The present investigation deals with the columnar structured growth of Mn doped ZnO (MZO) thin films by radio frequency sputtering technique. The X-ray diffraction and the processed electron diffraction pattern confirmed the hexagonal wurtzite structure and the film growth direction along (101) plane. The structure of grown film was compared with the pristine ZnO film and the JCPDS card No. 00-36-1451. The microstructures of the pristine ZnO and MZO films were studied by scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy. The columnar structure growth of MZO was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy using TEM cross-section sample. The presence of constituent elements and their concentrations in the films were recorded by energy dispersive X-ray diffraction spectroscopy. The optical transmittance, absorption edge and band gap of the material were studied by UV-Visible transmission spectroscopy. The field dependent magnetization at room-temperature was analysed by using vibrating sample magnetometer and magneto-optic Kerr effect.