Management Theories

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Understanding business organisations with reference to management theories - Unit Summary The Management theorists of the past provide valuable insights into current business practices The classical-scientific theorist’s main contribution was the use of the scientific method to determine the one best way of doing things. They: Were particularly effective in increasing productivity in manufacturing businesses Gave insights into the managerial functions of planning, organising and controlling Put an emphasis on the division of labour and organised people to departments Suggested a hierarchical pyramid structure to organise the business with small spans of control and a rigid chain of communication Supported a leadership style that was highly autocratic

The behaviourists focused on human and organisational behaviour, relationships, motivation and cooperation (the scientific management theorists treated people as machines). They: Looked at organisations in terms of group behaviour and team effort rather than individual performance Saw the role of management was to harmonise and coordinate the efforts of all people in the organisation Had a human relations view of management

Had a leadership style that was more democratic and encouraged participation in decision-making by workers Supported a flatter organisational structure based on teams
The political theorists contributed to our understanding of power and authority as it affected management interaction with the various stakeholder groups. They recognised that: The structure of a business as a coalition of stakeholders

Groups of stakeholders have different views on the objectives of a business Managers have to identify strongly held views of stakeholders and consider them when they developed strategies The classical, behavioural and political approaches to management have their strengths and weaknesses: Classical treated people as machines although they significantly improved productivity at the time there are...
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