Being the manager or leader of an organization involves daily challenges to anyone who assume this position. To perform this task, is necessary to have certain skills that can be as large as desired. Among them, depending on scope of the organization we can find that the leader may need certain skills in technology, or skills derived from engineering knowledge (naming a few). In spite of the mentioned before, there are a number of general skills that every project leader, supervisor or manager of an organization must have, to face the challenges of every day.
Managers should not perform their functions randomly. Good managers should support their work to dominate some functions, such as planning, organization, direction, coordination and control.
According to Chiavenato, Fayol divides the companies into six groups of general functions: technical, commercial, financial, security, accounting and administrative.
Chiavenato states that the Fayol's argument contends that the administrative functions contain the elements of the administration, which are constituents of the administrative process and differ from the other previous five.
Chiavenato called them the universal functions of management. They are: Planning, Organization, Direction, Coordination and Control.
Nowadays, a lot of authors use four basic management functions to frame the work of managers. Gloria Ponjuán identifies them as the basic management functions:
According to Ponjuán, Planning is the process of setting goals in order to achieve certain results and identify the actions needed to achieve them. This includes a set of decisions or selection of alternatives for achieving those results; also specifying when and how it can be done and who will assume their achievement.
The Organization is "the process of dividing the work to be done and coordinate the achievement of results that have a common purpose" ... the act of combining skills, technical possibilities, experiences, resources and all elements that could turn into results".
The Direction also designated as Command, is the process of conducting and coordinating work efforts of people that are part of an organization, helping them to develop important tasks within it. Through this function, are launched the scheduled activities. It includes the commitment to achieve a goal through the leadership of a group, exerting a significant influence on people to work voluntarily and enthusiastically to achieve the collective goals of the team and organization as a whole.
The Control is the process of monitoring activities and results, comparing them with the objectives and taking corrective actions, if necessary. To achieve this, the performance is compared with goals and plans, doing this; the deviations are shown, so, the actions needed to fix them, can be performed, which help to ensure the achievement of plans.
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