Characteristics of Management
Management is the art of managing and overseeing organizational resources and ensuring the desired goals are met. The followings are the notable features/characteristics of management.
The main characteristic of management is, it is goal oriented. It is centered around achieving specific objectives and goals. It involves setting clear targets, creating action plans, and directing efforts toward accomplishing desired outcomes.
By defining goals, management provides a sense of purpose and direction for individuals and organizations.
Pervasive in Nature
Management is present in all types and levels of organizations. It is an essential function that permeates every department and activity within an organization.
Regardless of the industry or sector, effective management is crucial for achieving success and ensuring smooth operations.
Management is a dynamic process that requires continuous adaptation to changing circumstances. It involves analyzing the external environment, making adjustments, and seizing opportunities to stay competitive.
Successful management embraces flexibility and proactively responds to evolving technologies, market trends, and customer demands.
Management draws knowledge and principles from various disciplines such as economics, psychology, sociology, finance, marketing, and more.
It integrates these diverse fields to make informed decisions and address complex organizational challenges. Managers need to have a broad understanding of different disciplines to effectively navigate the diverse aspects of their roles.
One of the major features of management is, it is universal in nature. The principles and concepts of management are applicable across different industries, sectors, and countries.
While specific practices may vary, the fundamental principles of management remain consistent. This universality allows managers to apply their skills and knowledge in various contexts, enabling them to work in different organizations and industries.
Management is an ongoing and continuous process that involves various functions such as planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. It is not a one-time activity but requires consistent effort and attention to ensure organizational success. Effective management involves a cycle of continuous improvement and adaptation.
Management emphasizes working with and through people. It involves effective communication, collaboration, and teamwork to harness the collective efforts and skills of individuals toward achieving shared goals. Managers must understand and leverage the strengths and dynamics of their teams to drive success.
According to this feature of management, is not tangible but manifests through the actions, decisions, and behaviors of managers. It is an intangible force that guides and influences the activities and direction of an organization.
Effective management involves inspiring and motivating individuals to contribute their best efforts toward organizational goals.
Art and Science
Management combines elements of both art and science. It requires creativity, judgment, and intuition (art) along with systematic analysis, research, and evidence-based practices (science) to make informed decisions and solve problems. Successful management involves a balance of theoretical knowledge and practical application.
Related: Management as a Science
Management is deeply rooted in social interactions and relationships. It involves understanding human behavior, motivating employees, resolving conflicts, and creating a positive work environment.
Managers need to be skilled in building relationships, fostering teamwork, and promoting a sense of belonging within the organization.
Management follows a distinct process that includes functions such as planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. These functions are interconnected and mutually supportive, providing a structured framework for managing organizational activities.
Each function contributes to the overall management process and plays a specific role in achieving organizational objectives.
Management is considered a profession as it requires specialized knowledge, skills, and ethical conduct. Professionals in management possess formal education, and practical experience, and adhere to professional standards. They are responsible for making critical decisions, leading teams, and driving organizational success.
Efficiency and Effectiveness
Management aims to achieve both efficiency (doing things right) and effectiveness (doing the right things).
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It focuses on optimizing resources, minimizing waste, and delivering desired outcomes in a timely and sustainable manner. Effective management ensures that resources are utilized efficiently and that organizational goals are achieved effectively.
Management recognizes that the best approach may vary depending on the specific situation. Managers must consider the unique characteristics of each situation and adapt their strategies and actions accordingly.
Effective management involves assessing the context, understanding the needs and preferences of stakeholders, and making decisions that align with the specific circumstances.
A Separate Discipline
In our list of 15 characteristics of management, feature – a separate discipline is the last. Management is a distinct field of study and practice. It has its own body of knowledge, theories, and principles. Management as a discipline is continuously evolving, with ongoing research and advancements.
It provides frameworks, tools, and techniques that help managers effectively navigate the complexities of organizational dynamics and achieve desired outcomes.
Read Next: Management as an Activity