January 31, 2017

Home Page of the Blog/Site - MBA - Management Theory Review - Revision Articles

"Sharpen The Saw"

Revise Marketing Management - January  Revision Schedule

Read my detailed article on Stephen Covey's Sharpen the Saw Principle

Knowledge is the saw with which knowledge workers solve the complex problems that come to them for decision making, design and development of products, services and systems.

This collection of articles facilitate review of knowledge gained in the MBA course. The core curriculum of the course is being covered in this blog. For specialization streams separate blogs will be opened.

"Sharpen the Saw" said Covey in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Knowledge workers have to keep their knowledge fresh always as 'quick recall knowledge' and 'quick assisted recall knowledge' to do their job right as knowledge workers. This can be ensured by periodic review or revision of the knowledge learned during the education years. Articles in the blog are prepared using reputed and popular textbooks on various subjects. Readers can read one or two articles per day and keep their knowledge sharp. The articles also help persons now pursuing their MBA to grasp the main ideas presented in a chapter.

Steven Covey on Seven Habits. He mentions the role of knowledge

Steven Covey left for the heavenly abode on 16 July 2012.

Revision Schedule

Current Month -  January 

January  - February  - March  - April  - May   -   June

July       - August     - September  - October  - November  - December

Revision Articles -  Subjects Covered 

(See the labels list also)

Auditing  -   Business ethics - Cost accounting - Cost management - Corporate Social Responsibility

Economics - Effectiveness -  Efficiency - Engineering economics - Financial accounting

Financial management - Human resource management - Industrial engineering -

Knowledge management -

Marketing Management - Operations ManagementOrganizational Behavior - Principles of Management

Supply chain management -


New Project of the Blog

30 Day MBA Self Study Course - Free Notes with  Recommended Texts

Developed by Professor K.V.S.S. Narayana Rao, Ph.D.
Professor, NITIE, India
Professor, SP Jain Institute of Management and Research, India
Senior Professor, ICFAI Business School, India

Developer of Graham - Rao Method of Analysis of Indian Stocks.

Developer of Markowitz Portfolio Analysis Method for Equity Stocks using Target Prices, Past Price Data, and Excel Software Developed by Associates of Markowitz

Provided Definition for Industrial Engineering: "Industrial Engineering is Human Effort Engineering and System Efficiency Engineering."

Organized First All India Student Equity Research Competition "Khoj" in India.

Organized First Student Presented Investor Conference in which Top 5 Indian equity share
purchases were recommended under 5 different equity research methods and each analytical method was explained in detail to the participants.

Global Number Individual English Author on Knol, which was a platform of Google.

Recipient  of the Innovation Award from Association of Indian Management Schools (AIMS) for Development of Web Based MBA Materials.

Recipient  of the  Award from Higher Education Forum of India (HEF) for Development of Web Based MBA Materials.

Labels of this blog



Online Management Books of Readings

Books of Collections of Online Articles by Professors of Global Top Business Schools

Advertising - Knol Book of Readings 

Auditing - Knol Book of Readings 

Business, Corporate and Managerial Ethics - Knol Book of Readings

Communication Skills - Knol Book of Readings 

Corporate Governance - Knol Book of Readings 

Cost Accounting - Knol Book of Readings

Economics - An Introductory Knol Book of Readings 

Entrepreneurial Spirit - Knol Book of Readings 

Environmental Management - Knol Book of Readings 

Equity Research - Knol Book of Readings

Ergonomics - Knol Book of Readings 

Financial Accounting - Knol Book of Readings - India version

Improvement Management of Tasks, Processes and Systems - Knol Book of Readings 

Inventory Control and Management - Knol Book of Readings 

Manufacturing Management - Knol Book of Readings 

Marketing Management - Online Book on Blog

Mergers and Acquisitions - Knol Book of Readings

Principles of Management - Book of Readings

Organizational Behavior - Knol Book of Readings 

Social Media Marketing - Book of Readings

Supply Chain Management - Knol Book of Readings

Management Textbooks - Online Versions - Reputed Authors

Business Communication for Success by By Scott McLean - Online Book

Financial Accounting by Joe Ben Hoyle and C. J. Skender - Online Free Access Book

Human Resource Management by Laura Portolese Dias - Online Book Contents

Introduction to Economic Analysis  - Ralph Preston McAfee, Tracy R. Lewis

Marketing Management Online Text Book by Tanner and Raymond - Principles of Marketing

Mastering Strategic Management by Dave Ketchen and Jeremy Short

Operations Management - Nigel Slack 4th Edition - Student Resources

Organizational Behavior by Talya Bauer and Berrin Erdogan - FWK Online Book

Principles of Accounting - Larry Walther

Principles of Management - Open Access Book - Mason Carpenter et al.

Psychology: An Introduction by Russell A. Dewey - Free Access Online Book

The Business Ethics Workshop by By James Brusseau - Online Book

The Power of Selling by by Kimberly Richmond - Free Online Book

Research in Management

Actively posting content in two blogs related to research in marketing

Management Theory Review - Research Perspective
Will have research paper collections and literature review type treatment of various topics

Management Research Papers Review
Will have summaries some research papers in various topics and areas. If a paper has given propositions, the propositions are listed under the paper.

Updated  19 January 2016, 26 August 2016, 31 Mar 2015

January 29, 2017

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People - Steven Covey - Summary

First chapter

Principles are the territory. Values are maps. If values are aligned to principles, there become effective.  A band of thieves may also have values. But they are not acceptable values.

Principles are supported by all major religions. They are not religion specific. They seem to be part of human consciousness. May be our adherence to them is of various degrees. If we can increase adherence, more persons will effective in their life. They will be happy and society will have more happiness.

Covey recommends inside out approach. First work on yourself and then relate to others.

First private victory. Then public victory. First three principles are concerned with private  victory. Next three with public victory. The last one is all embracing.

Covey also says growth or evolution of a human being from dependence - independence to interdependence.

Interdependence is the social relationships. It is participation of an individual in the happiness and well being of the society. In an interdependent network of relationships the individual is not dependent, he is independent but as a member of society he participates in interdependent relationships.

One more point covey makes is P - PC paradigm. To get required production on a long term basis, we have to take care of production capability (PC). This is equal to task orientation and people orientation generalized to a larger concept. They has to be balance between P and PC.

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

1. Be Proactive

2. Begin with the End in Mind

3. Put First Things First

4. Think Win - Win

5. Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood.

6. Synergise

7. Sharpen the Saw

What is a habit? 

It is a combination of knowledge, skill and motivation.








February - Management Knowledge Revision


Frank Gilbreth
Picture Source:

Febuary 1st Week  1 - 5 , 2016

The Nature of Organizing - Review Notes
Departmentation in Organizations - Review Notes

Line-Staff Authority and Decentralization - Review Notes
Effective Organizing and Organizational Culture - Review Notes

Summary - Principles - Organizing
Human Resource Management and Selection

Performance Appraisal and Career Strategy
Manager and Organization Development

Summary - Principles - Staffing
Resourcing; A Function of Management

February 2nd week,  8 to 12  (2016)

Human Factors and Motivation
Leadership - Koontz and O'Donnell - Review Notes

Supervision - Introduction - Public Administration Point of View
Committes and Group Decision Making - Review Notes

Communication - Koontz and O'Donnell - Review Notes
Summary of Principles - Directing - Leading

The System and Process of Controlling - Review Notes
Control Techniques and Information Technology

Productivity Control
Overall Control and Preventive Control - Review Notes

February 3rd Week  (15 - 19, 2016)

Summary - Principles of Controlling
Global and Comparative Management

Organizing - Global Management Issues - Review Notes
Staffing - Global Management Issues

Leading - Global Management Challenges
Controlling - Global Management Challenges - Review Notes

Management and Entrepreneurship: Science, Theory and Practice
Managerial Skills

Principles of Management - List
Principles of Management - Subject Update Articles Recent Years

February 4th Week  (22 to 26, 2016)

Marketing Management Revision Articles

The Marketing Concept Kotler
Marketing Strategy - Marketing Process - Kotler's Description

Scanning of Environment for Marketing Ideas and Decisions
Marketing Strategy - Differentiating and Positioning the Market Offering

Management of Marketing Department and Function
Marketing Research and Market Demand Forecasting

Consumer Behavior
Analysis of Consumer Markets

Organizational Buying Processes and Buying Behavior
Market Segmentation and Selection of Target Segments

To March - Management Knowledge Revision

Industrial Engineers support Engineers and Managers in Efficiency Improvement of Products, Processes and Systems

One Year MBA Knowledge Revision Plan

January  - February  - March  - April  - May   -   June

July  - August     - September  - October  - November  - December

Updated   1 Februry 2017, 16 Feb 2016, 22 Feb 2016

January 23, 2017

Business - Industrial Management versus Total Human Resource Management

Principles of Management textbooks are not discussing the enterprise business or industrial management fully. They are only discussing enterprise internal human resource management.

Business management has to deal with management of marketing and selling, management of customers, management of factory operations, management human resources working within the factory, management of supply,  management of suppliers, management of tax payment, compliance with government regulations, and management of all stakeholders. Principles of management as a general theory of management of business enterprise has to deal with all these aspects.

Henri Fayol, even though he identified organization of an enterprise is to provide it with all that is required to run a business (both material and personal), described only people organization within the firm in his initial essay. From then on, other scholars has expanded that limited treatment and have not developed the subject fully. There is a need to expand the subject.

That is why I came out with the new list of functions of management as planning, organizing, resourcing, executing and controlling. 

NRAOMTR.blogspot.com registered 2 Million Hits - 23 January 2017

On 23 January 2017, Management Theory Review, https://nraomtr.blogspot.com registered 2 million pages showing its global popularity in management blogs. This is an addition to 2 million page view already registered on Knol Platform from where the content is transferred to this blog.



I thank all readers and friends who supported the blog for many years.


Big global audience for the blog.

Country-wise Audience 


Important Project of the Blog - Around 450 essays on management

MBA Core Management Knowledge - One Year Revision Schedule

January 20, 2017

Planning - A Management Process

Principles of Planning (Koontz and O'Donnel)

Related to Purpose and Nature

Principle of contribution to objectives
          Every plan has to contribute positively toward the accomplishment of enterprise objectives.

Principle of efficiency of plans
          Efficiency is measured by the contribution of the plan to objectives of the enterprise minus the costs and unsought for consequences in formulating and implementing the plan.

Principle of primacy of planning
          Planning is the primary prerequisite for all other functions of management. Every action of the manager follows a planning step.

Principles Applicable to Structure of plans

Principle of planning premises
          If more people in an organization use common and consistent planning premises, the enterprise planning will be more coordinated.

Principle of policy framework
          If more policies, appropriate to the organization, are expressed in clear terms and form and if managers understand them, the plans of the enterprise will be more consistent.

Principle of timing
          If plans are structured to provide a network of derivatives plans in sequence, there will be more effectiveness in attainment of enterprise objectives.

Principles in Applicable to Process of Planning

Principle of alternatives
          Select the plan which is the most effective and the most efficient to the attainment of a desired goal.

Principle of limiting factor
          Consider limiting factor in generating alternatives and selection from alternatives.

The commitment Principle
          Planning can cover a period over which commitment of resources can be clearly visualized.

The Flexibility Principle
          Building flexibility in planning is beneficial, but cost of building flexibility needs to be evaluated against the benefits.

The Principle of navigational change
          Manager needs to periodically check events of the plan and redraw plans to maintain the move toward a desired goal.

Principle of competitive strategies
          In a competitive arena, it is important to choose plans in the light of what competitor will or will not do and navigate based on what competitors are doing or not doing.

Steps in Planning

1. Being Aware of Opportunities
2. Establishing Objectives
3. Developing Premises
4. Determining Alternative Courses
5. Evaluating Alternative Courses
6. Selecting a Course
7. Formulating Derivative Plans
8. Numberizing Plans by Budgeting

1. Being Aware of Opportunities

Awareness of opportunities in the external environment and within the existing organization (sometimes it can be the single entrepreneur to start with) is the real starting point for  planning. All managers have to see opportunities clearly and completely and understand the feasibility of profiting from them in the light of their strengths and weaknesses. They have to answer why and how they expect to profit from the opportunity. Setting realistic objectives depends on this step of understanding opportunities. 

2. Establishing Objectives

Objectives of the enterprise specify the expected results. Strategies, programs,  policies, procedures, rules, and budgets follow from the objectives. Enterprise objectives provide the basis for determining department level objectives.

3. Developing Premises

Plans of an organization must be based premises about the environment as well as the organization. It is important that all managers in the organization agree on the premises. The following principle is relevant here.

Principle of planning premises
          If more people in an organization use common and consistent planning premises, the enterprise planning will be more coordinated.

Forecasting is important exercise for premising.  Some people may argue that future is likely to change and hence planning is not going to be useful. What is important is the ability to plan for a given scenario. If the organization has that ability, whenever it is recognized that situation has changed a new plan can be quickly developed by the organization. The formal function of controlling is basically that. If expected results are not forthcoming, reasons have to investigated (both in the external environment and internal organization) and new plans have to be created. 

4. Determining Alternative Courses

Alternative courses of action to achieve the objectives in the light of premises have to be developed. Creative thinking is required here. Innovative thinking, which is developing profitable business models is also involved in this stage.

5. Evaluating Alternative Courses

The alternative courses developed in the above stage are subjected to detailed evaluation from technical, marketing and financial angles. Even people behavior issues have to be considered in this stage.

6. Selecting a Course

This is the point at which the plan is adopted by the decision makers.

7. Formulating Derivative Plans

Number of derivative plans based on major plan have to be prepared to make sure that the major plan does not get stuck due to neglect of some minor issues.

8. Numberizing Plans by Budgeting

Budgeting is a plan for period that clearly shows the inputs that go into the enterprise and the output that are expected from the enterprise giving in normal circumstances  profit in a business enterprise for the period.

 Detailed Discussion of Planning by Koontz and O'Donnell

Koontz and O'Donnell discussed the managerial function of planning in six chapters in the fourth edition of their text. The chapters are:


Principles of Management – Koontz and O’Donnell

Joint Revision Article - 23 January

Process and Functions of Management

Related Knols

Updated 23 January 2017,   22 July 2014, 16 Feb 2012

Originally posted on Knol (Knol no. 456)

Process and Functions of Management

Functions of Management or Process of Management

Koontz and O'Donnell's Description of Management Process

Koontz and O'Donnell classified the functions of management or process of management into PLANNING, ORGANIZING, STAFFING, LEADING AND CONTROLLING.

Management is an art and it is doing things in the light of realities of a situation. The organized knowledge underlying this practice is referred to as science and this body of knowledge can be expressed through principles of management. This is the thought of Koontz and O'Donnell. Principles are identified for each function of management.

Also, the functions of managers provide a useful structure for organizing management knowledge that is expanding with the more and more research being carried out in the  management field under various approaches to study of management. All new ideas, research findings, and techniques can be placed in the classification of  PLANNING, ORGANIZING, STAFFING, LEADING AND CONTROLLING.

Professor Narayana Rao suggests planning, organizing (Material and Human), resourcingexecuting and controlling as the appropriate steps for operational approach.


Every manager has to select objectives for his enterprise, department, section, unit or group. Based on the objectives he has to set goals for a specific period and make plans that contain ways of reaching the set goals. Planning in general is explained as generating alternatives and selection of the most suitable alternatives from among them for solving a problem. The problem in this context has positive connotation also. How to achieve growth is a problem which has a positive implication only.

Therefore planning is deciding in advance what to do, how to do it, when to do it, and who is to it. Planning bridges the gap from where we are to where we want to be in a desired future.

Planning involves decision making. It is selecting the courses of action that a company or any other enterprise, and every department of it, will follow.

Types of Plans


Objectives are the ends toward which the activity of an organization is aimed.

Goals represent the rate at which objectives of an organization are achieved. Goals quantify the objective with a time frame. For example, if a country has the objective of switching to unconventional sources of energy, the goals could specified as so many gigawatts of energy by end of year 2018. 
Grand strategies
According to R.N. Anthony strategies result from the processes  of deciding "on objectives of the organization", "on changes in these objectives", "on the resources used to attain these objectives", and "on policies that are to govern the acquisition, use, and disposition of these resources." The main meaning and usefulness of grand strategies are to describe a type of planning program of a broad nature which gives over-all direction to the other and more detailed programs of an enterprise.

Competitive strategies

Competition exists where two or more persons strive for the same goals under conditions in which not all can gain from them. Competitive strategy is a plan made in the light of the plans of a competitor. The competitive strategic plans are made either with an estimate of plans of competitors or the plan is a reaction to the strategic move of competitor either announced or executed.

Policies are general statements which guide or channel thinking in decision making of subordinates. Policies delimit an area within which a decision is to be made and assure that the decision will be consistent with and contribute to objectives. Policies tend to pre-decide issues, and avoid repeated analysis. Polices are based on analysis made by higher level managers and once pronounced avoid repeated analysis.

Procedures are plans and they establish a method of handling activities. They specify a chronological sequence of required actions.

A rule is the simplest type of plan. A rule requires that a specific and definite action be taken or not taken with respect to a situation.

A program is a complex of policies, procedures, rules, task assignments assembled to carry out a given course of action. A program is supported by necessary capital and operating budgets.

budget is a plan for a specific period. We can say it is a period plan. It is goals of a period expressed in terms of resources required and output expected and authorized or agreed by the organization. It is a statement of expected results expressed in numerical terms


Organization as envisaged by Fayol is the plan for material organization and people organization required to achieve the objectives of the organization. It could have been a part of the planning process. But it is a complex step and hence it is given as a separate function. Subsequent to Fayol, in the management text books material organization was not given any attention. All the attention has gone to people organization. This is a shortcoming of the management theory at this stage (2014).

Organizing is explained currently as  the grouping of activities necessary to attain the objectives, the assignment of each grouping to a manager with authority necessary to supervise it,and the provision for coordination horizontally and vertically in the enterprise structure.

Formal Organization and Informal Organization

Formal organization means the intentional structure of roles specified through  a formal organization structure chart.

Informal organization is any joint personal activity without conscious joint purpose, even though contributing to joint results (Chester Barnard).

Important concepts in organizing

1. Principles of span of control
2. Departmentation: By numbers, by time (shifts), by function, by territory, br product, by customer segment, by maketing channels, by process (in manufacturing).
3. Line and staff relationships
4. Delegation


The managerial function of staffing is defined a filling positions in the organization structure through identifying work force requirements, inventorying the people available, recruitment, selection, placement, promotion, appraisal, compensation, and training of people.


The managerial function of leading is defined as the process of influencing people so that they will strive willingly and enthusiastically toward the achievement of organizational goals.

Important Concepts

Behavioral model of man
Maslow's hierarchy of needs
McCleland's needs
Vroom's Expectancy Theory of Motivation
Reinforcement theory
Job enlargement
Job enrichment
Styles of leadership
Managerial grid
Situation leadership or contingency theory of leadership


The managerial function of controlling is the measurement and correction of performance in order to make sure that enterprise objectives and plans devised to attain them are accomplished. The control actions include planning once again, reorganization, new staffing decision and leading activities.

Control of overall performance refers to the assessment of higher level managers, managers of departments and profit centers.

Control also includes ensuring that all persons in the organization work towards the same ultimate purpose, follow procedures and display acceptable behavior.

Henri Fayol's Description of Management Process

Planning – Foresight is Essential Part of Management

The maxim “Managing means looking ahead.” gives some idea of the importance attached to planning in the business world. To foresee in this context means both to assess the future and make provision for it.

Planning is manifested in variety on a variety of occasions in managing  a concern, its chief manifestation, apparent sign and most effective instrument being the plan of action.

The plan of action is, at one and the same time,  the result envisaged, the line of action to be followed, the stages to go through, and methods to use.

Plan of Action

Plan of action depends upon what is wanted and what is possible.

In the plan of action, proximate events are outlined with some distinctness, whilst remote events appear progressively less distinct, and it entails the running of the business as foreseen and provided against over a definite period.

Plan of action rests:

1. on the firm’s resources
2. on the nature and importance of work in progress
3. on future trends which depend partly on technical, commercial, financial and other conditions all subject to change, whose importance and occurrence cannot be pre-determined.

Line of Conduct

In line of conduct it is not only imperative that nothing should clash with principles and rules of good management, but also that the arrangement adopted should facilitate application of these principles and rules.

Broad Features of a Good Plan of action

  • Unity of plan
  • The guiding action of the plan must be continuous.
  • The plan should be flexible enough to bend before such adjustments, as it is considered well to introduce, whether from pressure of circumstances or from any other reason.
  • Plan must have as much accuracy as is compatible with the unknown factors bearing on the fate of the concern.


To organize a business is to provide it with everything useful to its functioning: raw materials, tools, capital, personnel.

*All this may be divided into two main sections, the material organization and the human organization.
*The latter only is dealt with in this paper (This is a statement by Fayol).

Managerial Duties of an Organization

1. Ensure that the plan is judiciously prepared and strictly carried out.
See that the human and material organization is consistent with the objective, resources, and requirements of the concern.
3. Set up a single, competent energetic guiding authority.
4. Harmonize activities and co-ordinate efforts.
5. Formulate clear, distinct, precise decisions.

6. Arrange for efficient selection: Each  department must have an employees in places where they can render greatest service.
7.Define duties clearly.
8. Encourage a liking for initiative and responsibility
9. Have fair and suitable recompense for services rendered.
10. See to the maintenance of discipline.

11. See to the maintenance of discipline.
12. Ensure that individual interests are subordinated to the general interest.
13. Pay special attention to unity of command
14. Supervise both material and human order.
15. Have everything under control.
16. Fight against excess of regulations, red tape and paper control


The mission of command is set the organization going.
For every manager the object of command to get the optimum return from all employees of his unit in the interest of the whole concern.

Precepts that Facilitate Command
1. Have a thorough knowledge of personnel.
2. Eliminate the incompetent.
3. Be well versed in the agreements binding the business and its employees.
4. Set a good example.
5. Conduct periodic audits of the organization and use summarized charts to further this.
6. Bring together chief assistants by means of conferences at which unit of command and focusing  of effort are provided for.
7. Do not become engrossed in detail.
8. Aim at making unity, energy, initiative and loyalty prevail among the personnel.

4. Co-ordination

To co-ordinate is to harmonize all the activities of a concern so as to facilitate its working, and its success.
It is to keep expenditure proportional to financial resources, equipment and tools to production needs, stocks to rate of consumption, sales to production.

In a Well Co-ordinated Enterprise

1. Each department works in harmony with the rest.
Production knows its target, Finance provides necessary funds and stores procures what is needed.
2. In each department divisions and sub-divisions are precisely informed as to the share they must take in the communal task and the reciprocal aid they are to afford one another.

Weekly Conference of the Departmental Heads

Its main aim is to inform the management about the running of the concern.
To make clear co-operation to be expected as between various departments, and
To utilize the presence of departmental managers for solving various problems of common interest.
Importance of Co-ordinating Conference
The co-ordinating conference is to co-ordination what the plan of action is to foresight, what summarized charts of personnel are to the human organization.


In an undertaking, control consists in verifying whether everything occurs in conformity with the plan adopted, the instructions issued and principles established.

It has for its object to point out weaknesses and errors in order to rectify them and prevent recurrence.
It operates on everything, things, people, actions.

Control  by Supervisors and Control by Internal Control Specialists

Head of business and his assistants along the scalar chain do a lot control activity. But there is a need for specialist controllers and inspectors. Properly carried out, this specialist control is precious auxiliary to management and can afford it certain data which official supervision might at times fail to furnish.

Joint Revision Article - 23 January
Planning - A Management Process

January Month Management Revision starts from 15 January Monday

MBA Core Management Knowledge - One Year Revision Schedule

Updated on 23 January 2017,  26 Jan 2016, 27 Jan 2015, 8 Jan 2015

January 19, 2017

Management - Definition and Process

Definition of Management: Its Nature and Purpose

Management of an organization is the process of establishing objectives and goals of the organization periodically, designing the work system and the organization structure, and maintaining an environment in which individuals, working together in groups, accomplish their aims and objectives and goals of the organization effectively and efficiently (Narayana Rao). (3rd December 2008, Version 1 of this article)

Management of an organization is the process of establishing objectives and goals of the organization periodically, designing the work system and the organization structure, and maintaining an environment in which individuals, working together in groups in combination with capital equipment and current assets (working capital), accomplish their aims and objectives and goals of the organization effectively and efficiently (Narayana Rao). (24 January 2016).

The above definition was a modification of the definition given by Koontz and O'Donnell.

The definition implies the following.

(i) Management is a process.
(ii) Management applies to every kind of organization, government, profit making, or nonprofit making.
(iii) It applies to managers at all levels in the organization.
(iv) Management is concerned with effectiveness and efficiency.  Effectiveness is producing the product or service the customer wants in business context with the required functional benefits and product attributes at the price he is willing to pay. Efficiency is minimization of resources to produce the saleable output.

Weirich and Koontz

Weihrich and Koontz defined Management and explained it as follows in the tenth edition of their book Management: A Global Perspective (p.4).

"Management is the process of designing and maintaining an environment in which individuals, working together in groups, efficiently accomplish selected aims." This definition needs to be expanded:

1. As managers, people carry out the managerial functions of planning, organizing, staffing, leading, and controlling.
2. Management applies to any kind of organization.
3. It applies to managers at all organizational levels.
4. The aim of all managers is the same: to create a surplus.
5. Managing is concerned with productivity; this implies effectiveness and efficiency.

Functions of Management

The process of management can be better understood by breaking it down into the five basic functions of a manager – planning, organizing, staffing, leading and controlling. All the management concepts, principles, theories and techniques can be grouped under these five functions.

Professor Narayana Rao suggests planning, organizing, resourcingexecuting and controlling as the appropriate steps for operational approach.

Management Functions at Different Organizational Unit Levels

All managers carry out managerial functions. However the proportion of time spent for each function may differ from level to level. The top managers may spend more time on planning in choosing the corporate objectives and business unit objectives and in developing the work system and the organization structure. The first level supervisors may spend more time in leading the staff under them and in doing operational control.

Managerial Skills

Managers require four kinds of skills: technical, human, conceptual and design.

1. Technical skills are knowledge of and proficiency in working with the tools and specific techniques on given processes. For example, mechanics work with tools, and their supervisors should have the ability to train them how to use these tools and periodically evaluate and improve the skills of the staff under them. Similarly accounts use various formats of accounting records like journal, ledger, trial balance, balance sheet and use various procedures like entry, posting, reconciliation and reversing etc. and the supervisor of the accountants has to know these records and procedures to train the staff under him and evaluate their work for accuracy. The first level supervisors have to demonstrate or use their technical skills on a day to day basis as managers.  In an MBA curriculum number of technical disciplines are taught like marketing, purchasing, production, accounting, human resource recruiting and training, industrial engineering etc.

2. Human skills are the concepts, methods and techniques that facilitate working with people. Managers have to create an environment in which people feel comfortable, motivated, secure, and committed to the objectives and goals of the group or the organizational unit in which they are members. Organizational behavior is the subject taught in MBA curriculums to provide human skills.

3. Conceptual skill is the ability to see the “big picture.” It is the ability to recognize significant issues or elements in a situation and to understand the relationships among these key issues.

Concept skills are better understood or interpreted as business conceptual skills. Every manager at every level must be able to see his customer, his suppliers and his associates in the organization, superiors, subordinates and peers. He should be able to visualize the motivations of these agents to engage with him and the value that they are seeking and the value that they are willing to exchange. Every manager must be able to visualize how the business of the group he is managing is going to survive and prosper. Whenever managers cannot see this clearly, he will be failing in his managerial responsibility and the group is going to suffer.

4. Design skill is the ability to solve problems in ways that benefit the enterprise. To be effective managers in the organization must be capable of doing more than just seeing a problem (If they merely confine their attention to the problem, they become ‘problem watchers’ and they will not fulfill their responsibility). They Must have, in addition to the skill of identifying key problems, the skill of a good design engineer to work out a practical solution to a problem in the light of the realities they face in the situation. Solution design skills are synthesis skills. When a problem arises analytical skills may be used to identify various dimensions of the problems and possible solutions to each of these dimensions. But to solve the problem, a synthesis of all possible and useful alternatives has to be developed. Skills of synthesis are important in solution design.

The intensity or frequency with which these groups of skills are applied varies with the managerial level.

First line supervisors use their technical skills on a day to day to basis to observe the working of the staff in the department or section and guide them in carrying out the allotted tasks as per the specification of the customer or the design and in proper use of machines and tools. Quality and quantity control on a continuous basis becomes the important responsibility of first line supervisors and technical skills play a very important part in this role. Human skills are also important to both to get the task done and to make the operator feel happy and satisfied in completing the task, receiving the reward and also by the various physical facilities provided to him to take care of his professional and personal needs at the work place.

At the top level, conceptual skills and design skills have to be employed to recognize the opportunities and threats that keep on emerging in the environment. Solutions to benefit from the opportunities and contain the ill effects of threats have to be developed.

My article in my blog on the same topic


Seven Strategy Questions: A Simple Approach for Better Execution

Robert Simons, Professor, HBS

Video Introduction to Management



Related Knols

Original post - http://knol.google.com/k/narayana-rao/management-definition-and-process/ 2utb2lsm2k7a/ 547

Revision Article for 22 January
2nd article: Global and Comparative Management

January - Management Knowledge Revision Schedule

Updated  22 January 2017, 24 Jan 2016,  19 July 2014, 2 Dec 2013

Global and Comparative Management

The study of international management focuses on the operations of multinational firms in host countries and related managerial issues. Managers in multinational firms have to interact with employees who have different educational and cultural  backgrounds and they have to cope up with different legal, political, and economic factors. International company managers have to develop social diplomatic skills to prevent conflicts and resolves the ones that occur.

International transactions for firms can take many forms. They include export of goods and services, licensing agreements for producing goods in other countries by companies of that country of that of another country, managing operations of companies, joint ventures, strategic alliances, and setting up branches for selling or production facilities. The branches may be upgraded to subsidiary companies registered in the host countries.

Now multinational companies are more and Fortune magazine annually published the list of 500 largest global companies.

In its early stages, multinational companies operated with an ethnocentric outlook, the orientation of the foreign operations were based on that of the parent company's domestic practices. But now MNCs have evolved and have developed geocentric orientation. The entire organization is viewed as an interdependent system and collaborative practices are used to develop practices in various countries. Also, key positions are being filled by managers of different nationalities in various countries so that more eccletic view is taken by managers in various activities.

MNCs have advantages like having access to raw materials and cost-effective production facilities.

Emergence of Global or Transnational Corporations

Some firms are developing into global firms that view entire world a one market and develop products for the world right from the stage of new product idea. Such firms introduce the product simultaneously in number of markets. In recent Apple is one such example. Its products were made available in large number of countries simultaneously.

India's Role in the World Economy

India has the 12th largest economy at the moment (2010). It is forecasted that it will become the third largest economy after USA and China by 2025 or subsequent to it. India is being studied in detail by various academicians and management research firms to support multinational and transnational firms to take advantage of the huge market that is going to develop in the next 10 to 15 years.

Prosperous India - Vision 2035

India Economic Growth Story - GDP $20 Trillion from $2 Trillion

Make in India - Campaign - by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi

Cultural Differences

Geert Hostede, studied differences in culture across countries and came out with five dimensions.

Individualism - Collectivism
Large power distance - Small power distance
Uncertainty tolerance - Uncertainty avoidance
Masculanity - Feminity
Long-term orientation - Short-term orientation

Legal and Regulatory Aspects

Managers have to understand the role of Government and its various acts and rules put in place by Governments for business and industrial units to start and operate business units in various countries.


Management: A Global and Entrepreneurial Perspective  by Heinz Weihrich, Mark V. Cannice and Harold Koontz, 13 Edition, 2010

Revision Article for 22 January
2nd article: Management - Definition and Process

MBA Core Management Knowledge - One Year Revision Schedule

Updated  22 Jan 2017, 24 Jan 2016, 6 Jan 2015

January 18, 2017

Business Benefits of Big Data Initiatives - Planning and Implementing - BCG


Advanced Analytics - An Explanation for Operations Managers

Operations managers and leaders and managers are often making operations management using rules of thumb or basic data analysis. Today, they can apply advanced analytics techniques which provide solutions with low total cost and higher effectiveness due to  cheaper computing power and improved data capture mechanisms—to make better-informed decisions that optimize value.




Updated  21 January 2017, 26 October 2016

Education, Training, Development and Learning - Subject Update


What is learning?

Emotional intelligence perspective included in the answer.


January 16, 2017

Organization as a Social Group - Insights of Sociologists - in Management of Organizations

Koontz and O'Donnell described Chester Barnard as the spiritual father of this school of thought - organization is a social group or system.  Barnard developed the theory of cooperation pointing out the need of individual to offset through cooperation, the biological, physical, and social limitations affecting him and his environment.  Barnard described formal organization as a cooperative system in which people are able to communicate with each other and are willing to contribute action toward a conscious common purpose.

Herbert Simon also at one time defined human organization as system of interdependent activity, encompassing at least several primary groups, and usually characterized, at the level of consciousness of participants, by a high degree of rational direction of behavior towards ends that are objects of  common knowledge."

The school has made many noteworthy contributions to management. The recognition of organized enterprise as a social organism, subject to all the pressures and conflicts of the cultural environment has been helpful to both theory development and practice of management. The social organism quickly results in development of informal groups and bonds of organization.

Basic sociology - analysis of social behavior and study of group behavior in the social systems - does have great value in the field of management.


Lobachevsky State University of Nizhni Novgorod
Liliya Erushkina
Sociology of management - Manual
Recommended by the Methodical Commission of Management and Business
for international students, studying in the B.Sc. programme 010400  «Information technologies»

Management sociology, its concept and reasons for its appearance

 The management sociology is the boundary synthetic science studying sociological aspect of administrative activity. This science was generated on a joint of two independent disciplines: sociology and management.

Sociology is a science about a society as complete system and about social institutions, processes, social groups, relations between a person and a society, laws of people mass behavior. It is well-known that the primary goal of sociology is an objective analysis of social human relations in order to reveal laws of management of a society.

 The term "management" has several meanings. Management in all business areas and organizational activities are the acts of getting people together to accomplish desired goals and objectives efficiently and effectively.

Resourcing encompasses the deployment and manipulation of human resources, financial resources, technological resources, and natural resources.

Because organizations can be viewed as systems, management can also be defined as human action, including design, to facilitate the production of useful outcomes from a system. This view opens the opportunity to 'manage' oneself, a prerequisite to attempting to manage others.

Management can also refer to the person or people who perform the acts of management.

The problems studied by sociology of management:

Control systems as social systems from the point of view of their functioning;
Selection, arrangement, education of the staff;
The relations developing between people with administrative functions;
Statement and realization of the social purposes of management;
The analysis of social consequences of administrative decisions;
Research and making system to consider interests and opinions of workers Purposeful influence on operated subsystems and connected with it issues of discipline, responsibility and sense of duty;
Intragroup regulation and social self-organizing in groups and at the enterprise;
Interrelation of management and a level of society development.

Object, subject and methods of sociology of management

Object of sociology of management is the administrative processes which take place in a society and considered here from the point of view of the system approach, as a set constantly co-operating and making influence on each other subsystems (political system, economic system, social system); or processes in the organization which can be considered and interpreted from the point of view of people’s interaction, as all people participate in different groups (family, professional, territorial etc.) and are included in diverse processes of rivalry, competition, cooperation and etc.

 Subject of sociology of management is the evaluation, studying, perfection of managerial processes in various types of social societies, the social organizations, the social institutes, all society, each of which represents specific system of social interactions of people and their groups.

According to A.V.Sergejchuk’s opinion subject of sociology of management is social systems with a hierarchical characteristics of the organization. Sociology of management allows us to see management with the eyes of the sociologist.

 Methods of sociology of management combine approaches not only sociological research, but also campaigns of other sciences. All using methods can be divided into three basic groups.

The dialectics considering processes and the phenomena in their interrelation and development
Sociological Social - philosophical, assuming all-round studying of a society as complete social system;
Structure functional analysis according to it each social structure is understood through the analysis of carried out functions;
Gathering and processing of the information characterizing social interrelations of a society (social polls, supervision, experiments, modeling, the analysis of documents).
Specific Structure organizational (organization knowledge through its structure);
Technical (through requirements of technology of its activity);
Communication (organization studying through system of communications formed between its members);
Innovative (organization knowledge through its development).

Problems, functions and principles of sociology of management

The primary goals of sociology of management are:
1. Studying of the real facts making a live and constantly developing matter of administrative activity where we can see the interactions of the people belonging to different layers of an administrative pyramid.
2. Revealing of the most important, typical and irrational facts, and on this basis detection of tendencies of development of managerial processes depending on changes of conditions.
3. Explanation of appearance of innovations in the system and structure of administrative activity.
4. Working out of the directions and the most probable scenarios of development of administrative activity, forecasting of consequences of its realization either for the managing director or for operated managerial process subsystems.
5. Formulation of the scientific bases of recommendations about control system perfection and increasing of efficiency of administrative activity as a whole.

The basic functions of sociology of management as sciences are:

1. Informative. Its main objective consists in studying of features of management as specific sphere of work activity. And also in definition of a role and value of this sphere in development of a society, its subsystems, organizations, groups.
2. Estimating. It estimates harmony and correlation between management system and basic tendencies of a society (for example: to social expectations, interests and requirements of the majority of the population). To estimate, whether the system is democratic, totalitarian or authoritative on the basis of a scientific substantiation of socially-ethical, sociopolitical, social and economic criteria, whether management system can develop individuals’ initiative or not.
3. Prognostic. It is directed to reveal the most probable consequences in administrative activity within short-term, intermediate term and long-term prospects.
4. Educational. Spreading of knowledge about the primary goals, functions and mechanisms of management of administrative systems on the basis of definition and an evaluation of the importance of various administrative concepts, tendencies of development of administrative activity.

The main principles of management sociology are following:
1. Systematic – perception of investigated object as systems of the elements, corresponded to each other and forming structure of the whole system;
2. Integrated approach – all-round coverage of the investigated phenomena taking into account tendencies of development and interaction with environment;
3. Objectivity – real display of the investigated phenomena;
4. Concreteness – consideration of investigated processes and the phenomena in a context of a concrete environment;
5. Historicism – object research in dynamics of its development;
6. Unity of the theory and practice – acknowledgement of theoretical positions in practice, as the theory without practice - a hypothesis.

Joint Article for Revision: Mathematical Models and Optimization of Production and Distribution Systems

January Month Management Knowledge Revision Plan

MBA Core Management Knowledge - One Year Revision Schedule

Updated 19 January 2017,  20 Jan 2016, 30 Dec 2014