The main benefits of MBO are as follows:
1) Improved Planning:
MBO involves participative decision-making which makes objectives explicit and plans more realistic. It focuses attention on goals in key result areas. MBO forces managers to think in terms of results rather than activities. It encourages people to set specific pleasurable goals instead of depending on hunches or guesswork. An integrated hierarchy of objectives is created throughout the organization. Precise performance objectives and measures indicating goal accomplishment are laid down. There is a time bound programme.
MBO helps to clarify the structure and goals of the organization. Harmony of objectives enables individuals at various levels to have a common direction. Every individual knows clearly his role in the organization, his area of operation and the results expected of him. Interlinking of corporate, unit and individual objectives helps in the decentralization of authority and fixation of responsibility. MBO result in clarification of organizational roles and structure. It promotes and integrated view of management and helps interdepartmental co-ordination.
3) Motivation and Commitment:
Participation of subordinates in goal setting and performance reviews tend to improve their commitment to performance. The corporate goals are converted into personal goals at all levels to integrate the individual with the organization Timely feedback on performance creates a feeling of accomplishment Job enrichment and sense of achievement help to improve job satisfaction and morale. Improved communication and sense of involvement provides psychological satisfaction and stimulates them for hard work Conversion of organizational goals into personal goals helps to integrate the individual with the organization. MBO ensures performance by converting objective needs into personal goals and by providing freedom to subordinates.
4. Accurate Appraisals:
MBO replaces trait based appraisal by performance based appraisal. Quantitative targets for every individual enable him to evaluate his own performance. Performance under MBO is innovative and future oriented. It is positive, more objective and participative. Emphasis is on job requirements rather than on personality. MBO is not a scapegoat approach rather it involves constructive criticism to assess why operations have failed or lagged behind and suggests remedial actions like organizational restructuring, better communication systems, more effective incentives to motivate executives, etc. MBO provides an objective criterion for evaluation of actual performance. "Indeed one of the major contributions of MBO is that it enables us to substitute management by self-control, for management by domination."'Control becomes more effective due to verifiable standards of performance. Subordinates know in advance how they will be evaluated.
5. Executive Development:
The MBO strategy is a kind of self-discipline whereby shortcomings and development needs are easily identified. It stresses upon a long term perspective and self-development. MBO releases potential by providing opportunities for learning, innovation and creativity. It encourages initiative and growth by stretching capabilities of executives. MBO makes possible a high degree of self- control by individual managers and increases decentralization of authority.
6. Organizational change and Development:
MBO provides a frame work for planned changes. It enables managers to initiate and manage change. It helps to identify short-comings in organizational structure and processes. In this way, MBO improves the capacity of the organization to cope with its changing environment. When an organization is managed by objectives, it becomes performance-oriented and socially-useful.
Originally MBO was developed for business organizations but now it is being used by social welfare organizations also. But MBO might not be very successful in welfare organizations because of the abstract nature of the values to be measured in specific and quantified terms, general unwillingness on the part of personnel to subject their efforts to precise evaluations and lack of measuring instruments which could generate valid and reliable data. MBO has special significance in the areas of long range planning and performance appraisal.