Management roles

In “The Nature of Managerial work,” Mintzberg recalls the framework of 10 managerial roles, which he first developed when he wrote his doctoral thesis “Management: An Analysis of Words. observable data” from the 60s-70s of the last century. This is an analytical way to find out the basic “elements” of management work. The meaning of this search is very clear. Because, in your day-to-day work as a manager, you will switch from one role to another, with different jobs, different situations, and different expectations.

Management roles are divided into three groups by Mintzberg:

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Information role group including Monitor, Disseminator, Spokesperson.

Interpersonal role group includes Figurehead (Presence), Leader (Leader), Liaison (Connection).Decision-making role group including Entrepreneur, Disturbance Handler, Resource Allocator, Negotitor.

After combining these roles, it will become other "configurations", which in turn form other roles. Example: Contact manager=figurehead + liaison; new manager = liaison + monitor; team manager = leader; insider = resource allocator.

Here are some details about the roles: Monitor (Monitor/Control): Search and gather information in the field, within the organization and changes, maintain reports, and personal contacts. Monitoring includes the working status of the team, as well as the well-being of each member. This monitoring may include building a measurement system to capture activity. overall of the unit; productivity and cost measures; talk to team members about progress and assigned work; Check that the equipment is properly used and properly maintained.

Disseminator (Distributor of information): distribute information to others in the organization, send minutes, reports or make calls.

Spokesperson (Speaker): communicate information to outsiders through speeches, reports, and memos. The partners that managers must communicate with may include superiors, subordinates, customers, outsiders, professional colleagues, or the public. Often, senior leadership plays this role when communicating with the public.

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Figurehead (Representative): perform formal responsibilities, celebrate, as guests, sign legal documents. Jobs can be mentioned such as making a courtesy visit, sitting in the honorary chair representing the organization when participating in an event or holding an outside organization. A senior leader can spend 12-17% of the time on this figurehead role.

Leader (Leader): instructing and motivating subordinates; Training, consulting and communicating with subordinates. This is a role that managers can spend most of their time performing.

Liaison (Connector): maintain communication between inside and outside the organization; use email, phone, meeting..

Entrepreneur(Innovator): initiate improvement projects, seek out new ideas, delegate new ideas to others. Innovation includes creating and controlling changes in the organization. An Innovator's work may include gathering specialized information and seeking updates about the organization, talking to customers, and others within the organization to understand changing needs, engaging with off-site activities to drive performance and improvement (visits to external facilities, participation in industry events, trade shows, or training programs).

Disturbance Handler (Debugger): take corrective actions during troubles or crises, handle conflicts between employees; respond to environmental crises or work flows with other entities. A problem handler's job also includes handling complaints from customers, other units or superiors.

Resource Allocator: decide who has what resources, schedule, budget, set priorities. Some resources that are no longer relevant, unnecessary, or inefficient will be removed.

Negotiator (Negotiator): represent the unit in signing contracts, buying and selling, budgeting, or representing the interests of related parties. Negotiating objects include superiors (to obtain funds, financial resources, material resources, or other support); with another unit in the organization (for the use of personnel, resources, or support); with service providers, schedules, and deadlines.

Since its introduction, the 10 role manager model not only helps managers know what to do, but also supports management capacity development programs with a solid theoretical foundation. . The logic seems simple: If you want to learn something, do it well enough. Here already know what needs to be done that, then just learn to do that is fine.

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Theorists have attempted to push Mintzberg's work away. As a result, other roles were identified. In his book 'Essentials of Management', author Dubrin, based on other studies, describes another framework in more detail than Mintzberg's model of 17 management roles. In which the author added some roles such as: planning role (Strategic Planner: Strategic planner; Operational Planner: Operational planner), organizer role (Organizer) specializes in designing and assigning reasonable tasks, the role of personnel coordinator (Staffing Coordinator) specializes in arranging the right personnel for the right job, the assignor, the motivator and trainer (Coach and Motivatora specialization of the Leader role in Mintzberg's system), the team builder role (Team Builder), and the group member role (Team Player). Finally, the role of technical handler (Technical Problem Solver) which often occurs in direct line managers and some middle managers who have to deal with technical problems frequently.


The division of roles by function did not come to Mintzberg. From a traditional perspective (appearing from the time of Henry Fayol) on the functional framework of managers POsLC (Planning, Organizing and Staffing, Leading, Controlling), the order of the roles corresponding to the functional group is as follows:

Planning: Strategic Planner, Operational Planner.

Organizing and Staffing: Organizer, Liaison, Staffing Coordinator, Resource Allocator, Task Delegator.

Leading: Motivator and Coach, Figurehead, Spokeperson, Negotiator, Team Builder, Team Player, Technical Problem Solver, Entrepreneur

Controlling: Monitor, Disturbance Handler.

Today, the world seems flatter, and organizations also tend to be flatter. Command-and-control roles are unpopular. Managers have to work "with people" more and more in the context of the economy shifting to the knowledge sector. Roles like Coach, Motivator are preferred. Even at a small scale, managers in knowledge-based companies do not like to "direct", place little importance on hierarchy and often emphasize the element of collaboration (facilitating, supporting, collaborating). than. Today, when some workgroups are more self-organized, the control is also softer than before (subtle control).

People continue to invent new roles in management. Take for example the ScrumMaster role in the Scrum governance framework. This is a role that has only been officially named for about 30 years, as if a Team Builder, sometimes a Team Player, is part Resource Allocator, part Coach and Motivator, part Organizer, and sometimes Technical Problem Solver. But people refuse to call the ScrumMaster a manager, but a leader (actually this is a traditional aversion to deliberately distinguishing manager and leader as if they were two inseparable things; whereas We see today that modern management researchers and practitioners will say that “managers must lead, and a leader must manage to achieve common goals), and not forgetting attach a new label as Servant Leader to make it different and trendy.

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