Managers look alike across organisations. That is the conclusion of Canadian professor Henry Mintzberg, who has spent his long academic career in business and management studying and comparing the behaviour of managers.
From his many studies, he found that managers hold ten roles, which can be divided into three categories: the interpersonal roles, the information role and the decision-maker role.
The various management roles cannot be separated. If one of the roles is missing, the work of the organisation will simply not be performed optimally. It is also not possible to divide the roles between multiple people unless the persons work together as a whole.
Do you know your management roles? We have listed all ten roles below.
These roles describe the formal leadership tasks that mostly involve everyday decisions.
As a leader, you are the spearhead of the company and often closely associated with the overall image of the organisation. This means that the manager may have to attend the occasional formal and ceremonial events.
As a leader, you are at the forefront of an organisation and have overall responsibility for its functioning and delivering. To do that, you must also ensure that the employees are able to do their job. Therefore, the manager must motivate the employees and make the necessary decisions for the organisation to function on a daily basis.
Get some inspiration for personnel management in our E-book 'When dialogue between manager and employee develops'.
The manager not only has to nurture the relationship with the employees of the organisation. He/she must also create relations with the outside world, e.g. citizens or business partners.
Another important task for a leader is to obtain useful information from contacts from within and outside the walls of the organisation.
A leader uses his or her network outside the organisation to collect information that may be of importance to the organisation. This may include changes in the environment or changing expectations of the organisation.
It is important to share the information gathered with the employees as it is often of great importance for their work or everyday life. This can be done at morning meetings, team meetings or at the EDP interview.
Read our blog article 'Make the EDP interview last all year'.
As a spokesperson, the manager must pass on some of the information collected to contacts outside his or her organisation. In addition, the manager must pass on information to his superiors who may, for example, need to get information about finances or strategy.
One of the most important roles of the manager is to make decisions based on information and authority.
As an entrepreneur, the manager adapts and transforms the organisation to the requirements and expectations of its environment. This is related to the role of monitor, where the leader is always looking for new ideas to strengthen the organisation. The idea must then be turned into action, and the manager can implement the idea personally or delegate the task to an employee.
8) Disturbance Handler
According to Mintzberg, crises are unavoidable in an organisation, so the role of the manager is to change and adapt the organisation to be able to handle those crises.
9) Resource Allocator
Even though the manager is a decision-maker, he/she must also distribute resources within the organisation and coordinate the work in order to solve the tasks as best as possible. In order to allocate resources, it is important to have an overview of the available competences in the organisation.
Read here about using a competence web to map and develop the competences of the employees.
Last but not least, the manager must negotiate with current and new employees as well as with people outside the organisation.