MANAGEMENT SCIENCE Thursday, Dec 4 2008 

The Scientific Method of problem solving dictates that one should:

  1. Systematically observe the system whose behaviour must be explained to solve the problem.
  2. Use these specific observations and from which consequences of changing the system can be predicted.
  3. Use the model to deduce how the system will behave under conditions that have not been observe but could be observed if the changes were made.
  4. Finally, test the model by performing an experiment on the actual system to see if the effects of changes predicted using the model actually occur when the changes are made.

The OR ( Operations Research) groups proved very successful at using the scientific method to solve the problems.

 

THE CONTINGENCY APPROACH:

The contingency approach to management emphasizes that what managers do in practice depends on, or is contingent upon, a given set of circumstances – a situation.

In essence, this approach emphasizes “if-then” relationships.

“If” this situational variable exists,”then” this is the action a manager probably would take.

In general, the contingency approach attempts to outline the conditions or situations in which various management methods have the best chance of success.                                                                                        

This approach is based on the premise that, although there is probably no one best way to solve a management problem in all organizations, there probably is one best way to solve any given management problem in any one organization.

MAIN CHALLENGES OF USING THE CONTINGENCY APPROACH

  1. Perceiving organizational situations as they actually exist.
  2. Choosing the management tactics best suited to those situations.
  3. Competently implementing those tactics.

The notion of a contingency approach to management is a popular discussion topic for contemporary management thinkers.

THE SYSTEM APPROACH:

The system approach to management is based on general system theory. Ludwign von Bertalanffy as scientist is recognised as the founder of the general system theory.

The main premise of the theory is that to understand fully the operation of an entity, the entity as viewed as a system.

A system is a number of interdependent parts functioning as a whole for some purpose.

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HENRI FAYOL’S 14 Principles of Management Thursday, Dec 4 2008 

Management Principles developed by Henri Fayol: 

  1. DIVISION OF WORK: Work should be divided among individuals and groups to ensure  that effort and attention are focused on special portions of the task. Fayol presented work specialization as the best way to use the human resources of the organization.                                                                                                                   
  2. AUTHORITY: The concepts of Authority and responsibility are closely related. Authority was defined by Fayol as the right to give orders and the power to exact obedience. Responsibility involves being accountable, and is therefore naturally associated with authority. Whoever assumes authority also assumes responsibility.                                                              
  3. DISCIPLINE: A successful organization requires the common effort of workers. Penalties should be applied judiciously to encourage this common effort.                                                                              
  4. UNITY OF COMMAND: Workers should receive orders from only one manager.                                                                                              
  5. UNITY OF DIRECTION: The entire organization should be moving towards a common objective in a common direction.                                                                                                        
  6. SUBORDINATION OF INDIVIDUAL INTERESTS TO THE GENERAL INTERESTS: The interests of one person should not take priority over the interests of the organization as a whole.                                                                                                                                        
  7. REMUNERATION: Many variables, such as cost of living, supply of qualified personnel, general business conditions, and success of the business, should be considered in determining a worker’s rate of pay.                                                                                                  
  8. CENTRALIZATION: Fayol defined centralization as lowering the importance of the subordinate role. Decentralization is increasing the importance. The degree to which centralization or decentralization should be adopted depends on the specific organization in which the manager is working.                                                                                                                  
  9. SCALAR CHAIN: Managers in hierarchies are part of a chain like authority scale. Each manager, from the first line supervisor to the president, possess certain amounts of authority. The President possesses the most authority; the first line supervisor the least. Lower level managers should always keep upper level managers informed of their work activities. The existence of a scalar chain and adherence to it are necessary if the organization is to be successful.                                                                                                    
  10. ORDER: For the sake of efficiency and coordination, all materials and people related to a specific kind of work should be treated as equally as possible.                                                                          
  11. EQUITY: All employees should be treated as equally as possible.                                                                                                                 
  12. STABILITY OF TENURE OF PERSONNEL: Retaining productive employees should always be a high priority of management. Recruitment and Selection Costs, as well as increased product-reject rates are usually associated with hiring new workers.                                                                                                 
  13. INITIATIVE: Management should take steps to encourage worker initiative, which is defined as new or additional work activity undertaken through self direction.                                                    
  14. ESPIRIT DE CORPS: Management should encourage harmony and general good feelings among employees.

 

MANAGEMENT INNOVATIONS

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UNIVERSALITY OF MANAGEMENT & MANAGEMENT SKILL Thursday, Dec 4 2008 

Management principle are universal; that is why, the apply to all types of organizations including but not limited to FOR PROFIT AND NOT FOR PROFIT ones like businesses, churches,sororities, athletic teams, hospitals and so on.

Manager’s jobs vary somewhat from one type of organization to another because each organizational type requires the use of specialized knowledge, exists in a unique working and political environment, and uses different technology. However, there are job similarities across organizations because the  basic management activities – planning, organizing, influencing, and controlling are common to all organizations.

The basic ingredients of successful management are applicable to all organizations.

MANAGEMENT SKILL:

Management skill is the ability to carry out the process of reaching organization goals by working with and through people and other organizational resources.

Learning about management skill and focusing on developing it are of critical importance since possessing such skill is generally considered to be the prerequisite for management success.

Katz indicates that 3 types of skills are important for successful management performance: technical, human and conceptual skills.

* TECHNICAL SKILLS:

Technical skills are skills involving the ability to apply specialized knowledge and expertise to work related techniques and procedures.

Examples of these skills are engineering, computer programming, and accounting. Technical skills are mostly related to working with “things” – processes or physical objects.

HUMAN SKILLS:

Human skills are skill that build cooperation with the team being led. They involve working with attitudes and communication, individual and group interests – in short, working with people.

CONCEPTUAL SKILLS:

Conceptual Skills involve the ability to see the organization as a whole. A manager with conceptual skills is able to understand how various functions of the organization complement one another, how the organization relates to its environment, and how changes in one part of the organization affect the rest of the organization.

As a manager grows, the need for conceptual skills increases.

Human skills are required at all levels.

 

MANAGEMENT SKILL: A contemporary View:

The major activities that the modern managers typically perform are of 3 basic types:

  1. Task Related Activities:                                                                                                Task related activities are management efforts aimed at carrying out critical management related duties in organizations. Such activities include short term planning, clarifying objectives of jobs in organizations, and monitoring operations and performance.                                                                       
  2. People Related Activities:                                                                                                    People related activities are management efforts aimed at managing people in organizations. Such activities include providing support and encouragement to others, providing recognition for achievements and contributions,developing skill and confidence or organization members,consulting when making decisions, and empowering others to solve problem.                                                                                         
  3. Change Related Activities:                                                                                                    Change related activities are management efforts aimed at modifying organizational components. Such activities include monitoring organization’s external environment, proposing new strategies and vision, encouraging innovative thinking, and taking risks to promote needed change.

To increase the probability of being successful, managers should have competence in :

  • Clarifying Roles
  • Monitoring Operations
  • Short term Planning
  • Consulting
  • Supporting
  • Recognizing
  • Dveloping
  • Empowering
  • Envisioning Change
  • Taking risks for Change
  • Encourge Innovative Thinking
  • External Monitoring

 

 

MANAGEMENT INNOVATIONS

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MANAGERIAL EFFECTIVENESS & EFFICIENCY Thursday, Dec 4 2008 

ORGANIZATIONAL RESOURCES:

 

  1. Human Resources
  2. Monetary Resources
  3. Raw Materials
  4. Capital

 

Organizational resources are used,combined and transformed into finished products during the production process.

Human resources are people who work for an organization.Their skills and their knowledge are leveraged by the managers.

Monetary resources are amounts of money that managers use to purchase goods and services for the organization.

Raw materials are ingredients used directly in the manufacturing of products.

 

Managers must become both efficient and effective.

MANAGERIAL EFFECTIVENESS:

The effectiveness of the managers is measured in the effectiveness of the organization in achieving the organizational goals.

MANAGERIAL EFFICIENCY:

Managerial efficiency is the proportion of total organization resources that contribute to productivity during the manufacturing process. The higher this proportion, the more efficient the manager. The more resources wasted or used during the production process, the more efficient the manager.

Managers can be efficient but not effective and vice versa.

If managers achieve the organization goals they are effective, but if they end up using or wasting a high amount of resources, then definitely, the concerned manager is not being efficient.

On the other hand, if the manager is very efficient by using the resources in a limited manner, but misses accomplishing the organizational goals and objectives.

MANAGEMENT INNOVATION

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