Definition & Meaning of Principles of Management.
A principle is a fundamental truth and is generally stated in the form of cause and effect inter-relationship. Management principles are the statement of general truth providing guide to thought or action. In the words of Herbert G. Hicks, “Principles of management are the guiding rules of laws for managerial action.”
In the words of Kantooz and O’ Donnell, “Management principles are fundamental truth of general validity.” These truths are the guiding pillars in the managerial execution of functions and solution to problems. Every social science has developed its own principles. Management is also a social science and thus it has developed a number of management principles from time to time.
Henry Foyol, a French industrialist, offered fourteen principles of management for the first time in 1916. During the period of 1920-40s in the USA many authors did hard work in developing and testing various principles of management. Today, there is a very lengthy list of management principles and it is not possible to give an exhaustive list of them.
In order to derive principles following steps are taken as:
– Observation and study of the problem.
– Testing the principles.
– Choice of the problem or opportunity.
– Making hypothesis.
– Conclusion and forecasting.
Observing and study of the problem: Researchers in management observe the problems carefully in different situations and from different angles. They have to study deeply the problem, its causes, magnitude, consequences and find their solutions.
Testing the Principles: The principles formed must be scientifically tested and verified. Before generalization of the principles testing under different situations is a must
Choice of the problem or opportunity: The researchers in management science identify the area where general principles of business management are lacking or need modification.
Making hypothesis: On the basis of observation and the data collection a hypothesis is formed, under assumed situation what is expected to happen. For example, there will be more output, as wages are paid according to piece-rate system.
Conclusion and forecasting: The next step will be to reach the logical conclusion and predict the specific happenings under assumed situations. Thus, the management principles are not as exact as principles of physical sciences, because management is a social science and thus a victim of the nearness of social sciences. It deals with the human beings whose behaviors are always unpredictable, because they have go individually different socio-economic status, needs and perceptions. Secondly, it deals with the complex problems about which to little is known, though a lot of principles have been derived out of experiments, observation and enquiry. These principles are being satisfactorily applied but we cannot say that we have attained the perfection stage. Invention and improvement of theories in every discipline is a continuous process. The existing management principles are satisfactorily effective in understanding the complex management problems. These principles are applied in the real situations of managing business enterprises and achieving handsome results.
A Article by Swati Gupta
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