What is management, or more to the point, what is good management?

According to Scott & Rochester (1984) good management is about three things:

1. Knowing what should be happening.
2. Knowing what is actually happening.
3. Bringing 1 and 2 closer together.

photo of Scott and Rochester book Effective Management Skills

It is believed by many that good management is about moving:

“what is actually happening”

closer to:

“what should be happening”

However, Scott & Rochester point out that it is perfectly reasonable to move things in the other direction. And in reality, good management always rests on finding a happy medium between those two ends of a spectrum.

Do you know what should be happening and what is actually happening? How do you know? Where is it written down? What metrics have been logged? What changes are you implementing to make it better? Where is that process documented? What sort of management operation are you running?