According to Tomi Hunge Handbook on Management (Pg. 27); Controlling implies measurement of accomplishment of events against the standard of plans and the correction of deviation to ensure attainment of objectives according to plans. Once a plan becomes operational, control is necessary to measure progress, to uncover deviation from plans, and to indicate corrective action. The latter may involve simple measures such as minor changes in leadership. In other cases, adequate control may result in setting new goals, formulating new plans, changing the organizational structure, improving staffing and making major changes in techniques of leading.
It is important to bear in mind that controlling involves much more than mere measurement of deviations from plans. True control implies that corrective action can and will be back on course. It is thus to a great extent, the function that closes the loop in the system of management.
What is the Basic Control Process
Control techniques and systems are essentially the same for cash, office procedures, morale, product quality, or anything else. The basic control process, wherever it is found and whatever it controls, involves three steps:-
Measuring performance against these standards
Correcting deviations from standards and plans
Because plans are the yardstick against which controls must be devised, it follows logically that the first step in the control process would be to establish plans. However, since plans vary in detail and complexity and since manager cannot usually watch everything, special standards are established.
Standards are by definition simply criteria for performance. They are selected points in the entire planning programe where measures of performance are made so as to give managers signals as to how things are going without having to watch every step in the execution of plans.