Styles Of Management In Practice Proactive Vs. Reactive

by como ·

Although managers will have many different styles of management in practice, the foundation of all of them will be based on the principles of either proactive or reactive management. Proactive management means that managers evaluate and assess processes and methods and identify potential problem areas and have a plan in place or create preventative methods. Reactive management is when a change, problem or crisis happens and is reacted to after the event, in other words there is a lack of thought and planning.


Proactive management in practice means planning ahead for any eventualities. In order to do this senior management needs to be fully aware of how every department in the business works and have regular meetings with department heads to make sure that they know of any changes. Senior management will carry out risk analysis for each department so that they can identify problem areas and put a plan of action in place, which can then be amended as needed. Proactive management in practice means working to make sure that issues are intercepted before they can become a problem or crisis. As well as the tasks that senior management and department heads carry out, conducting regular training courses for employees will help them learn how to be proactive and improve their way of working and problem interception.

This style of management creates a good working atmosphere because employees are encouraged to be involved in all aspects of proactive management and are taught that their ideas are important and welcome.


This management style in practice is normally carried out by senior management and has short term goals. Reactive management is defined by a lack of forward planning, no risk analysis, no contingency plans, etc., and in fact it is only after a problem or crisis has occurred that anything is done or a solution discussed. This tends to be a very dictatorial or bureaucratic style of management that single minded individuals prefer. In reality using solely this style of management in practice can be very harmful to businesses and prevent them from recognising their potential for expansion and improvement.

Often with this style of management employees are less happy in their work place because it is an authoritarian style of management where they are taught that they should just concentrate on their jobs and keep their opinions and suggestions to themselves.

In summary, every business will find that proactive management in practice is the best solution for them and that it provides maximum productivity from their employees. Smaller businesses may find that they have less time to dedicate to regular risk assessment and action plans and so may have a proactive management style in the main but have to react to certain situations that occur that they have been unable to plan for in advance. Businesses that are changing to proactive management styles should consider sending their employees on a dedicated training course so that they are fully aware of the best practices to base this style of management on.

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