Theory Z

Topics: Personality psychology, Management, Personality type, Psychology / Pages: 24 (5761 words) / Published: Jan 15th, 2013
Theory Z is a management philosophy that stresses employee participation in all aspects of company decision making. It was first described by William Ouchi in his book Theory Z- How Man American Business Can Meet the Japanese Challenge. Theory Z incorporates many elements associated with the Japanese approach to management, such as trust and intimacy, but Japanese ideas have been adapted for use in the United States.
In Theory Z organizations, managers and workers share responsibilities; the management style is participative; and employment is long term and often lifelong. Theory Z results in employees feeling organizational ownership. Recent research has found that such feelings or ownership may produce positive attitudinal and behavioral effects or employees. (20) In a Theory Y organization, mangers focus on assumptions about the nature of the worker.
Theory Z has been adapted and modified for use in a number of U.S. companies. One adaptation involves workers in decisions through quality circles. Quality circles (also called quality-assurance teams) are small, usually having 5 to 8 members who discuss ways to reduce waste, eliminate problems, and improve quality, communication, and work satisfaction. Such quality teams are a common technique for harnessing the knowledge and creativity of hourly employees to solve problems in companies.
Even more involved than quality circles are programs that operate under names such as participating management, employee involvement, or self-directed work teams. Regardless of the term used to describe such programs, they strive to give employees more control over their jobs while making them more responsible for the outcome of their efforts.
Such programs often organize employees into work teams 5 to 15 members who are responsible for producing an entire product item. Team members are cross-trained and can therefore move from job to job within the team. Each team essentially manages itself and is responsible for its quality,

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