Journal of Management

2012, Nr. …

ISSN 1648-7974

The conception and models of managerial competence in modern theories of management

Ralph-Jörn Kurschus1, Vaida Pilinkienė2

Kurschus, Lawyers and Managers of bankruptcies1, Kaunas University of Technology2


The conception and models of managerial competence in modern theories of management are analyzed in the article. The conception of managerial competence is often associated with the disposal of necessary knowledge and capability of using it in practice. However such treatment of managerial competence is not completely accurate and corresponded to the purport of this term and besides, constantly upgrading requirements for quality of leadership and cooperative activity also the use of modern methods of management induce to specify and define the conception of managerial competence and study in detail the structures of the models of managerial competence in the context of modern management theories. The authors of the article present the detailed analysis of peculiarities of conceptions of competence and managerial competence and compare them, also study the models of managerial competence and possibilities of using them. The study showed that multidimensional character of the structure of managerial competence and its factors, the necessity of personal factors and contextual factors are called the most important characteristics of managerial competence, and the structure of the model of managerial competence depends on concrete situation but anyways it must include general managerial and technical knowledge, communicative skills, psychological and behavioural capabilities, cognitive skills.

KEYWORDS: managerial competence, the models of managerial competence, theories of management.


In the situation of today‘s competition and social transformations the rising interest in managerial competences takes place in economic literature. The managers, who have and use such competences, organize effective work at advanced level, so it is logically to maintain that the company, which has competent managers, will perform in the market successfully.

General aspects of competence have been analyzed by authors as Boyatzis (1982), Brown et al. (1991), Guion (1991), Spencer et al. (1993), Boam et al. (1998), Parry (1998), Woodruffe (2000), Horton (2000), Armstrong (2000), Boonstra (2004), Robbins et al. (2007). The conception of managerial competence and its characteristics are presented in the studies of such authors as Albanese (1989), Mansfield (1993), Antonacopoulou et al. (1996), Stuart et al. (1997), Butcher et al. (1998), May (1999), Qiao et al. (2009), Heilmann et al. (2011). The germs of creating of models of managerial competence are found in the theories presented by Glaser (1962), Gagne (1965), Popham (1969). The examples of manager’s behaviour complexes and paradoxes have already been possibly found in the early works written by Bass (1960), Lawrence and Lorsch (1967), Burns (1978). Later on the models of managerial competence were particularly analyzed by such authors as Burgoyne (1990), Spencer et al. (1993), Siriwaiprapan (1996), Fletcher (1997), Lindsay et al. (1997), Clarke (1998), Nyhan (1998), McCarthy et al. (1999), Seige (1999), Woodruffe (2000), Cheetham et al. (2005), Rappe et al. (2007), Brinckmann, (2008).

The scientific problem. In academic literature the conception of managerial competence is often associated with the disposal of necessary knowledge and capability of using it in practice. However, such treatment of managerial competence is not completely accurate and corresponded to the purport of this term and besides, constantly upgrading requirements for quality of leadership and cooperative activity also the use of modern methods of management, different structural organization of the term of competence induce to specify and define the conception of managerial competence and study in detail the structures of the models of managerial competence in the context of modern theories of management.

The goal of the study is to analyze the conception and models of managerial competence in the context of modern theories of management.

The object of the study is the conception and models of managerial competence.

The tasks of the study are as follows:

  1. To define and compare the conceptions of competence and managerial competence conceptions.

  2. To examine the characteristics of managerial competence. .

  3. To examine the models of managerial competence and peculiarities of its usage.

The methods of the study. Such common scientific methods as systemic analysis, comparative and logical analysis are used in the article.

The conceptions of competence and managerial competence

In a general sense competence means effective and successful way to do work. Most of the studies of the conception of competence were made in English speaking countries (The UK, The USA) also in Germany, where the term qualification is more common. The reason for use of such concepts can be different English and German traditions of professional training, although the recent studies and accreditation of systems towards qualifications among European countries demonstrate collaborative contacts (Lepaitė, 2001). For this reason the difference between the conceptions of competence and qualification has become negotiable because, in some scientists’ (Achtenhagen, 1994, Nijhof, 1999) opinion, it is purposively to separate competence in the structure of qualification as a component of qualification.

In the end of eighties the question “how extensive the concept of competence should be” were discussed actively. The term “expertise”, which is closely related to this concept, is defined as a set of common actions, which is necessary for a person to do a certain job being capable of accomplishing tasks and performing the functions competently, whereas competence is mostly connected with such behaviour, which enables a person to do work effectively (for example, perceptiveness) but is not connected with the job itself (for example, staff management) (Woodruffe, 2000). According to Jones et al. (1985) competence is not traditional categories like knowledge, skills and customs in total. Sveiby (1998) agrees with them partly and identifies competence with education and experience and Seige (1999) joins them maintaining that competence is a basis of mastership.

In English there are two terms “competence” and “competency”, which express different attitudes towards definition of competence of employees.

The term “competence” is usually used to identify standards for performing tasks or work. With the reference to this attitude Horton (2000) defines competence as an action, behaviour or result, which show capacity an employee has to be able to demonstrate or achieve. In this case competence is analyzed on the ground of functional analysis, i.e. by reducing the functions, which are necessary to perform the work, to activities. First of all the activities, which are required to perform specific work or tasks, are identified and only then necessary attributes (knowledge, skills, abilities) are designed. Such interpretation of competence is strongly criticized because of the groundless identification of attributes for performing work.

The term “competency” is usually used in connection with analysis of a person (performer of the work) and available necessary attributes of his to do work effectively. This attitude is supported by Armstrong (2000), Boyatzis (1982), Woodruffe (2000), Qiao et al. (2009) who emphasize the employee’s available attributes, which are resiliently connected with the work. It is proved by the definition of competence presented by Boyatzis (1982), who defines competence as abilities, which lie doggo in a person, enable him to act according to demands of an organization and help to achieve the best results of his work. Armstrong (2000) concretizes this conception of competence and maintains that competence is typical or repeating person’s characteristic directly connected with effective performing of work. Consequently, such competence can be treated as a common one, which does not depend on surroundings and repeats in most activities. However, this attitude is criticized due to its especially high abstractedness. The studies prove that different activities require use of different competences (Sandberg, 2000; Rappe et al. 2007; Heilmann et al. 2011).

The third viewpoint identifying person’s competence is called hybrid, because it includes activities as well as the person’s orientations. With the reference to this viewpoint the aim is to identify necessary personal attributes as well as activities required for doing work and performing tasks. Hybrid viewpoint is described by the definition of competence presented by Parry (1998) in which the author defines competence as a cluster containing knowledge, attitudes and skills and corresponding to four criteria: 1) is related to the work being performed; 2) has to be assessed according to fixed standards; 3) might be improved during trainings; 4) influences the quality of the work being performed.

Having summarized all the three attitudes it is possible to maintain that competence is defined as a specific set of attributes, which is used by a person to perform work. Consequently, the persons, who do the certain work and perform the certain tasks more effectively than others, are treated as employees having the best set of necessary attributes. According to Sandberg (2000), such rational attitude towards competence simplifies and abridges complex structure of competence although makes the premises to predict its multiplicity at once.

Although the discussions about the structure of competence, which takes place among scientists, are quite different they express almost the same opinion while separating several provisions, which describe the nature of competence. According to Spencer et al. (1993), first of all, competence is personal characteristics, which highlight the person’s depth, guarantee the person’s succession and enable to predict the behaviour of individual in various situations. The second, there is a causality of the display of competence, i.e. personal competence causes the certain behaviour of individual during his activity. The third, the person’s activity is motivated by the certain criteria which cause the higher level of performing. Guion (1991) agrees with this opinion and maintains that competence is such personal characteristics, which enable to find how the person’s thought and behaviour are shown during his activity.

Spencer et al. (1993) describe such structure of competence called Iceberg model (figure 1) where knowledge and skills are presented on the top and this part (qualification) is clearly visible, simply improved and easily identified. On the other hand, this part is only ”surface competence” and assessed carefully, because the results of knowledge might fail to become the instrument, which would help to predict the display of the person’s competence during his activity as the use of knowledge might fail to take place in many cases. Therefore the hidden part of the model (personal conception, personal characteristics, motivation) affects competence much more strongly and becomes the main characteristic, which enables to develop competence (Lepaitė, 2001).

Almost similar structure of competence is described by Von Krogh et al. (1996). In these authors’ opinion, expectations of external surroundings and capability of using available knowledge and skills in concrete situations affects competence.

Source: Spencer, L.M., Spencer, S.M. (1993). Competence at work: model for superior performance. New York: Wiley and Sons.

Figure 1. The structure of competence

The studies showed that the main elements of competence: personal attitudes, knowledge, experience, visible personal characteristics are dynamic because it is necessary not only to have knowledge and experience but also be capable of using them effectively. So with the reference to the given analysis it is purposefully to define competence as the person’s ability to assess the new situation, to choose effective methods for doing work and integrate available professional knowledge.

The analyzed conception of competence and its structure reflects the common characteristics of competence for any activity whereas managerial competence is very closely related to the context of the organization where the manager works. Wilson (1998) supplements such conception maintaining that managerial competence is skills in communicating, managing, cooperative working, seeking a quality and serving of customers. Petroni (2000) concretizes the conception of managerial competence and defines as a principle of activity for integration and coordination of activity of all employees together on purpose to be responsible and liable for getting certain results of a project.

Scientific theories of management created by F.B. Taylor and F.W. Gilbreth in 1911 are considered to be an origin of the studies of managerial competence. In their theories the scientists analyzed the factors of effective performing the task, which evolved into structural factors of managerial competence during the process of development of management science. One of the first definitions of managerial competence was presented by White (1959), who defined managerial competence quite notionally, i.e. as the person’s ability to perform effectively in certain surroundings. The most authors relate the conception of managerial competence to results of the company’s work. The fact, that managerial competence is analyzed with the aspects of competitive ability of the company (Nyhan, 1998), capability of achieving the company’s goals (Tate, 1997), available competitive advantage and strategy to develop it (Hogg, 1993) shows the importance of managerial competence to developing of the theories of management of human recourses.

According to some authors (Robotham, 1996; May, 1999; Boonstra, 2004; Hayton et al. 2006), the treatment of managerial competence based only on results (of the company’s work as well as of the person’s individual training) is narrow. In their scientific works Stuart et al. (1997), Mansfield (1993) do not agree with identifying of managerial competence with available managers’ technical knowledge and knowledge of management. In the mentioned authors’ opinion, the conception of managerial competence is much broader and often includes multiple managerial, social and psychological characteristics. Lindsay et al. (1997) try to present quantifiable assessment of managerial competence and define it as a value of personal abilities in the certain culture and in the context of the certain business.

The concept of managerial expertise is especially related to managerial competence. Boyatzis (1982) defines managerial expertise as a deep characteristic of a leader, which is displayed by effective and (or) advanced management. Such definition shows that managerial expertise is displayed by an activity in management. It is possible to suppose that managerial competences are those ones, which enables a person to become competent in management. Butcher et al. (1998) emphasizing the importance of meta-capabilities to managerial competence, accentuated the four general factors.

  • Cognitive skills. They include cognitive integrity and flexibility and interpersonal cognition. Due to them a person can understand a situation, solve problems, control conflicts, balance out short-lived and long-lasting viewpoints, use of information effectively.

  • Self-knowledge. It is a capability to see oneself “side on”, understand one’s motives and virtues, reflect on one’s and other people’s wishes, foresee more alternatives of behaviour, be more flexible while using of one’s knowledge and skills.

  • Emotional resilience. It is effective control of one’s emotions and impulses, including self-control, self-discipline, appropriate using of one’s emotions while being in a situation of stress. This ability enables a person to obtain toughness, which helps managers to concentrate their energy and perform successfully in difficult and critical situations.

  • Personal stimulus. It is an attribute of personal achievement and self-motivation which includes a wish to undertake succeeding, realize the tasks and capability to assume responsibility for personal risks.

The importance of these four meta-capabilities is shown through when the situation changes and improving of them helps to become a responsible and enterprising manager, who will find new possibilities and create new courses for oneself and for one’s organization. Nevertheless, scientific literature presents the opinions, which objects to universal identifying and defining of components of managerial competence. Albanese (1989) maintains that any set of competences can not reveal the secret role of management completely and any work requires the whole range of specific competences, which influence effectiveness of concrete role of leadership. Almost the same opinion is expressed by Burgoyne (1990) who maintains that competences are displayed in separate and concrete situations, which express that every action contains its own combination of synchronized and overtrumping elements. Antonacopoulou et al. (1996) noticed that the communities, which exist in managerial competence, are still sophistic attempts to refine the description of manager’s work and coherent skills made by H. Fayol in 1949, which were divided into four traditional categories: planning, organization, coordination and control. May (1999) expressed the opinion that it is difficult to define managerial competence although it is used to create the drafts in order to analyze resources in the point of business strategy and forecasting of risks. He offers to define managerial competence as well as other competences connected with work as technical or behavioural. The mentioned author offers to classify behavioural competence into common and specific, i.e. managers are expected to be capable of holding people, to be confident, communicative, to be able to work in team, whereas capability of negotiating, leadership, creative intellection are considered to be specific competency.

The studies show that many organizations created the lists of managerial competencies with reference to criteria of behaviour. Despite the fact that identification of these competences aims to create more competent group of management, which is capable to act fast in volatile surroundings, the most authors presents the arguments for the idea that a lot of sets of managerial competences are created with no conception of their internal conflict.

The models of managerial competence: evolution and structure

The most of traditional theories of management, which analyze the models of managerial competence, tend to be too categorical and to search the only and correct model of manager’s behaviour which would be relevant to a certain situation. Usually they present such opposite categories describing behaviour of management as autocratic and democratic, directive and participating, oriented towards a goal or towards relationships and so on.

The germs of creating of the models of managerial competence are found in the theories presented by Glaser (1962), Gagne (1965) and Popham (1969), in which they attempted to identify the conditions and factors, which are necessary to perform the task effectively, and unite them in a whole. Later on creating of the model of managerial competence was validated by assessment of managers’ capability to transfer technical and professional knowledge in certain working surroundings (Hirst, 1973; Schon, 1983; Medley, 1984).

The most theorists agree that the model of managerial competence must be validated by the conception of integrity or paradox of behaviour, which maintains that an effective manager must be capable of understanding and performing difficult and often incompatible roles (Denison et al. 1995).

The examples demonstrating integrity and paradoxes of manager’s behaviour have already been possibly found in early works written by Bass (1960), Lawrence et al. (1967), Burns (1978). These theorists agree that managers must attend to integration as well as differentiation, must be concentrated on the task and on interpersonal aspects of management at the same time.

The conception of integrity of behaviour was perfectly described by Fitzgerald (1945), who expressed the opinion that “culture of high level is a capability to have two polar ideas in one’s mind at the same time and still be able to operate”. So, effective managers are those ones, who demonstrate cognitive and behavioural integrity and are able to work subject to the situation, which often requires using of the model of absolutely opposite behaviour.

With the reference to this attitude, the models of managerial competence evolved from narrow descriptions of managers’ behaviour or separating of work tasks into functions into complex sets of roles of management or sets of managerial competences. Such scientists as Mintzberg (1973); Yukl (1981), Boyatzis (1982) are considered to be the pioneers creating this type of the models of managerial competence, who analyzed quite different sets of managerial competence in their works but all of them failed to develop the conception, which would become a basic and enable to explain the diversity of sets of managerial competence and integrity of behaviour.

Scientific literature presents the attitude, that managerial competences are just conditional differentiation of a certain group of competencies. It is illustrated by so called map of competences created by Spencer et al. (1993), where a separate group of managerial competences is presented. The mentioned scientists stress that practicably the group of managerial competences is the subgroup of the group “Power and Influence”, which is shown in the manners of managers relatively more often.

In 1998 M. Clarke presented the model of managerial competence, which united the set of six competences, among which the four ones can be defined as meta-capabilities:

  • Managerial cognition. It is a set of conceptions about different activities of organizations, which enables managers to understand information better and frame the strategies.

  • Authority and communication, suggestibility and training.

  • Cognitive skills, cognitive integrity and flexibility, intellection in long-life outlook, seeing of the “whole puzzle”.

  • Self-knowing.

  • Emotional toughness.

  • Personal stimulation .

However according to a lot of authors separating of managerial competences is objectively possible only while assessing technical knowledge of management like marketing, logistics, finance and so on, because all the managers more or less need them, whereas such behavioural competences as communication, having authority over people are common competences, which influence effective work of management.

Having referred to the performed studies of managerial competences McCarthy et al. (1999) presented the grand model of managerial competence (table 1), in which the shown competences are common for all the managers, who is responsible for resources of organization. Although this model is criticized due to its narrow application and low effectiveness of use. Besides, it does not exhibit the difference between “good” and “mean” managers also technical knowledge of management is emphasized too much: among the four groups of managerial competence only the last one shows capabilities of behaviour and communication.

Table 1.The grand model of managerial competence

1. Controlling of operations

2. Controlling of knowledge

3. Controlling of finances

4. Controlling of information

1.1.Effective controlling of time.

1.1.1.The control of time planning

1.1.2. The control of the project

1.2.Planning and making decisions

1.2.1.The control of planning

1.2.2 Assessing of potential.

1.2.3. Assessing of realization of the plan

1.3.The control of alterations

1.3.1.Finding of potential development

1.3.2.Formulating of the aims of alterations

1.3.3.Monitoring and assessing of alterations

1.4. The control of quality

1.4.1The assessment of quality.

1.4.2Monitoring and diagnostic of conditions.

1.4.3. The control of the systems

2.1. Administration of the team

2.1.1The styles of administration.

2.1.2 Structurized teams .

2.1.3 Delegation.

2.1.4. Meetings

2.1.5.Stimulating of cooperative work

2.2. Measurement of activity

2.2.1Assessment of competencies.

2.2.2.The design and reconsideration of incombencies

2.2.3. Setting of the gooal and reconsideration of it

2.2.4.Motivating of employees

2.3. Having authority over the people

2.3.1. Planning of the processes of administration


2.4. Juridical issues of employment 2.4.1.Health sequrity and safenss

2.4.2. The provisions of employment

2.4.3 Technical relationships

3.1. Financial control

3.1.1.Monitoring of outlay

3.1.2. The analysis of financial accounts

3.1.3. Presenting of results

3.1.4. Knowledge about financial systems

3.2. Financial planning

3.2.1.Estimating of investments

3.2.2.Creating of the systems

3.2.3. The control of external supply


4.1.1.Presenting of information

4.1.2.Selling of ideas

4.1.3.Interpretating of behaviour

4.2. Marketing

4.3. Competencies of behaviour

4.3.1. Capability of performing as an entrepreneur

4.3.2.Creative intellection

4.3.3. Managerial synergy

4.3.4. Logical intellection

4.3.5.Analytical abilities

Source: McCarthy, M.A., Thomas, N.G. (1999). Developing self-awareness in the managerial career development process: the value of 360-degree feedback and the MBTI. Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol 23, Issue 9.

The grand model of managerial competence significantly differs from so called model of euro-manger (table 2), which was created according to the survey, which was ordered by EU III General Directorate and carried out among employers in Great Britain, France, Germany, Sweden and Spain. With reference to the survey the list of competences of a supposed effective euro-manager, as one is imagined by employers was made. After having analyzed and equalized the terminology, which was used, the list of the named characteristics, abilities, skills and so on was grouped into five categories called “a group of skills”.

Comparing with the model presented by McCarthy et al. (1999) the model of euro-manager emphasizes behavioural and communicative abilities and skills, though specific knowledge of management is missed and it is mostly concentrated on common managerial capabilities like having experience of international management, controlling of conflicts and stressful situations and so on. On the other hand, such organization of the model can be explained as a wish to adapt it for a manager of any type.

Scientific literature also presents very concrete and corresponded to certain responsibilities of a manager models of managerial competence. One of such models is presented by Spencer et al. (1993) and is called the model of a competent manager of sales department. In it the competences of “effective” sales managers differ subject to the duration of the period of the sale and its integrity, characteristics of the company and the region, types of the product and consumer.

For example “effective” manager under the conditions of long-lasted period of sale (for example industrial gears, complex means of information technologies) is characterized by such competencies as complex sales to business organizations, great influence on the consumer’s business, long-lasted and complex relationships, close involvement in the consumer’s decisions and realization of them, relatively large amounts of sales for one product, rarer negative responses and so on.

Spencer et al. (1993) in their competence model presented six competences, which tell an “effective” manager from a “mean” one (table 3). As it can be seen almost all groups of competences are based on manager’s psychological and behavioural abilities, whereas technical managerial skills are emphasized little. Besides, this model is criticized because of too strong simplification and individualization, which limit its application to managers with different types of behaviour and intellection in the field of sales (Fletcher, 1997).

Table 2. The model of the competence of euro-manager

The groups of skills

1. Capability of “including” other people (interpersonal capabilities)

2.Skills of internationality

3. Flexibility

4. Intuition

5. Broadness of vision

1.1Communicative skills

1.2Psichological skills

1.3.Capability of working in teams of diverse hierarchic level

1.4. Capability of coordinating an activity, motivating people

1.5. The control of conflicts

2.1.International experience

2.2. Speaking several foreign languages

2.3. Geographic mobility

2.4.Global intellection

2.5.Understanding of cultural diversity

2.6. Capability of working in multicultural and multinational teams

3.1.Capability of controlling of alterations

3.2.Capability of controlling of diversity

3.3. Tolerant attitude towards uncertainties and ambiguities

3.4. Controlling of stresses

3.5. Development of skills of self-assessment

3.6.Capability of teaching

4.1. Intuition


4.3. Being interested in innovations

4.4. Capability of solving problems

5.1. Striving for making a total view of the situation

5.2. Systemic understanding

5.3. Sociological, philosophical and ethical understanding of phenomena

Source: composed by the author.

Siriwaiprapan (1996) in his work presents the model of managerial competence, in which even five competences are united: personal, organizational, social, cognitive and labour (figure 2). One of the most interesting aspects in this model is that managerial competence is related with organizational competence and first of all with organizational culture, which is defined as a system of shared and learned available virtues, meanings and conceptions, which gives information to people and is expressed, reproduced and transmitted partly by symbols (Alvesson, 1993). It shows fair positivism, because the conceptions of managerial competence as well as conceptions of organizational culture do not analyze structured, concentrated on achieving the goals activities, but study ephemeral, mutable people’s characteristics and abilities. In this sense the model presented by Siriwaiprapan (1996) objects to the critics’ assertions that the models of managerial competence can not assess the nature of the manager’s complex, contextual, coincidental and constantly changing role (Herling, 2000).

Table 3. The competences, which tell an “effective” manager from a “mean

The type of competence

The display of competence

Influence and impact

  • Get confidence

  • Accents the interests of the consumer, attends one.

  • Influences the consumer indirectly

  • Predicts the consequences following the actions

Orientation towards an achievement

  • Designs “provocative” but possibly achieved goals

  • Uses the time productively

  • Concentrates on potential profit


  • Realizes the potentials

  • Follows one’s position

  • Reacts to competitive threats

Interpersonal understanding

  • Is perfect at non-verbal communication

  • Comprehends attitudes and reticence of other people

  • Predicts the reaction of other people

Orientation towards servicing of the consumer

  • Makes additional efforts in order to meet the consumer’s requirements

  • Discovers the real demands of the consumer

  • Keeps in touch with the consumer long after the good has been sold

  • Becomes a solicitor or adviser to the consumer

Source: Spencer, L.M., Spencer, S.M. (1993). Competence at work: model for superior performance. New York: Wiley and Sons.

The aspect of organizational culture is quite emphatic in the model of managerial competence presented by Lindsay et al. (1997) (figure 2). The authors accentuate that organizational culture and business surroundings are essential components of managerial competence in the context of an organization. Such an attitude enables to present much more flexible and integrative model, which would help managers to comprehend a systemic connection between alterations of organization and competence. Although Lindsay et al. emphasize that “optimal” model of managerial competence should direct managers’ attention to relations of dimensions of competence seeking to achieve the settled goal, though the organizations, in which the set of certain skills is treated as a part of organizational culture, might use specific capabilities or talents in order to define a manager as competent one.

Despite the variety of models of managerial competence they do not avoid being criticized. Nyhan (1998), Seige (1999), Ruth (2006) express the opinion that any set of managerial competence does not exhibit the role of a manager completely, because every activity needs the whole range of specific competences, which influence effectiveness of a concrete role. Besides, they noticed, that the generalities, which exist in managerial competences, are still sophistic improvements on the works written by Fayol (1949), where the work of manager and the skills connected with it are described while using four categories: planning, organization, coordination, and control.

Source: Lindsay, Ph. R., Stuart, R. (1997). Reconstruing competence. Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol. 21, No. 8-9, p. 32-38.

Figure 2. The model of managerial competence

According to Collins et al. (1994), Dale (1990) available models of managerial competence being in their contemporary shape are still able to elucidate and define the manager’s behaviour and skills, which are useful nowadays, whereas little attention is given to encouraging organizations to invest their resources in a rising, dynamic, flexible and conformist manager, who is capable to accept future challenges. That is to say, in spite of being reliable and suitable according to the methods used the lists of managerial competences supported by systemic studies, might fail to reflect the competences, which will be required in future.

However, Burgoyne (1990) admits existing of some utilitarian models of managerial competence, which can help to project the programmes on developing of management. It is especially important in order to find the competences of basic level, which can vary in the course of time, for example the necessity of the competence of computer literacy, which appeared with increasing level of computerization. Woodruffe (2000) agrees with this opinion and maintains that existent similarities and occurring trumps justify existing of models of common managerial competences. Although Doyle (1995) maintains that it is necessary to create the sets of managerial competence in the unique context of separate organization, but common managerial competences are always needed as they enable to identify specific ones, which are typical for certain conditions or situations, what is considered to be purposeful.

Having summarized the attitudes of such authors as (Burgoyne, 1990; Spencer et al. 1993; Doyle, 1995; Siriwaiprapan, 1996; Lindsay et al. 1997; Nyhan, 1998; Clarke, 1998; McCarthy et al. 1999; Seige, 1999; Woodruffe, 2000; Cheetham et al. 2005; Ruth, 2006; Rappe et al. 2007; Brinckmann, 2008; Qiao et al. 2009; Heilmann et al. 2011) towards the models of managerial competence it is possible to maintain that the structure of managerial competence depends on a concrete situation, however, anyways it must include the following items:

  • Common managerial and technical knowledge;

  • Communicative skills;

  • Psychological and behavioural abilities;

  • Cognitive skills.

While modeling managerial competence it is purposefully to accentuate the sets of competences of several levels, what would help to give the better definition of the conception of “effective” manager in certain specific situations or in the context of a certain organization.


The essence of competence is described as: 1) personal characteristics; 2) causality of exhibition of a competence; 3) validating of personal activity by certain criteria. .

Having summarized the study the following characteristics of managerial competence were found: multidimensional character of its structure and factors, necessity of personal and contextual factors.

With reference to the results of the study the definition of managerial competence is offered to formulate as follows: managerial competence is multidimensional characteristic of an employee, which unites the employee’s especial behavioural and intellectual features as well as capability to select appropriate methods to perform and integrate available professional knowledge, which enables to achieve the best results holding the certain position and being in the certain situation.

Having summarized the presented opinions it is possible to maintain that the structure of managerial competence depends on the concrete situation, however anyways it must include common managerial and technical knowledge, communicative skills, psychological and behavioural abilities and cognitive skills.


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Vadybinės kompetencijos samprata ir modeliai šiuolaikinėse vadybos teorijose


Straipsnyje nagrinėjama vadybinės kompetencijos samprata ir modeliai šiuolaikinėse vadybos teorijose. Mokslinėje literatūroje vadybinės kompetencijos samprata dažnai siejama su reikalingų vadybinių žinių disponavimu bei sugebėjimu jas pritaikyti praktikoje. Tačiau toks vadybinės kompetencijos traktavimas ne visai tiksliai atitinka šio termino turinį, be to nuolat kylantys reikalavimai vadovavimo kokybei bei darbui komandoje, šiuolaikinių vadybos metodų naudojimas, skirtingas kompetencijos termino struktūrizavimas skatina patikslinti ir apibrėžti vadybinės kompetencijos sampratą bei detaliau ištirti vadybinės konkurencijos modelių pritaikymo galimybes šiuolaikinių vadybos teorijų kontekste. Todėl tyrimo tikslas – ištirti vadybinės kompetencijos sampratą ir modelius šiuolaikinių vadybos teorijų kontekste. Tyrimo objektas – vadybinės kompetencijos samprata ir modeliai. Tyrimo uždaviniai: apibūdinti ir palyginti kompetencijos ir vadybinės kompetencijos sampratas; išnagrinėti vadybinės kompetencijos bruožus; ištirti vadybinės kompetencijos modelius ir jų taikymo ypatybes. Straipsnyje naudoti bendramoksliniai tyrimo metodai: sisteminė, lyginamoji ir loginė analizė.

Bendrieji kompetencijos aspektai nagrinėti tokių autorių kaip R. Boyatzis (1982), Brown ir Duguid (1991), R.M. Guion (1991), L.M. Spencer, S.M. Spencer (1993), Boam, Sparrow (1998), S.B. Parry (1998), Woodruffe (2000), S. Horton (2000), M. Armstrong (2000), Ch. Woodruffe (2000) darbuose. Vadybinės kompetencijos sampratą ir jos bruožus tyrė šie autoriai: Robotam (1996), Macfarlane (1994), Stuart (1997), B. Mansfield (1993), L. Butcher, M. Harvey (1998), P.J. Albanese (1989), A. May (1999), E.P. Antonacopoulou, L. FitzGerald (1996). Vadybinės kompetencijos modelių kūrimo užuomazgos sutinkamos R. Glaser (1962), R.M. Gagne (1965) ir W.J. Popham (1969) teorijose. Vadybininko elgesio kompleksiškumo ir paradoksalumo pavyzdžių jau galima atrasti ir ankstyvuose B.M. Bass (1960), P.R. Lawrence ir J.W. Lorsch (1967), T. Burns (1978) darbuose. Vėlesniame laikotarpyje vadybinės kompetencijos modeliai detaliai nagrinėti tokių autorių kaip M.Clarke (1998), L.M. Spencer, S.M. Spencer (1993), M.A. McCarthy, N.G. Thomas (1999), Fletcher (1997), S. Siriwaiprapan (1996), Ph.R. Lindsay, R. Stuart (1997), B. Nyhan (1998); G. Seige (1999), D.G. Burgoyne (1990), Ch. Woodruffe (2000) darbuose.

Atlikti tyrimai parodė, kad svarbiausiais vadybinės kompetencijos bruožais įvardijama vadybinės kompetencijos struktūros ir jos veiksnių daugialypiškumas, asmeniškumo ir kontekstualumo būtinybė. Remiantis atlikta analize, vadybinės kompetencijos apibrėžimą siūloma formuluoti taip: vadybinė kompetencija – tai multidimensinė darbuotojo charakteristika, apjungianti išskirtines darbuotojo elgesio ir mąstymo savybes bei gebėjimą tinkamai pasirinkti efektyvius veiklos metodus ir integruoti turimas profesines žinias, įgalinančias pasiekti geriausių rezultatų tam tikroje darbo vietoje ar aplinkoje. Apibendrinant įvairių autorių požiūrius galima teigti, kad vadybinės kompetencijos modelio struktūra priklauso nuo konkrečios situacijos, tačiau bet kuriuo atveju turi apimti: bendrąsias vadybines ir technines žinias, komunikavimo įgūdžius, psichologinius ir elgsenos sugebėjimus, kognityvinius įgūdžius.

RAKTINIAI ŽODŽIAI: vadybinė kompetencija, vadybinės kompetencijos modeliai, vadybos teorijos.

Ralph-Jörn Kurschus, a lecturer at the Bank Academy in Frankfurt/Main and at Law Studies in the University of Jena, also he is a manager of bankruptcies in the “Kurschus, Lawyers and Managers of bankruptcies”. Research interests: management of bankruptcies, business environment. He prepared a variety of expert reports related to the economic situation of the German Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) for the German courts. Address: Kurschus, Lawyers and Managers of bankruptcies, chwedenstraße 11, DE 17033 Neubrandenburg, Germany. Tel: +49 395 5719150, e-mail:

Vaida Pilinkienė, Ph.D. of Social sciences (economics) is a professor at Economics and International Trade Department in Kaunas University of Technology. Research interests: business environment analysis and forecasting, competitiveness. She published more than 30 articles in various scientific journals and conferences. Address: Laisvės av. 55, LT-44029 Kaunas. Tel: +370 37 300575, e-mail: