Performance Management Essay

2598 words - 11 pages


I. Basic management functions have been around “forever.” However, we learn more about management as time goes on and things change that require adjustments, or sometimes, quite different ways of doing things. This chapter studies past management thought and practice so that we can learn the things that work well, in which situations, and the reasons that they do. The chapter also encourages us to keep looking for changes that will require adjustments so that we can continue to improve our knowledge about management.

II. Environmental Factors Influencing Management Thought. Major factors that influence management thought are:

A. Economic influences ...view middle of the document...

III. Schools of Management Thought.

A. The Classical Perspective: Comprising the oldest formal viewpoints of management, it includes the scientific management approach, the administrative management approach, and the bureaucratic management approach.

1. Scientific Management: Perspective on management that focuses on the productivity of the individual worker.

a. Frederick Taylor (1856-1915), the father of scientific management, was convinced that there is “one best way” to perform each task and used scientific methods to study how workers performed their jobs. Taylor’s observations led him to formulate opinions in the areas of task performance, supervision, and motivation.

b. Frank and Lillian Gilbreth also made substantial contributions to scientific management. Frank Gilbreth specialized in time and motion studies to determine the most efficient way to perform tasks. He identified 17 work elements (such as lifting, grasping, positioning, etc.) and called them therbligs. Lillian Gilbreth concentrated her efforts on the human aspects of industrial engineering. She was a strong proponent of better working conditions as a means of improving efficiency and productivity.

Note: Consider watching the movie, “Cheaper by the Dozen” to get some examples of how Frank and Lillian Gilbreth used time and motion studies, and practices related to these studies, in their home to be very efficient. It can be very entertaining and informative.

2. Administrative Management: Perspective on management that focuses on managers and the functions they perform.

a. Henri Fayol (1841-1925): Administrative management is most closely identified with Henri Fayol. Fayol was the first to recognize that successful managers had to understand the basic managerial functions. He identified these functions as planning, organizing, commanding (leading), coordinating, and controlling. Fayol also developed a set of 14 general principles of management, which are listed in Table 2.1 of the textbook.

3. Bureaucratic Management: Perspective on management that focuses on the overall organizational system and is based upon firm rules, policies, and procedures; a fixed hierarchy; and a clear division of labor.

a. Max Weber (1864-1920): Max Weber, a German sociologist and historian, is most closely associated with bureaucratic management. Weber envisioned a system of management that would be based upon impersonal and rational behavior.

b. Management of this sort is called a bureaucracy and is typified by:

i) Division of labor.
ii) Hierarchy of authority.
iii) Rules and procedures
iv) Impersonality.
v) Employee selection and promotion.

Note: Refer to Figure 2.3 in the textbook.

c. Types of Authority: Weber believed there were three different types of authority:...

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