This thesis discusses four functions of management and their relationship to event management.Many scholars have defined management and these are some of their views on the subject. Prachi Juneja defines management as a social process involving responsibility for economical and effective planning and regulation of operation of an enterprise in the fulfillment of given purposes (Juneja, 2019). Henry Fayol, on the other hand, asserts that, “to manage is to forecast and plan, to organize, to command and to control”. Finally, Anastacia defines management as the efficient use of resources combined with the guidance of people in order to reach a specific organizational objective (Anastasia, 2017). Management is a process to emphasize that all managers, irrespective of their aptitude or skill, engage in some inter-related functions in order to achieve their desired goals(iEduNote, 2017). Planning, organizing, leading, and controlling are the four functions of management which works as a continuous process. This means that managers ought to set a plan, organize resources according to the plan, lead employees to work towards the accomplishing the set plan and eventually control everything by monitoring and measuring the effectiveness of the plan.
The process of management is defined by three key characteristics which are a process of continuing and related activities, involving and concentrating on organizational goals and achieving organizational goals by working with people and resources. First, management is a process of continuing and related activities with functions related to each other and the functions complement each other. There is no management function that surpasses others in importance and therefore managers must take all functions seriously. The second core characteristic of management is involving and concentrating on organizational goals. Management is largely focused on achieving the key mission of the organization, its vision. Therefore prior to hosting an event it is imperative to identify and set achievable goals and objectives. Finally, management achieves the organizational goals by using different resources; technical, financial and human as part of the process. The manager is in charge of supporting the people and connecting the right person with the right resources.
Planning involves deciding where to take a company and selecting steps to get there. It requires managers to be aware of challenges facing their businesses and forecast future business and economic trends. Based on the economic outlook and forecast,managers should formulate objectives to reach by certain deadlines and decide on steps to achieve set goals. Managers re-evaluate their plans as conditions change and make adjustments as necessary. Failure to make timely adjustment results in companies failing to cope with market and economic demands eventually losing to competition as was the case with Kodak and Nokia– these companies failed to read the signs of the times. Planning improves resource allocation, reduce waste and boost staff motivation thereby elimination staff turnover (Quinn, 2010).
Planning helps to maintain managerial effectiveness as it works as a guide for the personnel for future activities. It also involves selecting mission, objectives and the actions to achieve them, it requires decision-making and choosing future courses of action from among alternatives. Thus, the foremost role of a manager is determining what the organization’s position and the situation should be at some time in the future and decide how best to bring about that situation. Planning and decision-making require a manager’s ability to visualize ahead purposefully, creatively and be able to give an analysis that helps pivot and set the course towards higher productivity and profitability. Managers must tap into past experiences, industry trends and teamwork to proactively plan for events prior to the day using a 360-degree approach.
Organizing is the process by which established plans are moved closer to realization.Once a manager set goals and develops plans, the next managerial function is organizing human, technical and financial resources that are identified as necessary by the plan to host a successful event.Organizing involves determining how activities and resources are to be assembled and coordinated for the event to flow smoothly achieving goals set in the planning phase.Organizing involves establishing an intentional structure of roles that make up the events team to shoulder the responsibility of planning and executing the event at hand. It is intended to making sure that all necessary tasks to accomplish goals are assigned to people who can do their best as they possess the ability and skills to.The purpose of organising is to create an environment for best performance. Allocation of duties must be designed in light of the abilities and motivations of the people available. Instead of randomly appointing people to identified roles, a manager should conduct a skills requirements analysis and then select volunteers from his team and delegate responsibility. Training staff is also commendable to ensure the right people are assigned to the tasks identified. Basically, organizing is deciding where decisions will be made, who will do what jobs and tasks, who will work for whom, and how resources will be utilised.
Leading is the third basic managerial function concerned with influencing people for a particular purpose or reason. Leading is considered to be the most important and challenging of all managerial activities. As a manager you need to influence your team to work together with the organization’s interest at heart. Thus, in order to have successful events, a manager needs to create a positive attitude towards work thereby influencing and replicating the same culture at the workplace.Leading is also concerned with giving strategic direction, motivation, communication and coordination.
A leader must be the one to offer direction and guidance, take the right direction through demonstration. The team needs to be motivated and it falls within the purview of the manager to provide the motivation either through culture, monetary and non-monetary benefits and much more. Management style can also be a push or inhibiting factor on the job. A dictatorial manager turns to demotivate staff while a democratic leader highly motivates staff. A wise manager can dabble between the various management styles in order to get the best out of his team. In the event of an emergency or crisis, a manager can take the dictatorial stance because failing to provide strategic in a timely manner can be costly leading to loss of human life. With the crisis behind, the manager can switch back to relaxed management style. Thus dictatorial tendencies can be employed in case of fire outbreak at the event, medical emergencies or breach of security.
Controlling is the final function of management that ensures the other functions are followed correctly and the flow of work is propelling the organization towards set out objectives. Theo Haimann posits that controlling is“the process of checking whether or not proper progress is being made towards the objectives and goals and acting if necessary, to correct any deviation.” During an event, controlling therefore is concerned with assessing and evaluating the performance of the team in planning, organising and hosting the event. As a manager, you would examine the processes you set forward and take note whether they are enhancing the organisation’s performance. The marketing campaign’s effectiveness would be evaluated and measured.Controlling requires managers to examine the objectives in a measurable manner. This is usually achieved by setting goals which guarantee you know exactly what you want to achieve and what counts as success or failure. Controlling also ensure you have the ability to correct behaviours when they deviate from the set standards. In short, controlling is concerned about quality monitoring examining the processes and ensuring they achieve best results for the organization.
Controlling is critical in management as it has the ability to reduce risk. Monitoring the performance of the team and comparing it against the set objectives enables managers with the ability to address problems more easily. Measuring performance can be the difference between the desired success and failure. Failure is technically a waste of resources and should be avoided at all costs. Controlling allows managers to ask very crucial questions that ascertain whether an event was successful, what worked and what failed, what lessons have been gained from the experience and should the event be repeated what can be improved and what can be dropped. With controlling managers are able to mount successful events as it gives the statistical approach to implement a better event than the previous. For controlling to be effective, managers need to establish standards of performance, measure the actual performance, compare the actual performance with the expected standards and finally take corrective action (Anastasia, 2017).
The functions of management are crucial to understand if you want to succeed as a manager. Knowing the above will guide you as a manager to focus on the right processes when doing the job and give you confidence in your ability. It also helps provide more clarity in terms of the skills and characteristics you need to possess to be a good manager. The functions are key to management in all levels, from the entry positions to higher roles of management. While management style might differ from someone else’s style, the above functions will be necessary in order for managers to do better in their roles. Management is a crucial part of any organization, emphasis and proper understanding of the above functions will boost the company’s operational efficiency and therefore put that organisation on the path of success.
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Available at: https://www.cleverism.com/functions-of-management-planning-organizing-staffing/
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Available at: https://iedunote.com/function-of-management-process
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- Juneja, P., 2019. Functions of Management. [Online]
Available at: https://www.managementstudyguide.com/management_functions.htm
[Accessed 21 October 2019].
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