"A manager's most basic responsibility is to focus people toward performance of work activities to achieve desired outcomes." Is this an accurate statement?
While it is important for a manager to be able to get workers to focus on the performance of work activities in order to achieve desired outcomes, it is not the most important function of a manager. There are three important responsibilities that a manager has in doing his or her job.
One important aspect of being a manager is leadership. A manager must be able to get workers to do things that they may not feel capable of doing or that they may not want to do. A manager must convince the workers that the vision of the organization is a good vision. A good manager is able to lead his or her workers.
A second important responsibility is to be able to administer the operation of the business. Managers must be able to make adjustments on a daily basis as needed. They also must handle financial requirements and paperwork requirements that go with the responsibilities of being a manager.
Finally, a manager must be able to delegate responsibilities. A manager cannot do everything that needs to be done. The manager must know what each worker is capable of doing and then give that worker the opportunity to do the things that need to be done.
Which of these responsibilities do you feel is the most important responsibility of a manager?
This is not a sufficient statement of a manager's basic responsibility. It is certainly true that managers should work to focus their employees. However, their most basic responsibility is to set up a system that will allow work to be done efficiently and effectively.
A manager's most basic responsibility is is not to get their employees to focus. Employees should be able to focus on their own without being motivated or pushed by the manager. What the manager must do is to create an organizational structure with plans that will ensure that the desired outcomes can be achieved. Motivated employees who do not have a well-structured and well-planned system will have a hard time achieving the firm's objectives. Therefore, what the manager should do is to create an environment in which workers can achieve their objectives. Occasional motivation and focusing may be needed, but that should not be the most basic responsibility of the manager.