Are you looking to expand your company? You’ll probably be involving a lot more people in your business than you are employing currently. Additionally, you’ll need to develop the organizational design involving different hierarchical levels of management to ensure that a clear chain of command is established. With all these aspects under consideration, dividing the employees into different levels of management can be one of the ways through which you can manage the business properly. In order to provide you with an overall view of the different levels of management, we have written this article. This article will also include the different functions and the skill level that the employees at each level of management have. So, let’s have a look at them.
A. Levels of management:
There are three levels of management that an organization can have. You can include different portfolios and designations in each of these management levels depending upon the specific needs of your business. So, here are the three levels:
Low Level Management:
The level of management, which deals with the non-managerial staff, oversees their work and interacts with them, is included in the low level management. The employees at this management level are at the lowest level of the managerial hierarchy. Moreover, they take instructions from the upper level of management. In addition, there is a direct involvement of these individuals in producing the products or rendering the services in an organization.
Following are the main functions of low level management:
- Oversees the work of the non-managerial staff
- Handle the grievances and concerns of the managerial staff
- Ensures that the instructions from the upper levels of management are fulfilled properly
- Involves in the assurance of the quality of the products or services produced by the organization
The management skills that are most important for the employees in this categorization are the technical skills. The technical skills often refer to the skills related to the execution of the specific job. The know-how of the technical elements and how would a particular task be performed are included in the technical skills. Such skills are important for the low level management because they are in direct contact with the non-managerial staff of the business. So, they need such expertise to get along in the best possible way.
The examples of the skills that are part of the low level management include:
- Technical expertise for operating machines
- Specific ways and techniques to do a job efficiently and effectively
- Additionally, hands on experience of producing goods and rendering services
Some of the designations that can be a part of the low level management of any organization are:
- Shift manager
- Department manager
- District Manager
- Office manager
Middle Level Management:
This is the second tier in the managerial hierarchy. The purpose of this level of management is to coordinate between the top management and the lower level of management. They oversee the work of the tier below them and ensure that the work being done is according to the goals and objectives of the organization. So, this is how we can define the work of the middle level management.
The functions that are expected to be part of the middle level of management are:
- Oversight of the work of the lower level; of management
- Provision of guidelines to execute the strategies set to achieve the goals set for the organization
- Assurance of the fact that the work being executed by the low level management is of the required quality
- Moreover, maintenance of coordination between the top level management and the upper level management
- Provision of a full report about the performance of the lower level staff
The skills that are part of the middle level management include human skills. Human skills refer to the presence of soft skills that are important for maintaining good communication and coordination between different tiers. Such skills enable these managers to know the problem s of the lower level management and ensure that the solution for such problems is provided by the top management. Similarly, a successful two-way communication also requires some skills, which are included in the skill set of this tier of management.
The specific skills that are important for this tier of management include:
- Good communication
- Empathetic personality
- Moreover, effective decision-making ability
Some of the examples for this level of management include:
- Store manager
- Division manager
Top Level Management:
The level of management that can be considered as part of the executive board of an organization is known as the top level management. The main purpose of their existence is to formulate the strategies for the organization. Moreover, they tend to evaluate the current position of a company and review the objectives and goals that you need to achieve. Based on these considerations and the external factors or the environmental factors, this level of management makes strategies.
These strategies are passed on to the middle level of management, which ensures its effective execution. Apart from formulating strategies the evaluation and monitoring of the performance of the middle level management is also their responsibility.
Usually, the top level management contains a number of middle level managers under them. The exact number is dependent on the span of control and the design that a company follows. So, you’ll have to analyze the business structure of a specific company if you are looking for further details on the number of managers under the top level of management. Only then you can expect to get the best answer.
Some of the specific functions that you can expect the top level management to perform includes:
- Analysis of the current situation of the organization
- Evaluation of the external and internal factors
- Formulation of strategies for the organization
- Setting the organization-wide targets
- Moreover, monitoring the work of the middle level management
- Additionally, provision of feedback on the implementation of the strategy
The top level management must know how to analyze the external and internal forces affecting the company. Moreover, they must have know-how about the best techniques through which the organization can achieve the set objectives. Additionally, the strategies that the level of management forms must be well thought of, considering the external factors and the limitations of the organization. Furthermore, it is the duty of the top management that they must establish themselves as the leader to motivate and help other employees in time of crisis.
You can also categorize all these individual skills in the category of conceptual skills. The conceptual skills are the skills by using which the managers consider the situation that a particular organization is facing at a particular point of time and make the future plans for its success. Moreover, knowledge and the ability to understand the situation come under this specific type of skill.
The specific skills that you can consider as the part of the top level management include:
- Leadership qualities
- Effective decision-making skills
- Ability to delegate tasks
- Monitoring work of others
- Moreover, Dedication towards the achievement of the goals and strategies set
You might have heard a few designations to be part of every big business. These are often the part of the top level management. In order to clarify it further, we have listed some of the designations that you can see in the top level management as:
- Finance Manager
- Marketing Manager
- HR Manager
- Operations Manager
B. Management Skills:
Although we have discussed the specific skills that must be the part of personality for each level of management, we are going to highlight the skills in this section again. It is because the coverage of skills depending upon the specific level of management is a subjective concept to which there can be a number of objections. Some of these objections have been highlighted in this section along with the explanation so that you can have a better view. With this description, you’ll also be able to implement the different levels of management in your organization in an effective way.
Are human skills only for the middle level of management?
Firstly, the presence of the human skills has been limited to the middle level of management only, but in reality, all the levels of management actually use and require the human skills to execute the work in a proper manner. The reason for categorizing the human skills for the middle level management is that the expected interaction of these managers is higher (considering within the organization scenario). They have to interact with the lower level of employees as well as the higher level of management. So, in order to execute things in a proper way, human skills get higher importance.
Are the conceptual skills only for the top level management?
Similarly, the conceptual skills are mostly used by the top level management. But it is not always the case. The middle level and the lower level management might require to make decisions. Additionally, in some situations where the analysis of the current situation and the possible impact of the decision is essential beforehand. Such a situation requires these skills. Thus, requiring these managers to show conceptual skills in their working as well.
Are the technical skills only for low level management?
As it has been seen in the other types of skills, the technical skills are mostly required by the low level management so that they can have a look at the non-managerial staff. But if the middle and the top level management won’t have an idea about the execution process, then making strategies and implementing them would be very difficult. This shows that there is a need for a bit of the technical understanding in the other two levels of management as well. So, that a business can flourish in the best possible way.
C. Is the implementation of different levels of management necessary?
Our answer to this question would be not necessarily. Rather, it depends upon your choice of organizational design. If your business demands the hierarchical system where there is a clear chain of command. You’ll need different levels of management to ensure the proper reporting relationships. But in case, your business model does not require the traditional organizational design. Additionally, you can switch to many other ways of controlling and monitoring your employees. Amongst these ways, the team structure of governance is the most prominent one. In such a structure, teams manage all the work scenario. Thus, no need of hierarchy or formal chain of command.
There are three levels of management that we have highlighted for you in detail. These levels include the top level management, middle level management, and low level management. Each of these management levels comes with different functions and skills. You can hire individuals depending upon your need. In addition, this is going to be true for every level of management. In case you don’t want to use the traditional hierarchical structure where you’ll need to incorporate the levels of management, then you can simply go for the non-traditional structures of business and execute the operations of the business in the best possible way.