The Management Theory and Practice Essay

The management theory and practice has changed over since the early 1900’s, while the economy developed. With the globalization and technology be used widely, the environment became more competitive. The social institutions feel pressure to face a new challenge. The management system should be innovated into the new conditions and challenges management and the new management made workplace more productive. The old management evolved from classical management approaches to modern management approaches.

This essay will describe three parts of changing in management approaches: changing in the method of treating employees, changing the method of management problem solving and achieving modern management approaches. The classical management approaches thought is developing universal principles for use in various management situations. The three major aspects are scientific management, administrative principles and bureaucratic organization.

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For scientific management, Taylor and Gilbreths advanced that “making results-based compensation a performance incentive, carefully design jobs with efficient work methods, carefully select workers with the abilities to du these jobs, training workers to perform jobs to the best of their abilities, training supervisors to support workers so they can perform jobs to the best of their abilities” (Campling et al. 2008, p92). Those ideas are efficiently improving the productivity, but problems had appeared.

The first one is a high staff-attrition rate (Campling et al. 2008, p92). The companies have given priority to make staff recruitment and employee training programs. Second problem is that it not implement fully. Some employers decreased the piece rate of wages to because they do not willing to pay the large increases brought about by the increased productivity of Taylor’s method (Mckenna 1999, P55). Third, “the narrow specialization of jobs led to dehumanizing of the workforce” (Mckenna 1999, P55).

All of those resulted in strong opposition from workers. For bureaucratic organization, there five disadvantages that are “excessive paperwork, slowness in handling problems, rigidity in the face of shifting needs, resistance to change and employee apathy”(Campling et al. 2008, p94). These disadvantages led to change into new management. The behavioural management approach became more humanness. This approach maintains that people are social and self-actualising.

Behavioural management approaches include Hawthorne Studies, Maslow’s theory of human needs, McGregor’s Theory X and Theory Y and Argyris’s theory of adult personality. Hawthorne researched that psychological factors influenced results and human interaction would be the finally influence on the field of management. Mayo and his colleagues research shows that the two factors which is group atmosphere and participative supervision created for workers for the increased productivity (Campling et al. 2008, p95).

Mayo studies also showed the groups have strong influences on individual productivity. Maslow’s advanced theory of human needs and separated needs into five levels that are physiological, safety, social, esteem and self-actualisation. When the human needs be satisfied, the productivity will be achieved at work (businessballs 2009). Argyris stated the theory of adult personality. He believes that if managers treat their employees in a positive manner—as responsible adults—their employees will be more productive (Cliffsnotes 2009).

Although the behavioural management approaches is more perfect than the classical management approach, the management still be changed to adapt new economy environment. With the computer technology and software program applied widespread, a new management approach appeared which is quantitative management approach. The quantitative management approach is the scientific application of mathematical techniques that can be used to solve problem and improve managerial decision making. The computer technology increased the speed to solve the complicated mathematical models.

There are six management science applications and techniques are used that are mathematical forecasting, inventory modeling, linear programming, queuing theory, network models and simulation. The values of these factors could be changed to develop different scenarios in the search for a solution (Hahn 2007). While operations research has provided management with a valuable tool in the planning and control of production activities, mathematical models have yet to account effectively for human behaviors. Nowadays, many of the techniques are highly sophisticated.

Organisations often use staff specialists to help managers apply techniques. The software and hardware development also have potential quantitative applications to managerial problems. After the three management approaches, the modern management approaches grew directly from foundation established. When people became complicated and variable, the management changed into modern management approaches. While time changed, people have more different needs. Therefore, the organisations and managers should have variety of managerial strategies and job opportunities to deal with individual differences.

Systems thinking and contingency thinking are the key foundations of the modern management approaches. The system is “collection of interrelated parts that function together to achieve a common purpose” (Campling et al. 2008, p92). It use communication method to make the cooperation happened. The open system is an organisation that interacts with its environments in the continual process of transforming resource inputs into outputs. Barnard suggested that the subsystem cooperated well in whole organisation can gain high performance.

The contingency theory has been defined as an explanation of leader effectiveness, and in terms of appropriate managerial action. This theory said that there is no one best way to manage and a appropriate way to manage depends on the situation. The major changed in management is from classical management to modern management. But the changing still continues. The continuing pressures for quality and performance excellence, an expanding global awareness and new leadership are the new management themes of the 21st century.

The new age manager should have global strategist, master of technology, effective politician and inspiring leader. In this essay, I compared with major four management approaches and stated their changes in different time levels. The three parts of changing in management approaches are changing in the method of treating employees, changing the method of management problem solving and achieving modern management approaches. At the end of the essay, I also look forward to the future management themes.

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