What is Directing in Management

Directing is the fourth function of management which directly deal with influencing, guiding, leading, supervising, and motivating the organization’s staff in order they can achieve the organization’s desired goals.

Today in this article, we will in detail explain what is directing, its meaning, the definition given by different authors, the element of directing, the importance of directing, the features of directing, and the principle of directing.

► What is Directing in Management?

Directing is one of the prominent functions of management in which the managers guide, instruct, inspire and supervise the performance of employees to accomplish predetermined goals lay down by the organization.

◉ Directing Meaning in Management

Directing is considered a process in which managers try to manage the subordinates by guiding, motivating, and instructing them which led to a better understanding of the needs and problems of subordinates and contributes effectively and efficiently to the attainment of enterprise objectives.

Definition of Directing in Management

“Directing is telling people what to do and seeing that they do it to the best of their ability. It includes making assignments, explaining procedures, seeing that mistakes are corrected, providing on-the-job instructions, and of course issuing orders”. — Ernest Dale

“Direction is the sum total of managerial efforts that are applied for guiding and inspiring the working terms to make better accomplishments in the organization. ” —S.S. Chatterjee

“Directing concerns the total manner in which a manager influences the actions of subordinates. It is the final action of a manager in getting others to act after all preparations have been completed.” —Joseph Massie

“Direction is telling people what to do and seeing that they do it to the best of their ability. It includes making assignments, corresponding procedures, seeing that mistakes are corrected, providing on-the-job instructions, and, of course, issuing orders.” —Ernest Dale

► Need & Importance of Directing

  • It ensures conformity with the organization’s objectives and organization actions.
  • It facilitates control and coordination
  • Efficient utilization of resource
  • It helps in increasing the motivation of employee
  • Help in to cope with the change
  • It ensures employee discipline
  • It integrates all the efforts to ensure effectiveness and stability.

► Objectives of Directing

  • Guiding
  • Influencing
  • Leading
  • Supervising
  • Motivating

Also Read : What is Controlling?

► Features of Directing

  • Pervasive function 
  • Continuous process
  • Dynamic Function
  • Performance Oriented Function
  • Human factor
  • Creative activity
  • Descending order of hierarchy

◉ Pervasive Function

Directing is a pervasive function because it is found in all organizations, at all levels, and in all locations. Every manager universe has to supervise guide, motivate and communicate with his subordinates to attain the objective.

◉ Continuous Process

Directing is a continuous activity because the manager continuously guides, supervises, and motivates his subordinates. If managers want that performance to be according to standards.

◉ Dynamic Function

Directing is a dynamic function because the methods and techniques used by managers to direct workers are continuous with change according to the plan and strategy of the organization.

◉ Performance-Oriented Function

Performance is the essence of directing. Being a performance-oriented function, directing ensures the continuity of operations for the effective achievement of goals.

◉ Human Factor

Directions consider an interpersonal aspect of management because employee behavior depends on the situation and according to the situation each employee behaves differently so it becomes the duty of the manager to influence the behavior of employees and get things done through them.

◉ Descending order of Hierarchy

In an organization, direction starts from the top of the management to the bottom. Every manager or superior gives guidance to his immediate subordinates and this process continues way down to the last subordinate.

► Elements of Directing in Management

The directing function of management has important elements-

  • Supervision
  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Motivation

✔ Supervision – Directing in Management

It refers to the process by which the manager oversees the subordinate performance. The main aim of supervision is to check whether subordinates doing their task in a predetermined manner.

✔ Leadership – Directing in Management

Leadership simply means the ability of a person to influence or guide or teach others. An effective leader tries to maximize the efforts of his subordinates so that easily accomplish their goals.

✔ Communication – Directing in Management

Effective communication is important in an organization because it ensures the exchange of information between managers and workers which helps the manager to understand the needs, problems, and requirements of workers so it takes corrective action.

✔ Motivation – Directing in Management

One of the key functions of management is to motivate the workers when they feel low or face any difficulties.

► Principles of Directing

  • Harmony of objective
  • Maximum individual contribution
  • Unity of command
  • Direct supervision
  • Managerial communication
  • Effective leadership
  • Effective motivation
  • Follow through

◉ Harmony of objective

This principle of harmony of objectives states that there should be harmony between the organization’s objectives and the individual objectives of an organization. If harmony exists then there is no conflict between the organization and individual objectives.

◉ Maximum individual contribution

As per the principle of maximum individual contribution, mean management should adopt such a policy that maximizes individual potential and facilitate him or her to contribute more in achieving the organization’s goal.

◉ Unity of command

As per this principle, the subordinate should receive a command from only one superior, and the subordinate should obey it.

◉ Direct supervision

In every organization, supervision is done by the manager so that manager can check whether employees are adhering to his instruction or not. Direct supervision ensures quick feedback and boosts the morale of the employee.

◉ Managerial communication

As per this principle of direction, good and healthy communication between employees and management prevents miscommunication which may hinder the functioning of the organization.

◉ Effective leadership

The main role of the manager is to adopt a suitable leadership style that matches the situation because the leadership style varies with the situation.

◉ Effective Motivation

As per the principle of effective motivation, a manager should use appropriate motivation techniques according to the needs of employees. A manager should increase pay, status, remuneration, etc so that the productivity of employees can increase.

◉ Follow Through

According to the principle of follow through, the manager should examine the policies, procedures, and instructions, if the manager finds any problem then he or she should take suitable action to correct this.

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