5 management functions

Functions of Management: Planning, Organizing, Staffing, Directing, and Controlling

Functions of Management

Management is an exercise to achieve the planned goals and objectives of an organization by managing all the devices of the organization. Management functions include all the managerial activities from setting objectives to taking essential steps to ensure and achieve organizational objectives.

These functions of management are essential to create a better working environment to achieve predetermined objectives.

The basic process and functions of management are:

  • Planning
  • Organizing
  • Staffing
  • Directing
  • Controlling
functions of management

#1 Planning

Planning is deciding in advance what is to be done and an intellectual course of action to be taken to achieve predetermined goals in time.

Planning is the primary function of the management functions. It involves selecting the objectives, policies, procedures, and programs to achieve the desired result. It is a mental exercise and requires intelligence, skill, imagination, and vision.

Planning gives solutions to various problems which may arise in the course of functioning. It minimizes function uncertainties and risks. It saves, time, cost, and efforts of the organizations. Planning functions include:

  • Setting organizational objectives
  • Forecasting the events
  • Formulating policies and procedures
  • Preparing work schedule and budget

#2 Organizing

Another important function of management is organizing. Organizing is the process of identification of major activities, grouping them into units, assignment of work to staff, and delegation of authority.

Organizing is concerned with developing the structure and framework and arranging required resources to perform required activities. Resources include human, finance, physical, and information. It defines the authority relationship among the organizational members. Thus, organizing is the root or base of an enterprise.

It is the framework where all the mechanisms involved in achieving common objectives are clarified. The major activity of organizing management functions include:

  • Identifying major activities
  • Grouping them into managerial units
  • Assigning jobs to different departments and employees
  • Delegating necessary authority to fulfill given responsibility

#3 Staffing

Staffing is the process of determination of manpower and recruitment, selection, appointment, and placement of the right employee to the right job.

Staffing is a life-blood of an enterprise that mobilizes all the other resources for the achievement of common goals. It also involves determining the size of manpower at different levels. Staffing is the continuous process up to the existence of an organization. Staffing includes:

  • Determining the total manpower requirement
  • Recruitment, selection, and appointment of the right person to the right job
  • Organizing seminar, workshops, and training to develop employees skill
  • Performance evaluation, promotion, and transfer of employees
  • Remunerating employees according to their skill and ability

#4 Directing

The direction is a complex function that includes all those activities that are designed to encourage a subordinate to work efficiently and effectively. It is concerned with instructing, guiding, and inspiring subordinates to achieve organizational objectives. The direction is the instrument to develop a better working environment in the organization. The direction functions of management include:


It refers to the direct and immediate guidance to the subordinates to ensure the execution of assigned works. The main motive of supervision to ensure optimum utilization of human and physical resources so as to achieve organizational objectives. For this, a supervisor has to guide subordinates so that the latter can perform their work effectively. It is the continuous process till the existence of an organization.


Motivation is a psychological and human aspect. It is the process of stimulating subordinate’s behaviors to achieved predetermined goals. It is based on needs and human behavior. As social being workers want to fulfill their basic and social needs. They might be motivated by both financial and non-financial incentives.


Leadership is the art of influencing the behavior and performance of subordinates. It is the ability to persuade others to work willingly to achieve the desired goals. A person is said to be a leader when he is able to influence others and they accept his guidance, suggestions, and directions. A manager is said to be a leader of the organization when he or she successfully able to influence the attitude and behaviors of the subordinates.


Communication is the process of transmitting ideas and information from one person to another. It is an exchange of facts, ideas, opinions between two or more persons. Communication is said to be effective when the message is clear. An effective communication system among all the mechanisms of the organization is essential for successful operation. There must be an effective communication system for direct and clear follow of information on various management levels.


Coordination is the process of integrating all the units and departments of an organization. It is the process of the orderly arrangement of group efforts to provide unity of action for the attainment of common goals. Different departments and people perform different functions in an organization. But the activities of different departments are interrelated to each other. Thus, coordination among all the departments is necessary to bring uniformity in action to achieve organizational goals.

#5 Controlling

From the management functions controlling is the last. Controlling is the process of comparing actual performance achieved with that of planned performance and taking corrective action if any deviation is there in actual performance so that defined goals can be achieved in a defined time.

Controlling is the main instrument with which uniformity in action is maintained. Taking corrective action is necessary if actual performance is not in accordance with the planned performance.

The management executes a plan through control to ensure the achievement of predetermined goals. Therefore, it is essential to have a good controlling system for achieving results according to the plan. Controlling functions of management include:

  • Setting standards
  • Measuring actual performance
  • Identifying deviation, if any, between actual and planned performance
  • Analyzing the cause of the deviation
  • Taking corrective action to achieve predetermined goals

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