The managerial function of directing is like the activitiesof a teacher in a classroom. Inorder to teach, a teacherhas to guide his students, maintain discipline, inspirethemand lead them to the desired goal. It is a veryimportant function in the management of any enterprise.It helps the managers in ensuring quality performance ofjobs by the employees and achievement of organisationalgoals. It involves supervision, communication andproviding leadership to the subordinates and motivatingthem to contribute to their best of capability.
• It guides and helps the subordinates to complete thegiven task properly and as perschedule.• It provides the necessary motivation to subordinatesto complete the work satisfactorily and strive to dothem best.• It helps in maintaining discipline and rewarding thosewho do well.• Directing involves supervision, which is essential tomake sure that work is performed according to theorders and instructions.
• Different people perform different activities in theorganisation. All the activities are interrelated. Inorder to co-ordinate the activities carried out indifferent parts and to ensure that they are performedwell, directing is important. It thus, helps to integratethe various activities and so also the individual goalswith organisational goals.• Directing involves leadership that essentially helps increating appropriate work environment and build upteam spirit.
COMMUNICATIONCommunication is a basic organisationalfunction, which refers to the process bywhich aperson (known as sender) transmitsinformation or messages to another person(knownas receiver). The purpose ofcommunication in organisations is toconvey orders,instructions, or informationso as to bring desired changes in theperformance and or theattitude ofemployees.
In an organisation, supervisors transmitinformation to subordinates.Propercommunication results in clarity andsecuring the cooperation of subordinates.Faulty communication may create problemsdue to misunderstanding between thesuperior and subordinates. Thesubordinates must correctly understand themessage conveyed to them.
• there are two parties, one is known as the sender andthe other is known as receiver;• there is a message sent by the sender to the receiver;and• the receiver receives the message and understands it.Communication does not always flow from supervisor tosubordinate. It can also be from a subordinate to asupervisor. For example, subordinates can passinformation to the supervisor about the faults/problemsat the assembly line. Thus, it is a two way process.
IMPORTANCE• Communication helps employees to understand theirrole clearly and perform effectively.• It helps in achieving co-ordination and mutualunderstanding which in turn, leads to industrial harmonyand increased productivity.• Communication improves managerial efficiency andensures cooperation of the staff.• Effective communication helps in moulding attitudes andbuilding up employees’ morale.• Communication is the means through which delegationand decentralisation of authorityis successfully accomplished in an organisation.
Formal and Informal CommunicationThe path through which information flows is calledchannel of communication. In every organisationwe have both formal and informal channels. Thepaths of communication which are based onrelationship establish formally by management arethe formal channels. For example, the GeneralManager communicates a decision to theproduction manager who may then issue orders orinstructions to the foremen. It may also be like aworker applying to his supervisor for a loan fromthe GPF account.
He/she forwards it to the Manager Accounts who finallysends it to the General Manager (Finance) for approval.Communication, which takes place on the basis ofinformal or social relations among staff,is calledinformal communication.For example:Any sharing of information between a productionsupervisor and an accountant, as they happen to befriends or so. Mostly informal channels are used due tofriendly interaction of members of an organisation.Infact, it may be purely personal or related toorganisational matters.
Upward, Downward, Horizontal and Diagonal Communication(On the basis of the flow or direction of communicationin organisations, it can be classifiedasupward, downward, horizontal or diagonal) Whenemployees make any request, appeal,report, suggest orcommunicate ideas to the superior, the flow ofcommunication is upward i.e., from bottom to top. Forinstance, when a typist drops a suggestion in thesuggestion box, or a foreman reports breakdown ofmachinery to the factory manager, the flow ofcommunication is upward.
Upward communication encourages employees toparticipate actively in the operations of theirdepartment. They get encouraged and their sense ofresponsibility increases when they are heard by theirsupervisors about problems affecting the jobs. Whencommunication is made from superiors down thehierarchy it is called a downward communication. Forinstance, when superiors issue orders and instructions tosubordinates,it is known as downward communication.When the General Manager orders supervisors to workovertime, the flow of communication is downward i.e.,from top to bottom.Similarly, communication of workassignments, notices, requests for performance, etc.through bulletin boards, memos, reports, speeches,meetings, etc, are all forms of downward.
communication.Communication can also be amongstmembers at the same level in the organisation. Forinstance, production manager may communicate theproduction plan to the sales manager. This is known ashorizontal flow of communication. Here, thecommunication is among people of the same rank andstatus. Such communication facilitates coordination ofactivities that are interdependent.When communication ismade between people who are neither in the samedepartment nor at the same level of organisationalhierarchy, it is called diagonal communication.For example,cost accountant may request for reports from salesrepresentatives not the sales manager for the purpose ofdistribution cost analysis. This type of communication doestake place under special circumstances.
Verbal And Non – VerbalOn the basis of the mode used, communication may be verbal ornon-verbal. Whilecommunicating, managers may talk to theirsubordinates either face to face or on telephone or they may sendletters, issue notices, or memos. These are all verbalcommunication.Thus, the verbal modes of communication may beoral and written. Face to face communication, as in interviews,meetings and seminars, are examples of oral communication.Issuing orders and instructions on telephone or through anintercommunication system is also oral communication. Thewritten modes of communication include letters, circulars, noticesand memos. Sometimes verbal communication is supported bynon-verbal communication such as facial expressions and bodygestures. For example– wave of hand, a smile or a frown etc. Thisis also termed as the gestural communication.
SUPERVISIONAfter the employees have been instructedregarding what they have to do and how todo, it is the duty of the manager to see thatthey perform the work as per instructions. This is knownas supervision. Managers play the role of supervisors andensure that the work is done as per the instructions andthe plans. Supervisors clarify all instructions and guideemployees to work as a team in co-operation withothers. Supervisors solve most of the routine job-relatedproblems of subordinates.
FUNCTIONS :• clarifies orders and instructions issued to subordinates andensures that they have understand and follow these fully;• ensures that subordinates have the required facilities to performtheir jobs;• keeps a watch and guides the activities of subordinates inperforming their jobs;• broadens the horizon of his subordinates by making them awareof the wider aspects of their day-to-day work;• coordinates the work of different subordinates under him;• detects errors and omissions and ensures their rectification.
IMPORTANCESupervisors are the key people among managers atdifferent levels. They are the link between the top andmiddle management and the workers. Take, for example,the foreman of the factory or the office superintendent inthe office. Both of them are members of the managementteam, and are in direct contact with operatives in theworkshop and clerical staff in the office. They are themouthpiece of management for communicating its ideas,plans and policies to the workers and employees.
At the same time, they have to play the role of principalspokesmen of their subordinates to communicate theirfeelings and grievances to the management. Thus, it isonly the supervisor who, as a member of themanagement team, is capable of developing links toworkers. Supervisors are expected to maintain the bestand friendly relations with their seniors as well as withthe workers and enjoy the trust and confidence of bothmanagement and operatives.
MOTIVATIONMotivation is one of the important elements of directing.Issuance of proper instructions or orders does notnecessarily ensure that they will be properly carried out.It requires manager to inspire or induce the employees toact and get the expected result. This is called motivation.It is a force that inspire a person at work to intensify hiswillingness to use thebest of his capability forachievement of specify objectives. It may be in the formof incentives like financial (such as bonus, commissionetc.) or, non-financial (such as appreciation, growth etc.),or it could be positive or negative. Basically, motivation isdirected towards goals and prompt people to act.
IMPORTANCE :• with proper motivation there can be maximum utilisation of thefactors of production like men, money, material etc.;• if employees are motivated it will reduce employee turnoverand absenteeism;• motivation fosters a sense of belongingness among theemployees towards the organisation and also improves theirmorale;• motivation helps in reducing the number of complaints andgrievances. The wastage and accident rate also come down;• with proper motivational techniques management can attractcompetent and best qualityemployees.
LEADERSHIPWhile motivation is the process through whichemployees are made to contribute voluntarily towork, leadership is the ability to persuade andmotivate others to work in a desired way forachieving the goal. Thus, a person who is able toinfluence others and make them follow hisinstructions is called a leader. For example, in anorganisation the management decides to installsome new machines to which the workers areresisting.
However, one ofthe workers takes the initiative,explains the fellow workers the benefits of working withthe new machines and moulds them to accept themanagement’s decision. Now he is said to be leader ashe is able to influence a group of workers who followedhim. In practice, the managers have to guide and leadtheir subordinates towards the achievement of goals,and so, to be an effective, a manager has to be a goodleader.Leadership is the process, which influences thepeople and inspires them to willingly accomplish theorganisational objectives. The main purpose ofmanagerial leadership is to get willing cooperation ofthe workgroup in pursuit of the goals.
IMPORTANCE :• leadership improves the performance of theemployees. Leaders can motivate the followers to workand thereby increase their performance level.• with continuous support and guidance, leaders areable to build confidence among the followers, therebyincreasing speed and accuracy and decreasing wastage.• with friendly and cooperative efforts the leader is ableto build employees’ morale which in turn contribute tohigher productivity.
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