What is a Manager?
A manager is a professional who manages organizational resources so as to make the achievement of predetermined goals and objectives of the company as effective and efficient as possible. They make plans, and policies, manage people, and implement the plans.
Managers’ main task is to make possible the realization of desired organizational goals. They perform different managerial functions like planning, organizing, staffing, directing, and controlling to bring productivity and improved performance in the organization.
Managers take a leadership role in the organization, they create, manage, and lead teams of employees. They play a fundamental role in organizational success. The effective management and best utilization of organizational resources (people, money, information, and physical) largely depend upon the knowledge, skills, and abilities of the manager.
A good manager brings uniformity in action, builds team spirit, and cooperation, and creates a healthy working environment. He supports and encourages employees more rather than controlling them.
Types of Manager
In some organizations, the manager manages teams in others, manages departments, and in others manages the whole organization. What duties managers have depends upon the size and nature of firms.
Mainly the types of managers include three. They are,
The top-level manager is the professional who comes in c-suite positions. He works as the head of the organization. CEOs, CFOs, Presidents, Managing Directors, etc. come under the category of top-level managers.
They are responsible for the overall direction, growth, and image of the organization. Setting long-term plans, and strategies, matching organizational resources with employees’ competencies & environmental opportunities, and managing employees are the major roles they have to perform.
Also Read: What are Managerial Skills?
Departmental heads like marketing managers, production managers, R&D managers, distribution managers, finance managers, HR managers, procurement managers, etc. are examples of middle-level managers. They work under top managers.
They are responsible to set plans and guiding department people as per the instruction given by CEOs. They receive required instruction and authority from CEOs and are responsible to guide lower-level managers. They provide the progress report to CEOs and maintain disciple in the organization.
Supervisors, coordinators, superintendents, etc. are examples of lower-level managers. They are operational managers who directly interact with the actual doer (working-level employees) of the organization.
They work under the departmental heads and have the duty to implement plans and strategies made by top and middle-level managers. The manager leads, motivates, and controls working employees and speaks on queries on behalf of working employees.
They play a significant role in the achievement of dreams dreamed by CEOs and middle managers as efficiency in day-to-day activities eventually leads to big results.
Roles of a Manager
It is obvious that managers are hired with the expectation they will perform some roles and responsibilities expected by management committees. There are commonly accepted 10 roles a manager performs in the tenure of his organization.
- Figurehead Role – In this role, a manager serves as the organization’s symbolic leader. He has to set a good example on behalf of his company in important programs.
- Leader Role – Guiding and influencing teams of employees toward organizational interests is an important leadership role of the manager.
- Liaison Role – Managers communicate different organizational matters to inside and outside people. He needs to establish good relationships with outside people and the community.
- Monitor Role – Collecting important information from inside and outside the organization and scanning involves a monitor role. A SWOT analysis is an effective way to better perform the monitor role.
- Disseminator Role – After collecting and scanning he has to distribute useful information to different organizational units and outsiders also.
- Spokesperson Role – He has a legal obligation to disclose information about the company to the general public, the media, and governmental organizations.
- Negotiator Role – A manager has to negotiate and bargain with different outsides and sometimes within the organization to protect the organizational interests.
- Resource Allocator – Allocating human, finance, information, and physical resources properly are essential for productivity and goal achievement.
- Entrepreneurial Role – Managers have to apply new, innovative, and creative ways to do the task as entrepreneurs do.
- Disturbance Handler – Unexpected conflicts and disturbances do arise in the organization they need to be managed.
Functions of a Manager
What functions does a manager do? The most commonly accepted functions managers do include five. They are mentioned below:
In the planning function, he has to develop the roadmap of future courses of action in advance including 5W and how to do it. It is an intellectual process and requires an insightful understanding of how things work.
He has to make effective plans combining the organizational competencies and environmental factors so as to make goal achievement possible.
Organizing is about building structures in the organization. It is making the working of all organizational elements as effective & efficient as possible.
Managers should work on to appropriate combination between departments, units, materials, and people. Job design, departmentalization, bringing coordination, etc. are important functions of organizing.
Related: What is Organizational Structure?
In staffing, managers need to manage employees in a way they give their best efforts with ease. The competency of employees is as important as managers.
At the core of the staffing function, he should keep the right employee in the right position.
The directing function of managers refers to guiding, instructing, supervising, commanding, and leading employees to make them work as planned. Leadership, motivation, supervision, coordination, and communication are the tools of effective direction.
Controlling is the means to check whether the executed plans are in the right direction or not. It involves comparing standard results with actual results and taking corrective actions if any deviations are found.
Skills and Qualities of a Good Manager
Managers must possess relevant skills and qualities to successfully manage people, execute plans, and run the whole organization. They should possess the following:
A manager should possess leadership skills as a successful leader possess. He works with people, he should know how to guide and influence people in a way they easily accept his works.
Related: Qualities of a Good Manager
Communication is the key in the organization to building stronger and more productive relationships. He should have good communication skills so his intended message gets employees as he seeks.
Decision-making means selecting the best options out of a pool of options. A right decision means the completion of 50% of the work. He should have good decision-making skill that further minimizes time, and resources, and ensures effective operations.
The business environment is uncertain. It can not be forecasted accurately. The managers must prepare themselves to stand strong in an uncertain environment.
It is a fact that the organization is a social setting. Teamwork makes possible hard tasks. He should know how to form an effective team, manage, and lead the team. Team spirit is necessary for coordination and mutual understanding in the firm.
After all, everything managers do is to make goal achievement possible through customer satisfaction. He should have a feeling of customer care and customer value.
Good Conflicts Handler
Conflicts arise in the workplace. A manager should have the necessary conflict resolution and prevention skills to maintain peace in the company.
Hence, a manager is a professional, respectful, and responsible person who takes care of the organization manages people and resources, and ensures desired goals achievement.
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