsibility for the effective and economical planning and regulation of the operations of an enterprise, in fulfilment of a given purpose or tasks, such responsibility involving:
  • Judgement and decision in determining plans, and the development of data procedures to assist control of performance and progress against plans; and
  • The guidance, integration, motivation and supervision of the personnel composing the enterprise and carrying out its operations.
It can be seen from the above that the process as a whole is called management – administration being part of it.

The term top management usually refers to management above departmental level and is loosely applied to directors.

The word executive is correctly used when referring to a person who carried out policy. The phrase top executive is used for people of a high status, who is fact do no executive work at all, as they spend their time formulating policy. They are of course responsible for executive action done under their jurisdiction. Where words are associated with status rather than function, precision is impossible.

The concept of Management

There have been many attempts to describe the contents of the “job” of management. It has been considered to be a separate activity from the technical functions of production, marketing and finance. Various economists separated it from other factors of production (land, labour and capital). The other economists also agreed with the idea that management was a separate entity, being concerned with innovation as well as administration.

In recent years, management deals with a number of variable that are dependent upon each other. These variables will surely increase as companies grow more complex and it will then become more difficult to trace the side-effect of a change in dealing with a specific are of management responsibility.

There are many problems to be solved. Some people try to solve them by considering changes in the structure of organizations and the locations of authority and responsibility. Others hope to do it by improving the quality of decisions by new technological ideas and the use of modern methods of data processing. Yet another group expects to solve the same problem by concentrating on human relations

The vital point to be considered is that the structural, technological and human aspects cannot be separated as they all interact. For example, if a firm changes from a functional to a product grouping, problems of interpersonal relations occur. This may in turn affect the techniques of control (i.e. new financial systems may be needed). A knowledge of the above fact should enable a manager to understand that it may not be easy to find a simple answer to a problem but, by acknowledging this fact and using available knowledge wisely, answers can be much more accurate and effective.

The development of any science needs a conceptual framework of theory and principle. Principles of management have existed for a long time, but an acceptable framework to encompass them was needed.  A management principle distils and organizes knowledge that has been built up through experience and analysis. Management is far from being an exact science at present but, by understanding and applying accepted principles, the quality of management will never become wholly an exact science as personal judgment will always be needed to supplement available knowledge, therefore, as practice, management will always be an art.

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Characteristics of an effective teamwork

An effective team has clear goals and members who are committed to achieving these goals. In order to accomplish this, members should:
  • Enjoy open and honest communication (between members and with the leader)
  • Participate in goal setting
  • Contribute their skills and expertise
  • Deal constructively with differing point of view within the team
  • Be able to take on the role of another team member when required

Quality Teamwork

Organizations require quality effort from their teams. Teams can contribute much to the outcomes of the organization if they:
  • Use everybody within the group
  • Pay attention to data collection and analysis
  • Document process as a form of control
  • Focus on the needs of the customers and clients
  • Implement good communication processes

With these techniques in place, the result can be quite outstanding.

Team Leaders

Team leader have a particular role to fill. In the beginning their role is to set parameters and motivate members. As the team begins to function effectively, the role will change and the leader will become a facilitator.

Some suggestions for a good team leader are to:
  • Discuss matters concerning the work with all team members-keep them up-to-date
  • Respect the contributions made by members
  • Make sure members understand what is expected of them
  • Listen to all points of view
  • Build self-esteem
  • Motivate members towards attaining the team’s goals
  • Provide training and support in area which would assist member’s performance
  • Show appreciation for the contribution made by members


Delegating is a valuable time management tool. It involved work into separate tasks and allocating the responsibility for completing those tasks to team members or other staff members. Staffs who accept the tasks need to have the necessary time available for complete them, as well as expertise, skills and an interest in the project.

The constraints of time and the need to use the expertise of others are two reasons for delegating. Staffs stand to gain valuable experience. The team leader is available for consultation, but is also released to concentrate on other work. The person delegating the tasks should give feedback on how well the work was done.

A record should be kept of the work that is delegated and a follow-up system should be implemented to check on the progress.


Teams are not exempt from conflict situations. Members can express opinions and exhibit behaviours that are not always in line with the group’s ideas.

Conflict may be either destructive or constructive. The openness and assertiveness of communication will influence the satisfactory resolution of any disagreement.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Quality Formation Teamwork

There are several stages in team formation. A team leader needs to understand for cycles or phase of team formation so that appropriate support and encouragement are given.

This is the phase when the team first comes together to perform the set tasks. Members will learn:
  • How to relate to each other
  • To overcome fear, misgivings and apprehension
  • To appreciate the strengths of the team leader
  • What their function will be within the team
This is the phase when differences are sorted out and adjustments are made. Productivity may decline or be stalemated until the team members accept individual differences. The team members need to work harmoniously with the leader and know what is expected of them in their particular role.

The leader should discuss issues with members so that principles for working towards common goals are established.

In this phase, the team’s work begins to settle and members learn to appreciate the roles played by others, and also learn what their individual contribution should be.

By now, the leader should be developing trust in the team members who are starting to assume responsibility for working through the assigned tasks.

By the performing phase, teams are starting to see the result of their efforts. The balance within the team is more finely-turned and the leader’s role will change to one of delegation as members take on more decision making.

When a member leaves or a new member joins the team, progress will be disrupted. The team will revert to an earlier phase until it adjusts to the change in relationships and perhaps also to change in roles.

Industry is now placing more emphasis on the work carried out by teams. A popular phrase is “continuous improvement”. This means reviewing the current systems and assessing, in hindsight, whether they worked effectively or can be improved. The results are evaluated so that in future it is known what worked for particular team and what was not effective in achieving the desired outcomes.

Experience and knowledge gained through teamwork will make employees more valuable to the organization.

Team members should become enthusiastic and committed to developing strategies for reaching the goals set.

Some strategies are to:
  • Get the work done-understand what is required and follow through on what you have promised to do
  • Find ways of making and documenting improvement-look for  better work practices and ways of reducing wasted effort and materials
  • Share your ideas and ensure that quality processes are followed-tell other team members of improved methods you have developed what you have learned may enable cost savings to be made by the team and the organization.