Theory Y and X

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The Moral Character of Management Practice
Roberts J (1984)

Within this journal, John Roberts distinguishes between two types of scientific theories, theory X and theory Y. He relates these two theories on two managers (Dave and Val) who are in the same organization (Telecommunication company), however in different departments. He continues to talk about how they use their management skills on their employees based on theory X and theory Y.

Douglas McGregor, an American Social Psychologist, proposed X-Y theory in his 1960 book “The human side of enterprise”. Theories X and Y are still referred in the field of management and motivation. According to McGregor’s Ideas, he believes there are two fundamental approaches to managing people. Past results show that many managers use theory X, which on average produces poor results. However, open-minded managers use theory y, which produces better performances and results, allowing employees as well as managers to grow and develop within their field of expertise.

Both theories which are explained in the journal have very different but fundamental approaches in managing people. In the journal, Dave uses theory X ('authoritarian management' style) showing that he wishes to follow the targets which have been set and avoid any additional responsibility. Relatively showing that he is not ambitious and does not consider his employees as vital as the success of the business. This as stated in the journal has led Dave’s staff to believe that he has done nothing but used them to achieve what he wants, resulting in no relationship between Dave and his employees.

However, on the other hand, Val uses theory Y (‘Participative management’ style). Val has admitted that she use to treat her employees like children as they were immature however now she feels they have matured, therefore has started to treat them like adults and has changed her ways in which she deals with her employees. Since doing this she has realised...
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