Management theories include the set of general principles used to guide management in managing a business. Theories provide an explanation that helps workers to achieve a relationship with the goals of a business. Besides, they help employees to execute practical means that allow the attainment of business goals. Management theory is used in addressing how supervisors and managers relate to their companies, especially in understanding the purposes of a business and implementing practical means of accomplishing the goals. It also addresses ways of encouraging employees to improve their performance. This paper explores the five key management theories over time. It addresses why the milestone was considered significant and the events during its development. The article looks at the father of a particular principle and the highlights and limitations of the theory.
Theory of Scientific Management
The theory of scientific management was developed by Fredrick Winslow Taylor, who is known for the use of engineering science at the operating levels or production levels. The theory’s purpose is to improve economic efficiency, particularly the production of labor. Taylor maintained a simple point of view regarding what motivated individuals while at work (Mahmood et al., 2012). He identified money as the primary motivator and felt that employees needed to receive fair pay for the work done during the day. Besides, the pay should be connected to the production level. As a result, Taylor brought in the differential piece rate plan. Under this plan, if efficiency was recorded as greater than the set standard, workers needed to receive 120 percent of the typical piece rate. When efficiency was found to be below the set standard, employees would receive 80 percent of the typical piece rate.
The theory as established in the early twentieth century. It was also referred to as time and motion study. In his theory, Frederick concentrated on raising production levels in the industrial field. He maintained that the solution to issues facing labor was entirely using scientific management (Mahmood et al., 2012). The technique was dependent on administration and planning efficiency to enhance standardization through the maximization of the human aspect in production. Frederick advocated for the transformation of the management system to keep similar organizational interests for employees and the management. Scientific management theory emerged during the introduction of industrialization. During this time, some nations wanted to take advantage of other countries, especially for individual benefits.
Scientific management theory was adopted by the public sector, where a member of a team was established to utilize the working hours for unnecessary movements and individual activities. The theory was initiated during the Second World War period. Nevertheless, implementation of the method has not received significant success, especially in improving the efficiency of operations in certain nations' public administration fields. The principle is used with public and small companies, concentrating on personal and not group performance. The theory does not take into consideration the human aspect; instead, it focuses on monetary gains.
Administrative management theory
Henri Fayol developed the theory in 1916, and he is regarded as the father of management. He identified fourteen management principles, including equity, division of labor, initiative, discipline, and authority, and responsibility (Mahmood et al., 2012). It also includes de corps, the stability of tenure, unity of direction, remuneration, and centralization. Other principles include unity of command, solar chain, and subordination of personal interests to general interests.
The theory was found at the time of radical evolution and industrialization in the business setting. Administrative management theory can be applied in general management, but it concentrated on business management. The management functions were identified as forecasting, planning, monitoring, coordinating, and commanding (Mahmood et al., 2012). The primary demerit of the theory includes the control and command aspect of the top management. Administration at a company should be more horizontally and vertically.
Bureaucratic theory of management
In the Bureaucratic Theory Of Management, Weber made a differentiation between power and authority. He believed that power develops obedience via force or a force threat. This makes people observe regulations. Weber identified three types of power, including charismatic, Traditional, and legal or bureaucratic (Mahmood et al., 2012). The features of bureaucracy included formal hierarchical structure, division of labor, selection in terms of technical expertise, written documents, and management by rules (Mahmood et al., 2012). It also has features including formal and impersonal relations, and it maintains that only legal power is essential.
Max Weber developed the Theory of Bureaucracy in the year 19487. The theory primarily concentrates on the structure of an organization. Weber emphasized the need for a comp[any to ensure divisions exist, such as controllable and manageable divisions or departments based on training and knowledge. It also requires the establishment of control and authority for every department (Mahmood et al., 2012). The latter would allow the execution of operation mechanisms in attaining the goals of a business. Control and authority emerged as a western civilization and became more prevalent in most countries (Mahmood et al., 2012). As a result, it created the need for oriented thinking and a technocratic approach. According to weber, the transformations in civilization at the time were aimed at attaining technical outcomes while at the same time ensuring the exploitation of humanistic contents. Weber, in his thought, argued that employees were compelled to obey their managers through the use of the current rules in the company.
Nevertheless, such organizations involved excessive paperwork and observed that there is less belongingness from employees' perspective. Besides, the forms depict heavy reliance on tight rules that hinder efforts of innovation. This is because workers are likely to get used to the system and ultimately create resistance to any attempts of change.
The behavioral theory of management
Elton mayo established the theory of behavioral management. He worked to disapprove the view of Taylor that the use of science would ultimately determine the level of employees’ productivity through the use of tight human control. Mayo conducted research that included a group of women, divided them into groups (Kwok, 2014). These groups included that one of them had breaks, the other did not have breaks, another had freer hours over the week, while the other received free meals. He conducted experiments that demonstrated an increase in the productivity level of a worker was generated by the psychological stimulus, particularly of being involved, singled out, and made to have the feeling of being valued. Mayo developed the Hawthorn effect and summarized the behavior as where workers will react positively to any given new change in the work setting. This may include clean work stations, better illumination, relocation of work stations, among others. The production level of employees is increased as they understand they are under investigation (Kwok, 2014). Mayo stressed employee positive response and self-interest compared to coercion from the organization’s administration (Kwok, 2014). An organization is defined through the use of dynamic social setup. Therefore, this is considered the best approach when addressing them if a high level of productivity is to be attained.
The behavioral theory fails to fully resolve motivational issues in human nature, as the following studies disapproved of the satisfaction of employees as the only motivation source. Other aspects that were suggested, including salaries, influenced employee motivation at an organization. Social and psychological dimensions of a person are found to be particularly described under behavioral theory.
The other advances, especially in management techniques include situational, systems or contingency theories, alongside others. System theory was followed with changes in training and practices management and with limitations identified in the past theories. Organizations usually face challenges that hinder their operation, compelling managers, and trainers from exploring alternative solutions. Systems theory offers management of an organization with a broader look, particularly of the management practices. It also allows exploration of how managers perceive and interpret occurrences and patterns occurring at the workplace (Kwok, 2014). It generally champions for managers to understand the multiple departments within an organization or its divisions and develop favorable regulations and rules that allow department interactions. However, system theory has few limitations, including that it does not recognize that functional unity and harmony are not in all cases possible. Besides, it perceives a company and its setting as completely concrete items.
In conclusion, organizations have adopted distinct theories of management to put them into practice. The theories are established as helpful as they contribute to an increased level of productivity and lead to improved service quality. Even though the theories were established serval years in the past, they help in the creation of interconnected work settings where both workers and employers are found to work hand in hand. The paper has identified some of the major management theories, including systems theory, scientific management theory, behavioral theory of management, the bureaucratic theory of management, and administrative theory of management. The theories allow managers to ensure that they motivate their employees, allocate resources appropriately, make informed decisions, or negotiate deals within the organizations. Managers are perceived as an integral part of an organization starting from the industrial revolution. The management theories were created and applied, starting when management first became a standard part of the business practices. Even though older theories are still sued in the modern business world, new ones are created to maintain existing business trends.
Kwok, A. C. (2014). The evolution of management theories: A literature review. Nang Yan Business Journal, 3(1), 28-40. DOI: 10.1515/nybj-2015-0003
Mahmood, Z., Basharat, M., & Bashir, Z. (2012). Review of Classical Management Theories. International journal of social sciences & education, 2(1).
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