Organisational terms

There are a number of technical terms you need to learn:

  • Hierarchy refers to the management levels within an organisation.
  • Line managers are responsible for overseeing the work of other staff.
  • Subordinates report to other staff higher up the hierarchy. Subordinates are accountable to their line manager for their actions.
  • Authority refers to the power managers have to direct subordinates and make decisions.
  • Delegation is when managers entrust tasks or decisions to subordinates.
  • Empowerment sees managers passing authority to make decisions down to subordinates. Empowerment can be motivational.
  • The span of control measures the number of subordinates reporting directly to a manager.
  • The chain of command is the path of authority along which instructions are passed, from the CEO downwards.
  • Lines of communication are the routes messages travel along.