Modern Management approaches

A worker does not work for money only. Non-financial rewards such as affection and respect for co-workers are also important factors. The emphasis was on employee-centered, democratic and participative style of supervisory leadership as this is more effective than task centered leadership. This approach was however criticized for its emphasis on the importance of symbolic rewards and not on material rewards. The belief of this approach that an organization can turn into one big happy family where it is always possible to find solutions which satisfies everybody has also been questioned.

Behavioral Approach:

An approach that recognizes the practical and situational constraints on human rationality for making decisions>

Behavioral scientists attach great importance to participative and group decision making. They are highly critical of the classical organization structures built on traditional concepts and prefer more flexible organization structures.

Two major theorists, Abraham Maslow and Douglas Mcgregor, came forward with ideas that managers found helpful.

Abraham Maslow:

He developed the theory of motivation that was based on three assumptions. First, human beings have needs that are never completely satisfied. Second, human action is aimed at fulfilling the needs that are satisfied at a given point in time. Third, needs fit into a hierarchy, ranging from basic and lower level needs at the bottom to higher level needs at the top.

Douglas McGregor:

He developed a concept of Theory X versus Theory Y dealing with possible assumptions that managers make about workers. Theory X managers tend to assume that workers are lazy, need to be coerced, have little ambition and are focused mainly on security needs. Theory Y managers assume that workers do not inherently dislike work, are capable of self control, have capacity to be creative and innovative and generally have higher level needs. This approach helped managers develop a broader perspective on the nature of workers and new alternatives for interacting with them.

Quantitative Approach:

An approach that focuses on the use of quantitative tools for managerial decision making.

The quantitative management viewpoint focuses on the use of mathematics, statistics and information aids to supports managerial decision making and organizational effectiveness. Three main branches have evolved: operations research, operations management and management information systems.

Operations Research:

Operations Research is an approach aimed at increasing decision effectiveness through the use of sophisticated mathematical models and possibilities as they can accomplish extensive calculation. Some operations research tools are linear programming, querying, waiting line, routing and distribution models.

Operations management:

Operation management is a field that is responsible for managing the production and delivery function of an organization’s products and services. Operations management is generally applied to manufacturing industries and uses tools such as inventory analysis, statistical quality control, networking etc.

Management Information System:

Management Information System refers to the designing and implementing computer based information systems for use by the management. Such systems turn raw data into information that is required and useful to various levels of management.

Contingency Approach:

A view point which believes that appropriate managerial action depends on the peculiar nature of every situation.

This approach is a viewpoint which argues that there is no best way to handle problems. Managerial action depends on the particular situation. Hence, rather than seeking universal principles that apply to every situation, this theory attempts to identify contingency principles that prescribe actions to take depending on the situation.

Systems Approach to management:

Systems theory is an approach based on the notion that organizations can be visualized as systems. A system is a set of interrelated parts that operate as a whole in pursuit of common goals. Every system has four major components:

1. Inputs are the various resources required to produce goods and services.
2. Transformation processes are the organization managerial and technological abilities that are applied to convert inputs into outputs.
3. Outputs are the products, services and other outcomes produced by the organization.
4. Feedback is information about results and organizational status relative to the environment.

Resources: (1) Human (2) Materials (3) Equipment (4) Financial (5) Informational

Managerial and Technological Abilities: (1) Planning (2) Organizing (3) Leading (4) Controlling (5) Technology

Outcomes: (1) product and services (2) Profits and losses (3) Employee growth and satisfaction.

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