Management: Competencies, levels, organizational behavior and all you need to know on management basics

Management competencies include all of the following: conceptual, interpersonal, technical, and political. Competency refers to the skills and attitudes that make an individual more effective in their roles

A manager is an individual who works in an organization to oversee and direct other people’s activities. An organization that has a managerial role should have three basic characteristics which are goals, people, and a deliberate structure.

Managers are classified into three categories which are top-level managers, middle-level managers, and first-line managers.

First-line managers – These are the managers to directly monitor the production of goods and services

Middle managers – These are managers who set objectives as directed by the top managers, and translating them for the first-line managers to implement. 

Top managers – These managers are responsible for formulating the long-term objectives of the organization and responsible for the overall direction. 

Management is defined as the process of getting things done effectively (doing the right things), and efficiently (doing things right). A functional manager supervises employees in a specific part of an organization or department. 

Categories of managers

  • The functions approach

This approach states that managers perform four basic functions within an organization which is leading, planning, controlling, and organizing.

  • The Mintzberg’s roles approach

This approach states that the manager’s work is based on 10 roles they perform at work grouped around an interpersonal relationship, information transfer, and decision making.

  • The skills/competencies approach

This approach describes the role of managers depending on the kind of skills and competencies they possess. There are four critical managerial skills: Conceptual, technical, political, and interpersonal. Managerial competencies considered by this approach include and not limited to communication, emotional control, dependability, etc.

Importance of studying management

  • All of us interact with management in one way or another on a daily bases.
  • One can either be managed or be a manager in their career life
  • One can get insights into what the manager or organizational boss behave or should behave as well as how organizations function

The four functions of a manager

  1. Planning – Planning involves determining the goals of the organization and effective ways to achieve them
  1. Organizing – Organizing entails deciding on what decisions are to be made, who performs the tasks, and who reports to whom.
  1. Leading – Leading entails combining different skills from individuals, and motivating them to achieve the set organizational objectives.
  1. Controlling – This function involves monitoring the performance of the group or an individual.

The main factors that define and shape management are based on four areas in management

  • Delivering high-quality customer service
  • Encouraging innovative efforts
  • Use of social media to advance the image and brand whenever necessary
  • Focusing on the sustainability of the organization both in the short-term and long-term

Organization behavior

Organizational behavior is defined as the study of how individuals, organizational structure affect behavior within the organization while applying this information to make the organization more effective

Organizational skills can be learned by practicing them in the workplace.

Emotional intelligence in management is an important factor that helps in understanding one emotion and those of others, and how to create a positive environment. Emotions are important to all managers because the manager can use emotions to understand the people around him/her better.

There are six determinants of personality

Openness – This refers to being more creative and adapting better, but such individuals are less rule-abiding.

Conscientiousness – Individuals with this trait are more dependable and hard-working, but one drawback of dealing with such individuals is that they are poor at adapting to organizational change.

Extraversion – Individuals with this personality desire to create friends and are rarely involved in conflicts within the organization. The drawback of dealing with such a person is they never take charge and may never share an opinion in their minds.

Neuroticism – Individuals high in neuroticism have a more accurate perception and can easily detect any threat within their environment. However, they have high levels of anxiety and stress.

Difference between high context cultures and low context cultures

In high context cultures, individuals often rely on non-verbal communication while in low-context cultures people are heavily on direct-verbal communication. High-context cultures are highly collectivistic which implies that people value group needs and relationships above personal objectives. Low-context cultures are more individualistic as people value individual achievements more than group achievements.

 Basic types of organizational cultures

Fragmented culture – In this type of culture, individuals are distant and disconnected from each other.

Mercenary culture – This is the type of culture in which the employees think the same way, but are not friendly to each other

Networked culture – An organizational culture in which the employees think in the same way, and are highly connected to each other considering each as a friend.

Communal culture – Organizations with communal cultures have employees who feel they are different from each other and hence each person does things their own way, but they are all friendly

Customer service culture – This culture is mainly focused on providing quality services

Safety culture – This culture focuses more on providing a safe working place for all employees, which has been shown to reduce injuries and accidents

Diversity culture – Organizations are highly diverse, and with a diverse culture, the diversity is used to provide a competitive advantage to the organization

Creativity culture – This is a culture that focuses on creativity. It entails providing what might be needed to encourage creativity.

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