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The Four Functions of Management

Assessing a Situation

The new chief executive officer (CEO) of your company is a strong believer in the four functions of management theory. In preparation for a management meeting, he has asked you to write a report that he can use to explain the theory to his management team. In the report, he would like to see some specific examples of firms that practiced these four functions. For a company with which you are familiar, use each of the four functions to do the following:

* Assess how the overall management team performed in terms of the four functions of management, which are as follows:

o Planning
o Organizing
o Leading
o Controlling

* Identify and explain the strong points of the managers.
* Identify and explain areas in which improvement is needed.

If you do not have any firsthand experiences, ask friends or colleagues for anecdotes or search the Web for specific, real-life examples.

Specifically regarding the controlling function of management, answer the following questions:

* How did most employees feel about the monitoring of activities that managers put in place to monitor employee performance and overall company performance?
* How well was the need for controls and monitoring explained to everyone before the controls were put in place?
* Did the controls have a meaningful impact on the overall department or company performance? Cite some specific examples.

Solution Preview

Managers exist in every business. In fact, managers do the same types of tasks in all businesses. Whether a person manages a hair salon or a factory, the manager's job consists of similar tasks. Planning, organizing, leading and controlling all serve an important part in achieving management's vision. Each component is important and one cannot function well without the others.

Planning

The first component of managing is planning. A manager must determine what the organizations goals are and how to achieve those goals. Much of this information will come directly from the vision and mission statement for the company. Setting objectives for the goal and following up on the execution of the plan are two critical components of the planning function. For example, a manager of a new local restaurant will need to have a marketing plan, a hiring plan and a sales plan.

Ray Kroc had a goal "to see a hamburger restaurant in every town and every city." His business came to fruition through careful planning after "he first met the McDonald brothers in their little hamburger restaurant in San Bernardino, California. Kroc could see the possibilities in duplicating this successful business. But he was able to see beyond just opening a second and third restaurant. He could see opening hundreds all across the United States. " Today, McDonald's franchises are stretching around the world (The Vision of Ray Kroc, http://www.bspage.com/1article/peo1.html, Retrieved March 22, 2011).

Organizing

Managers are responsible for organization of the company and this includes organizing people and resources. Knowing how many employees are needed for particular shifts can be critical to the success of a company. If those employees do not have the necessary resources to complete their jobs, organization has not occurred. Without an organized workplace, employees will see a manager as unprepared and may lose respect for that particular manager's supervisory techniques.

Bill Gates' Microsoft Corporation is worth $41 billion. How Microsoft did this is amazing! It has an assembly of thousands of ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses on how to assess whether an overall management team performed in terms of the four functions of management namely planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. This solution is approximately 1000 words.

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