The practice of what we commonly refer to as management has been going on for thousands of years. For example, it is highly unlikely the Egyptians could have built the Great Pyramids in 4000 B.C. without the activities of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling hundreds of people and tons of stone. As in the past, those basic management activities are still essential to the successful operation of organizations today. Intensive study of the field of management over the past 100 years has led to the creation of an exciting body of knowledge regarding the nature of management philosophies and theories of behavior, and methods of application and research.
The growing complexity of business and the work place has also led to the creation of niches within management where special types of skills and training are required. For example, the knowledge and skills needed by a production manager involved in the manufacturing of a product differ significantly from the knowledge and skills needed by a human resources manager responsible for hiring, training, and compensating employees. The Department of Management at Missouri State has taken steps to create program options that prepare majors for the diverse challenges offered in these specialty areas.