We recently wrote an article on the four functions of management as defined by the age old philosophy of management. These four functions are applicable to all management profiles, entrepreneurs and business owners.
However, with the advent of the internet, many a time the entrepreneurs don’t even meet the people who work for them. They either talk over the internet or speak over skype. Any modern organization has a very flat organization culture. Most of them are small offices with a lot of reach because of the very nature of the internet.
So during the times of internet, smartphone and high connectivity, what are the new functions of management?
The first new function of management is to energise the people who work for you. And one of the best ways to that is to have a vision. A vision gives you power and energy to move forward in a unified direction, so that even those who are left behind can catch up. A modern manager should know how to energize the people reporting to him. And he can do this with one single tool – Vision of what the team can achieve by moving forward.
Read this article on How to energize your employees.
A basic service rule is to empower the people beneath you so that they are able to solve customer problems or problems within an organization. The right people at the right place without the power to make the right decisions are basically useless. If you don’t trust your people in making the right decisions, maybe you need to train them better or hire the right people. But overall, Empowering your employees is crucial as a new function of management because it makes the Employees more confident and more capable in handling the problems they are facing.
A manager’s job is not only to direct and lead, it is also to support. Most new workforces are compromised of youngsters who have a lot of energy. This energy can be utilised and nurtured with the proper support. When i joined my first job, I loved it when my manager came up to me and said “Hey buddy, start saving your money from day one, it will help you”. He spoke about insurance and about stock markets from time to time.
It was fantastic that he supported me during the initial times when i was worried about my salary. But now, i look back and support the youngsters who report to me. I guide them how to earn money through savings or through the stock market. This makes them more confident towards me and helps them discuss their problems with me.
A basic requirement to keep the company together is to communicate with each other. An organization might have multiple departments and to move forward, rapid communication and decision making between the department helps. Many times, politics or other human problems interfere with work and delays the work to a great extent. Ensure that the managers below you are responsible for such communications so that there are no delays.
Not only inter-departmental communications, but communication as a whole is important. I analysed this one firm, where the product changes were happening before the sales team were communicated and before there was marketing material available for the changes. This created a lot of confusion and frustration at the sales end because the sales executives were in the blind and they came to know about the changes when they sold to the customer. Moreover, the product was technical in nature, and this caused further ruckus. In essence, the better the communication, the more confident the people who are the front end or back end of your products or services.
Any of the small businesses, internet firms or services firm will be better off with applications of these new functions of management. These new functions will drive improved engagement, increased loyalty and enhanced productivity within the organization.