Managerial Skills – 5 Major Types of Managerial Skills | Principles of Management

Managerial Skills

The 5 Major Types of Managerial Skills are described below:

(1) Technical Skills

A technical skill is the ability to apply procedures, techniques, and knowledge of a particular field. For instance, an accounting manager needs basic technical skills of the accounting profession. The need for technical skills decreases as the manager moves up in the organizational hierarchy. The first line managers require a high degree of technical skill in order to supervise subordinates effectively.

(2) Human Skills

Human skills refer to the ability to work with, understand, and motivate others. Managers spend considerable time interacting with people inside and outside the organization. Getting along with people and getting work done through people requires these skills. They include interpersonal skills such as communication, negotiation, bargaining, leading, motivating, and resolving conflicts.

Increasingly, teams are managed based on human skills. This has made interpersonal skills more important for all members of an organization. In general, a manager who has strong interpersonal skills will be more successful than one with poor ones.

(3) Conceptual Skills

Taking a broad and farsighted view of an organization requires conceptual skills, which are the ability to organize information for better understanding. The manager needs to be able to understand how different parts of the organization work together, and how a change in one part will affect others.

As a result, they are able to think strategically, to see the big picture, and to make decisions that benefit the organization as a whole. A manager’s conceptual skills become more important as he or she moves up the organizational hierarchy.

(4) Diagnostic Skills

Diagnostic skills are also essential for successful managers. Using these skills, managers can visualize the most appropriate response to situations. Managers must study the symptoms of problems within an organization and develop solutions to them. Getting to the root of a problem and recommending solutions can be a very exciting part of a manager’s job. As a manager is promoted to higher levels, the importance of diagnostic skills increases.

(5) Digital Skills

It is important for managers to have digital skills because they know how to use digital technology in many aspects of their jobs. They understand computers, telecommunications, and in particular, how to use digital technology. Managers’ productivity increases substantially when using digital technology.

Financial analysis, human resource planning, and other tasks that would otherwise take hours or even days to complete can be performed by computers in minutes. Computers are especially useful for decision-making since software allows managers to manipulate data and perform ‘what if’ scenarios to examine the impact of various scenarios.


In spite of the fact that the above skills are all vital, their relative importance varies depending on the level of the manager within the organization. It is generally necessary for first line managers to have more technical and human skills in order to succeed. Digital skills are equally important at all levels of management. Middle managers require an even distribution of skills since they have a greater degree of contact with the work being done and the people doing it. 

Top managers have the primary responsibility to make the key decisions that are implemented or executed at lower levels, which is why conceptual and diagnostic skills are extremely important. Identifying opportunities in the environment and developing strategic plans to capitalize on these opportunities requires top managers to see the big picture.

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