Management Skills (Managerial Skills)
Managerial skills or management skills can be defined as the ability of the manager to do his/her best work regarding the organization. It is the manager’s ability to perform a particular task effectively. Whenever a manager enters the organization he must have some management skills consisting of conceptual, human, and technical skills.
Skill is an ability or proficiency to do something within an acceptable standard. Management job is different from other jobs. Management skills are learned and developed. Managerial performance primarily depends upon performance rather than personality traits. When managers have the necessary management skills, they will probably perform well and be relatively successful in their profession.
On the other hand, if the managers do not have the necessary managerial skills, they will probably perform below the expectations of the organization. Regardless of the levels of management, managers must possess and seek to further develop necessary skills.
Managerial skills require elements of stewardship and commitment to the purpose. It involves the obligation to make prudent use of human and material resources. It requires sound judgment to handle complex situations. Further, the nature of the job becomes increasingly complex at each higher level because of the increase in the scope of authority and responsibility. Therefore, each level of management requires increased knowledge, a broader perspective, and greater skills.
Robert L. Katz suggested three essential management/managerial skills or competencies among the managers.
- Conceptual Skills
- Human skills
- Technical skills
#1 Technical Skills
Technical skills are the ability and knowledge to use the equipment, techniques, and procedures involved in performing a specific task. It consists of specialized knowledge and the ability to perform within that specialty.
The technical skills of management include:
- Handling machines
- Preparing daily work schedule
- Supervising employees
- Team formation and mobilizing performance appraisal
- Preparing reports
- Motivating employees, etc.
Technical skills are mostly required for operating level managers since they spend much of their time training subordinates and answering questions on work-related problems. Though these skills are important for middle and top-level managers as well. Engineers, doctors, charted accountants, musicians, production managers need technical skills.
#2 Human Skills
Human skills refer to the ability to work with, understand and motivate other people individually or in a group. It is concerned with understanding people.
Managers with good human skills are able to get the best output from the subordinates. Because they know how to motivate, communicate, lead, and inspire subordinates.
Human behavior is the most complex aspect of management. Every manager must have good knowledge of communication, motivation, leadership, grievance handling, and conflict management. A manager should have ideas to communicate effectively with followers and immediate superiors. A manager with ample human skills can lead subordinates and successfully manage the groups and coordinate them effectively.
Managers can acquire human skills through education and training. These management skills are equally important at each level of the organization. Thus, human skills are required equally for all managers in every organization for effective and efficient operation.
#3 Conceptual Skills
Conceptual skills refer to the mental ability to analyze and diagnose complex situations. It involves the seeing organization as a whole and understanding how its parts will affect the whole.
Conceptual skills are mostly necessary to top-level management. It helps the managers to conceptualize the environment, to analyze the forces in a working situation, and to take a board farsighted view of the organization.
Managers also need to look for opportunities in the changing environment and develop strategic plans to capitalize on such opportunities. Every manager must have a clear vision and concept about the policies, planning, and other activities of the organization. Top-level managers require a high degree of conceptual skills while other level managers also necessitate enough amounts of conceptual skills.