Management 101 – Part 2 – Organize

organizing calendarWhether you’re planning a meeting with your associates or the launch of a new product, the plans are doomed unless and until things are organized. Plans may make us feel better and plans do give us a sense of accomplishment and purpose.

But plans, in and of themselves, will remain locked in and of themselves. Organization must logically follow. It must be determined:

Who will do what.

When will it be done.

Where will it take place.

How will it be accomplished.

What will be required to get “it” done.

Who will get the stuff that will be required….and on the list goes.

The only why that should be asked is to validate the component pieces, i.e., why is this person or that thing needed at this time?

Organizing includes:

Specialization of participants and resources – This is the ability to focus on the tasks at hand and the  objectives those tasks are supposed to bring about.

Division of work – An organizer recruits or assigns personnel to the tasks that must be done, hands off work to them (delegation) and makes assignments requiring measureable results. By definition and implication organizers are precise not vague and they clarify not obfuscate.

Forming tasks and workers in logical and sequential order. – To organize is make lists, assemble resources, arrange components, and sequence tasks.

Organizing can be simple or complex depending on the size of the project and the skill and experience of those involved. Inexperienced personnel will need greater detail. More experienced people can get by well with more generalized plans.

Here are 7 Benefits of ORGANIZATION:

  1. Efficiency – To organize is to gain the most productivity from the least effort and hassle. Organization minimizes waste or eliminates it entirely. Duplication of effort is reduced, multitasking can result, or unneeded items can be eliminated from the budget.
  2. Fluidity of movement – Organized efforts avoid whiplash of the attitudes. Poor organization produced false starts, abrupt stops, and wild changes of direction.
  3. Economy – An organized manager/leader realizes the most expedient use of the resources at hand saving the company money and himself effort.
  4. Humane consideration of your associates – organizing gives evidence of planning which is the result of care. When you care about someone or something, you plan for them or it. When you are concerned about the outcome you pay attention to the in-between events that take up the space between the idea and its manifestation.
  5. Organization defines structure clearly, reveals how things fit together, and diagrams what relates to what, who relates to whom, and who cares for what. The entire organizational system might be in your head or it may be revealed in organizational charts. Whatever the depository, it should be shared an known by everyone who works within ints structure.
  6. Organizing enables managers and leaders to see where responsibility resides, where and how authority should flow, and from where accountability should come. See # 5.
  7. Organization builds the channels within which delegation functions so that power, the authorization to act and the releasing of resources to act, can flow more freely.

Remember the three fundamental objectives of effective leadership? To extend YOUR reachmultiply YOUR effectiveness, and divide YOUR work. The product of organizing is not more work for you, but to create less, to enable you to get more done by empowering others to execute plans that will accomplish your goals. Some managers and leaders are not naturally gifted organizers, and they do accomplish things, but at great labor, often much frustration, and a good amount of wasted effort.

Almost anyone can learn the basic skills of organization and many tools exist to help us.  The simplest is the venerable task list. I’ve tried the task list in Outlook. I use OneNote and Evernote. I’ve tried Google’s Calendar. All of them have been some help. None of them have been as handy and readily available as a pad of paper and a pencil.

Complicated projects require more planning and therefore more organization. You may have built in organization where you work. The chain of command, reporting procedures, and audit systems can be helpful when you understand them and work with them.

Tight organization may be required when risks and consequences are high. Looser organizational systems may work well when participants have a PROVEN record of responsible behavior, careful accountability, and mature use of authority.

Every effective manager is a competent organizer. Many effective leaders are not. Management’s specific domain is that of organization and implementation while leadership is to inspire and project. However, effective leaders recognize this and soon employ the assistance of capable organizers.

The first lesson in this series is Management 101 – Part 1 Planning. The next lesson is T = Train. Who is the most effective trainer you know? I have two more lessons in this series before beginning another. What would you like to see covered here? Drop me a line or leave a comment.

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