If you have a small business and no management education, you've probably been taking empiric management.
In this case, you may like to have some basic management theory.
On this occasion, I want to take up the subject of the Management Process. By this, I mean the independent but totally related tasks that involve managing.
Depending on the authors or source, these activities may differ somewhat. But this time, I want to focus on the next four divisions because they are the most accepted within current management thinking.
These actions together seek to achieve the same goal within the organization.
This may seem very basic to some, but the most of the cases, small business managers (whether owners or not) do not have well-defined priorities to be dedicated to each of the phases of this management process.
Establishes a concrete route of action to be followed, sets the principles, the sequence of operations and the times necessary for the achievement of the objectives.
Planning is like drawing the blueprints of future actions, is making decisions today about what you want to obtain in the future.
Once the planning has been done and the goals have been settled, it's now necessary to determine the "how to do it" and this is achieved with the organization.
This action is a process that allows to combine, coordinate, relate, design and arrange the necessary functions among people, work and resources to achieve those objectives.
The best alternatives are chosen in order achieve the goals of the organization.
Direction implements everything that was planned and execute the management actions. Involves decisions in the communication, motivation, and leadership areas.
In order to execute the decisions, Direction needs to communicate (transmit and receive) the necessary information, plans, and activities to the people in the organization.
Much of the activity of Directing has to do with positively influencing people to contribute to the achievement of goals.
In this phase, the results are evaluated in relation to the planned. Corrections and adjustments can be made as needed, as well as keep improving process.
With the Planning, the criteria of Control are established and an adequate control depends on an efficient planning and vice versa. Control is also feedback.
Within a culture of quality, prevention is the best form of control. One of the purposes is to minimize the possibility of errors and to have corrective control plans.
Administrative functions at different levels
In small companies, it is frequent for managers not to have a clear definition of the priorities they should follow for each one of the phases of the management process.
It's common to find managers concentrated in control activities and giving almost no attention to planning. The following graph is an idea proposed by Heinz Weihrich and Harold Koontz, which shows an estimate of the relative time that should be allocated for each function.
I hope I have achieved showing you an overview of the different stages that managing a company has. If you are already doing it, cheers, but if not, it wouldn't hurt to start thinking about it.
Thanks for your comments, continue having a great day.