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Functions of management
There are four basic functions of management, viz., planning, organization, direction and control.


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These functions are closely interlinked and interwoven in character. All executives or mangers, regardless of their area and position,a are o discharge these functions. These functions are the identifying marks by which a manger can be differentiated form a non-manager. Of the four functions, however, the upper or top executives are mostly preoccupied with the first two functions-planning and organization, while the lower-ranking executives are largely busy with direction and largely busy with direction and control. But the thinking functions of planning and organisation cannot be separated in to water-tight compartments from the doing functions of direction and control. Irrespective of their levels and spheres of activity, executives are required to perform all the four functions in varying degrees.

1. Planning Is the rational and orderly thinking about ways and means for the realization of certain goals. It involves thought and decision pertaining to a future course of action. It anticipates and precedes action rather than making a reflective thinking abut the past events. Absence of planning before doing implies rashness, imprudence or shortsightedness in the performance of work. Before undertaking any work, is to be done, and who is to do the work. In considering these points, managers have to clarify objectives or goals and to evolve policies and procedures for guiding those who do the work; they have to chart the proposed lines of action with proper time schedules for the execution of work. For providing a factual basis for future action, managers have to map out a programme indicating the best course of action to be followed, fixing the targets and standards of work performance there in and evolving the strategies and remedies for possible hindrances to the smooth flow of work. In other words, programmes provide a complete road map for the guidance of managers to get things done through operators.
In a sense, planning and decisions making are synonymous. Like decision making, planning is made for providing guide to action in problem areas. There is much common ground between the steps planning and of decision making-diagnosis of the problem, development of alternative, evaluation of alternative and selection of the best course of action. The decision phase of planning is so important that many writers have treated planning as a synonym of decision making.

2. Organization Provides the mechanism or apparatus for purposive, integrated and co-operative action by two or more persons with a view to implementing any plan. With a few persons, organization calls for the allocation of tasks to individuals and the requires the efforts of many people, several departments come into existence under the charge of different managers who are tied together neatly by authority relationships for integrated action. That is, organization involves the division and subdivision of activities, into departments, sections and jobs as well as the integration of activities and positions into a co-ordinated whole. The division of activities entails three thing, viz., determination of
total activities, grouping of such activities and assignment of jobs to both managers and operators. The integration of activities is effected through positions which are bound together in a consistent pattern by the fabric of inter-relationships among enterprise functions, jobs and personnel. Delegation of authority is the cement that holds the positions together as one entity.

The concept of organization has a number of implications. First, it has two aspects: technical or mechanistic aspect pertaining to activities and social or humanistic aspect pertaining to people. For the personal contentment and social satisfaction of people, organization calls for the matching of jobs with individuals and vice-versa. Secondly, as a mechanism for action, organization is required to be changed when either the volume and nature of action or the personnel change. Although some amount of reorganization takes place with every personnel change, upper-level personnel change is more significant in effect. Thirdly, delegation of authority takes place not only between management members, but it extends to operators as well. In addition to managerial jobs, the operating jobs are also put to the same process of delegation.

3. Direction is largely a function of human relations and motivation. This function is, of course, denoted variously by different writers, such as command, leadership, motivation, execution or actuating. The organizational mechanism is to be energized, activated or put into action for carrying out the management plan. This is what is actually done through directing function to set the organization in motion. But human beings are not inanimate cogs in a machine; they have emotions, aspirations, sentiments, capacity to participate or to withhold such participation. Like a machine, they could not be ordered to do a predetermined work. With the purpose of inducing the members of the organization to put forth their best endeavour, managers direct the employees through the medium of leadership, guidance, supervision, communication and counselling. Direction involves personal and social-group relationships. The working terms are inspired and motivated to do the work willingly and whole-heartedly because of providing desirable job satisfaction and wanted team spirit.

4. Control ensures qualitative and quantitative performance of work in the organization for completing plans and achieving objectives. Under the control function, measuring standards or yardsticks are established and communicated to managers so that they can regulate employee performance and can work by self-control. Moreover, control brings to light any management lapses that hinder satisfactory work progress, and thus it provides the managers with an opportunity to take remedial action before it is too late. The control function furnishes new data and facts that enable the managers to verify the accuracy of their decisions with regard to planning, organizing and directing functions. Controlling as a process involves measurement, evaluation and correction of performance in the light of standards established through planning. That planning and controlling are inter-dependent can be explained form the nature of either functions. As control forces events to conform to plans, three can exist no control without planning. Likewise, plans are not capable of self-achieving without the exercise of controlling function. In the past, control was work-focused rather than work-focused,

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