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The Role of Leadership and Management in the 21st Century



The 21st century can be described as an era that is changing the way we do business, communicate and work. It is a period of technological revolution that is centred on computers, information, communication and multimedia technologies.

Business in the 21st century is mainly characterized by uncertainty, extreme competition, emerging technologies and globalisation. Thus, organisations to survive and function effectively, it is important to have effective leaders and managers as well as competent and reliable followers on board.

Business in the 21st century require leaders and managers who can make decisions quickly and effectively, use emerging technologies and social media to communicate, and coordinate actions efficiently. Moreover, leaders and managers can only achieve this if they master the main management functions discussed underneath.

Management Functions

Management focuses on four basic functions: planning, organising, leading and controlling. The role of the manager typically involves these several functions at any given time with the ultimate aim being to achieve short and long term business goals. Let’s get into the 4 basic core functions.


Planning

The first goal of the manager is to plan what must be done. This involves setting up objectives to be attained. The plan should be aligned with the business strategy, mission statement and long term goals. All relevant information relating to the business strategy should be collected and contextualised for each department/unit within the business and this plan should be executed tactically.


Organizing

Organising is a process that entails operationalisation/execution of the detailed plan. Through this process, the manager acquires the necessary resources and decides how will the plan be executed. This involves the manager to communicate methods, strategies, facilitate meetings and discussions for better understanding and to achieve the desired goals of the company.


Leading

Leading involves influencing and motivating individuals and team within the company to fulfil their roles and responsibilities. A leader aspires people using vision, influence, persuasion and effective communication.

Controlling

Controlling is a process of controlling and monitoring the progress towards the achievement of goals. This process is essential as it provides the managers to track progress against the plan. Meetings, presentations and reports can be used to gather accurate progress information. In addition, controlling entails ensuring performance does not deviate from standards. Performance standards are often stated in monetary terms such as revenue, costs or profits but may also be stated in other terms such as units produced, levels of quality or customer service.


To conclude organisational structure is vital in driving the business forward and leaders and managers are required to be decisional, interpersonal and informational and their role is to turn a team member’s skill and talent into a higher level of performance in order to achieve business goals.





Nozuko Tikayo

" Align all the elements of your life to support the pursuit of what has deep meaning to you"

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