Functions of Management : Planning, Organizing, Staffing, Directing and Controlling

Functions of Management

Planning, Organizing, Staffing, Directing and Controlling

Functions of Management


Functions of Management

All the managers have to perform certain functions in an organization to get the things moving. But there is never complete agreement among experts on what functions should be included in the management process. Some classify these functions into four types, some into six or seven.

Newman and Summer recognize only four functions, namely:

  1. Organizing
  2. Planning
  3. Leading
  4. Controlling

Henry Fayol identifies five functions of management viz,

  1. Planning
  2. Organizing
  3. Commanding
  4. Coordinating
  5. Controlling

Warren Haynes and Joseph Massie classify management functions into:

  1. Decision-making
  2. Organizing
  3. Staffing
  4. Planning
  5. Controlling
  6. Communicating
  7. Directing

Luther Gullick states seven such functions under the catch word “POSDCORB”

  1. P – Planning
  2. O – Organizing
  3. S – Staffing
  4. D – Directing
  5. Co – Coordinating
  6. R – Reporting
  7. B – Budgeting

Most Widely Accepted Five Managerial Function given By Koontz O’ Donnell are as follows:

  1. Planning
  2. Organizing
  3. Directing
  4. Controlling
  5. Staffing



Each of these functions is briefly described below:

1. Planning

Planning is the conscious determination of future course of action. This involves why an action, what an action, how to take an action and when to take an action. Thus, planning includes determination of specific objectives, determining projects and programmes, setting policies and strategies, setting rules and procedures, and preparing budgets.

Planning is a perspective of doing anything. Planning is a pervasive, continuous and never ending activity. This is done not only for the organization as a whole but for every division or department or sub-unit of the organization. it is a function, which is performed by managers at all levels, like top, middle and supervisory levels of management. Plans made by top management of the organizations whole may cover periods along as five or ten years. Also, plans made by middle or first line managers, cover such shorter periods. Such plans may be for the next days or weeks, or months etc. for example for a two-hour meeting to take place in a week.

Planning leads to more effective and faster achievements in any organization and enhances the ability of the organization to adopt to future eventualities.

2. Organizing

organizing is the process of dividing work into convenient tasks or duties, grouping of such duties in the form of positions, grouping of various positions into departments and sections, assigning duties to individual positions, and delegating authority to each position so that the work is carried out as planned. Organizing establishes working relationships among employees. Various activities are assigned to them, authority is granted to them, and they are brought in the relationship of superior and subordinate. This working relationship brings order and discipline in an organization. every employees knows who his superior is and commands his activities and who is to be commanded by him. Thus, this function creates organizational structures, involves delegation of authority, which results in a hierarchy.

Organizing function contributes to the efficiency of the organization by ensuring that all necessary activities will be performed and objectives are achieved.

3.  Staffing

staffing involves manning the various positions created by the organizing process. It includes preparing inventory of personnel available and identifying the gap between manpower required and available, identifying the sources from where people will be selected, selecting people, training and developing them, fixing financial compensation, appraising them periodically etc.

Staffing is a time consuming and complicated process. to make it easier, some processes of staffing are completed by personnel department. In doing so, it facilitates the performance of staffing function by managers in the organization. Every manager is continuously engaged in performing the staffing function. But some elementary functions like keeping inventory of personnel, advertising for jobs, calling candidates etc. are assigned to Personnel department. Similarly managers are required to appraise the performance of their subordinates. Personnel department can facilitate this function by prescribing and supplying the proforma for this appraisal so that there is uniformity in appraisal system thought the organization. Staffing function is too complicated and time-consuming. To make it convenient, some processes

4. Directing

After plans have been made and the organization has been established and staffed, the next step is to direct, influences, guide, supervise and motivate people working in the organization for the accomplishment of the pre-determined objectives. Therefore, this function is also called by various names like, Leading, Directing, Motivating, Actuating and so on. Planning, organizing and staffing are merely preparations of the work, the actual starts when managers start performing the direct functions.

Directing involves three sub-functions. They are as follows:

Communication: The process of passing the information from one person to another

Leadership : The process of guiding and influencing the work of subordinates.

Motivation : Arousing desire in the minds of workers to give their best to the enterprise.

Managers must understand the needs of their subordinates and help in satisfying them and coordinating them with organizational objectives.

5. Controlling

Controlling involves identification of actual results, comparison of actual results with expected results as set by planning process, identification of deviation between the two, if any and taking of corrective action so that actual results match with expected results. Controlling keeps a check on other functions for ensuring successful functioning management. The most notable feature is that it is forward looking. A manager cannot control the past but can avoid mistakes in the future by taking actions in the light of past experience.

All these five functions are performed by managers in small and large organizations, profit and non-profit organizations, manufacturing as well as service industries. Moreover, these functions are performed by every kind of manager and at every level of the hierarchy for instance, by the CEO, Production manager, supervisor, manager of Hockey team, Hospital administrator, Dean of a college etc. Though all managers carry out managerial functions, the time spent for each function may differ. Top-level managers spend more time in planning and organizing, whereas first-level supervisors spend more time in leading.


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