Coordination- the essence of management
Coordination means organizing different parts or elements together so that they work more effectively together. It is the process of synchronizing all the activities of different departments together to achieve common goal. There are diverse functions in an organization such as planning, organising, staffing, directing and controlling and coordination runs as a common thread through all of them so as to get better results and reaching the ultimate objective of the firm more effectively and efficiently.
The process of coordinating is required in different activities of the organization such as manufacturing, buying, selling, financing etc. this is sometimes referred to be a completely different function of management but it is not a different function of management rather it is the very essence of management. It is pervasive and is required at top level, middle level, and operational level and within workers also.
Functions of management
Coordination during planning stage
Planning means to decide in advance about various things such as what to do, how to do, when to do and who are the people who will do it. Planning includes various plans which are to be planned in advance such as objectives, strategy, plans and procedures, rules etc. These are to be coordinated properly for example including all of them into one master plan and thus avoiding any glitches or problems later on during other functions.
Coordination during organization stage
Organizing means dividing all the work into different divisions and departments and creates a proper flow of authority and responsibility. Without coordination it would not be possible for any employee to properly follow the divisional structure and it may create chaos.
Coordination and staffing stage
Staffing is also affected by coordination. Staffing includes recruitment, selection, placement, promotion, demotion, transfers etc. These activities are to be highly coordinated so that proper human resource can be selected and placed for the right task and at right time. When these activities are not coordinated then it may create a gap between requirement of workforce and appointment of workforce.
Coordination and directing stage
Directing is the stage where actual work takes place. Directing means giving required instructions, motivation, and guidance and leading the personnel properly so the work is done on time and is completed effectively and efficiently. When there is lack of coordination between the heads and subordinates then proper flow of instructions cannot be done and can lead to unfinished work or less effective work.
Coordination and controlling stage
Controlling means to hold things properly. Controlling involves setting the standards first and this is also part of planning process. Then it requires measuring the actual performance. When both are measured it is then required to compare the set standards with the actual performance. After comparing and finding out the deviations, corrective measures are taken. Coordination is required in controlling because we cannot jump from one step to another. A proper process needs to be followed. If we miss out any step then control may fail and may lead to failure of strategies and sometimes result in failure of business.
Features of coordination
Coordination helps in achieving the objectives with minimum chaos or conflict. These are the features of coordination:
Coordination integrates group efforts
Coordination is most important in bringing unity of action and it brings together diverse activities into one purposeful activity so that can help in achieving the goal of organization. It helps in giving focal point to the group so that the group can work towards that focus and the effort does not go in vain. Many a times, each member of group works very efficiently but not together and this reduces the overall effectiveness of the group. Coordination helps in synchronisation of efforts in right direction.
Coordination ensures unity of action
The main purpose of coordination is that the unity of action is there and the main purpose is achieved. It helps in keeping different activities of different departments focused towards one common goal. For example, any company who produces and sells the product need to know the demand in the market and produce accordingly and this is only possible when there is proper coordination between the production department and the sales department.
Coordination is a continuous process
Coordination is not a single use function but a continuous process and starts at the very first stage, that is, planning. While planning the coordination is required for making different plans and then it continues further for different functions of management.
Coordination is all pervasive function
Pervasive means that it is required at every level of management and within every activity. Coordination is required in different activities and different departments such as production, sales, purchase department etc. every action needs to be coordinated to achieve a common goal.
Coordination is responsibility of all managers
Coordination is required at the top level of management so that there can be proper communication between the firm and outer world. Middle level management coordinates with the top level and the lower level management to communicate the plans made by the top level to lower level. Lower level management requires coordination to coordinate the actions of workers and then represent the workers in front of middle level managers.
Coordination is a deliberate function
Coordination and co-operation go hand in hand. Many a times, workers and managers are ready to cooperate with each other but due to lack of coordination the efforts get wasted. Thus coordination should be a deliberated function and should be done in a conscious manner.
Coordination is function of management which is required within other functions of management and thus cannot be called a separate one but Coordination is the essence of management. Coordination and cooperation are required at every level of organization and within every department to avoid wastage of efforts, time, and money and avoid dissatisfaction among employees.