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3 Tutorials that teach Managers
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Author: Sophia Tutorial

Identify the key distinct areas of management.

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what's covered
If I asked you to describe a manager, what would you say? Would it be the manager of a baseball team? Would it be a CEO? Would it be the shift manager down at your local McDonald's or Burger King? This tutorial will cover the topic of managers. Our discussion breaks down as follows:
  1. Manager Types
  2. Management Areas

1. Manager Types

Different organizations, no matter what organization type, all have managers. Whether it's the flattest organization or the largest organization, once it gets big enough and has enough employees, it will need a manager of some type.

Managers are required to make sure that the goals for the corporation or organization are achieved. They're also needed to ensure that tasks such as scheduling and payroll happen, taking care of those things that are beyond the scope of the individual worker.

Now, managers exist at the top level. They also exist at the middle level and at the very lowest level, such as front line managers. Let's take a look at these three a little more closely.

  • Top managers have titles such as president or vice president, treasurer, or CEO. These are the people that are responsible for the larger picture--that bigger corporate strategy, if you will, for an organization.
  • Middle managers include job descriptions like plant managers, or operations managers, or perhaps division managers. These middle managers take care of the middle section of the organization. They develop the business strategy, or the competitive strategy. They are also responsible for making sure that the larger strategy or plan from the vice president and the president is implemented at the lower levels.
  • Lower level managers, also known as the front line managers, include people like office managers, supervisors, or group leaders. They take their cues from the middle managers, and they also make sure that they are supervising, controlling, and organizing the work of those people who don't have managerial duties. They are the ones who take care of everything behind the scenes. While they're not the ones who are actually doing the work or selling the item, for instance, they are the ones making sure that it's possible for those people to actually complete those tasks, by taking care of all the behind-the-scenes jobs, such as scheduling and pay.

2. Management Areas

Managers exist in different management areas. Larger organizations will have much larger scopes for those different management areas.

Management Area Roles
Human Resources Managers People who are responsible for hiring, firing, and promoting. They make sure that the employees have the correct training and are paid. They also help define what the benefits packages are and administer those benefit packages for the different levels of employees.
Operations Managers People who manage the operations for the business. They manage the particular function of a business. For example, if your business is a stock selling business, your operations managers are the ones who manage the area of stock sales, acquiring different stocks, and any tasks that roll into that particular function of the business.
Marketing Managers People who make sure the product gets from point A to point B. They promote the product and essentially do everything that we discussed earlier in the marketing section of this Introduction to Business course. They manage the marketing mix, promotion mix and any other marketing aspect of the business.
Information Managers People in a company who are putting out information to the public. They are also the ones who manage information within the organization, ensuring that everybody has the plan of the day, for instance.
Financial Managers People who are the CPAs, or the certified public accountants--the finance people. They physically pay the bills, make sure the books are balanced and ensure that the business has enough money to buy the supplies it needs and to pay the people who work for it. They are also responsible for collecting on the bills that customers owe payment on. For instance, if a customer charges something on credit, the financial managers are the ones who make sure that the customer pays that bill in full. Also, if a company purchases a product from an outside vendor, the financial managers are responsible for paying that vendor.
Public Relations Managers People who deal strictly with the public. They are responsible for making sure that the business is portrayed in a positive light. They handle crises and different bad publicity aspects of a company, but they're also the ones who publicize the good things to the public.
Research and Development Managers People who work in R&D, or research and development, are responsible for everything that goes into new product or new idea development. They are the innovators within a company whose job is to make sure that the company stays on the cutting edge of whatever business sector it's in. The R&D people at Apple, for instance, are the ones who come up with the latest iPad or iPod, or the new way a particular phone works.

Now, it's important to note that management deals with a lot of different resources. For instance, it doesn't really matter what area you specialize in; the resources that you will deal with are going to range from material to human to financial, and possibly even international factors, and they will all affect your particular area of expertise.


If you are a human resources manager, for example, you have to deal with the material, like the paperwork that goes along with dealing with the human factor--the people who work for you. You deal with the finances to make sure that the company has enough to provide a certain benefit to the employees. You could also be dealing with employees in different international areas. All of these different factors or areas are going to impact managers, no matter what area they may specialize in.

Managers have to balance all of these things. There are many different--and sometimes conflicting--demands from different areas within the area of expertise that they manage, such as those material, human, financial, and international concerns. A manager is responsible for ensuring that he or she is effectively managing all of those different areas and balancing them in a way that benefits the business.

We've discussed a lot of different areas where management happens, but this is by no means an exclusive list. There can be managers in a lot of different management areas within an organization that are simply too numerous to cover here. Organizations that are unique may have unique concerns they need to manage that don't exist other places. This will depend on the organization type.


Agriculture industry or agriculture companies will have management areas that may not necessarily equate to a company like Apple, for instance. They will have to manage different areas within the company that other people simply wouldn't have to worry about.

Today we learned about managers as a whole. We discussed the different manager types--the top, middle, and front line managers--including where they exist and the concerns that they deal with on a daily basis.

We also learned about management areas, those different areas like human resources, marketing, or public relations where management happens. We learned that no matter where you work in management, there are certain resources that you need to balance on a daily basis, like material, human, financial, and international areas, in order to do your job effectively.

Good luck!

Source: adapted from sophia instructor james howard