This management theory was coined by Fredrick Taylor as a means of analyzing and synthesizing workflows. In essence it is identified as the theory of Taylorism. The main ideology of this theory is to ensure economic efficiency particularly in the productivity of laborers. Through scientific management, Fredrick Taylor sought to incorporate science into the engineering of processes and in the management of people (Taneja, Pryor, & Toombs, 2011). In this case, he believed that workers are motivated by money hence the idea of providing a fair day’s pay for an equivalent amount of work carried out.
The Human Relations Movement
This theory of management identifies the organizational development researchers who attempted to study the behaviors of people in a group. These individuals would be particularly from the workplace groups. The researchers sought to identify their social relations, motivations and satisfaction of the individuals in relation to the resulting productivity enjoyed by the organization (Rose, 2005). The ideology was developed in the 1930s and viewed the employees as psychological beings and the way they fit with the company and not as interchangeable parts. Through this thinking, the human resource management was created.
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Pros of Theories
There are numerous pros that are associated with each of the above management theories. The scientific management theory identifies the reward of a worker the wage as the main motivator towards increasing productivity. In this way, the major benefit of the theory is its ability to improve economic efficiency in a bid to improve the performance of the organization (Head, 2005). On the other hand, the human relations movement looked into the behaviors of the workers as a means of increasing productivity and performance of the organization. In this case, the laborer is seen as a psychological being and hence the need to identify how he or she relates with others, his or her motivations and the factors that will lead to their satisfaction. This theory focuses on the improved treatment of the employee in a bid to benefit as the employer.
Cons of Theories
One major con of the scientific management theory is the belief that there is only a single way of doing things that is right. In this regard, the theory does not expect the processes of the organization to change as decisions are only made by the executives. The theory is also opposed to the element of teamwork as the numerous tasks of the organization are broken down to tiny steps allowing each worker to work on their own and establishing autonomy. Taylorism does not identify the union of manual and mental work as they are separated (Mullins, 2004). The theory focuses on the mechanics of completing tasks and completely ignores motivation, satisfaction and value of the people in creating efficiency and productivity in the organization. The main con of the human relation is the numerous theoretical perspectives that have been employed (Bruce & Nylan, 2011). This is where the numerous ideologies will usually contradict each other though they present a common idea of focusing on employee needs, motivation and satisfaction to ensure productivity of the organization
Which Theory to Use in Day-to-day Management of Workers
The human relations management theory is the most appropriate for use in the day-to-day management of workers. Implementing this theory will usually help create a workplace environment that is suitable for the employees to incorporate their skills, knowledge and experiences to their full capacity. This increases the level of productivity and the performance of the organization. This also ensures that numerous factors such as conflict in the workplace can be resolved to increase productivity of the workers. Taylorism on the other hand is not appropriate as does not consider the value of the laborers as effective parts of the productivity of the organization (Hughes, 2004).
Bruce, K. & Nylan, C. (2011). ‘Elton Mayo and the Deification of Human Relations’, Organization Studies , Vol 32, No 3: 383-405.
Head, S. (2005). The New Ruthless Economy: Work and Power in the Digital Age. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press
Hughes, T. P. (2004) American Genesis: A Century of Invention and Technological Enthusiasm, 1870–1970 (2nd ed.). Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Mullins, L. J. (2004). Management and Organizational Behavior (7th ed.), Financial Times–FT Press–Prentice-Hall–Pearson Education Ltd.
Rose, N. (2005) “Human Relations Theory and People Management”, Studying Organizations , 43-62.
Taneja, S., Pryor, M. G. & Toombs, L. A. (2011). ‘Frederick W. Taylor's Scientific Management Principles: Relevance and Validity’, Journal of Applied Management and Entrepreneurship , Vol 16, No 3: 60-78.