On the 4th Principle: Unity of Command

Principles of Management
Knowledge Center

Best Practices

Sign up


On the 4th Principle: Unity of Command

According to Fayol's 4th Principle, Unity of Command, I should receive instruction from one boss who is my immediate manager.
However I have been instructed by other managers from other department too. And even by my colleagues. These instructions make my work overloaded. Is this not a violation of this principle by Fayol?

  Franciscus Koning
Interim Manager, Netherlands

Multiple Instructions of Multiple Instructors

Maybe Fayol, in his time, would have classified it as the violation of several principles of industrial administration!
It is even more important that the content of the commands given to you is consistent and the direction of actions to be executed is one-dimensional. And the probability that this will be not guaranteed in your workstation is high. The effect is improductivity and waste of capacity and materials (failures).
If the work is overloaded with instructions, the instructed person can avoid overload by following the most productive and effective instructions. Those come from the one who can judge the result of your work, your process, and those before and after your process. Prevoyance, organisation, coordination, control!

  Richard Ngcobo
United Kingdom

Unity of Command is Aimed at Avoiding Confusion

The main aim of this principle is to avoid confusi (...)

  Adeyinka Oluwaseun
Student (University), Nigeria

More than One Supervisor Chokes the Subordinate

Henry Fayol was quite on point regarding the princ (...)

  Marie Florence Dieudonne

Managers Must Realize that Employees have an Immediate Manager

I believe the Unity of Command principle is most s (...)

  Mukwana Ronald Samuel
Student (University), Uganda

Discuss the Unity of Command Principle with your Immediate Boss

It is indeed a violation of this principle. It c (...)

  Sachin Narayan Nagle
Manager, India

Unity of Command if one has a Line Manager and a Functional Manger

Hi, this really creates confusion about what shoul (...)

  Suleiman C. Muttani
Consultant, Tanzania

Confusion, Loss of Focus and Loss of Trust

This situation is confusing; it is like in the say (...)

  Thusego Kabo

How a Manager and his Manager should Maintain Unity of Command towards the Employee

My view is that if some higher supervisor wants a (...)

Professor, India

Don't Worry

Don't become confused after receiving various inst (...)

  Bernard Ngwenya
Analyst, Zimbabwe

Unity of Command in Case of an Acting Supervisor

Thanks for bringing out the above. Yes, it can be (...)

Manager, Uganda

Unity of Command is Also Aimed at Quick Execution

@Richard Ngcobo: I agree unity of command is aimed (...)

  wil son chnyamurindi

Play Along

Unity of command principle would only work in an e (...)

  Jamie Solak

Unity of Command is Just One Principle That is Violated

This is a common challenge (especially for highly (...)

Student (Other), Hong Kong

Unity of Command Enables Accountability

I agree that if a manager violate this rule, it mi (...)

CEO, Bahamas

Response to the Conflicting Reporting Structures in the Current Envinornment in the Organizations

Hi. These kind of situations are the reason I stat (...)

  David Egbeama

Unity of Command

Unity of command does not necessarily mean that in (...)

  Adeyinka Oluwaseun
Student (University), Nigeria

Unity of Command Ensures Orderliness

The Principle of Unity in Demand is to ensure orde (...)

Start a new forum topic


More on Principles of Management
🔥Is Management an Inexact Science?
Which of Fayol's 14 Principles is Most Important?
Abuse of Delegation | Misuse of Delegating
On #9: Scalar Chain has to be Modified for Current Times
All of These Principles are Obvious Features
Current Research on Fayol / 14 Principles?
The Contribution of Henri Fayol to Strategy
Books by Henri Fayol on Management
Best Practices
Are Fayol's 14 Management Principles Still Relevant Today?
What is Management?
What is organisational hierarchy?
Management requires patience
How to Remember the 14 Principles by Fayol?
Best Ever Developed on Management
The 10 Principles of Urwick
Managers versus Leaders
Risks in Fayol's 14 Principles of Management
Evolution of Management
Good and bad managers...
POLICE Acronym in Management
Need for Employees' Welfare in the Principles
Managers: Born or Made?
Fayol's Management Roles
Add #15 Principle: Conformity to the Basic Origin
Difficulties to Apply 14 Principles of Henri Fayol
What is Prevoyance? Explanation
Delegation: How to Delegate Effectively?
Explanation and Examples of Esprit de Corps
Fayols Principles are the Basis of Many Later Management Concepts
Organizational Efficiency or Effectiveness?
(Why) Do we Need Managers?
Interpreting POLICE In Management Parlance
Difference between Adminstration and Management
Example of Subordination of Individual Interest?
Fayol's Unity of Direction Principle of Management
On the 4th Principle: Unity of Command
A Good Organization Run by Monkeys
Exactly Where are the 14 Principles of Fayol Located?
The Power of an Ownership Attitude among Employees
Are Fayol's Principles of Management also applicable to non-profit organizations?
Manager in Conflict with Top Management...
Management Mantras
Special Interest Group

Are you interested in Principles of Management? Sign up for free

Notify your students

Copy this into your study materials:

and add a hyperlink to:

Link to this discussion

Copy this HTML code to your web site:

Principles of Management
Knowledge Center

About 12manage | Advertising | Link to us / Cite us | Privacy | Suggestions | Terms of Service
2021 12manage - The Executive Fast Track. V15.8 - Last updated: 15-4-2021. All names of their owners.