Functions of Managers
Managers just don't go out and haphazardly perform their responsibilities. Good managers discover how
to master five basic functions: planning, organizing, staffing, leading, and controlling
* Planning: This step involves mapping out exactly how to achieve a particular goal. Say, for example,
that the organization's goal is to improve company sales. The manager first needs to decide which steps
are necessary to accomplish that goal. These steps may include increasing advertising, inventory, and
sales staff. These necessary steps are developed into a plan. When the plan is in place, the manager can
follow it to accomplish the goal of improving company sales.
* Organizing: After a plan is in place, a manager needs to organize her team and materials according to
her plan. Assigning work and granting authority are two important elements of organizing.
*Staffing: After a manager discerns his area's needs, he may decide to beef up his staffing by
recruiting, selecting, training, and developing employees. A manager in a large organization often works
with the company's human resources department to accomplish this goal.
*Leading: A manager needs to do more than just plan, organize, and staff her team to achieve a goal.
She must also lead. Leading involves motivating, communicating, guiding, and encouraging. It requires
the manager to coach, assist, and problem solve with employees.
*Controlling: After the other elements are in place, a manager's job is not finished. He needs to
continuously check results against goals and take any corrective actions necessary to make sure that his
area's plans remain on track.
All managers at all levels of every organization perform these functions, but the amount of time a
manager spends on each one depends on both the level of management and the specific organization.
Roles performed by managers
The Nature of Managerial Work, Henry Mintzberg describes a set of ten roles that a manager fills. These
roles fall into three categories:
*Interpersonal: This role involves human interaction.
*Informational: This role involves the sharing and analyzing of information.
*Decisional: This role involves decision making.
Mintzberg's Set of Ten Roles
Informational;Monitor;Seek and receive information; scan periodicals and reports; maintain personal
contact with stakeholders.
Disseminator;Forward information to organization members via memos, reports, and phone calls.
Spokesperson;Transmit information to outsiders via reports, memos, and speeches.
Interpersonal;Figurehead;Perform ceremonial and symbolic duties, such as greeting visitors and signing
Leader;Direct and motivate subordinates; counsel and communicate with subordinates.
Liaison;Maintain information links both inside and outside organization via mail, phone calls, and