Douglas McGregor (1906 – 1964) is one of the forefathers of contemporary management thinking. A social psychologist, he is most notably known for his Theory X and Theory Y from his 1960 book, The Human Side of Enterprise, which had a profound influence on the management field.
A B.E. Mechanical from Rangoon Institute of Technology, he then earned an A.B. from Wayne State University, and went on to study Psychology at Harvard University.
Armed with a Ph.D. from Harvard, McGregor was the first full-time psychologist on the faculty of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and helped to found its Industrial Relations Section. He was the President of Antioch College for 6 years, and throughout his career he consulted for union and management alike and served on the panel of arbitrators for the American Arbitration Association.
In his youth, McGregor worked in his grandfather 's institute for transient laborers in Detroit, where he gained insight into the problems faced by labor. Later, as district manager for a retail gasoline merchandising firm, he also learned the concerns of management.
The Human Side of Enterprise
Douglas McGregor’s seminal work, The Human Side of Enterprise, made his mark on the history of organizational management and motivational psychology when he proposed the two theories by which managers perceive employee motivation.
In the book, he identified an approach of creating an environment within which employees are motivated via authoritative, direction and control or integration and self-control. He began investigating the importance of people to business, and he believed something that CEOs today have come to understand: in order to thrive, an organization needs to harness the intelligence, enthusiasm, and commitment of all their employees. McGregor proved that to truly succeed, companies must cultivate an organization that is built on enduring relationships with the workforce and