Home Management 14 Principles of Management: Henri Fayol Administrative Theory

14 Principles of Management: Henri Fayol Administrative Theory


Henri Fayol explained 14 principles of management under Administrative Management. His greatest contribution is considered to be his theory of management principles and elements. He has made the distinction between management principles and management elements. Management principles are a fundamental truth and show a cause-effect relationship. The management element refers to the function performed by a manager.

Henri Fayol’s theory and principles of management are often called Fayolism. He was a French industrialist who owns a large coal mining company in France. He developed general principles of business management. He believed that management was an activity common to all businesses, governments, and even the home. This belief led him to develop 14 principles of management.

14 Principles of Management by Henri Fayol

14 principles of management

1. Division of work
2. Authority and Responsibility
3. Discipline
4. Unity of command
5. Unity of direction
6. Subordination of personal/individual interests to the general interest.
7. Remuneration
8. centralization
9. Scalar chain
10. Order
11. Equity
12. Stability of tenure of personnel
13. Initiative
14. Esprit de corps

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14 Principles of Management

Let’s discuss all these 14 principles of management in detail.

1. Division of work

Specialization of work and department increases output by making employees more efficient for the organization.

This division of work can be applied at all managerial levels of the organization.

2. Authority and Responsibility

Managers must be able to give orders to their subordinates, and authority gives them this right.

Henri Fayol finds authority as a continuation of official and personal or individual factors.

Official Authority is derived from the position of a managerial role and personal authority is derived from personal qualities such as intelligence, knowledge, and experience.

Responsibility arises out of the assignment of activity.

In order to discharge the responsibility properly, there should be uniformity of authority and responsibility.

3. Discipline

Employees should be disciplined; they must obey and respect the rules that govern the organization.

Discipline may be of two types. Self-imposed and command discipline.

Self-imposed discipline springs from within the individual. It is in the nature of the spontaneous response to a skillful leader.

Command discipline comes from a recognized authority. This ensures compliance with the desired action by established customs, rules, and regulations of the organization.

4. Unity of command

principle of Unity of command states the one employee should receive orders from one boss only. More than one superior can not give an order to an employee at a time.

More specifically an individual has a reporting relationship to a single superior or boss.

This makes the problem of conflict in instructions very less. It also increases the feeling of personal responsibility for results.

5. Unity of direction

The organization should have a single plan of action to guide managers and all the workers.

Unity of direction provides better coordination among various activities in different departments to be undertaken by an organization.

6. Subordination of individual interests to the general/common interest

Common organizational interest is above the individual interest of an employee.

The personal interests of any employee should not take precedence over the interests of the business organization as a whole.

Ambition, laziness, weakness, etc., are factors that reduce the importance of general interest.

There should be constant vigilance and supervision to maintain agreement between employer and employees.

7. Remuneration (14 principles of Management)

The principle of remunerations simply means that employees and workers must be paid a fair salary or wage for their services.

Remuneration of employees should provide maximum possible satisfaction to employees and employers.

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8. Centralization

Centralization is a term used to refer to the degree to which subordinates are involved in decision-making.

If the importance of a subordinate’s role is increasing then it is known as decentralization. And when his importance is reducing then it is called centralization.

Centralization is very common in small firms but in large firms, a series of intermediaries and conciliators are required.

9. Scalar chain

This line of authority from top management to the lowest position is the scalar chain.

There should be a scaler chain of authority and communication on every level of management from highest to the lowest.

It is important the communication must flow systematically through each level and position in the line of authority.

10. Order

People and materials (Human resources) should be in the right place at the right time.

This kind of order demands precise knowledge of the human requirement and resources of the organization and a constant balance between these requirements and resources.

Normally, the bigger the size of the organization, the more difficult this balance is.

11. Equity

Every Manager should be kind and fair to their subordinates.

Equity is known as the combination of justice and kindness.

The application of equity requires optimistic thinking, experience, and good nature for soliciting loyalty and devotion from subordinates.

12. Stability of tenure of personnel

Management should provide orderly human resource planning and ensure that replacements are available to fill vacancies whenever required.

No employees should be removed within a short time. There should be reasonable security of a job role.

Stability of tenure of personnel is very important to get new employees accustomed to new work and attain set standard performance.

Unnecessary turnover of employees is both cause and effect of bad management.

13. Initiative (14 principles of Management)

Employees should be allowed to innovate ideas and plans and it requires high levels of effort to make this happen.

Managers should encourage their employees for taking initiative in group meetings within the limits of authority and discipline. The initiative is concerned with thinking out and executing a plan.

14. Esprit de corps (14 principles of Management)

Esprit de corps simply means promoting team spirit and increase unity within the organization.

This is the principle of ‘Union is Strength’ and advance stage of unity of command for establishing teamwork.

Every manager should encourage esprit de corps among his subordinate employees.

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Henri Fayol’s 14 principles of management are followed by almost all business and non-business organizations. He introduced Administrative management theory which is based on the classical approach of performing managerial tasks.

Fayol’s principles of management help managers in performing managerial roles and responsibilities in an organization.