Planning Function of Management

Management has been described as a social process involving responsibility for economical and effective planning&regulation of operation of an enterprise in the fulfillment of given purposes. It is a dynamic process consisting of various elements and activities. These activities are different from operative functions like marketing, finance, purchase etc. Rather these activities are common to each and every manger irrespective of his level of status. Different experts have classified functions of management.

According to George&Jerry, “There are four fundamental functions of management i.

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e. planning, organizing, actuating and controlling”. According to Henry Fayol, “To manage is to forecast and plan, to organize, to command, & to control”. Whereas Luther Gullick has given a keyword ‘POSDCORB’ where P stands for Planning, O for Organizing, S for Staffing, D for Directing, Co for Co-ordination, R for reporting&B for Budgeting. But the most widely accepted are functions of management given by KOONTZ and O’DONNEL i.e.

Planning, Organizing, Staffing, Directing and Controlling.

For theoretical purposes, it may be convenient to separate the function of management but practically these functions are overlapping in nature i. e. they are highly inseparable. Each function blends into the other ; each affects the performance of others. Planning means looking ahead and chalking out future courses of action to be followed.

It is a preparatory step. It is a systematic activity which determines when, how and who is going to perform a specific job. Planning is a detailed programme regarding future courses of action.Planning Function of Management Case Study

It is rightly said “Well plan is half done”.

Therefore planning takes into consideration available ; prospective human and physical resources of the organization so as to get effective co-ordination, contribution ; perfect adjustment. It is the basic management function which includes formulation of one or more detailed plans to achieve optimum balance of needs or demands with the available resources. According to Urwick, “Planning is a mental predisposition to do things in orderly way, to think before acting and to act in the light of facts rather than guesses”.

Planning is deciding best alternative among others to perform different managerial functions in order to achieve predetermined goals. According to Koontz ; O’Donell, “Planning is deciding in advance what to do, how to do and who is to do it. Planning bridges the gap between where we are to, where we want to go.

It makes possible things to occur which would not otherwise occur”. There are several steps in planning function. That is establishment of objective, establishment of planning premises, choice of alternative course of action, formulation of derivative plans, securing co-operation and follow up/appraisal of plans.

Planning is also the primary function of management / primacy planning. It lays foundation for other function of management.

It also serves as a guide for organizing, staffing, directing and controlling. All the functions of management are performed within the framework of plans laid out. There are many different activities that mangers perform into a few conceptual categories that are now called as management function.

There are six management functions, they are.

  1. Planning
  2. Organizing
  3. Coordinating
  4. Staffing
  5. Directing
  6. Controlling

Planning in this function it establishes goals and objectives to pursue during a future period. The planning function spans all levels of management.

Top managers are involved in strategic planning that sets board, long-range goals for an organization. These goals become the basis for short-range, annual operational planning; during which top and middle managers determine specific departmental objectives that will help the organization makes progress toward the broader, long-range goals. Organizing in this function it typically follows planning and reflects how the organization tries to accomplish its goals and objectives.

In relation to the structure of a company, organizing involves the assignment of tasks, the grouping of tasks into departments and the allocation of resources to departments. Organizing also involves establishing the flow of authority and communication between position and levels within the organization. Top manager performs these activities.

Like wise middle manager and supervisors organize the tasks to create positions within their departments. Job analysis and job design activities are organizing function. Coordinating in his function coordinating refers to management activities related to achieving an efficient use of resources to attain the organization’s goals and objectives. Staffing in this function staffing refers to the fundamental cycle of human resources activities, determining human resource needs, and recruiting, selecting, hiring, training, and developing staff members. Directing in this function directing is also referred to as leading, it involves influencing division, departments, and individual staff members to accomplish the organization’s goals and objectives.

Controlling in this function manager performing the controlling management function translate organizational goals and objectives into performance standards for divisions, department and individual position.

Controlling also involves assessing actual performance against standards to determine whether the organization is on target to reach its goals and taking corrective actions as necessary. Managers practicing the evaluative component of controlling assess how well the organization has achieved its objectives.