The Basics of Business Management

management-teamThe term management can be viewed from two different perspectives.

  1. It can be used to refer to the coordination of all activities necessary for a business to achieve its set objectives through maximum utilization of available resources.
  2. It can also be used to refer to the persons bestowed with the responsibility of overseeing that the above happens and that the right decisions concerning any business venture are made.

Management plays a number of critical roles in a business. To begin with, managers help to plan the activities to be undertaken in a business. They thus develop a vision to be attained within a given period of time. After that they organize how this plan will be implemented through allocation of resources and funds. They then offer leadership on various ways to help achieve the objectives. Once this has been done, they control the direction towards which the business heads by making adjustments where necessary and making the right decisions on various matters.

Where decision making is necessary, it takes place at different levels of management in a business organization. This depends on aspects such as urgency and legal implications that may be tied to the decision. However, the levels that are in a given organization depend on its size and extent of centralization or decentralization. The first level is the topmost and consists of senior management. They develop policies and set objectives for the organization. They also hire, supervise and promote middle level management. Shareholders hold them accountable for the overall performance of the business. They act as the face of the organizations and are given titles such as presidents or chief executive officers.
Below this is middle level management. Managers at this point serve as branch and departmental heads. They receive orders from top management and ensure that policies are implemented. They serve as an intermediary between their juniors and top management.

Communication from above is trickled down through them. They have authority over a sub section of the company.
Lower level management carries out supervisory roles on staff. They have a direct contact with people on the ground. They carry out performance evaluation and staff appraisal. Allocation of duties to the workers is done by them. They analyze situations, brief their seniors write reports and offer recommendations where necessary. Due to their direct contact with workers, they are responsible for ensuring good employee relations.

Management comes with its own share of challenges. One of them is the conflict between profitability and ethical issues. While the main purpose of establishing a business is maximizing on profits, the means to achieving that should be genuine. For example, employees’ well being should not be compromised by overworking them in order to meet targets. Internal and external competition is another challenge. While done from within, it may end up being counterproductive where conflicts over shared resources emerge. Instead of focusing on how best to utilize the available resources, employees shift their attention to outwitting each other on having the most of the resources. Competition from other businesses may lead to low demand for products. As such, management has to come up with ways of eliminating competition. Lack of motivation among the workers can demoralize them. This poses a challenge to management in deciding which ways will serve best in morale boosting.

The field of business management has developed a lot in the recent past. As a result, there have been a number of emergent issues concerning it. One of these is the use of technology which has given rise to globalization. This has enabled organizations to expand their businesses to international levels. It has also led to cost cutting with facilities such as teleconferencing enabling managers who are in different locations to hold meetings. Online businesses have also grown where orders are placed via the internet and purchases shipped to the clients. The use of social media as a marketing and customer relations tool is on the rise. Any business willing to remain relevant has to be reasonably visible on the internet. Corporate social responsibility is another trend that organizations are adopting. This helps them give back to the community. Given the versatility of the business world today, any business wishing to achieve its objectives must ensure that its management is effective and efficient. Strategies must be put in place to ensure that they remain ahead of their competition.

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