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Functions of Strategic Management and Theories of Management

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Management
Wordcount: 3374 words Published: 5th Oct 2017

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Strategic management is one of the most key human activities. From the time human beings began forming social organizations to accomplish aims and objectives they could not achieve as persons, managing has been necessary to ensure the ordination of individual efforts. As society constantly relied on group effort, and as any organized groups have become large, the task of managers has been increasing in importance and complexity. Henceforth, managerial theory has become crucial in the way managers manage composite organizations.

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The middle theory of this paper is that although some managers in different parts of the world could have achieved managerial success without having basic theoretical knowledge in management, it has to be clearly emphasized that those managers who have mixed management theory in their day-to-day practice, have had better chances of managing their organizations more professionally and effectively to achieve both individual and organizational objectives. Therefore, managers of modern organizations ought to appreciate the important role they play in their respective organizations if they are to achieve set goals. Secondly, there is need to promote excellence among all persons in organizations, especially among managers themselves.

Definition of strategic Management

Management is the art, or science, of achieving goals through people. Since managers also manage, management can be interpret to mean accurately making sure people do hat they are supposed to do. Managers are therefore, expected to ensure greater productivity or, using the current terms, continuous improvement more broadly, management is the process of designing and maintain an environment in which persons, working together in groups, efficiently achieve selected aims . In its expanded form, this basic definition means several things. First, as managers, people carry out the managerial functions of planning, organizing, staffing, leading, and controlling. Second, management applies to any kind of organization. Third, management applies to managers at all organizational levels. Fourth, the aim of all managers is the same – to create extra. Finally, managing is concerned with output – this implies efficiency and efficiency.   

Strategic Management Objectives, Functions, Goals, and Essentiality

Management Objectives

There are fundamentally three management objectives. One objective is ensuring Organizational goals and targets are met with least cost and smallest amount waste.

The second objective is looking after health and welfare, and safety of staff. The third purpose is caring the mechanism and resources of the organization, including the human resources.

Strategic Management Functions

To understand management, it is imperative that we break it down into five managerial functions, namely, planning, organizing, staffing, leading, and controlling.

  1. Planning:

Planning involves selecting missions and objectives and the actions to achieve them. It requires managerial, choosing future courses of act from among alternatives. Plans range from overall purposes and objectives to the most detailed actions to be taken. No real plan exists until a decision – a obligation of human and material resources – has been made. In other words, before a decision is made, all that exists is planning study, analysis, or a suggestion; there is no real plan.

People working together in groups to achieve some goal must have roles to play. Generally, these roles have to be defined and structured by someone who wants to make sure that people put in in a specific way to group effort.

  1. Organizing:

It is that part of management that involves establishing an intentional arrangement of roles for people to fill in an organization. Intentional in that all tasks essential to accomplish goals are assign and assigned to people who can do those best. Indeed, the purpose of an organizational structure is to help in creating an environment for human act. However, designing an organizational structure is not an easy managerial task because many problems are encountered in making structures fit situations, including both refining the kind of jobs that must be done and finding the people to do them. Staffing involves filling, and keeping filled, the positions in the organization structure.

  1. Leading:

Leading is the influencing of people so that they will give to organization and group goals; it has to do mostly with the interpersonal aspect of managing. Most important problems to managers arise from people their needs and attitudes, their behavior as individuals and in groups. Hence, effective managers need to be effective leaders. Leading involve motivation,

  1. Controlling:

Controlling, for example, budget for expense, is the measure and correct of behavior of subordinates to ensure that events conform to plans. It measures performance against goals and plans, shows where negative deviations exist, and, by putting in motion actions to correct deviation, helps ensure achievement of plans. Even though planning must precede controlling, plans are not self-achieving. Plans guide managers in the use of resources to accomplish specific goals, then activities are checked to determine whether hey conform to the plans. Compelling events to conform to plans means locating the persons who are liable for results that differ from planned action and then taking the required steps to improve performance. Thus, controlling what people do controls organizational outcomes.

  1. Coordinating:

Finally, coordination is the essence of manager-ship for achieving synchronization among individual efforts toward the accomplishment of group goals. Each of the managerial functions discussed earlier on is an exercise causative to coordination. Because individuals often interpret similar interests in different ways, and their efforts in the direction of mutual goals do not automatically network with the efforts of others, it, thus, becomes the central task of the manager to reconcile differences in approach, timing, effort, or interest, and to go with individual goals to add to organizational goals.

Although these management functions concern the internal environment for performance within an organization, managers must operate in the external environment of an organization as well. Clearly, managers cannot perform their tasks well unless they have an understanding of, and are responsive to, the many elements of the external environment economic, technological, social, political, and ethical factors – that affect their areas of operation.

Goals of All Managers

First and prime, the logical and publicly enviable aim of all managers in all kinds of organizations, whether business or non-business, should be a spare. Thus, managers must set up an environment in which people can accomplish group goals with the least amount of time, money, resources, and personal discontent or in which they can achieve as much as possible of a desired goal with existing resources. In a non-business venture such as units of a business, such as an accounting department that are not responsible for total business profits, managers still have goals and should strive to achieve them with the minimum of resources or to accomplish as much as possible with available resources. A manager who achieves such an aim is said to be a strategic manager. The second goal or aim of all managers is that they must be creative.

The: Essentiality of Management in Any Organization

Managers are charged with the duty of taking actions that will make it possible for individuals to make their best help to group objectives. Thus, management applies to small and large organizations, to profit and not for-profit enterprises, to industrialized as well as service industries. However, a given situation may differ considerably among various levels in an organization or various types of enterprises. The scope of right held may vary and the types of problems dealt with may be significantly different. All managers obtain results by establishing an environment for effective group endeavor.

In addition, all managers carry out managerial functions. However, the time spent for each function may differ. Thus, top-level managers spend more time on planning and organizing than do lower-level managers. Leading, on the other hand, takes a great deal of time for first-line supervisors. The distinction in the amount of time spent on controlling varies only slightly for managers at various levels. The manager is, therefore, the dynamic, life-giving element in every business. Without the leadership of the manager, resources of production remain mere resources and never become production. In a aggressive economy, the quality and performance of the managers determine the success of a business, indeed, they establish its survival.

Managerial Skills and the Organizational Hierarchy

Mangers require four main kinds of skills, namely: technical, human, and theoretical and design. What does each of these skills mean? Technical skill is knowledge of and skill in activities involving methods, processes, and procedures. Thus, it involves working with tools and specific techniques. Human skill is the ability to work with people; it is cooperative effort, is cooperation, it is the creation of an environment in which people feel secure and free to convey their opinions.

For purposes of explanation, technical skills are of greatest importance at the supervisory level and less at the middle-management level, human skills in the frequent interactions with subordinates at all levels, theoretical skills not critical for lower-level supervisors but gain in importance at the middle-management level. At the top management level, conceptual and design abilities and human skills are especially valuable, but there is relatively little need for technical abilities. The assumption, especially in large companies, those chief executives can utilize the technical abilities of their subordinates. In smaller firms, however, technical experience may still be quite important.

Why Study Management Theory?

Theories are perspectives with which people make sagacity of their world experiences. Theory is a methodical grouping of interdependent concepts mental images of anything formed by simplification from particular and principles are generalizations or hypotheses that are tested for accuracy and appear to be true to reflect or explain real it that give a structure to, or tie together, a significant area of knowledge. Increase data are not in sequence unless the observer has knowledge of the theory that will explain relationships.

However, the variety of approaches to management study, the welter of research, and the number of opposing views have resulted in much confusion as to what management is, what management theory and science is, and how managerial events should be analyzed.

Principles in management are fundamental truths, explaining affairs between two or more sets of variables, usually an independent variable and a dependent variable. Principles may be descriptive or predictive, and not narrow. That is, they describe how one variable relates to another what will happen when these variables oblige.

Managers who apply theory to managing must usually blend values with realities. Once managers know about theory, they will have the capacity to forestall future problems that may occur in the enterprise. At this point it is worth distinctive management theory from management techniques. Contrary to the theory we have discussed above, techniques are essentially ways of doing things; methods of accomplishing a given result. In all fields of practice, including management, they are important.

Management Theories

Modern theories of management tend to account for and help construe the rapidly changing nature of today’s organizational environments. This document will deal with several important management theories which are broadly classified as follows:

The Scientific Management School comprising the mechanism of Frederick W. Taylor and Jillian Gilbreth’s motion study, between others, the Classical Organizational Theory School comprising the works of Henri Fayol’s views on administration, and Max Weber’s dealized administration, among others, Behavioral School comprising the work of Elton Mayo and his associates, the Management Science School which I discuss at the end of his section, and Recent Developments in Management Theory comprising works such as Systems.

Scientific Management School

The first management theory is what is generally referred to as Frederick Taylor’s Scientific Management. Frederick Taylor started the time of modern management. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, he was decrying the awkward, ineffective, or ill-directed movements of men as national loss. Taylor consistently sought to depose management by rule of thumb and replace it with actual timed explanation leading practice. He also advocated the systematic training of workers in the one best practice other than allowing them personal discretion in their tasks. He further believed that the workload would be evenly shared between the workers and

Classical Organizational Theory School

In this category of management theory are the works of Max Weber’s practical theory and Henri Fayol’s managerial theory. Weber postulated that western civilization was shifting from thinking, moving action act derived from emotions, and traditional action action derived from past precedent to thinking. He believed that society was changing to seek technically optimal results at the expense of emotional or humanistic content. Weber then developed a set of principles for an ideal bureaucracy as follows:

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Fixed and official jurisdictional areas, a firmly prepared hierarchy of fantastic and subordination, management based on written records, thorough and expert training, official activity taking priority over other actions and that management of a given association follows stable, knowable rules. The establishment was envisioned as a large machine for attaining its goals in the most efficient manner possible. However, Weber was cautious of bureaucracy when he observed that the more fully realize, the more bureaucracy depersonalizes itself, the more completely it succeeds in achieving the exclusion of love, hatred, and every purely personal, especially irrational and limitless, feeling from execution of official tasks. Hence, Weber predicted a completely impersonal organization with little human level interaction between its members.

Behavioral School

The key scholar under this class is Elton Mayo. The origin of behavioral is the human relations movement that was a result of the Hawthorne Works Experiment carried out at the Western Electric Company, in the United States of America that started in the early 1920s. Elton Mayo and his associates experiments disproved Taylor’s beliefs that science dictate that the highest productivity was found in the one best way and that way could be obtained by controlled test. The Hawthorne studies attempted to determine the effects of lighting on worker productivity. When this experiment showed no clear link between light level and productivity the experiments then started looking at other factors. These factors that were considered when Mayo was working with a group of women incorporated rest breaks, no rest breaks, no free meals, more hours in the work-day/work-week or fewer hours in the workday/ work-week. With each of these changes, productivity went up. When the women were put back to their original hours and conditions, they set a efficiency record. These experiments proved five things.

Recent Developments in Management Theory

Under this category of theory are the system Approach, Situational or possibility theory, Chaos theory, and Team Building theory. The systems theory has had a significant effect on management science and considerate organizations. A system is a collection f part unified to accomplish an overall goal. If one part of the system is removed, the nature of the system is changed as well. A system can be looked at as have inputs. system share advice among each of these four aspects of the system.

Management as Practice

Managing, like all other practice whether medication, music work of art, engineering, accountancy, or even baseball – is an art, it is know-how. It is doing things in the light of the reality of a position. Yet managers can work better by using the organized information about management. It is this knowledge that constitutes science. However, the science underlying managing is fairly crude and inexact. This is true because the many variables with which managers deal are really complex. Yet, such management knowledge can certainly improve managerial practice. Managers who attempt to manage without management science must put their trust to luck, intuition, or what they did in the past. In managing, as in any other field, unless practitioners are to learn by trial and error, there is no place they can turn for meaningful guidance other than the accumulated knowledge underlying their practice, this accumulated knowledge is theory. For practical purposes, all managers must develop three sets of skills, namely, conceptual, technical, and human.


In end, it has to be restated that management is the procedure of designing and maintain an environment for the reason of efficiently accomplish preferred aims. Managers carry out the functions of planning, organizing, staffing, leading, and controlling. Managing is a necessary activity at all executive level. However, the managerial skills necessary vary with organizational levels.

The progress of management theory involves the growth of concepts, philosophy, and techniques. There are many theories about management, and each contributes something to our knowledge of what managers do. Each approach or theory has its own chacteristics and recompense as well as limitations. The prepared, or management procedure, pproach draws on each and methodically integrates them.

Finally, the organization is an open system that operates in and interacts with the environment. The systems advance to management includes inputs from the outer environment and from claimants, the alteration process, the communication system, external factors, outputs, and a way to recuperate the system. No doubt, a manager who makes serious attempts to translate theory into reality is bound to increase productivity more than a manager who chooses to use the error approach.


  • Homans G. C. (1958) The Human Group (New York: Harcout, Brace and World).
  • Fleet David D. Van and Peterson Tim O. (1994) Contemporary Management (Houghton Mifflin Company), Third Edition.
  • Koontz Harold (1961) “The Management Theory Jungle”, in Journal of the Academy of Management, December.
  • Koontz Harold (1962) “Making Sense of Management Theory”, in Harvard Business Review, July-August.
  • Koontz Harold (1980) “The Management Theory Revisited”, in Academy of Management Review, April.
  • Koontz Harold and Weihrich Heinz (1990) Essentials of Management, Fifth Edition, McGraw-Hill.
  • Stoner James A. F., Freeman R. Edward, and Gilbert, Jr. Daniel R. (2003) Management (New Delhi: Prentice-Hall of India), Sixth Edition.


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