Hawthorne Effect

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Management has played a key role in business for many many years. Throughout this time management has evolved and improved vastly. Many new theories have been discovered and implemented within the workplace to improve workers effectiveness and affiance which then inturn increases productivity for the business. Throughout the late 1940’s research by the theorists was focused on Behavioural Management, which is the study of how managers should behave to encourage and motivate employees to perform at high levels and to be committed to the achievement of organisational goals.(Waddle, Devine , Jones and George 2007, pp52) .

Various theorist had their own views on how management should behave towards it their workers. Two of the most famous theorist with very different opinions were Mary Parker Follet and F.W Taylor.( Waddle, Devine, Jones and George, 2007, pp 52-53). Follet believed that management should take a horizontal view on authority. She thought if employees have the knowledge of their job at hand they should be in control of the work itself. This theory was considered quite radical for that era (early 1900‘s) as management styles were then still quite conservative. On the hand there was Taylor who believed quite the opposite. He felt management should have a top to bottom line of authority, where the managers manager and the workers work. He believed that it was up to the managers to analysis tasks at hand to identify whether or not they could be performed more effectively.

One of the most criticised and controversial investigations ever undertaken on workplace relations was known as the Hawthorne Effect. These studies were undertaken at the Bell Telephone Western Electric Manufacturing Plant in Chicago. The studies began in 1924 and continued through until the Depression in 1932. The purpose of the studies was to gain an insight on whether a workers environment affected their productivity. Initially the study that was of particular interest to the...
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