Basic Functions of Management/Leadership

This is basically for my own edification and reminder reference as I have found that, over a very long career in diverse industries, these principles still hold. These are management tasks that must be performed to a more or lesser degree in all organizations. How a manager accomplishes the tasks is in the realm of management theory, a body of study and knowledge that continually evolves. The most recent trend in management theory seems to be a combination of customer/employee oriented factors involving coordination, communication and collaboration at the core (not unlike recent education trends) – mostly common sense. The race to develop adopted catch-phases that sell books might be more the driving force behind the theories than is the advancement of theory and practices. Some examples from recent books: “radical management”; “connected and engaged organization”; The Power of PullThe Elastic Enterprise; “new management paradigm”; The Connected Company; and many others. This for another blog?

  •  Planning (operational [tactical] and strategic):
    • Define where the organization is, identify a future ideal state then map how the company will move toward that future state.
    •  Outcomes:
      1. Ideal organizational vision, identity, culture, personality.
      2. Anticipated external environment (economy, government, etc.).
      3. Tactics and strategies.
      4. Timetable.
      5. Mission, goals and objectives.
      6. Resources needed.
      7. Marketing plan.
  •  Organizing:
    • Organize resources (human and material) to accomplish mission, goals and objectives.
    • Outcomes:
      1. Organizational chart.
        1. Spans of control.
        2. Chain of command.
        3. Lines of authority.
      2. Departmentalization.
      3. Position descriptions.
        1. Duties and responsibilities.
        2. Detailed tasks, conditions and standards.
        3. Position authority.
        4. Delegation of authority to include hiring, firing, supervising, disciplining, ordering, purchasing, compensatory time, etc.
      4. Policies, processes, procedures, systems and rules.
  • Leading (Directing) toward mission, goal, objective and task achievement:
    • Decision making
    • Motivating
    • Rewarding
    • Disciplining
    • Compensating
    • Communicating/informing
    • Supervising
    • Supporting
    • Training, educating and orienting
    • Evaluating
    • Consistency
  •  Staffing:
    • Position analysis
    • Human resource inventory
    • Identification of position skills, knowledges and abilities
    • Recruiting
    • Testing and interviewing
    • Hiring, promoting, transferring, adjusting pay, terminating
    • Training, educating and orienting
    • Evaluating
    • Consistency
  • Controlling:
    • Assigning, evaluating, and regulating resources on an ongoing basis to accomplish the organization’s goals:
      1. Measuring performance against position descriptions and standards.
      2. Evaluating and measuring compliance and progress with and regulating plans, policies, processes, procedures, systems, rules, regulations, ordinances, laws, project drawings, specifications and other contract documents and budgets.
      3. Ensuring that organizational activities are consistent, effective and efficient.
      4. Soliciting customer, vendor and employee feedback.
      5. Making necessary changes and taking corrective actions as needed in response to outcomes of the first four principles above.
      6. Managing change.