2.2.6 The Concept of Management
To have a proper understanding of what management is, note from the beginning that it denotes two things - it denotes a function as well as the people who discharge the function.Let us therefore rely on the definition provided by (Robbins and Coutler 1966) in Brussels(2009:17), where they posit that the term management refers to the process of coordinating work activities so that they are completed efficiently and effectively with and through other people. Simply put, management is the act of organizing, controlling, directing, and coordination of activities through people and with people in order to achieve objectives. It can be applied in all aspects of life. In the homes, in churches, in schools, in organizations and even in the communities, management is applied.
Every definition of management should therefore show that management is an ongoing activity in pursuit of goals making use of people and machines. In the words of Ogunbameru (2000:11), management can be seen as a process of attaining organization’s goals by effectively leading, and controlling the organization’s human, physical, financial and informational resources. However, the classical management theorists have a more direct and brief approach to the definition of management. F.W. Taylor defines management as an “Art of knowing what you want to do and then seeing that it is done the best and cheapest way”.
For Henry Fayol, “To manage is to forecast, to plan, to organize, to command, to co-ordinate and to control”.For Peter Drucker, Management is work and as such it has its own skills, its own tools and its own techniques”. He goes further to say that “Management is the art of getting things done through and with people (Ogunbameru, 2000:19)
Hellriegel et al (1999) in (Ezigbo, 2011:4) posit that a manager is a person who plans, organizes, directs and controls the allocation of human, material, financial and information resources in pursuit of the organization’s goals. Management is therefore referred to as the process of planning, organizing, leading and controlling the work of the organization members and of using all available organizational resources to reach stated organizational goals.
In Aluko, Odugbesan, Gbadamosi, and Osuagwu(2004:19), two typical and relevant definition of management exists; it is the direction of an enterprise through planning, organization, coordination, and controlling human and material resources towards the achievement of predetermined objectives. Secondly, it is the process of coordinating individual group activity towards group goals. Aluko et al. (2004) identify three levels of management;top, middle and operational levels and all are for coordination and strategizing activities, implementing policies and day to day supervision and direction of activities.
From his definition, it is obvious that management is a process which takes place at all levels in an organization. Management is therefore about making decisions through the management process which is essentially a step by step way of doing things through the rational use of resources both human and material resources. Management functions are to plan, organize, coordinate and actuate. In the researchers own words, management is the art of doing things through people and with people.Weihrich(2000) sees management as the process of designing and maintaining an environment in which individuals working together in groups accomplish efficiently selected aims. Managers are charged with the responsibility of taking actions that will make it possible for individuals to make their best contributions to group objectives. Weihrich further observes thatmanaging is an art and at the same time scientific. He sees the practice as an art while the organized knowledge underlying the practice may be referred to as science. In such contexts, science and art are not mutually exclusive but are complementary.Managerial activities may be common to all managers but the practices and methods, must be adapted to the particular tasks, enterprises and situations. Although managerial concepts, principles and theories have general validity but their application as an art depends on the particular situation.Managing therefore, just like so many other discipline example medicine and accounts, engineering and music is in large measure an art but founded on a wealth of science. It is making decisions on the basis of business realities. It isobvious that management skills once acquired would be readily transferable between different organization and even private sector organization like manufacturing firms(Otite, Oniugu, and Albert, 2000:19).
Consequently, managers must be responsive to both external and internal environmental factors of the organization before decisions are made in order to achieve the desired objectives and better performance. Secondly, for these objectives to be achieved, it must be strategic in nature. In Ezigbo(2011:334) strategy consists of actions taken by an organization to accomplish stated objectives. Harvey (1980) in Ezigbo (2011:335)also defines strategy as a course of action used to achieve major objectives. By applying strategically the organized knowledge about management that has accrued over the decades, managers work better. It is this knowledge, whether crude or advanced, whether exact or inexact, that, to the extent it is well organized, clear and pertinent, constitutes a science. In this context, science and art are not mutually exclusive but are complementary.
Thenmozhi(2006:19) enlists the following characteristics as found inmanagement;
Management is a Process /a function.
Is a Social Process
Involves Group Effort
Aims at achieving predetermined objectives
Management is required at all levels.
Is a Profession
Is comprised of the following functions: •Planning •Organizing •Directing Controlling •Co-ordination.
Is an art and a science
For him, the complexity of management lies in the fact that, it is not only an art but also a science. There is therefore no defined approach. Each approach depends on the situation at hand unlike in the science world where scientific formulas are used to find solutions to problems. He goes further to classify management as an art and as a science. As an art management involves the following;
Practical know how
As a science, management involves the following;
Cause and effect relationship
Generally, management as a science provides principles and as an art helps in tackling situations using the human skill. Human skills are involved at top level and technical skill at supervisory level.
Source; Thenmozhi, M.(2006:25),Management Concepts and Fundamentals,Department of Management Studies Indian Institute of Technology Madras Chennai Madras Printers
The objectives of Intellectual Property cannot therefore be well achieved if not managed well.
Osuagwu et al (2004) identify three areas of management skill as Technical, Human and Conceptual skills. The conceptual skill helps managers to understand the complexities of the overall organization or the system, Human skill helps him to have the ability and judgment in working with and through people while technical helps him to have ability to use knowledge, methods, techniques and equipment necessary for the performance of specific tasks.
Since managers are management practitioners, they are needed in all aspects of business, because they manage both human and material assets, including engineering, law, medicine, economics, and social sciences. In property acquisition and maintenance, both tangible and intangible properties, management is also needed to meet objectives. Effective management leads to effective performance, and thus increases productivity(Aluko et al., 2004:5). Clear, vigorous, determination of goals is necessary for effective management of properties in manufacturing firms, both tangible and intangible.These will usually lead to an organization’s increase in production and possiblysales. In intellectual property management, the manager needs all these in addition to knowledge and skill for a good performance.
2.2.7 The Concept of Performance
Performance can be defined as the actual output of an individual placed on a job over a period of time. Performance is measured in actual quantity or percentage quality. Murphy, (1999) in Frese, and Sonnentag(2001:9) defines performance as behaviors that are related to the goals of the organization. Rotundo, and Rotman(2002:19) declare that performance are those actions or behaviors under the control of the individual, that contribute to the organization’s goals, and that can be measured according to the individual’s level of proficiency. This definition seems to be consistent with most other writers. Nevertheless, the concept of performance cannot be explored fully without mentioning the word “COMPETENCE”.One of the main purposes of training of managers is to increase their competence in doing certain jobs. Even so, the relevance of competence can only be demonstrated in a work situation by achieving certain practical results which determines their level of performance (kubra, and Prokopenko, 1998). If competence is low, performance is likely to be low, but if competence is high and performance remains low, then something is likely wrong in the organizational management system or better still in the definition and profile of competence which results to performance. They further identify factors like vague definition of responsibilities, low managerial authority, and poor motivation as some of the factors affecting performance in organization(kubra, and Prokopenko, 1998).
“Performance is what the organization hires one to do, and do well” (Campbell et al., 1993:40). Thus, performance is not defined by the action itself but by judgmental and evaluative processes. Moreover, only actions which can be scaled, i.e., measured, are considered to constitute measuring by performance.Performance is a multi-dimensional concept. A great deal of attention has been paid to the distinction between task and contextual performance. Rotundo, (2002) distinguishes between task and contextual performance. Task performance refers to an individual’s proficiency with which he or she performs activities which contribute to the organization’s ‘technical core. Contextual performance refers to activities which do not contribute to the technical core but which support the organizational, social, and psychological environment in which organizational goals are pursued’
They identify three basic differences between task and contextual performance;
1. Task performance is job specific whereas Contextual performance activities are comparable for almost all jobs,
2. Task performance is predicted mainly by ability, whereas contextual performance is mainly predicted by motivation and personality;
3. Task performance is in-role behavior and part of the formal job-description, whereas contextual performance is extra-role behavior and discretionary (not enforceable), and often not rewarded by formal reward systems or directly or indirectly considered by the management.
Motowidlo & Schmit (1999:30) also distinguishes three basic assumptions associated with the differentiation between task and contextual performance. These are;
1. Activities relevant for task performance vary between jobs whereas contextual performance activities are relatively similar across jobs.
2. Task performance is related to ability, whereas contextual performance is related to personality and motivation.
3. Task performance is more prescribed and constitutes in-role behavior, whereas contextual performance is more discretionary and extra-role but also making suggestions about how to improve work procedures. Researchers also conceptualize task performance as behaviors that contribute directly or indirectly to the technical core and behaviors that are recognized as part of the job or job description. Rotundo, et al. (2002: 19) argue that this definition includes a wide range of job behaviors and that some behaviors contribute to the employee’s duties and responsibilities, while other behaviors still affect the goals of the organization but do not fall under duties and responsibilities.He however notes that restricting a definition of task performance (or any aspect of job performance) to include only those behaviors listed in a job description is problematic because job descriptions for the same job may differ from one organization to the next, which makes it difficult to compare performance across organizations. Furthermore, jobs are constantly changing without these changes being reflected in job descriptions. Therefore, measures of performance that depend on the content of a job description may not be accurate. On the basis of these arguments, he recommends that task performance be defined as actions and behaviors that contribute directly or indirectly to the production of a good or the provision of a service.
Productivity is another term that is often confused with performance. Productivity has been defined as the ratio of outputs relative to inputs into some production process while job performance is defined as actions that contribute to organizational goals and that are under the individual’s control,and or the organizational control. It is therefore important to distinguished performance from effectiveness, productivity and efficiency (Campbell et al., 1993;Pritchard et al., 1992 in Wubben et al (2003).
Tinn et al (2008:2) pronounce that it is commonly accepted that the business environment encompassing features of the legal, regulatory, financial and institutional system of a country has an impact on the performance of firms. As barriers to doing business appear to vary widely across regions and countries, it has also been asserted that the business environment will affect aggregate performance. As such, empirical investigation of these conjectures can proceed at both firm and country levels.Wubben et al(2003:7) particularly emphasize on the importance of performance in, their paper, Innovation and Firm performance, by trying to understand the relation between innovation and performance in both large and small firms.
The definitions of job performance reviewed here have some common features. These features include a focus on behaviors that are under the control of individual and not results and on behaviors that contribute to the goals of the organization.
Organizations need highly performing individuals in order to meet their goals, to deliver the products and services they specialized in, and finally to achieve competitive advantage.Sonnentag, and Frese (2001:13), note that performance is as important for the individual as it is for the organization. Accomplishing tasks and performing at a high level can be a source of satisfaction, with feelings of mastery and pride. Low performance and not achieving the goals might be experienced as dissatisfying to organizations or even as a personal failure. Moreover performance if it is recognized by others within the organization is often rewarded by financial and or other benefits.
Job performance needs to be differentiated from other measures of performance that are sometimes used interchangeably, often incorrectly so. For example, evaluating the total sales of a retail sales clerk at the end of the day or month against the standards of performance for sales clerks set by the standards is an example of a measure of effectiveness, where a measure that rates the sales clerk on appropriate work behaviors is a measure of job performance(Sonnentag, et al., 2001:19). Although effectiveness is sometimes used as an index of job performance, it actually also measures something different (Campbell, 1990: 23). Authors also agree that when conceptualizing performance one has to differentiate between an action (i.e., behavioral) aspect and an outcome aspect of performance.Moreover, despite the general agreement that the behavioral and the outcome aspect of performance have to be differentiated, authors do not completely agree about which.
An effective performance measurement system is an asset to any organization (Osuagwu et al 2004:180). On the other hand, performance is one of the widely used criteria for determining organization’s effectiveness and efficiency. To perform is to take a complex series of actions that integrate skills and knowledge to produce a valuable result.Armstrong(2006:503) sees performance management as a process. As such, it involves managers and those whom they manage acting as partners but within a framework that sets out how they can best work together. Performance management can also be described as a continuous self-renewing cycle as was illustrated by Armstrong, with each part of the cycle contributing to the progress of the organization.
Figure: 2.1 Performance Management Cycles
Source: Armstrong, M., (2006) Human Resources Management Practice (10th edition)London U.K. Kogon Page Publishers Limited,p. 507.
Gbadamosi, 1995) in Aluko, et al (2004:180), emphasizes that organizational performance or effectiveness is commonly measured with the following criteria; Productivity or Output, goal attainment and profitability. They further enumerated the indices of performance as; Productivity/Output; Goal Attainment; Profitability; Moral, Turnover, and Absenteeism; Employee satisfaction; and Employee performance. Generally, it is measured with actual output data. However, critics point out that measuring it in that form ignored the environment of the organization and its coping ability, the future and present of the organization and finally the quality and efficiency of performance which are all played down. Despite the critics, performance can still not be measured without looking at the output of a firm.
Performance, as the adage goes, is a “journey not a destination.” The location in the journey is labeled as “level of performance.” Sonnentag, et al (2001:32) aptly enumerates the various levels with its characteristics as follows:
- • As a lawyer improves her level of performance, she can conduct legal research faster, more thoroughly, and more in-depth.
- • As an academic department improves its level of performance, the members of the department are able to produce more effective student learning, more effective research, and a more effective culture.
- • As a manager advances his level of performances, he is able to organize people and resources more effectively and to get higher quality results in a shorter time.
- • As a teacher advances his levels of performance, he is able to produce deeper levels of learning, improved levels of skill development, and more connection with the discipline for larger classes while spending less time doing this.
- • As an actor improves his level of performance, he is able to learn parts quicker, play more varied roles, and produce a deeper and more meaningful impact on audiences.
THE CONCEPT OF MANAGEMENT AND PERFORMANCE - INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY