Management Process: Definition, Features & Functions

Introduction

A process is a systematic way of executing tasks. It is concerned with the transformation of inputs into outputs. An analysis of the management process will help us understand the functions that managers perform. However, before we analyse, we need to understand what is management process all about.

How Do You Define a Management Process?

Management is a process that brings scarce human and material resources together and motivates people to achieve common organisational goals. It is not a one-time act but an ongoing progression of complementary activities.

In simple words, a management process is a well-defined system of setting goals, planning and controlling any action’s execution. It constitutes a set of interrelated operations or functions necessary to accomplish desired organisational objectives. These activities include but are not restrained to:

  • a project (project management system), or
  • a process (process management system, sometimes referred to as the process performance measurement and management system).

The senior management of an organisation is in charge of carrying out its management process. However, this is not always true for all management processes; for example, sometimes, it is the project manager’s responsibility to carry out a project management process.

Salient Features of a Management Process

The following features characterise a management process:

1. Management is Highly Aspirational

The achievement of pre-defined objectives is an essential aspect of the management process. It is a medium to accomplish the goals and objectives established well in advance. Without any purpose, there is no rationale for a management process in place. Every activity undertaken by an organisation’s management should be goal-oriented. This achievement of pre-defined goals is a measurement of the success of any organisation’s leadership.

2. Management is Omnipresent

In today’s world, management is pervasive. Be it clubs, governments, armies, or business organisations; all require an efficient management system. The basic principles of management apply to all spheres within an organisation. Managers at all levels execute the same essential functions day in and day out. It is this persistent need that makes the management process a universal concept.

3. Management is an Ongoing Process

Management is not a one-off affair; rather, it is a continuous exercise. The constant desire to achieve varied organisational goals makes management an ongoing process.

4. Management is Abstract

Management is neither visible nor can it be felt in a real sense. One can only observe management’s accomplishments and compare a well-managed organisation with one that has been poorly managed.

5. Management is Social in Nature

Management is social because it involves interpersonal relations. The human element is the most crucial factor in the management process as it is dictated by contrasting social values and cultures. It is a function that transforms society, preserves the community, and endorses its future interests.

6. Management is Versatile

Management deals with human reactions under enterprising conditions. The awareness and the aptitude required for management comes from several disciplines like Sociology, Psychology, Engineering, Economics, Anthropology, Mathematics, etc. It is this aspect that makes managing a multifaceted experience.

7. Management is Conditional

There are several ways of doing things. An existing situation determines the most suitable method of performing any task. Sometimes, it may be possible that management is not doing things in the right manner due to the situation. Successful managers should account for these specific situations.

8. Management is a Team Effort

An individual’s efforts are harmonised with the team’s efforts. A single individual cannot manage the management function alone. All the managerial activities like the setting of goals, the formation of plans and policies, implementation, and follow-up are the coordinated effort of a group of people who envision an organisation’s future.

9. Management is an Administrative Function

The administration and management of the activities of people to accomplish predetermined objectives are concerned with the management. Management is also known as an approach through which a human group’s goals are set, defined and achieved.

Functions of a Management Process

At the basic level, management is a regimen that comprises five standard functions, namely, planning, organising, staffing, leading, and controlling. These functions are part of a body of practices and theories that educate on becoming an efficient manager.

The functions of the management process help managers focus their efforts to ensure beneficial results. Let us take a look at the five conventional functions of the management process.

1. Planning

Planning in management is a process of choosing apt goals and actions to pursue, and then determining what strategies to use, what steps to take, and what resources are needed to achieve the goals.

2. Organising

This process of defining working relationships allows workers to synergise their efforts to achieve common organisational objectives.

3. Leading

This function involves stating a vision, influencing, persuading, motivating and inspiring employees.

4. Staffing

Enlisting and recruiting employees for positions within the various teams and departments in an organised manner.

5. Controlling

Evaluate the achievement of goals, improvement in performance and the ability to take action. Put processes in place to help you establish standards, so you can measure, compare, and make decisions.

Conclusion

Management is an unseen force that reflects the collective efforts of people. An efficient and effective management process aligns individual interests with the organisation’s goals and objectives as a whole. The success of organisations such as Reliance, Tata, Birla, etc., is not a matter of luck or chance, but a result of following a deliberate process called Management.

Various management courses across multiple functions such as finance, human resources, product management, marketing, information technology, and more are at the disposal of individuals with a burning desire to succeed in the management function. Please tune in to upGrad to find out more about the various management courses we have on offer.

On the other hand, if you’re interested in learning more about management and want to enter this field as a professional, check out our management course.

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