What are the management functions that comprise the P-O-L-C framework?

What are the management functions that comprise the P-O-L-C framework?

Controlling involves ensuring that performance does not deviate from standards. Controlling consists
of three steps, which include (1) establishing performance standards, (2) comparing actual performance
against standards, and (3) taking corrective action when necessary. 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, number of defective products, or levels of quality or customer service.
The measurement of performance can be done in several ways, depending on the performance
standards, including financial statements, sales reports, production results, customer satisfaction, and
formal performance appraisals. Managers at all levels engage in the managerial function of controlling
to some degree.
The managerial function of controlling should not be confused with control in the behavioral or
manipulative sense. This function does not imply that managers should attempt to control or to manipulate
the personalities, values, attitudes, or emotions of their subordinates. Instead, this function of
management concerns the manager?s role in taking necessary actions to ensure that the work-related
activities of subordinates are consistent with and contributing toward the accomplishment of organizational
and departmental objectives.
Effective controlling requires the existence of plans, since planning provides the necessary performance
standards or objectives. Controlling also requires a clear understanding of where responsibility
for deviations from standards lies. Two traditional control techniques are budget and performance
audits. An audit involves an examination and verification of records and supporting documents. A
budget audit provides information about where the organization is with respect to what was planned or
budgeted for, whereas a performance audit might try to determine whether the figures reported are a
reflection of actual performance. Although controlling is often thought of in terms of financial criteria,
managers must also control production and operations processes, procedures for delivery of services,
compliance with company policies, and many other activities within the organization.
The management functions of planning, organizing, leading, and controlling are widely considered
to be the best means of describing the manager?s job, as well as the best way to classify accumulated
knowledge about the study of management. Although there have been tremendous changes in the
environment faced by managers and the tools used by managers to perform their roles, managers still
perform these essential functions.
KEY TAKEAWAY
The principles of management can be distilled down to four critical functions. These functions are planning,
organizing, leading, and controlling. This P-O-L-C framework provides useful guidance into what the ideal job
of a manager should look like.
EXERCISES
1. What are the management functions that comprise the P-O-L-C framework?
2. Are there any criticisms of this framework?
3. What function does planning serve?
4. What function does organizing serve?
5. What function does leading serve?
6. What function does controlling serve?
CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION TO PRINCIPLES OF MANAGEMENT 11
stakeholders
Individuals and organizations
who are actively involved in
the organization or whose
interests may be positively or
negatively affected as a result
of what the organization
does.
triple bottom line
The measurement of
business performance along
social, environmental, and
economic dimensions.
accounting profit
The difference between an
organization?s revenues and
its costs in a given period of
time.
corporate social
responsibility (CSR)
When organizations consider
the interests of society by
taking responsibility for the
effect of their activities on
customers, suppliers,
employees, shareholders,
communities, and the
environment in all aspects of
their operations.

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