Principles of Management. Scientific Management, Knowledge Management, and Evolution of Management Theory

A Write-Up Based on the Review of Literature

Academic Paper, 2010

34 Pages, Grade: A



Some Advantages are that
Some Disadvantages of the Scientific Management
Hawthorne Studies
Applying The Hawthorne Effect on Employee Motivation
Someone ReallyCares about Me

Four Contingency Variables are

Steps in Practicing Creative Skills

Looking Further at Exploration and Exploitation


Mechanistic and Organistic Organisations

The Theory By Max Weber (1864-1920)
Theory of Administration Management Henry Fayol (1841-1925)
Theory of Behavioural Management By Mary Parker Follett (1868-1933)
Management Theory X and Theory Y By Douglas Murray McGregor(1906-1964)
Management Science (a Contemporay extension of Scientific Management)
Organizational Environment Theory
The Open System Theory By Daniel Katz, Robert Kahn, and James Thomson 1960s
Mechanic and Organic Structures


Student: Wisdom Yao Dornyo

This ISP (independent study program) was metered to assess the student when he or she missed a particular course at least up to half-way through the course from the beginning, also when the student missed the whole course session. It was so much designed to assist the student to acquire the missed sessions through independent but lecturer guided autonomous research work with a project write-up. An ISP was supposed to buttress and strengthen the student intellectual background and autonomy in independent learning capabilities coupled with capacity building in making constructive and scientific presentations, data and diagrammatic analysis, and project write-up style inculcation. It strengthened the student research background using knowledge platforms to put knowledge together, to solve problems, establish a structure of a system or an organization, and to set up dynamic systems that function towards a business goal, or a scientific and technological goal-implementation. It empowered the student to write scientific research papers and finally built the student towards thesis or dissertation writing when the student was conversant with the decision making and analysis tools in all fields, w.r.t. statistics, quantitative studies in business decision making, management science capabilities, scientific data collection and analysis prowess, and model building.


Scientific management is the process whereby worker efficiency is increased by way of management through the use of scientifc investigation. In the early nineteens this way of management was inspired by the ideas of Frederick Winslow Taylor who was regarded up to today as the „Father of Scientifc Management“. Taylor introduced the concepts of „one best way“ for promoting efficiency for each worker in the organization, using the scientific method. As a mechanical engineer he was consistently appalled at the efficiency of workers. According to Stephen et al,1 Talor believed that worker output was only about one-third of what was possible. Therefore, he set out to correct the situation by applying the scientific method to jobs on the shop floor. He spent more than two decades pursuing with a passion the -one best way- for each job to be done“. Taylor created clear guidelines for improving production efficiency. He defined four priniciples of management and these are as follows:

1. Develop a science for each element of an individual's work, which replaces the old rule of- thumb method.
2. Scientifically select and then train, teach, and develop the worker.(Previously, worker chose their own work and trained themselves as best as they could).
3. Heartily cooperate with the workers so as to ensure that all work is done in accordance with the principles of the science that has been developed.
4. Divide work and responsibility almost equally between management and workers. Management takes over all work for which it is better fitted than the workers. (Previously, almost all the work and the greater part of the responsibility were thrown upon the workers).

Using the above definitions, Taylor was able to identify the one best way of doing a job schedule, and then selected the right people for it, and trained them precisely in that only and best way he coined out. Stephen et al 1995, posited that, „Besides motivating the workers, Taylor achieved consistency improvements in productivy in the range of 200 percent or more, and he reaffirm the functions of managers to plan and control, and that of workers to perform as instructed.

Taylor's approach was adopted by the Harvard Business School in 1908 as the standard for mordern management using it as the core around which all its courses were organized. His work spreaded all over the world and adopted by most business organizations. His principles were also adopted by Frank and Lillian Gilbrerth and Henry Gantt. Gilbrerth studied work arrangements to eliminate waste in unnecessary motion of hand and body. He and his wife Lillian were ones of the first people to use motion picture films to study hand and body motion and devised a micronometer to record time to 1/2000 of a second. They placed the camera strategically to determine the length of time spent by a worker making each motion. Since motions could be faster than the eye, it is possible the eye could miss some of the ineffective motions and this wasted motions could be detected by the instrument and eliminated. Also, seventeen classification scheme which more precisely enabled analyzing the exact elements of workers' basic hand motions called therbligs were deviced by the Gilbrerths i.e. „search“, select, „grasp“, and „hold“.

Gantt also extended some of Taylor's original ideas adding his own. He developed graphs known as Gantt charts which managers widely use to plan and control work till today.

Some Advantages are that

1. Standard of living of entire country is raised
2. Cost of putting up factories or homes droped significantly
3. More jobs creation became possible and dometic gadgets such as refrigerators, stoves, motor bykes etc. became more accessible to working families
4. Specialization and therefore labour intensive i.e. so many people performing the same task
5. Efficiencies on the production floor leading to lower steel prices, expanding markets, creating more jobs and making products more accessible.

Some Disadvantages of the Scientific Management

„While scientific management principles improved productivity and had a substantial impact on industry, they also increased the monotony of work. The core job dimensions of skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy, and feedback all were missing from the picture of scientific management.

While in many cases the new ways of working were accepted by the workers, in some cases they were not. The use of stopwatches often was a protested issue and led to a strike at one factory where "Taylorism" was being tested. Complaints that Taylorism was dehumanizing led to an investigation by the United States Congress. Despite its controversy, scientific management changed the way that work was done, and forms of it continue to be used today“2.

Hawthorne Studies

Hawthorne studies was one of the approaches of HR management. The Hawthorne works of Western Electric Company in Cicero, Illinois was used in 1924 to conduct the study. In these studies engineers exposed workers to different illumination levels to see the effect on the productivity of a group of workers. There was a control group who worked under a constant illumination intensity and the engineers expected that the intensities would be in direct propotionality with individual worker. By increasing the illumination intensity on the experimental group the engineers saw output increased in both groups but to their marvel output increment continued even when the intensity was reduced. The oputput trend reversed (reduced) only when the intensity was reduced to moon light level, because worker could no longer see well to do their work effectively. The engineers then concluded that illumination intentsity was not directly related to group productivity, however they could not explain further why it so happened.

Applying The Hawthorne Effect on Employee Motivation

Suppose you select a management trainee and provide specialized training in management skills not currently possessed. Without saying a word, you've given the trainee the feeling that she is so valuable to the organization that you'll spend time and money to develop her skills. She feels she's on a track to the top, which, in turn, motivates her to work harder and more effectively. This form of employee motivation is independent of any particular skills or knowledge she may have gained from the training session. That's the Hawthorne Effect at work.

In a way, the Hawthorne Effect can be construed as an enemy of the modern manager. Carrying the theory further toward cynicism, it could be said that it doesn't matter how you manage, because the Hawthorne Effect will produce the positive outcome you want.

Someone ReallyCares about Me

In an experiment by Elton Mayo one of the engineers at the Western Electric Hawthorne Works in Cicero, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago) realised during his studies on some of the factory women that the women, exercising a freedom they didn't have on the factory floor, had formed a social atmosphere that also included the productivity-tracking observer that even at a point when their rest breaks were taken away productivity increased. „They talked and joked with one another. They began to meet socially outside of work.

When these women were singled out from the rest of the factory workers, it raised their self-esteem. When they were allowed to have a friendly relationship with their supervisor, they felt happier at work. When he discussed changes in advance with them, and allowed them a form of participation, they felt like part of the team. Elton Mayo had secured the girls cooperation and loyalty. This explains why productivity rose even when he took away their rest breaks.

There's nothing wrong with intentionally using the Hawthorne Effect to reach goals. In fact, the Hawthorne Effect has also been called the 'Somebody Upstairs Cares' syndrome. When people spend a large portion of their time at work, they require a sense of belonging, of being part of something bigger than themselves. When they do, they are more effective.

This effect has been described as the reward you reap when you pay attention to people. The mere act of showing people that you're concerned about them usually spurs them to better job performance“3.


„The contingency approach to management is based on the idea that there is no one best way to manage and that to be effective, planning, organizing, leading, and controlling must be tailored to the particular circumstances faced by an organization“ ( For example, age, fitness, alcoholism or smoking are contigencies that have effect on somebody's health and the circumstance could affect work performance as well as output, progress and development of an organization. Black posited that, contigency plans typically identify key factors that could affect the desired resuts ad specify what different actions will be taken if changes in key event occur4. For this reason, management is not (and can not be) based on simplistic principles to be applied in all situations. Different and changing situations require mangers to use different approaches and techniques. That, the contingency approach (situational approach) says that organizations are different, face different situations (contingencies) and require different ways of managing. It is one thing to say the method management „depends on the situation“ and another thing to say what it depends on Stephen et al5,

Four Contingency Variables are

1. Organization Size: Increase in size leads to increased coordination problems. An organizational structurer for 60000 employees can not work well with that of 45 employees.
2. Routineness of Task Technology: The processing of inputs into outputs.
3. Environmental Uncertainty: Instability in politics, economy, socialcutural, technology, just whatever works in a stable system can not work well in a rapidly changing unpredictable system and so its environment.
4. Individual Differences: That is differences in growth, autonomy, tolerance for ambiguity, and expectations also, styles of leadership, job design and motivational techniques.

Further, „Certainty and predictability permit the use of policies, rules, and procedures to guide decision making for routine tasks and problems. Unstable environments suggest organic structures which emphasize decentralization to achieve flexibility and adaptability. Uncertainty and unpredictability require general problem solving methods for nonroutine tasks and problems“6.


Workforce diversity literally means diverse organizational members. Managing a diverse workforce implies coordinating work efforts of diverse organisational employees in accomplishing organisational goals. Workforce diversity involves workforce that are highly heterogeneous in terms of gender, race ethnicity, age, etc. that points to differences.

According to Stephen et al7 „before 1980 people took a -melting pot- approach to differences in organizations“. The assumption was that, people who were different would want to assimilate but it was not that easy as immediate as such. The issue recognised now is that employees do not set their preferred lifestyles and cultural values aside when they are at work. It is therefore a challenge to managers to make organizations more accommodating to diversity through addressing different lifestyles a family needs as well as work styles. As a result, managers recognize employees differences and celebrate them instead of hooking to the melting pot ideas.

Really diversity could be an asset to a business organization as a result of the quite diversified and extensive view point and widened approaches to problem solving. With such an integration, organizations are in better position to understand and flexibly handle diverse customer base and needs. Franchises such as McDonalds, KFC, and companies like Avon Products, Xerox, Avis Rent A Car etc have extensive management programmes of diversity.

(Rob,, spelt out seven factors that motivate companies in accommodating a diversified workforce and these are;

1. Social reponsibility: By this employees get the break they need to earn a living to achieve their dreams.
2. As an economic payback: Diversifying the workforce with packages like welfare-to-work employs tax users to worker, and become tax payers.
3. As a resource imperative: Competitive companies can not allow discriminative preferences to resist them from attracting the best available talent within the pool.
4. As a legal requirement: Many companies are under legislative mandates to be nondiscriminative in their employment practices. Non-compliance with „‘equal-employment- opportunity‘ employment or affirmative action legislation“ can result in fines and or loss of contracts with government agencies. It therefore makes good business sence to be workforce diversified.
5. As a marketing strategy: Buying power in today's global economy require people from all walks of life to bring their expertise to bear on bargains. Also, for business deals with the general public organizations are hiring diverse workforce whose makeup reflects that of their customer base.
6. As a business communications strategy: Due to expanding diversity in customer base, businesses with homogenous work force will find themselves ineffective in their external interactions.
7. As a capacity building strategy: In the 21st century companies that prosper are those that have the capacity to solve problems and this capacity is measured by the calibre of diversified workforce of the company. Employees are valued according to their uniqueness and perspectives that they can bring to the organization. This will change the way an organization does business for the better. Therefore, companies with a diversified workforce will have a competitive advantage over their counterparts that don't.8


Creavity refers to the ability to combine ideas in a uniques way or to make unusual associations between ideas (Stephen et al, 1996)9. To make creativity useful, we need to innovate. Stephen et al posited that, „the outcome of the creative process needs to be turned into useful products, services, or work methods, which is defined as innovation“. There is the need to think about problems in divergent ways i.e. „thinking outside the box“ and there are three qualities that determine the extent of creativity. These are, expertise, creative thinking skills and intrinsic task motivation. The higher these qualities, the more creative an individual becomes.

The potential for creativity is enhanced when individuals have abilities, knowledge, proficiencies, and similar expertise in their fields of endeavor. In combination with the associated personality characteristics of creative thinking skills which is the individuals ability to use analogies and talents to see in different light, the familiar. The following traits are necessary for an individual to move on, thus, intelligence, independence, self-confidence, risk taking, an internal locus of control, tolerance for ambiguity and perseverance in the face of frustration.

There is the need to see problems a new way. The psychological and intuitive acceptance of the joy in making (i.e. i ntrinsic task motivation) is really important for a creator. This involves the desire to work on something as a result of how interesting it is, involving and exciting, satisfying or challenging. These can be seen as motivational potentials that urge an individual into the way of real creative ideas. This is the expression that indicates why creative people often love their work even to the point of absessity.

Steps in Practicing Creative Skills

1. Think of yourself as creative.
2. Pay attention to your intuition.
3. Move away from your comfort zone.
4. Engage in activities that put you outside your comfort zone.
5. Seek a change of scenery.
6. Find several right answers.
7. Play your own devil's advocate- challenging yourself to defend your solution helps you to develop confidence in your creative efforts.
8. Believe you will get a solution.
9. Brainstorm with others.
10. Turn creative ideas into action.10


Mark et al of the Advanced Institute of Management,11 defined dynamic capabilities as „the ability of an organisation to adapt and innovate continually in the face of business and environmental change“. It has been a topic of interest for years due to the link between organisational performance and competitiveness. It focuses on the detailed processes inside organisations leading to this change and innovation.

Mark posited that, „the factors that make two separate companies dynamic are often quite different, and are not transferable or substitutable“.There are a number of factors that repeat frequently in different organisations that is: the ability to absorb and exploit external knowledge; pro-activity inside and outside the organisation; a strong focus on innovation at all levels; and structural flexibility. This reflects the posit of Somaya and Teece, 2007, that, „the importance of dynamic capability is now amplified because the global economy has become more open and the sources of invention, innovation, and manufacturing are more diverse geographically, organizationally and multiple inventions must be combined to achieve market place success“12. Dynamic Capabilities are often considered as the factor justifying the different degrees of successes of organizations in turbulent environment (Pavlou & El Sawy, 2006; Rai, Patnayakuni, & Seth, 2006; Zollo & Winter, 2002)13. However, dynamic capabilities often lie in the successful combination of clearly opposite characteristics, like direction and empowerment; internal knowledge creation and external networking; pro-activity and reactivity; and, exploration and exploitation. Moreover, their integration is largely a political process and hence takes note of temporal and spatial dimensions.


1 Fundamentals of Management By Stephen P. Robbins and David A. Decenzo, p28


3 Fundamentals of Management by Stephen P. Robbins et al, p33,,,,,,,

4 Hit Black Porter, Management Internal Edition, p277

5 Management, International Edition By Stephen P. Robbins and Mary Coulter, p36

6, Fundamentals of Management. Essential Concepts and Applications, By Stephen P. Robbins et al p41,,,,,

7 Fundamentals of Management. Essential Concepts and Applications, By Stephen P. Robbins et al p58, and International Edition, Management By Stephen P. Robbins and Mary Coulter, p39, and Management “Princples and practices for Tomorrow’s Leaders” By Gary Dessler, p45


9 International Edition, Management By Stephen P. Robbins and Mary Coulter, p327, and Fundamentals of Management By Stephen P. Robbins and David A. Decenzo, p111 and p128





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Principles of Management. Scientific Management, Knowledge Management, and Evolution of Management Theory
A Write-Up Based on the Review of Literature
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Wisdom Yao Dornyo (Author), 2010, Principles of Management. Scientific Management, Knowledge Management, and Evolution of Management Theory, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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