Formative years: early 1900's to 1930's
Was called "scientific management"
Focus on the management of work and organizations
Important contributors: Taylor, Gilbreths, Gantt, Weber, Fayol, Barnard
Human Relations
Formative years: 1920's to 1940's
Focus on the management of people
Hawthorne a nd pajama factory studies were significant events
Important contributors: Mayo, Maslow, French, McGregor, Skinner (later)
Management Science
Different from "scientific management"
Formative years: 1940's to 1960's
Operations research
Quantitative basis for decision making - uses mathematical models
Emphasis on managing production and operations
Rooted in classical
Systems Approach
Formative years: 1950's to 197 0's
Views an organization as a group of inter-dependent functions
     contributing to a single purpose
"Black box" concept and input/output
Important contributor: U.S. Department of Defense
Formative years: 1950's to 1980's
Challenged the rigidity of classical organizations - more people oriented
Emphasis on inter-relationships of people - motivation,
     leadership, communications Important contributors: Lewin, Likert, Argyris
Situational (Contingency)
Formative years: 1970's to 1990's
Appropriate theory depends on the situation - in certain situations, some management
practices work better than others
Important contributors: Follett (earlier), Woodward, Fry


Practicing managers were first contributors t o the field. Did not have academic recognition at the time.

Management of Work

1. Frederick W. Taylor

Four principles:
a. Replace rule-of-thumb with science
b. Select, train, and develop workers
c. Cooperate with workers to make sure work is done
     according to scientific procedures
d. Recognize that managers do "an equal division" of the work
2. Frank and Lillian Gilbreth
Time and motion studies of bricklaying
Work simplification
3. Henry L. Gantt
Focused on the shop floor
Gantt chart for scheduling work
4. Harrington Emerson
Efficiency programs based on scientific principles
a. Use scientific, factual, and objective analyses
b. Define the aims of the undertaking
c. Relate each part to the whole
d. Provide standardized procedures and met hods
e. Reward individuals for successful execution of the task
Management of Organizations

Two lasting contributions of classical organization theory: (a) principles of management, and (b) principles of organization. Bureaucracy is one form of classical organization.

1. Henri Fayol

Identified 5 functions in which managers must engage
a. Planning
b. Organizing
c. Commanding
d. Coordinating
e. Controlling< /blockquote> Proposed 14 principles for the management of organizations
a. Division of labor
b. Parity of authority and responsibility
c. Discipline
d. Unity of command
e. Unity of direction - combine activities that have the same purpose
f. Subordination of the individual to the general interest
g. Fair remuneration
h. Centralization
i. Chain of command
j. Order - define each job and its relationship to others
k. Equity - enforce the rules fai rly
l. Stability of personnel
m. Initiative - encourage employees within bounds of their authority
n. Esprit de corps - individual interests are equal to the organization's
2. James D. Mooney
Management is the technique of directing and inspiring other people.
Organization is the technique of relating specific duties or functions into a coordinated whole.
Primary purpose of management is to devise an appropriate organization.
F our principles of organization:
a. Authority - define job duties and responsibilities
     and the chain of command
b. Leadership - delegation of authority
c. Specialization - necessary in all organizations
d. Coordination - specialization requires it

Early approaches to management (i.e. classical) were built on the concept that, if managers could properly plan, organize, and co ntrol jobs and organizations, then productivity would increase. These early approaches also emphasized the technical aspects of work.

Theories began to emerge which challenged the earlier approaches. These new theories pointed out the need for managers to use "people skills."

The emphasis shifted for managers. They are called upon to communicate, lead, create a positive motivational environment, and resolve conflicts.

The Hawthorne Studies

The earliest insights into the nee d for a new approach are attributed to the Hawthorne Studies. These were a series of studies done in Western Electric's Hawthorne plant in Cicero, Illinois during the period 1924-33.

Two of these studies will be described: (a.) experiments to determine the effect of illumination on productivity, and (b.) wiring room experiment to determine the effect of group piece rate incentives.

Conclusion: human element and social behavior dominated the workplace.

Term: "The Hawthorne Effect"

T he Pajama Factory

Studies in the pajama factory (Harwood Manufacturing Corporation) in the 1940's investigated the reasons why workers resist changes

It was found that productivity-reducing resistance could be overcome by telling workers about the change beforehand and by explaining the reasons for the change

Findings led to formulation of approaches to worker participation at various levels of involvement


The aim of management s cience is to provide managers with quantitative bases for decisions. Development of management science is traced to World War II, when operations researchers successfully solved a number of military problems including many of a logistical nature (equipment and troop movements) and strategy for submarine warfare. After the War, companies such as Dupont and Heinz pioneered the use of operations research in business applications.

1. Characteristics of management science

Primary foc us is decision making
Relies on economic effectiveness criteria
Uses formal mathematical models
Depends on computers
2. Some useful types of models
Allocation models - enable allocation of resources
     to optimize the attainment of an objective
Network models - assist in planning and controlling complex projects
Inventory models - address the questions: how much? and when?
3. Some types of models Linear programming
Optimize the attainment of an objective
Key terms: objective function (maximize or minimize)
     and constraints
PERT (Program Evaluation and Review Technique)
Minimize conflicts, delays, and interruptions in a project
Most useful for non-repetitive projects
Developed by the U.S. Navy for Polaris program (1958)
Key terms: critical path and activities
Inv entory planning and control
Types of inventories: raw materials, supplies,
     work-in-process, finished goods
Purposes of inventories
Customer service
Manufacturing flexibility and smoothing
Safety stocks
Price speculation
Economic Order Quantity (EOQ)

This is really a way of thinking about management problems.

It views an organization as a group of inter-dependent parts, each with a single purpose.

Because the action of one part influences the others, managers cannot deal separately with the individual parts.

In solving problems, managers must view the organization as a dynamic whole and must try to anticipate the intended as well as the unintended impacts of their decisions.

The purpose is to provide a holistic view of the management of an organization that will integrate all other approaches.

Often, the result of a systems approach is a computer model.


The neoclassical approach is built upon the social sciences: psychology, sociology, and anthropology. While the Human Relations School introduced the human side as a part to be considered, the Neoclassical School created a full approach of management based upon the human side.

Arguments supporting the neoclassical approach are: (1) classical theory is inherently flawed, and (2) classical theory is irrelevant con temporary societies.

a. Classical theory is inherently flawed
Hawthorne and subsequent studies showed the importance
     of the human element
Others (e.g., Chris Argyris) believe that classical organizations tend to
     suppress the individual, making them passive, dependent, and
     noncreative, and thereby waste a considerable portion of
   ;   their human resources.
b. Classical theory is irrelevant to contemporary society
A considerable body of evidence supports the thesis that classically
     designed organizations are not compatible with contemporary society.
Classical approaches worked best in the early period of industrialization, where production processes determined organization forms.

Today, advancing technology and other changes require organizations to be adaptable and flexible so that new ways of doing work can be quickly implemented.

A leading advocate of the neoclassical approach is Rensis Likert.

He stated that neoclassical organizations utilize human and technical
     resources more fully than classical ones.
Neoclassical emphasizes the importance of decentralized authority and
     nondirective, participative management behavior.
Characteristic s of neoclassical design
Very different organizational approach than classical
Classical tries to maximize efficiency and production;
    neoclassical stresses flexibility and adaptability
Job designs stress personal growth and responsibility
Decentralization of decision making, control and goal-setting
Communications flow throughout the organization and not just
    along a chain of command
The neoclassical organization
Is relatively simple - de-emphasizes specialization and emphasizes a wide range
     of responsibilities in each job
Is relatively decentralized - emphasizes delegation of authority and increasing job depth
Is relatively informal - emphasizes the product and customer as bases for departments

This approach states that the best way to organize depends on the nature of underlying factors such as the organization's strategy, environment, and technology. It recognizes that classical organizations are more efficient and productive, but less adaptive and flexible than neoclassical organizations. A particular organization - or part of an organization - should be structured on the basis of whether is must be (1) efficient and productive, or (2) adaptive and flexible.

Those who have contributed to this theory have suggested a number of circumstances, or variables, that influence the desi gn of the organization. Among these variables are:
Age of the organization Strategic choice
Size of the organization Employee needs
Form of ownership Current fashion
Technology Environmental uncertainty
As an example, using technology, mass production tends to require a cla ssical organization, but production of single units (as in aerospace) or continuous processes (such as in oil refining) are more suitable to neoclassical organizations.

It is now recognized that large organizations require a combination of classical and neoclassical departments, depending on the nature of the department's function.

Return to top