Compare & Contrast Between Scientific and Behavioral Theories of Management

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  • Topic: Management, Scientific management, Operations research
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Section Two

Salient Management Theories

A. Classical Approach of Management Theory:
1. Scientific Management School.
2. Administrative Management Theory.

B. Behavioral Approach of Management Theory:
1. Mayo and the Hawthorne Experiments.
2. McGregor and Theory X and Theory Y.

C. Theory Z: The Japanese Management Techniques.

A. Classical Schools of Management Theory
1- Scientific Management School:
(Fredrick Winslow Taylor: 1856 -1915)

(1) Introduction:
Scientific management theory is one of the classical approach theories that concentrated on work and production rather than on workers. This theory appeared in USA as a reaction to the drastic technological changes and the need to attain maximum productivity through far efficient workers. This theory is commonly related to Fredrick w. Taylor. However, Taylor may be counted as the first among others such as Mathew Boulton, James Watt, Robert Owen, Henry Towny, Charles Babbage, Frank Gilberth, Harrington, Emerson and Henry Gantt, to mention only few. Taylor was an intense person, deeply committed to the study and understanding of work and the improvement of worker efficiency. Started as a common laborer In the Midvale steel company, Taylor proceeded to become an engineer, not at Harvard where his parents wanted him to go, but by attending the seven institute of technology at night. Before Taylor’s efforts, workers performed jobs according to hunches and intuition. Instead, Taylor broke each job down into its component tasks (i.e. job fractionation), thus creating basic work units of the job. Through time and motion studies, and by determining the most efficient way of doing each “basic work unit” and then combining the work units into a total task, Taylor arrived to a system called “piece rate” . Based on the piece rate system workers were paid their salaries taking into account the amount produced. (2) Theory Content: “ one right way” to do the job:

Taylor thought that economic prosperity could be only attained by maximum worker productivity which, in turn, would be achieved by making workers more efficient. And because one could not trust employees to work in the most efficient manner, a “management scientist” should be hired to redesign tasks to achieve maximum efficiency by establishing the “one right way” to do the job. Managers should match workers to the different tasks in the workshop and finally evaluate their performance through close supervision and control. Workers have to be directed and controlled to reach the maximum productivity and, therefore, they get their rewards or punishments according to their direct output daily based on the "one right way" And, although the “one right way” (i.e. the “piece rate system’) resulted in improving worker’s efficiency and reflected in greater wages for workers, the unions resisted this system as they fear the increased rate of work would result in earlier work completion and consequent work layoffs. On the opposite side, management in America, impressed by the increases in worker productivity, and reduction in costs, enthusiastically embraced Taylor’s innovation. Moreover, the Congress, oftenly, invited Taylor to deliver his speech within congressional hearings. (3) Evaluation of Scientific Management Thought:

i) Scientific management theory came out as a genuine response to the colleagues that has been facing the western industrial and commercial sector. Taylor, and his associates, exerted efforts to deliver scientific, sound and consistence solutions to problems such as lacking of efficiency and poor productivity. Thus, organizations, due to the efforts of Taylor and his colleagues, started to consult management experts to arrive to “one right way” to do the job instead of resorting to hunch and intuition. ii) Scientific...
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