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DIRECTING & COORDINATION

MEANING
Directing is the active element which initiates action to translate
decisions into productive activities. In the absence of direction,
these decisions will remain only as good intentions on paper. While
planning and organizing are carried out mainly by the top
management, direction has to be performed by managers at all
levels, though the time and efforts spent on it will vary according to
their levels in the organization. Apparently, the first line manager
that is the supervisor, has to spend more time than the higher level
managers in directing, instructing and supervising a large number
of persons working under him. It must, however, be remembered
that though the chief executive spends less time in directing, it is
his effective directions which provide the basis for the directing
activity of all lower-level managers bringing about the following
results:
(1)A full understanding by each individual manager of the
objectives, the long and short term plans and the master
strategy of the organization.
(2)A full understanding by the individual manager of the
organization and its elements, of his own area of authority and
responsibility.
(3)A full understanding of all policies, regulations and procedures
under which the group operates.
(4)A full understanding of the major problems which the
organization is facing and specifically, what each manager can
contribute to the solution of theses problems.
(5)Full and up-to-date information about business forecasts,
contemplated changes in facilities, policies, etc.
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ELEMENTS OF DIRECTING
(1)Assignment giving:
Assignment giving is probably the most critical element of
effective directing. When it is not properly used, it results in
serious loss of time and money. There is also frustration on
the part of both the assignment giver and the receiver. The
Manager must know what needs to be done and to give the
assignment in such a way that the subordinate wants to do it.
(2)Good listener:
Roughly, managers spend twenty five per cent of their working
time on listening. The tests of listening comprehension show
that most managers are bad listeners. When employees
approach the manager, they wish to say many things and
expect the manager to give patient hearing. It gives employees
a sense of satisfaction.
(3)Effective Conference Leading:
A carefully planned and executed conference/ committee
meeting is an effective way of disseminating information,
gathering opinions, exchange of ideas and arriving at sound
decisions. When decisions are taken in a democratic way,
directing employees becomes a simple exercise.
(4)Effective Speaking:

There are numerous occasions when the manager is expected


to address a group of employees. He must have be careful in
the use of the language and must ensure that the does not
hurt their sentiments.

(5)Simplification:
Directing is mostly repetitive act but complex in nature.
Managers have to transform complex directing activity into
simplified routine guidance. Managers have developed four
techniques to achieve simplification. They are (a) Standard
operating procedures (b) Developing positive attitude (c)
Explaining why and (d) Consultative Direction.

PRINCIPLES OF DIRECTION
(1)Directing Objectives:
The basic purpose of directing may be summarized by the
principle that the more effective the directing process, the
greater

will

be

the

contribution

of

subordinates

to

organizational goals. The job of making the people understand


their goals and roles and motivating them for performances is
clearly an integral part of the process.
(2)Harmony of objective:
Usually a very small number of persons in an enterprise
identify their personal objectives should not expect the goals of
the subordinates and the goals of the group to be identical.

But in directing subordinates, they must take advantage of


individual motives to gain group goals. They must harmonize
individual and group objectives. When directing is effective,
individuals will perceive that their personal goals are in
harmony with the enterprise objectives.
(3)Unity of command:
The principle of unity of command is a directing as well as
organizing principle. It reflects the desire of an individual to be
responsible to one superior; creating greater feeling of personal
responsibility for results. Directing can be most efficiently
carried on by one person who knows better than others the
character of subordinates, the motivation they respond to and
their technical proficiency. Consequently, the superior should
be in the best position to select such techniques which
maximize productivity both of individual employees and the
group.
(4)Direct supervision:
It is always desirable that the superiors should maintain direct
contact

with

subordinates.

Directing

facilitates

fast

communication, encourages feedback and quickens decisionmaking. Directing minimizes misunderstandings and mistakes
and improves efficiency.
(5)Unity of direction:
Each group of activities with the same objective must have one
head and one plan. The direction must be clear and
unambiguous and from a single chain of command.

(6)Democratic process:
When the views of

subordinates

are

incorporated

in

managerial decision making, it improves employee morale.


Democratic process makes the direction easier since it is taken
as guidance for improvements.

NEED FOR EFFECTIVE DIRECTION


(1)Unity of command:
This is most commonly used principle of management. It
implies that the subordinates should receive orders and
instructions from one superior only. This will avoid confusion
and misunderstanding in carrying out the orders. When the
subordinates receive orders from one superior, they can
approach the same person asking for direction when the
instructions are found ambiguous or conflicting. The superior
would be in a position to set the situation is correct
perspective. When orders are issued by two superiors, it
always results in disputes and poor performance on the part of
subordinates.
(2)Balancing Objectives:
Every organization outlines its common objective which all
employees have to work hard to achieve. Employees certainly
extend their cooperation provided their individual objectives
like higher pay, incentive payments, promotion etc. are well
protected e.g. if employees are told to achieve higher sales to
increase companys profits, they may not put in their best
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efforts but if they are told to do so to earn higher commission


or promotion, they will go out of the way to achieve
organizational goals. Where organizational objectives and
individual objectives are well balanced, directing employees
becomes easy and smooth.
(3)Effective Communication:
Communication is a vehicle of direction. The superiors use
various communication techniques to issue instructions,
allocate

work,

explain

duties

and

ensure

performance.

Communication becomes effective when it is used as a twoway process. Such communication makes way to obtain
regular

feedback

from

the

subordinates.

In

turn,

the

subordinates also come to know how the company reacts on


matters concerning them. In communication, comprehension
is more important than the content.

(4)Personal Contact:
Quality direction depends on face-to-face contact with the
subordinates. Personally knowing subordinates makes all the
difference in managing subordinates. Personal contact ensures
employees loyalty. It improves morale of employees and
ensures uninterrupted feedback. It is also control device.
Employees are kept under check because they know that they
are

being

watched

and

therefore

perform

satisfactorily.

Personal contact facilitates taking corrective action on sooner


some wrong or mistakes starts taking place.

(5)Follow through:
Direction is highly useful to ensure that work is carried out
the way it is expected by the superiors who extend helping
hand to the subordinates to organize themselves to perform
the duties is desired manner. The superiors must maintain
close scrutiny on the progress and performance of employees.
Under the circumstances, it is easier for the superiors to
identify deficiency in work and suggest corrective measures.
Direction, based on regular reviews, makes administration
friendly and result-oriented.

COORDINATION

MEANING OF COORDINATION
Coordination is one important function of management. In fact,
coordination is treated as the essence of management. This is
because an organization can work effectively and move in one
direction only when all resources and efforts of people are properly
coordinated.
Coordinating is a managerial function in which different activities of
the business are properly adjusted, integrated or inter-linked in
order to achieve well-defined objectives.

DEFINITION
According to Mooney and Reiley The achievement of orderly group
effort and unity of action in pursuit of common purpose.

Features/Characteristics of Coordination
(1)
(2)
(3)
(4)
(5)

Coordination is a process and not a fixed entity.


The concept of coordination applies to group efforts and
not to individual efforts.
Coordination does not occur automatically. A manager
has to make special efforts to achieve coordination.
The Objective of coordination is to achieve a common
purpose as decided by the top-level management.
Coordination leads to unity of action for achieving
desired goals.

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NEED OF COORDINATION
(1)Achieving promising result
The complexity of functions and activities given to different
participating individuals suggest the need of coordination. The
activities assigned are managers are so many that they need to
be coordinated in order to secure promising results.
(2)Avoiding rivalries
Personal rivalries

and

conflicts

may

exist

within

the

department or between departments. Conflict is possible


between the line and staff officers. Coordination is effective in
avoiding such personal rivalries.
(3)Minimizing Conflicts
Conflict of interest is possible at the organizational level. Such
conflict may be because people have different personal goals
and they conflict with the organizational goals. Such conflicts
can be avoided or at least minimized through the technique of
coordination.
(4)Introducing division of work and departmentation
The expansion in the size of a business enterprise suggests
the need of coordination through special efforts. Division of
work and departmentation also bring the need for effective
coordination.
(5)Avoiding confusion:
Coordination is needed in order to avoid confusion and clashes
in the activities and operations of different departments.
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(6)Integrating efforts:
Coordination is needed in order to integrate diverse efforts into
a common direction for achieving the overall objectives.

STEPS IN EFFECTIVE COORDINATION


(1)
Simplified Organization:
The entire organization should be arranged department wise
or function wise. The need for clear cut organization and
procedure can never be neglected. The procedures of the
entire organization should cover all activities and how a
particular individuals work is related to that of other
individuals in the organization.
(2)
Coordination through supervision:
Proper supervision of the work of sub-ordinates plays an
important part in coordinating the work of different units of
the organization. If the workload of an executive is more,
assistance should be provided to supervise the work. The
executive can use his time for bringing about coordination
within the different departments of the organization.
(3)
System of communication:
A well designed system of communication is absolutely
essential for making adjustments in plans and for preparing

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programmes for the future. A good system of communication


ensures effective coordination among various departments.
(4)
Voluntary cooperation:
If employees have strong sense of devotion and involvement in
work, voluntary cooperation from individuals from different
departments is possible. By maintaining close contacts with
staff it is possible to achieve voluntary cooperation which
would improve coordination.
(5)
Harmonized plans:
Rational planning can lead to greater coordination. The plans
prepared by different departmental heads should be checked
for consistencies. The plan should be an integrated one for the
entire organization.

COORDINATION AS ESSENCE OF MANAGEMENT


Coordination figures prominently as the manager performs his
managerial functions. It helps to increase the effectiveness of
management. As a matter of fact, coordination is the essence of
management as it is closely related to the various functions of
managements as discussed below:
(1)
Coordination through Planning:
By integrating various plans through mutual discussions and
exchange of ideas, it is possible to bring about coordination at
the planning stage. If the marketing manager is to plan his
sales promotion campaign, it would be advisable that he
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discusses the plan with the Finance Manager, Production


Manager, Advertising Manager and so on. While Performing
his managerial function of planning he is trying to attain
coordination by joining the efforts of all the managers who are
related with the work.
(2)
Coordination through Organizing:
Coordination is the first function which a manager has to
consider while grouping and assigning the different activities
to subordinates and also when creating departments. The
manager has to coordinate related activities to make the
organization work successfully.
(3)
Coordination through Directing:
When a manager undertakes direction simultaneously he is
also performing the function of coordination. Giving orders
and instructions to subordinates results in coordinating their
activities.
(4)
Coordination through Motivating:
The manager has to deal with human factor which is
responsible for effective performance. The manager must
coordinate financial and non-financial incentives to motivate
the subordinates.
(5)
Coordination through Communication:
A sound means of communication and also free flow of
communication are important pre-requisites to successful
coordination. Written communication, reports, bulletins, etc.
are important devices to provide speedy information to
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subordinates who can coordinate their work. Certainly,


personal

contact

is

the

most

effective

means

of

communication to achieve coordination.


(6)
Coordination through Staffing:
The need for coordination arises because there is need to
integrate the efforts of all employees. The placement of right
number of executives in various positions is of great
importance. These executives must possess the qualities of
head and heart, who are willing to coordinate efforts of all.
(7)
Coordination through Controlling:
When the manager performs the function of controlling, he
comes to know whether the current activities are in
accordance with the desired standards. If certain deviations
are noted, the manager can recommend remedial measures to
coordinate the activities.
(8)
Coordination through Decision-Making:
Decision-Making is choosing from among two or more
alternative courses of action. Coordination is required not
only to identify the problem but also to work out the best
solution.

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