Who Speaks Management?

by Louis Allen



The article highlights the need for forward-looking companies to develop a logical, integrated management system that will provide for alert leadership, profit-oriented planning and control and a streamlined productive organization. Many important contributions to the systems approach to management have been made in the past few years. However, one elementary need is of a common vocabulary of management terminology so that the same words will have similar meanings and managers will be able to communicate with quick comprehension. A key step is the development of a logical classification or taxonomy of management work. Such taxonomy would facilitate the communication and dissemination of new management knowledge and would provide the basis for a logical definition of management terms. This would reveal, for example, the important similarities among strategic planning, Program Evaluation Review Technique, planning programming system of budgeting, and management by objectives, correspondences which are now confused in the minds of many because the terms are inconsistently defined. By clarifying terminology, such taxonomy would enable managers to cut through prevalent fad and gimmickry, which is based as much on labels as on content and come to grips with the fundamental requirements of professional practice.

California Management Review

Berkeley-Haas's Premier Management Journal

Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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