Business Management: nature and scope

Business management (also known as business administration) is the administration of a commercial enterprise. It includes all aspects of overseeing and supervising business operations. From the point of view of management and leadership, it also covers fields that include office building administration, accounting, finance, designing, development, quality assurance, data analysis, sales, project management, information-technology management, research and development, and marketing.

The administration of a business includes the performance or management of business operations and decision-making, as well as the efficient organization of people and other resources to direct activities towards common goals and objectives. In general, “administration” refers to the broader management function, including the associated finance, personnel and MIS services.

Administration can refer to the bureaucratic or operational performance of routine office tasks, usually internally oriented and reactive rather than proactive. Administrators, broadly speaking, engage in a common set of functions to meet an organization’s goals. Henri Fayol (1841-1925) described these “functions” of the administrator as “the five elements of administration”.  According to Fayol, the five functions of management are;

  1. Planning.
  2. Organizing.
  3. Commanding.
  4. Coordinating.
  5. Controlling

Sometimes creating output, which includes all of the processes that generate the product that the business sells, is added as a sixth element.

Alternatively, some analyses view management as a subset of administration, specifically associated with the technical and operational aspects of an organization, and distinct from executive or strategic functions.

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