Management as a Profession

Management as a Profession

Is management a profession? If a profession is defined as a calling or occupation that serves others, then management may be said to be a profession. But if a profession is defined a as vocation requiring specialized knowledge and long and intensive academic preparation, such as the profession of a doctor or a lawyer or a chartered accountant, then management may not satisfy the description of a profession, though these days it is common to find universities and professional bodies impartation knowledge and training in various branches of management and people with such knowledge and training are widely preferred for managerial jobs in organizations. Even so, let us see how far management comes near to being described as a profession.

(1) Body knowledge: there is a body of knowledge peculiar to the study of management. The study of management is multi- disciplinary because the subject draws heavily on Sociology, Social Psychology, Economics, Commerce, Geography, Anthropology, and so on. With the passage of time, certain concepts of management have been developed and there is a vast amount of technical information relating to specialized management areas such as production, marketing finance and personnel. To be a successful manger, familiarity with these concepts is necessary.

(2) Social obligation: Like a doctor or a lawyer, a manager is also engaged on serving the society, in the sense that he uses scarce resources for production of socially useful goods and services.

(3) License or degree: Unlike a doctor or a lawyer, no license or degree as such is required to become a manager. But people with knowledge and training in the field of management are widely preferred for managerial jobs, for the simple reason that they perform better than those without such knowledge and training.

(4) Code of conduct: Unlike members of other recognized professions, such as medicine or law, managers have no enforceable code of conduct, though the Indian Management Association has prescribed certain obligations, such as non- disclosure of employer's trade secrets, abstaining from making any personal gain at the expense of the employer, working for social good, and so on. 

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