A Vision on Managerial skills & roles

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Management: Getting work done through other people. Management is a process, which involves planning, organizing, staffing, leading & controlling.

Manager: A person who allocates human and other material resources and directs the operations of a department or an entire organization. General Manager: A person who is responsible for the overall operations of a complex unit such as a company or division.   

Managers who are also viewed as team leaders are the main pillars of the organization because they direct and guide their work teams to achieve organizational objectives. Manager influences effectiveness by defining objectives, recognizing and minimizing obstacles to the achievement of these objectives and effectively planning, organizing, leading and controlling all available resources to attain high level of effectiveness.

The skillful manager is able to manage and monitor effectiveness in such a way that objectives are achieved because he or she is result oriented and makes the things happen. A successful manager possesses certain quantities in applying his or her skills and carrying out various managerial roles. The qualities of a successful manager have been identified as follows:

Qualities of a Successful Manager

1. Provides clear direction (sets goals and standards for performance) 2. Encourages open communication (climate of openness & trust) 3. Coaches and Supports People (solves performance problems and provides support & protection) 4. Provides objective recognition (focuses on rewards rather than criticism on performance) 5. Establishes on going controls (regular feedback) 6. Selects the right person for the right job 7. Understand the financial implications of decisions 8. Encourages creativity and innovation 9. Gives clear cut decisions to subordinates 10. Consistently demonstrate a high level of integrity.

Types of Manager

1. First line Managers: The first line managers are often called supervisors, foreman or office manager. These entry-level managers coordinate the work of others like salespersons, accounting clerks and workers of a factory.

2. Middle Level Managers: The middle level managers are the functional or departmental heads who receive broad strategies & policies from top managers and translate them into specific objectives for the first line managers to implement. They may be called functional managers who are incharge of a functional area of operation i.e. finance production or marketing, etc.        

3. Top Managers: The top-level managers are responsible for overall direction and operation of an organization. It is a small cadre of managers, which usually includes a chief executive, president and board of directors.

Managerial Skills

  Skill: A skill is an ability or proficiency in performing a particular task. Managerial skill is related to performance that is not necessarily in born and it falls into four main groups_________ technical, interpersonal, conceptual and communication.  

  1. Technical Skills: It means the ability to apply specific methods, procedures and techniques in performing job related task. Technical skills are especially important at the first line management level, since daily work related problems must be solved.
  2. Analytical Skills:  An analytical skill is an ability to diagnose and evaluate. Such skills are needed to understand the problem and to develop a plan of action.
  3. Decision-making Skills: The quality of a manager's decision determines their degree of effectiveness. A manager's decision-making skill is influenced by his or her analytical skill. Poor analytical proficiency will result in inefficient and inadequate decision-making.
  4. Interpersonal Skills: The interpersonal or human relation skill means the ability to work with, communicate with and understand others. It includes the skills to lead, motivate, negotiate, council, etc.
  5. Communication Skills: Communication skills involve the ability to communicate in ways that other people understand, and to seek & use feedback from employees to ensure that one is understood. Effective communication _______  the written & oral transmission of common understanding ______ is vital for effective managerial performance. The communication skill is critical to success for mangers who must achieve results through the efforts of the other people. Managerial communication skills include: a.   Communicating effectively with employees and customers   b. Handling media and public speaking c. Sensitivity to cultural differences.
  6. Conceptual Skills: The conceptual skill means the ability to see the big picture ________ the complexity of the overall organization and how the various parts fit together.  The importance of knowing how each part of the organization interrelates and contributes to the overall objectives of the organization. Managerial conceptual skills include: a. Formulating strategy    b. Sense of vision  c. Understanding & relating external environments to the organization or business.

While all the above skills are important, the relative importance of each varies according to the level of the manager in the organization. The technical and human skills are more important at lower levels of management. These managers have closer contact with the work being done and the people doing the work. Analytical skills are slightly more important at higher levels of management where the environment is less stable and problems are less predictable. ·      

Decision-making & conceptual skills are extremely critical to the performance of the top management. Top manager's primary responsibility is to make decisions that are executed at lower level. This requires the top management to see the big picture in order to identify opportunities and develop strategic plans to capitalize on these opportunities.   

  Managerial Role:  Managerial role is an organized set of behaviours that may fall into the categories of interpersonal, informational and decisional.  

1. Interpersonal Roles

a. Figurehead Role: This role is symbolic or ceremonial in nature. Some examples of the figurehead role include a college dean who hands out diplomas at graduation ceremony, the chairman of an enterprise who delivers a welcome address to the guests at a function.

b. Leadership Role: This role involves directing & coordinating the activities of subordinates. This may involve staffing, motivating and controlling the activities/performance of the team members.

c. Liaison Role: This may involve public relation & networking both inside and outside the organization.  

2.  Informational Role: The informational role establishes the managers as the central point for receiving & sending non-routine information. He gathers & receives information as a monitor and translates that information as the disseminate and spokesperson.

a. Monitor Role: The monitor role involves examining the environment in order to gather information, changes, opportunities and problems that may affect the unit.

b. Disseminate Role: This involves providing important or privilege information to subordinates.

c. Spokesperson Role: The spokesperson role forces the manager as a representative of the unit to other people. The representation may be internal when a manger makes the case for salary increase to top management. It may be external when an executive represents the organization's view on a particular issue of public issue to a local social work organization.  

3. Decisional Role  

a. Entrepreneur Role: This role involves bringing better changes in the organization to improve the overall productivity & effectiveness.

b. Disturbance handler Role: This role involves making decisions or taking corrective action in response to pressure that is beyond their control. The immediate goal is to return the environment to stability through their prompt response.

c. Resource allocator Role: This role involves decisions about resources allocation. These resources include money, people. Time and equipment.

d. Negotiator Role:  This role involves bargaining with other units and individuals to obtain advantages for own unit. The negotiations may concern work, performance, objectives, resources or anything else influencing the unit.

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