Evolution and History of Management

Definitions of Effectiveness and Efficiency

Productivity implies effectiveness and efficiency in individual and organizational performance. Effectiveness is the achievement of objectives.  Efficiency is the achievement of the ends with the least amount of resources. Managers cannot know whether they are productive unless they first know their goals and those of the organization, a topic that will be discussed in the article.

Managing: Science or Art?

Managing, like all other practices – whether medicine, music composition, engineering, accountancy, or even baseball is an art. It is knowhow. It is doing things in the light of the realities of a situation. Yet, managers can work better by using the organized knowledge about management. It is this knowledge that constitutes a science.  Thus, managing as practice is an art; the organized knowledge underlying the practice may be referred to as a science. In this context science and art not mutually exclusive; they are complementary.

As science improves, so should art, as has happened in the physical and biological sciences. To be sure, the science underlying managing is fairly crude and inexact. This is true because the many variables with which managers deal are extremely complex. Nevertheless, such management knowledge can certainly improve managerial practice. Physicians without advantage of science would be little more than witch doctors. Executives who attempt to manage without management science must trust on luck, intuition or what they did in the past.

In managing, as in any other field, unless practitioners are to learn by trial and error there is no place they run to for meaningful guidance other than the accumulated knowledge underlying their practice.

Many different contributions of writers and practitioners have resulted in different approaches to management, and these up a “management theory jungle”. Later in this chapter you will learn about the different patterns of management analysis and what can be done to untangle the jungle. The major contributions of management writers and practitioners we will highlight Frederick Taylor’s scientific management, Henri Fayol, the father of modern operational management theory, and Elton Mayo and F.J. Roethlisberger’s Hawthorne studies.

Frederick Winslow Taylor gave up college studies and started out as an apprentice pattern maker and machinist in 1875, joined the Midvale Steel Company in Philadelphia as a machinist in 1878, and rose to the position of chief engineer after earning a degree in engineering through evening study. He invented high speed steel cutting tools and spent most of his life as a consulting engineer. Taylor is generally acknowledged as the father of scientific management. Probably no other person had had a greater impact on the early development of management. His experiences as an apprentice, a common labourer, a foreman, a master mechanic and then the chief engineer of a steel  company gave Taylor ample  opportunity to know first-hand the problems and attitudes of workers and to see the great possibilities  for improving the quality of management.

Taylor’s famous work entitled The Principles of Scientific Management was published in 1911. The fundamental principles that Taylor saw underlying the scientific approach to management are as follows:

*Replacing rules of thumb with science (organized knowledge)

* Obtaining harmony in group action, rather than discord.

* Achieving cooperation of human beings, rather than chaotic individualism.

* Working for maximum output, rather than restricted output.

* Developing all workers to the fullest extent possible for their own and their company’s highest prosperity.

You will notice that these basic precepts of Taylor’s are not far from the fundamental beliefs of the modern manager.

The emergency of management thought

Frederick  W Taylor

  • Shop management (1903)
  • Principles of Scientific management (1911)

Acknowledged as the father of scientific management His primary concern was to increase productivity through greater efficiency in production and increased   pay for workers through  the application of the scientific method. His principles emphasized   using science, creating group harmony and cooperation, achieving maximum output, and developing workers.

Henry L Gantt (1901)

Called for scientific selection of workers and harmonious cooperation between labour  and management. Developed the Gantt chart. Stressed the need for training.

Frank and Lillian Gilbreth (1900)

Frank is known primarily for his time and   motion studies. Lillian an industrial psychological focused on the human aspects of work and the understanding of workers’ personalities and needs.

Modern operational management theory

Henri  Fayol (1916)

Referred to as the father of modern management theory Divided industrial activities into six group: technical, commercial, financial ,security accounting and managerial . Recognized the need for teaching management.  Formulated fourteen principles of management, such as authority and responsibility unity of command, scalar chain, and espirit de corps.

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