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Most authors recognize four key functions of management: planning, organizing, motivating, and controlling. Each of these management functions plays a key role in the success of a business.
The most fundamental management function is planning. Before a business can begin work on a project, management must map out goals and allocate the resources necessary to achieve them. They must also evaluate potential roadblocks and plan what to do if and when the business encounters them. Planning does not end once a project is underway. As the Houston Chronicle attests, leaders must regularly "re-evaluate their plans as conditions change and make adjustments as necessary."
Another important facet of management is organization. Leaders must organize their resources (labor, materials, money, etc.) efficiently so they can accomplish their objectives quickly and reduce waste.
Once the project has been planned and organized, management must motivate their employees by communicating with them about their roles in the project and supervising them to ensure they are fulfilling their objectives.
Finally, managers must evaluate the project's level of achievement. As Rayanne Thorn writes in the Huffington Post,
This function allows for resolution and change that is compulsory. Through this process, predictors are in place and crisis can be prevented and/or averted.
Like planning, control is a continuous process for businesses which wish to remain effective.
The major functions that a manager completes can be categorized into four different functions known as planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. For some of us, we only see the final two - leading and controlling - but you should know that for every managerial behavior you do see, there is an equal amount that you do not. Behind the manager's closed door, he or she spends a good deal of his or her time planning and organizing so that he or she can effectively carry out the functions of leading and controlling.
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