Management means many things to many people. To a layman management means an impressive person occupying an air-condition chamber with an overstaked table and cushioned chair. Some people suggest management as commanding other. To many others, management is nothing more than clerical work and putting fancy signatures. But truly management is the process of planning, organising, staffing, directing, co-ordinating and controlling the activities of business enterprises. It is also described as the technique of leadership, decision making and a mean of co-ordinating.
A few definitions by experts are:
- “Management is an art of knowing what is to be done and seeing that it is done in the best possible manner.” (planning and controlling)
F.W. Taylor (father of scientific management
- “Management is to forecast, to plan, to organize, to command, to coordinate and control activities of others.”
Henri Fayol (father of modern management
- “Management is the process by which co-operative group directs actions towards common goals.”
- “Management is that process by which managers create, direct, maintain and operate purposive organisation through systematic, coordinated and cooperative human efforts.”
- “Management is the coordination of all resources through the process of planning, organising, directing and controlling in order to attain stated goals.”
- “Management is a social and technical process that utilises resources, influences human action and facilitates changes in order to accomplish an organization’s goals.”
Tho Harmann, William Scott
- “Management is a process of working with and through others to achieve organizational objectives in a changing environment, central to this purpose is the effective and efficient use of limited resources.”
- “Management is a responsible person’s or group’s thinking processes and administrative processes directed at achieving the purpose, needs, aspirations and objectives of an organization, project or task through people.”
Levels of Management
Top Level of Management
It consists of board of directors, chief executive or managing director. The top management is the ultimate source of authority and it manages goals and policies for an enterprise. It devotes more time on planning and coordinating functions. While this may be more visible in large organisations there is not normally such a sharp stratification in smaller organisations where the same person may perform strategic, tactical and operational roles.
The role of the top management can be summarized as follows –
Top management lays down the objectives and broad policies of the enterprise.
It issues necessary instructions for preparation of department budgets, procedures, schedules etc.
It prepares strategic plans & policies for the enterprise.
It appoints the executive for middle level i.e. departmental managers.
It controls & coordinates the activities of all the departments.
It is also responsible for maintaining a contact with the outside world.
It provides guidance and direction.
The top management is also responsible towards the shareholders for the performance of the enterprise
Middle Level of Management
The branch managers and departmental managers constitute middle level. They are responsible to the top management for the functioning of their department. They devote more time to organizational and directional functions. In small organization, there is only one layer of middle level of management but in big enterprises, there may be senior and junior middle level management. Their role can be emphasized as –
They execute the plans of the organization in accordance with the policies and directives of the top management.
They make plans for the sub-units of the organization.
They participate in employment & training of lower level management.
They interpret and explain policies from top level management to lower level.
They are responsible for coordinating the activities within the division or department.
It also sends important reports and other important data to top level management.
They evaluate performance of junior managers.
They are also responsible for inspiring lower level managers towards better performance.
Lower Level of Management
Lower level is also known as supervisory / operative level of management. It consists of supervisors, foreman, section officers, superintendent etc. According to R.C. Davis, “Supervisory management refers to those executives whose work has to be largely with personal oversight and direction of operative employees”. In other words, they are concerned with direction and controlling function of management. Their activities include –
Assigning of jobs and tasks to various workers.
They guide and instruct workers for day to day activities.
They are responsible for the quality as well as quantity of production.
They are also entrusted with the responsibility of maintaining good relation in the organization.
They communicate workers problems, suggestions, and recommendatory appeals etc. to the higher level and higher level goals and objectives to the workers.
They help to solve the grievances of the workers.
They supervise & guide the sub-ordinates.
They are responsible for providing training to the workers.
They arrange necessary materials, machines, tools etc. for getting the things done.
They prepare periodical reports about the performance of the workers.
They ensure discipline in the enterprise.
They motivate workers.
They are the image builders of the enterprise because they are in direct contact with the workers.
Simply, managerial skills are the knowledge and ability of the individuals in a managerial position to fulfill some specific managerial activities or tasks. This knowledge and ability can be learned and practiced. However, they also can be acquired through practical implementation of required activities and tasks. Therefore, each skill can be developed through learning and practical experience of the individuals.
There are many definitions about skills that talk about talent. Talent is something personal related to an individual and presents a native gift from the nature about that something inside that talented person. All persons cannot be artists. Usually, artists are born with the gift of art, but despite their talent they continue to develop their talent to improve their art skills.
When we talk about managerial skills, we talk about skills of a manager to maintain high efficiency in the way how his or her employees complete their everyday working tasks. Because of that, managers will need skills that will help them to manage people and technology to ensure an effective and efficient realization of their working tasks.
THREE TYPES OF MANAGERIAL SKILLS
Robert Katz identifies three types of skills that are essential for a successful management process:
- Conceptual and
- Human or interpersonal management skills.
As the name of these skills tells us, they give the manager’s knowledge and ability to use different techniques to achieve what they want to achieve. Technical skills are not related only for machines, production tools or other equipment, but also they are skills that will be required to increase sales, design different types of products and services, market the products and services…
For example, let’s take an individual who works in the sales department and have high developed sales skills obtained through education and experience in his department or the same departments in different organizations. Because of these skills that he possesses, this person can be a perfect solution to become sales manager. This is the best solution because he has great technical skills related to the sales department.
On the other hand, the person who becomes sales manager will start to build his next type of required skills. It is because if his task until now was only to work with the customers as sales representative, now he will need to work with employees in the sales department as addition to the work with customers.
Technical skills are most important for the first-level managers. Whet it comes to the top managers, these skills are not something with high significance level. As we go through a hierarchy from the bottom to higher levels, the technical skills lose their importance.
Conceptual skills present knowledge or ability of a manager for more abstract thinking. That means he can easily see the whole through analysis and diagnosis of different states. In such a way they can predict the future of the business or department as a whole. Why managers need these skills?
As a first, a company contain more business elements or functions as selling, marketing, finance, production… All these business elements have different goals even completely opposed goals. Think about marketing and production as a business function and their specific goals. You’ll see the essential difference. The conceptual skills will help managers to look outside their department’s goals. So, they will make decisions that will satisfy overall business goals.
Conceptual skills are vital for top managers, less important for mid-level managers, and not required for first-level managers. As we go from a bottom of the managerial hierarchy to the top, the importance of these skills will rise.
HUMAN OR INTERPERSONAL MANAGERIAL SKILLS
Human or interpersonal managerial skills present a manager’s knowledge and ability to work with people. One of the most important management tasks is to work with people. Without people, there will not be a need for existence of management and managers.
These skills will enable managers to become leaders and motivate employees for better accomplishments. Also, they will help them to make more effective use of human potential in the company. Simply, they are the most important skills for managers.
Interpersonal management skills are important for all hierarchical levels in the company.
Modern healthcare management
The IT system has revolutionised the field of medicine. In this fast-paced world of medicine, it is a daunting task to manage a multi-speciality hospital. A hospital management system (HMS) is a computer or web based system that facilitates managing the functioning of the hospital or any medical set up1. This system or software will help in making the whole functioning paperless. It integrates all the information regarding patients, doctors, staff, hospital administrative details etc. into one software4. It has sections for various professionals that make up a hospital.
This section includes the list of the doctors and their schedules3. It also includes doctors’ emergency numbers. The doctor can check his schedule and that of other doctors too. This helps a doctor to edit his schedule accordingly. It includes list of the available medicines for specific diseases so that the doctor can easily look for an alternative when in need. The patient can be given an appointment referring to the doctors’ schedule. The use of HMS makes the co-ordination between a doctor and patient easy and hassle free.
New patients can be registered in the system. An electronic medical record system is in-built which stores all the basic and medical details of the patient2. One can also add a feature to store photos of the patients as identity proof which can also help in medico-legal cases of false identities or fraud1.
Using HMS one can quickly check the availability of rooms/beds so that the receptionist can adjust transfer of patients from one ward to another or allot the bed to the new patient. This data is constantly updated to keep a track of discharged patients. This section also includes the detailed schedule of the operation theatres. This helps the receptionist or the nurses to know which theatres are vacant to slot other surgeries.
It includes names and timings of the nurses and ward boys on duty with their respective ward numbers. The instructions given to the nurse for each patient are entered in the system.
A thorough inventory can be maintained about the stock of supplies in the hospital like surgical instruments, medications, laboratory supplies, stationary, staff supplies, etc. This record helps the administration to have a quick look at the usage and keep a control on the wastage of the supplies.
A separate automated section is meant for billing purposes. HMS helps to sum up all the expenses of a patient at one time and produce a complete bill at the end of the consultation or at discharge. This saves time and effort for each department as they need not produce separate
The respective insurance company can check the details and further the process of passing the claim. This data is then stored in the database and hence can be recovered for any later use by the hospital or patient or insurance company.
When the doctor advises a certain list of tests the same is updated in the HMS and directly received by the laboratory. This interfacing helps to reduce errors caused by the staff. Since all the data is fed in the system, one can retrieve and review the past reports of the patients anytime. This section also includes details of the blood bank
This section includes basic information of the employees including contact numbers and address along with professional details. Every new employee is registered in the system. Medical details of the employees also can be entered for their benefit.
All the data in a HMS is integrated and can be analysed. This helps in creating a statistical database for the internal use of the hospital which can be submitted to the administration1. This section helps the administration in summarizing the expenses of the hospital and evaluating the necessary and unnecessary expenditure.
A Web based HMS can be used for providing online services to patients, appointments and obtaining opinions of consultants sitting away from the hospital set up.
One does worry about the security aspect of the data. Hence, a HMS has passwords, photo identifications etc. to prevent any leakage of important and A hospital management system acts like an interface between the patient and the hospital administration. With the help of this system one can access all the essential information anytime and anywhere. Another advantage is that it can be modified and customized to suit a small hospital or a big multi-speciality hospital4. As it provides multiple facilities, it helps in reducing hospital costs, which in turn reduces the expense of quality healthcare for the patient.