Friday, March 7, 2014

14 Fundamental Principles of Management Formulated by Henry Fayol

Henry Fayol, a famous industrialist of France, has described fourteen principles of management in his book General and Industrial Management. While presenting the principles of management Fayol has kept two things in mind. Firstly, the list of the principles of management should not be long but should be suggestive and only those principles should be explained which become applicable in most of the situations.



  1. DIVISION OF WORK: Work should be divided among individuals and groups to ensure  that effort and attention are focused on special portions of the task. Fayol presented work specialization as the best way to use the human resources of the organization. For example, a furniture manufacturer gets an order for manufacturing 100 lecture stands. He has five workers who will do the job. There are two ways to complete this order. First, every worker should be asked to complete 20 lecture stands.The second method can be distributing different parts of the lecture stand-legs, top board, centre support, assembling and polishing-to all the five workers in a manner that only one worker does the same job for all the 100 lecture stands. Here, Fayol’s indication is to the second way to do this job and not the former one.                                                                                                                  
  2. AUTHORITY: The concepts of Authority and responsibility are closely related. Authority was defined by Fayol as the right to give orders and the power to exact obedience. Responsibility involves being accountable, and is therefore naturally associated with authority. Whoever assumes authority also assumes responsibility.                                                              
  3. DISCIPLINE: A successful organization requires the common effort of workers. Penalties should be applied judiciously to encourage this common effort. For example, if the employees break their promise of working up to their full capacity, it will amount to the violation of obedience. Similarly a sales manager has the authority to do business on credit.But in case he allows this facility not to the general customers but only to his relatives and friends, then it will amount to ignoring his respect to his authority.                                                                           
  4. UNITY OF COMMAND: Workers should receive orders from only one manager or an individual employee should receive orders from only one superior at a time and that employee should be answerable only to that superior. If there are many superiors giving orders to the same employee, he will not be able to decide as to which order is to be given priority. He thus finds himself in a confused situation.                                                                                             
  5. UNITY OF DIRECTION: The entire organization should be moving towards a common objective in a common direction.or example, suppose an automobile company is manufacturing two products, namely, scooters and cars, hence having two divisions.As each product has its own markets and problems therefore each division must have its own targets. Now each division must plan its target as per its environmental conditions to get better results. It is necessary to distinguish between the meaning of the unity of command and the unity of direction.                                                                                                        
  6. SUBORDINATION OF INDIVIDUAL INTERESTS TO THE GENERAL INTERESTS: The interests of one person should not take priority over the interests of the organization as a whole. For example, if a manager takes some decision which harms him personally but results in a great profit to the company, he should certainly give priority to the interest of the company and take the decision accordingly. On the contrary, if some decision helps the manager personally but results in a great loss to the company, then such a decision should never be taken.                                                                                                                                       
  7. REMUNERATION: Many variables, such as cost of living, supply of qualified personnel, general business conditions, and success of the business, should be considered in determining a worker’s rate of pay.                                                                                                  
  8. CENTRALIZATION: Fayol defined centralization as lowering the importance of the subordinate role. Decentralization is increasing the importance. The degree to which centralization or decentralization should be adopted depends on the specific organization in which the manager is working.                                                                                                                  
  9. SCALAR CHAIN: Managers in hierarchies are part of a chain like authority scale. Each manager, from the first line supervisor to the president, possess certain amounts of authority. The President possesses the most authority; the first line supervisor the least. Lower level managers should always keep upper level managers informed of their work activities. The existence of a scalar chain and adherence to it are necessary if the organization is to be successful.                                                                                                    
  10. ORDER: For the sake of efficiency and coordination, all materials and people related to a specific kind of work should be treated as equally as possible.                                                                          
  11. EQUITY: All employees should be treated as equally as possible.                                                                                                                 
  12. STABILITY OF TENURE OF PERSONNEL: Retaining productive employees should always be a high priority of management. Recruitment and Selection Costs, as well as increased product-reject rates are usually associated with hiring new workers.                                                                                                 
  13. INITIATIVE: Management should take steps to encourage worker initiative, which is defined as new or additional work activity undertaken through self direction.                                                    
  14. ESPIRIT DE CORPS: Management should encourage harmony and general good feelings among employees.