French Management Theorist Henri Fayol, back in the early part of the twentieth century wrote that the five management functions of planning, organizing, commanding, coordinating and controlling are performed by all managers. However, in the present day, a manager’s basic functions have been reduced to four. We say that a manager is one who plans, organizes, leads and controls the operations of the organization. Planning is a process that includes defining goals, establishing strategy, and developing plans to coordinate activities. Organizing is determining what tasks are to be done, by whom, how tasks are to be grouped, who reports to whom, and where decisions are to be made. Leading includes motivating employees, directing others, selecting the most effective communications channels, and resolving conflicts. Controlling is monitoring activities to ensure they are being accomplished as planned, and correcting any significant deviations.
Managers often play different roles in an organization. In the late 1960s, Henry Mintzberg identified ten basic managerial roles clustered into three categories. In the category of Interpersonal Roles a manager plays a figurehead role by being ceremonial and symbolic in nature, a leadership role where he hires, trains, motivates and disciplines employees and a liaison role where he contacts others that provide information. In the category of Informational Roles a manager is required to play the monitor role by collecting information from outside organizations and