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Chapter: 12th Office Management and Secretaryship : Chapter 1 : Introduction to Management

Functions of Management

There are four fundamental functions of management, (i.e.) Planning, Organising, Actuating and Controlling

Functions of Management

Different experts have classified functions of management in different manner

According     to   George  and   Jerry,

“There are four fundamental functions of management, (i.e.) Planning, Organising, Actuating and Controlling”.

According to Henry Fayol, “To manage is to forecast and plan, to organise, to command and to control”.

Luther Gullick has given a keyword, ‘POSDCORB” where

Most widely accepted functions of management given by koontz and O Donnel (ie) Planning, Organising, Staffing, Directing and Controlling.

Functions of management are overlapping in nature. Each function affects the performance of other.


1. Planning

It includes determination of objectives, setting rules, procedure, policies, strategies, budgeting etc., Planning may be short term or long term. Manager at all levels want to prepare plans, so it is considered as a pervasive functions. Planning looks into future without planning organization cannot achieve anything in future. Planning is deciding in advance what has to done, and how and when it has to be done. It bridges the gap between the present and the future.

Harold Koontz says that planning has the following four important objectives:

1.   To offset uncertainty and change,

2.   To focus attention of objectives,

3.   To gain economical operation, and

4.   To facilitate control.

Planning is the basic function of management and all other functions of management are greatly influenced by the planning process. Planning is an inevitable function of management at levels of an organisation.


2. Organising

Organising involves establishment of the formal structure of authority through which work subdivisions are arranged, defined and coordinated to accomplish the defined objective of the organization.

Designing and maintaining these systems of roles is basically the managerial function of organising.

Organising is:

a)   Identification and classification of required activities.

b)   Grouping of activities necessary to attain objectives

c)   Assignment of each grouping to a manager with the authority (delegation) necessary to supervise it, and

d)   Provision for coordination horizontally (same organisation) and vertically (headquarters and departments) in the organisation structure.


3. Staffing


Staffing involves the process of filling positions in the organisation structure. The staffing function relates to the recruitment, selection, training, promotion and transfer of employees at all levels of management. The staffing function is different from other functions because it deals only with people.


4. Directing

Direction is process by which the employees are guided to contribute towards organisational objectives. The term directing refers to that the managerial function which initiates organised action. 

Formulating the policies and plans which will be useful if it is converted into action. According to Earnest Dale, “Direction is telling people what to do and seeing that they do it to their abilities. It includes making assignments, corresponding procedures, seeing that mistakes are corrected, providing on the job instructions and of course, issuing orders”. It includes the following sub function. 1. Motivation 2. Leadership 3. Supervision 4. Communication and 5. Coordination.


5. Controlling

Controlling is an important element in the management process. Controlling involves setting standards measuring the performance comparing the actual with the standards and find out the deviations and taking corrective actions. Hence business enterprises can accomplish the goals only by establishing a proper control system. Control activities generally relate to the measurement and achievement. Each measures shows whether plans are working out or not.


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12th Office Management and Secretaryship : Chapter 1 : Introduction to Management : Functions of Management |

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