Direction in Management

  • Post last modified:10 January 2022
  • Reading time:11 mins read

Direction in Management

In the process of management, the planning organizing and staffing are not enough. These are to be supported by effective directing and efficient controlling. Every manager must direct his subordinates, to get things done. The directing is considered as an initiating function.

Organization is the sum-total of human and non-human resources. These resources should be handled in a certain way to get the desired results. Through direction, the management conveys and motivates individuals in the organization to function in the desired way to get organizational objectives.

Without direction, other managerial activities like planning, organizing, and staffing become ineffective.

Fig 1.2 Directing and Supervising

Here the manager will direct, instruct, guide and oversee the presentation of every workers so as to obtain already defined goals. It is the main part of the management process which is responsible for planning, organizing, staffing. Direction carries human factors that explain guidance to workers in order to 127 do work. In case of management direction refers to activities that are created to uplift subordinates in order to work efficiently and professionally.


Definition of Directing

In the words of UrwickandBrech, “directing is the guidance, the inspiration, the leadership of those men and women that constitutes the real core of the responsibility of management.” Thus directing involves, issuing orders and instructions, overseeing of the subordinates and supervising the work being performed by them. According to Hai man, “Directing consists of a process or technique by which instruction can be issued and operations can be carried out as originally planned.” Broadly, the process of directing involves the following elements:

  • Issuing orders and instructions to the subordinates regarding the work being performed by them.
  • Guiding, counseling and educating the subordinates and telling them the way of doing the given job.
  • Supervising the work being performed by them on the regular basis to ensure that they have been working according to the plan.
  • Maintaining and inspiring the subordinates for following given orders and instructions and working in the given direction.

Nature of Directing

There are certain characteristics related to directing which are

Pervasive Function

As directing is essential at every levels in an organization, so it is the duty duty of the manager to give related guidance and to boost his subordinates.

Continuous Activity

In an organization, direction serves as continuous activity throughout life in an organization.

Human Factor

It is seen that directing is associated with subordinates and as human factor. As both are complex and unpredictable, hence direction serves as an important part.

Creative Activity

With direction, you can alter any plans into performance as in the absence of this; people will become stationary and physical resources results in no meaning.

Creative Activity

With direction, you can alter any plans into performance as in the absence of this; people will become stationary and physical resources results in no meaning.


Need and Importance of Directing

Directing may be considered as a core of managing process. The performances of various activities in organization revolve around it. In spite of sound planning, a suitable organizational structure, effective staffing and efficient controlling,

the desired results may not be obtained without proper directing. It is only through directing process, the organizational actions are initiated for achieving it objectives. In detail, the importance of directing can be understood on the basis of the following factors.

Directing helps in achieving Co-ordination

The Co-ordination is considered as a by-product of effective directing. In the process of directing, every manager integrates the activities of subordinates through supervision, guidance and counseling for achieving organizational goals.

It is a means of motivation

To accomplish the-objectives of organization, it is necessary to motivate the employees working there. They are motivated to work willingly and efficiently, through the process of directing. The superior who directs the activities of subordinates inspires them to follow given orders and instructions wholeheartedly.

Directing supplements other managerial functions

In the process of managing, the manager has to perform many management functions such as planning organizing, staffing and controlling etc.

To produce desired results from all these functions, the directing function is crucial. Through directing, other managerial functions are initiated and actuated. Moreover, without effective directing, the managerial functions remain less effective.

Directing helps in coping with changing environment

The changing environment of business may force organization to initiate change in its functioning, structure or goals. Such changes can be introduced and managed effectively with the help of directing. Through directing, the manager provides dynamic leadership and free and frank communication with subordinates as to convince them regarding the positive side of change.

They may be taken into confidence and persuaded for accepting the change and giving their full cooperation for implementing it.

Directing facilitates order and discipline among employees

Disciplined human force is needed for the smooth functioning and the success of the organization. Through the process of directing orders and instructions are given to the subordinates and they are inspired and motivated to follow them. The main purpose of directing is to get things done by subordinates. By supervising, guiding, educating and overseeing the activities of subordinates, they are made to work in a disciplined manner.


Principles of Directing

In order to make directing more effective and meaningful, certain principles are followed. Some important principles of directing are as follows:

Harmony of objectives

The organization is a collective entity of the people. It involves the interest of various groups of the people such as owners, employees, customers, financiers, society, etc. According to this principle, to secure maximum prosperity for the organization and to serve the interest of other groups in a better way,

these conflicting objectives must be synchronized so that they strengthen 129 and promote each other.

In this regard, P.W.Taylor has painted out that an effective direction depends on the harmony of objectives Interestingly enough, Henri Fayol has also stated that the employees of organization should sacrifice their personal interest for achieving the ob-objectives of organization, because their personal interest may be served better only if common goal of organization are achieved efficiently.

Unity of command

According to this principle while directing subordinates, every subordinate should get all orders and instructions regarding the work only from one superior, An application of this principle implies unified direction of subordinates? activities by one superior. In doing so, discipline can be maintained among them their activities can be controlled effectively and dual command is avoided.

Direct supervision

Directing becomes more effective if it is accompanied by personal interest and personal touch of the superior. The superior maintains direct contact with subordinates, looks into their needs and requirement, helps them in performing their job and solve their difficulties promptly.

The subordinates feel happy and satisfied and contribute more for the accomplishment of organizational goals.

Participate leadership

It is interesting to observe that participate leadership on the part of superior helps in making directing more effective. If the superior respects and listens to the views of subordinates, they become more loyal and sincere and give more cooperation to him. According to this principle to encourage the performance levels, subordinates should be taken into confidence and must be consulted at least on the matters that are related to them before making decision by the superior.

Follow up

Issuing orders and instructions is the chief task of direction. In order to make directing, more effective it is necessary to take up some follow up actions by the superior. He should motivate subordinates to follow given directives and work accordingly. He must oversee the working of subordinates, check their performance and guide them to follow suitable course of action for doing the Job.

Unity of direction

To make the whole process of directing more meaningful it is necessary to follow the principle of unity of direction. According to this principle, there should be one head and one plan for a group of activities, which are similar and have same objective.

For example, all activities related to production should have one plan i.e. the production plan and this plan should be implemented under the command of production manager. By adopting this principle, duplication and repetition of activities will be reduced and benefits of specialization may be secured.


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