Is Management an Art or Science? Essay

Is Management an art or science? Explain. Management is an art and science both. Management as an art: • Art refers to creative skills and talent which people require to conduct certain activities effectively. • Art is an inborn talent. However it can be refined through learning and pratice. Management is an art to the following reasons. • Intelligence – Successful managers are intelligent. Most importantly they need to have more intelligence than their subordinates so as to command respect and get the work done. Initiative – Managers like artist have to take initiative of doing the right things right at the right time. Good managers also encourage initiative in the part of their subordinates. • Innovative – Managers like any other art needs to be innovative. A managerial decision taken by a manager cannot be easily be copied or repeated by any other manager. • Individual Approach – Every manager needs to adopt his individual approach or style of handling situations. Application & Dedication – Good managers require not only skills & knowledge but there is also a need for discipline, dedication and commitment. • Result Oriented – Every good manager, like an artist, is always practical and action based. Management as a science: • Science is a systematic body knowledge which is universally accepted. • “F. W. Taylor” father of scientific management was perhaps the first person to consider management as a science Sciences can be broadly divided into two groups: ) Physical Science – like physics, chemistry and mathematics are exact and accurate, whereas social sciences are not exact and accurate as they deal with human beings.

2) Social Science – Management is a social science because it deals with the human beings. Since human nature cannot be predicted with accuracy, the decisions taken in management may just be one way of doing things in a given situation and not the only way of doing things. Comparison: Management As an art • Based on practice and creativity. It is a theoretical body of knowledge • Has personalized application As a science • Based on experimentation • It is a systemized body of knowledge. • Has universal application Frederick W. Taylor’s Principle of scientific management – Managers must study the way that workers perform their tasks and understand job knowledge (formal and informal) that workers have, and then find ways to improve how tasks are performed. – Managers must codify new methods of performing tasks into written work rules and standard operating procedures. Managers should hire workers who have skills abilities needed for the tasks to be completed, and should train them to perform the tasks according to the established procedures. – Managers must establish a level of performance for the task that is acceptable, fair and should link it to a pay system that reward workers who perform above acceptable level. – Practicing manager who believes in management as a science is likely to believe that there are ideal managerial practices for certain situations.

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For instance, If manager has a problem with an employee’s poor work performance, the manager will look to specific means of performance improvement, expecting than certain principles will work in most situations. He or she may rely on concepts learned in business school or through a company training program when determining a course of action, perhaps paying less attention to political and social factors involved in the situation.


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