What is Management – Definition, Meaning of

Table of Contents:-

  • What is Management?
  • Meaning of Management 
  • Definition of Management
  • Define Management

What is Management?

Providing an accurate definition of management is challenging, as a universally accepted one has yet to be established. Management encompasses the acquisition and application of knowledge, avoiding reliance solely on intuition or the rule of thumb, even though it is viewed as an extension of common sense. Thus, management is a blend of both art and science. The scientific aspect lies in decision making, planning, and the appropriate use of technology. In contrast, the artistic element is evident in communication, leadership, and goal-setting tasks.

Various definitions of management include:

Managing is the art or process of getting things done through other people’s efforts.

Managing is the art of creating and maintaining an internal environment in an enterprise where individuals, working together in groups, can perform efficiently and effectively towards attaining group goals.

Management is setting and achieving goals by executing five essential management functions (i.e., Planning, Organising, Staffing, Directing, and Controlling) that utilize human, financial, and material resources.

Management is a process or activity that combines several varied resources like persons, materials, techniques, and technologies to accomplish a task or task.

As a distinct field of study, management is also the body of organized knowledge that underlies the art of management.


Meaning of Management 

Management means many things to many people. Economists consider it a factor of production. Socialists view it as a class or group of people. At the same time, management practitioners treat it as a process. Trade unionists consider Management to be an exploitative set of people. In simple terms, ‘Management is what a manager does in an organisation’.

Management is the art of getting things done through people in formally organized groups. Administration can, therefore, be defined as the art or skill of directing human activities and physical resources to accomplish planned goals.

“Management” is a broad term. It carries several different meanings depending on the context in which it is used. It is defined as a “process,” “activity,”  and  “group of people” vested with the authority to make decisions.

Definition of Management

Louis Allen states, “Management is what a manager does”.

According to James D. Mooney and Allan C. Reiley, “Management is the art of directing and inspiring people”.

As per Peter Drucker, “Management is a multipurpose organ that manages a business, manages a manager and manages a worker and work”.

According to Koontz and O’Donnell, “Management is the creation and maintenance of an internal environment in an enterprise where individuals, working in groups, can perform efficiently and effectively toward the attainment of group goals. It is the art of getting the work done through and with people in formally organised groups”.

Management, in the context of business and organization, means coordinating people’s actions by using the available resources efficiently and effectively to ensure the achievement of goals. Management includes planning, organizing, staffing, leading or directing, and controlling the organization or initiative.

Leadership is essential for any organization, regardless of size or profitability. Good management is crucial to success, whether the organization is big or small, profitable or non-profitable. Control is necessary to cooperate and contribute to achieving the collective objectives. Administration includes those mutually related functions that all managers perform. Managers spend different amounts of time on other tasks. Managers at higher levels spend more time planning and organization than managers at lower levels.

Define Management

Management is an important topic that many authors have written about. The word management is a widely used word that is generally used for all types of activities. It is mainly used for many activities of any enterprise. From the above example and study of the situation, it must have become apparent that governance is that activity that is necessary for every organization in which people are working as a group. 

People in the organization perform different activity types but still work for the same purpose. Leadership directs the people’s efforts to achieve a common objective. This way, management sees that tasks are completed and goals are achieved (i.e., effect completion) with the least resources and minimum cost (i.e., efficiency).

Thus, management can be defined as getting the work done to achieve objectives effectively and efficiently. We need to analyze this definition.

Some words need to be described in detail. These words are-

  1. Process 
  2. Effectively and
  3. To full capacity.

The process used in the definition means the primary function or activities the management performs to complete the tasks. These functions are planning, organization, appointment, direction, and control.

Practical or to do a task effectively means accomplishing a given job. Effective leadership is concerned with doing the right thing, completing the activities, and achieving the objectives. In other words, its function is to achieve the final result. But more than just finishing the work is needed, there is another aspect to it: efficiency, i.e., doing the job efficiently.

Efficiency means doing the job correctly at the lowest cost. It involves cost-benefit analysis and the relationship between inputs and outputs. Suppose we get more profit (result) using fewer resources (information). In that case, there is an increasing inefficiency. Efficiency will increase if fewer resources are used for the same profit or output and less cost is incurred. Input resources are the money, materials, equipment, and human resources required to perform a particular task. Naturally, management is concerned with efficiently using these resources as they reduce costs and ultimately increase profits.

Management Roles

Managers assume multiple roles to fulfil various responsibilities. According to Henry Mintzberg, all managers commonly perform ten roles. Management roles can be grouped into three main categories as follows:

1) Interpersonal: It serves as a vital link between different managerial functions.

2) Informational: This role ensures the provision of information.

3) Decisional: This role facilitates the efficient utilisation of information.

Different managers can perform these roles in various circumstances or one manager can perform them according to the situation and the management level.

These individual roles are a part of an integrated managerial role as depicted in the image below:

1) Interpersonal Roles

A manager has to play different roles as per the requirements of the responsibilities vested upon him. These roles are connected with the interpersonal relations shared by a manager and his subordinates. While performing interpersonal roles the manager acts as a:

i) Leader: It is the role of the manager as a leader to encourage his subordinates and motivate them to satisfy their individual needs in a way that ensures the fulfilment of the overall organisational objectives.

ii) Liaison: Every manager should be a good communicator outside his commanding area to gather information from other sources present in the organisation.

iii) Figurehead: A manager assumes the role of a prominent figure during certain events, such as welcoming foreign business associates or senior personnel, attending personal functions of subordinates, hosting lunch for special customers, etc.

2) Informational Roles

Collection and dissemination of information are essential components of managerial responsibilities performed by a manager.  While performing informational roles the manager acts as a:

i) Monitor: A manager must develop a personal network of contacts inside and outside the organisation. As a monitor. he has to constantly analyse his business environment to extract information, questioning his subordinates and receiving unsolicited information from the established contacts.

ii) Spokesperson: An organisation has several stakeholders like shareholders, investors, consumers, society, etc. who require information about the enterprise’s activities.

iii) Disseminator: It is the role of a manager to share privileged business information with his department members which otherwise would not be available to them.

A manager’s role is to recommend the shareholders regarding financial performance and assure the government and regulatory authorities that the enterprise. abides by the law, and ensures that social responsibilities are met for the well-being of consumers.

3) Decisional Roles

A manager is the key personnel in the decision-making process within an organization. As he has access to all the information and can voice. his opinions for the benefit of the organisation. While performing decisional roles the manager acts as a/an:

i) Disturbance Handler: A manager must be prepared to handle unanticipated problems in and outside the organisation. He must have contingency plans or prompt solutions in case of a strike by the workers, important consumers going bankrupt, a client terminating a contract against the terms decided, etc.

ii) Entrepreneur: The business environment is dynamic. The environmental factors keep on changing constantly. A successful manager adopts these. changes and implements them to improve existing and new products, devise innovative business plans, etc.

iii) Negotiator: A manager represents the organisation in case of a dispute that calls. for negotiation. A corporate-level manager plays the role of a negotiator and makes decisions for the organisation as a whole.

iv) Resource Allocator: Division of work among subordinates and delegation of authority to perform the given work should be done by the manager. He assigns tasks to employees as per their capacities.

Not all negotiations are handled by the top-level manager; issues at the executive. level are resolved by the executive. level managers.

Effectiveness vs Efficiency

Although these two words are different, they are related to each other. The management needs to be both efficient and effective. The effectiveness and skill of an individual are two sides of the same coin. However, balance is necessary for both these aspects, and sometimes management has to compromise efficiently. 

For example, it is easy to be effective and overlook efficiency, which means getting the job done at a high cost. For example, suppose a company aims to produce 8,000 units in a year. The manager was adequate but inefficient enough to achieve this goal when power was not available most of the time, as more inputs (cost of labour and electricity) were used for the same output. Sometimes, businesses focus more on producing goods with fewer resources, i.e., reduced cost, but cannot have the stipulated work. 

As a result, the goods could not reach the market, so their demand decreased, and the competitors took their place. It is a situation of lack of efficiency but effectiveness as the goods did not reach the market. Therefore, achieving the goals (effectively) at the lowest cost (efficiently) is more important for the manager. It requires a balance between effectiveness and efficiency.

High efficiency is generally accompanied by high effectiveness, which is the goal of all managers. But more than simply stressing high work efficiency without significance is also desirable. Management could be more robust due to a lack of effectiveness and efficiency.

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