Organizational theory term paper

He watched bricklayers and saw that some workers were slow and inefficient, while others were very productive. He discovered that each bricklayer used a different set of motions to lay bricks. From his observations, Frank isolated the basic movements necessary to do the job and eliminated unnecessary motions. Workers using these movements raised their output from 1, to 2, bricks per day. This was the first motion study designed to isolate the best possible method of performing a given job. Later, Frank and his wife Lillian studied job motions using a motion-picture camera and a split-second clock.

When her husband died at the age of 56, Lillian continued their work. Thanks to these contributors and others, the basic ideas regarding scientific management developed.

Organizational Theory, Design and Change

They include the following:. Whereas scientific management focused on the productivity of individuals, the classical administrative approach concentrates on the total organization. The emphasis is on the development of managerial principles rather than work methods. These theorists studied the flow of information within an organization and emphasized the importance of understanding how an organization operated. He believed that organizations should be managed impersonally and that a formal organizational structure, where specific rules were followed, was important. In other words, he didn't think that authority should be based on a person's personality.

He thought authority should be something that was part of a person's job and passed from individual to individual as one person left and another took over.

This nonperson, objective form of organization was called a bureaucracy. All positions within a bureaucracy are structured in a way that permits the higher positions to supervise and control the lower positions. This clear chain of command facilitates control and order throughout the organization - Division of labor and specialization. All responsibilities in an organization are specialized so that each employee has the necessary expertise to do a particular task - Rules and regulations. Standard operating procedures govern all organizational activities to provide certainty and facilitate coordination - Impersonal relationships between managers and employees.

Managers should maintain an impersonal relationship with employees so that favoritism and personal prejudice do not influence decisions - Competence. A bureaucracy needs to maintain complete files regarding all its activities.


Henri Fayol, a French mining engineer, developed 14 principles of management based on his management experiences. These principles provide modern-day managers with general guidelines on how a supervisor should organize her department and manage her staff.

Classical Organizational Theory

Although later research has created controversy over many of the following principles, they are still widely used in management theories. A manager has official authority because of her position, as well as personal authority based on individual personality, intelligence, and experience. Authority creates responsibility - Discipline: Obedience and respect within an organization are absolutely essential.

Good discipline requires managers to apply sanctions whenever violations become apparent - Unity of command: An employee should receive orders from only one superior - Unity of direction: Organizational activities must have one central authority and one plan of action - Subordination of individual interest to general interest: The interests of one employee or group of employees are subordinate to the interests and goals of the organization - Remuneration of personnel: Salaries — the price of services rendered by employees — should be fair and provide satisfaction both to the employee and employer - Centralization: The objective of centralization is the best utilization of personnel.

The degree of centralization varies according to the dynamics of each organization - Scalar chain: A chain of authority exists from the highest organizational authority to the lowest ranks - Order: Organizational order for materials and personnel is essential. The right materials and the right employees are necessary for each organizational function and activity - Equity: In organizations, equity is a combination of kindliness and justice.

Both equity and equality of treatment should be considered when dealing with employees - Stability of tenure of personnel: To attain the maximum productivity of personnel, a stable work force is needed - Initiative: Thinking out a plan and ensuring its success is an extremely strong motivator. Zeal, energy, and initiative are desired at all levels of the organizational ladder - Esprit de corps: Teamwork is fundamentally important to an organization.

Work teams and extensive face-to-face verbal communication encourages teamwork. Mary Parker Follett stressed the importance of an organization establishing common goals for its employees. However, she also began to think somewhat differently than the other theorists of her day, discarding command-style hierarchical organizations where employees were treated like robots.

She began to talk about such things as ethics, power, and leadership. She encouraged managers to allow employees to participate in decision making. She stressed the importance of people rather than techniques — a concept very much before her time. As a result, she was a pioneer and often not taken seriously by management scholars of her time.

But times change, and innovative ideas from the past suddenly take on new meanings. Much of what managers do today is based on the fundamentals that Follett established more than 80 years ago. Chester Barnard, who was president of New Jersey Bell Telephone Company, introduced the idea of the informal organization — cliques exclusive groups of people that naturally form within a company. He felt that these informal organizations provided necessary and vital communication functions for the overall organization and that they could help the organization accomplish its goals. Barnard felt that it was particularly important for managers to develop a sense of common purpose where a willingness to cooperate is strongly encouraged.

He is credited with developing the acceptance theory of management, which emphasizes the willingness of employees to accept that managers have legitimate authority to act. Barnard felt that four factors affected the willingness of employees to accept authority:. Barnard's sympathy for and understanding of employee needs positioned him as a bridge to the behavioral school of management, the next school of thought to emerge. As management research continued in the 20th century, questions began to come up regarding the interactions and motivations of the individual within organizations.

Management principles developed during the classical period were simply not useful in dealing with many management situations and could not explain the behavior of individual employees. In short, classical theory ignored employee motivation and behavior. As a result, the behavioral school was a natural outgrowth of this revolutionary management experiment. The behavioral management theory is often called the human relations movement because it addresses the human dimension of work.

Behavioral theorists believed that a better understanding of human behavior at work, such as motivation, conflict, expectations, and group dynamics, improved productivity. The theorists who contributed to this school viewed employees as individuals, resources, and assets to be developed and worked with — not as machines, as in the past.

Much more than documents.

Several individuals and experiments contributed to this theory. Elton Mayo's contributions came as part of the Hawthorne studies, a series of experiments that rigorously applied classical management theory only to reveal its shortcomings.

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  • Introduction.

The Hawthorne experiments consisted of two studies conducted at the Hawthorne Works of the Western Electric Company in Chicago from to The first study was conducted by a group of engineers seeking to determine the relationship of lighting levels to worker productivity. Surprisingly enough, they discovered that worker productivity increased as the lighting levels decreased — that is, until the employees were unable to see what they were doing, after which performance naturally declined.

A few years later, a second group of experiments began. Harvard researchers Mayo and F. Roethlisberger supervised a group of five women in a bank wiring room. They gave the women special privileges, such as the right to leave their workstations without permission, take rest periods, enjoy free lunches, and have variations in pay levels and workdays.

This experiment also resulted in significantly increased rates of productivity. In this case, Mayo and Roethlisberger concluded that the increase in productivity resulted from the supervisory arrangement rather than the changes in lighting or other associated worker benefits. Because the experimenters became the primary supervisors of the employees, the intense interest they displayed for the workers was the basis for the increased motivation and resulting productivity.

Essentially, the experimenters became a part of the study and influenced its outcome.

Organizational theory term paper | organizational theory term paper ideas

This is the origin of the term Hawthorne effect, which describes the special attention researchers give to a study's subjects and the impact that attention has on the study's findings. The general conclusion from the Hawthorne studies was that human relations and the social needs of workers are crucial aspects of business management.

This principle of human motivation helped revolutionize theories and practices of management. Abraham Maslow, a practicing psychologist, developed one of the most widely recognized need theories, a theory of motivation based upon a consideration of human needs. His theory of human needs had three assumptions:.

Maslow grouped all physical needs necessary for maintaining basic human well-being, such as food and drink, into this category. After the need is satisfied, however, it is no longer is a motivator - Safety needs. These needs include the need for basic security, stability, protection, and freedom from fear. A normal state exists for an individual to have all these needs generally satisfied. Otherwise, they become primary motivators - Belonging and love needs. After the physical and safety needs are satisfied and are no longer motivators, the need for belonging and love emerges as a primary motivator.

The individual strives to establish meaningful relationships with significant others - Esteem needs. An individual must develop self-confidence and wants to achieve status, reputation, fame, and glory - Self-actualization needs. Assuming that all the previous needs in the hierarchy are satisfied, an individual feels a need to find himself. Douglas McGregor was heavily influenced by both the Hawthorne studies and Maslow.

He believed that two basic kinds of managers exist. One type, the Theory X manager, has a negative view of employees and assumes that they are lazy, untrustworthy, and incapable of assuming responsibility. On the other hand, the Theory Y manager assumes that employees are not only trustworthy and capable of assuming responsibility, but also have high levels of motivation. An important aspect of McGregor's idea was his belief that managers who hold either set of assumptions can create self-fulfilling prophecies — that through their behavior, these managers create situations where subordinates act in ways that confirm the manager's original expectations.

Organizational Theory Term Paper

As a group, these theorists discovered that people worked for inner satisfaction and not materialistic rewards, shifting the focus to the role of individuals in an organization's performance. During World War II, mathematicians, physicists, and other scientists joined together to solve military problems. The quantitative school of management is a result of the research conducted during World War II. The quantitative approach to management involves the use of quantitative techniques, such as statistics, information models, and computer simulations, to improve decision making.

This school consists of several branches, described in the following sections. The management science school emerged to treat the problems associated with global warfare. Today, this view encourages managers to use mathematics, statistics, and other quantitative techniques to make management decisions.

Managers can use computer models to figure out the best way to do something — saving both money and time. Managers use several science applications. Operations management is a narrow branch of the quantitative approach to management.

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  7. Extract of sample "Organizational Theory Literature and an Analysis of the U.S. Steel Corporation"?
  8. The product outputs can be either goods or services; effective operations management is a concern for both manufacturing and service organizations. The resource inputs, or factors of production, include the wide variety of raw materials, technologies, capital information, and people needed to create finished products.