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Industrial revolution & management theory

The crucial importance event that formed the world into the shape we now see around us was the industrial revolution which began in the late eighteenth century. Before it, most societies were based on small-scale, agricultural production, with the vast majority of the population, living in the countryside. After the industrial revolution, the reverse became the case. In the industrialised countries, most people living in urban centres. The great importance  development of the industrial revolution  was the creation of factories.

During the early part of industrial revolution, most of production was carried out by occupation based on family units. As demand increased, some men and women became specialist in a certain job. In that time, It was the owner who began the move towards the factory system.

The management based on two basic propositions:

1-   Labour is unreliable, lazy and will only work when tightly controlled and closely supervised.

2-   The main controllable business cost is labour, therefore the key to increased profits is to make it cheaper and increase its productivity by getting employers work harder or for longer hours for the same or less money.

Fredrick Winslow Taylor made a major contribution to the development of managerial theory and practice in the twentieth (lock, 1982: rose, 1988)

Taylor believed passionately in the need to reform managerial authority: to base it on competence rather than the power to hire and fire. Taylor’s approach required a radical change in managerial behaviour. The objective of his system was to improve the productivity and efficiency by management.

According to Feyol (1949), it is the prime responsibility of manager to achieve the organisations aim, he prescribed the main duties of managers as follows:

1. Planning : examining the future, deciding what needs to be done and developing plan of action.

2. Organising : bringing together the resources, human and material, and developing the structure to carry out the activities of the organisation.

3. Command: ensuring that the employees perform their jobe well and in the best interests of the organisation.

4 .Coordination: Verifying that the activities of the organisation work harmoniously together to achieve its goals.

5. Control: establishing that plans, instruction and commands are correctly carried out.

Mc Greoger(1906-1964) In his book the human side of enterprise argued that decisions taken by managers on the best way to manage people were based on their assumptions about human nature.

He maintained that there are basically two views of human nature, a negative view (theory X) and a positive view (theory Y ). The managers who adhere to theory X will use a combination of methods to control there subordinates. Those managers who adhere to theory Y will adopt a more open and  flexible style to management.

Nothing is inevitable until is actually happens and even it may be reserved. In this days organisations dominate our lives, where they appear to be more powerful than ever before, The role and performance of managers will be crucial. manager will need to recognise that in the future, as in the past ,regardless of the particular issues involved, the environment in which their organisation operate will continue to change. managers will have to recognise that the appropriateness  of their decision will be judged by a wider set of criteria and a wider range of stakeholders than in the past.

At the same time management will continue to have to find ways of ensuring that their organisation and its environment and the other constraint under which it operated, are, as far as possible keep aligned.

Managers seek to influence the constrains under which their organisation operates and the pace and timing of change to make them more favourable to their preferred way of working.

The biggest challenge facing industrial management today is globalisation. The creation of a unified world market place Allied to globalisation, however, are three other challenges ;how to achieve sustainability in a world of dwindling natural resources and increasing environmental pollution ;how to manage an increasingly diverse workforce, at a time when business leaders are considered less trust worthy than ever before, how to manage ethically.

It has never been easy to define the role of manager, though this has not prevented a great number of attempts over the years.

Definition of the role of management have ranged from attempts to list basic tasks: plans , organises, directs and controls on proprietors or on behalf, an industrial, commercial or other undertaking, organisation and  co-ordinates the work of departmental managers or other immediate subordinates.( Quoted in Dakin and Hamilton, 1990:32)

To more ambitious attempts to define the essence of the manager’s role : the manager has the take task of creating a true whole that is larger than the sum of its parts, a productive entity that turns out more than the sum of resources put into it.(Drucker 1985:53)

Drucker  (1985) also linked the manager to the conductor of symphony orchestra.

Handy (1986), on the other hand, linked the manager to a doctor: the manager is the first recipient of problems. The manager’s role is, therefore, to identify the symptoms in any situation, to diagnose the disease or cause of the trouble; to decide how it might be dealt with, through a strategy for health; and to start the treatment.

Duncan(1975) has a holistic view of the role of the manager. He identifies three distinct levels of management activity : philosophical(goal information), scientific(goal accomplishment and evaluation); and art(implementation of decisions). At the philosophical level the manager is mainly concerned with the effects of the actions and reactions of other individuals and groups which the organisation is set. At this level,  managers formulate clear and precise strategies that can result from the set goals. It is also at this level that the ethics of managerial behaviour, values and priorities of the organisation are formulated and established. At the scientific level, Manager develops plans, methods and techniques for achieving set goals. The art level is concerned with the implementation.This is the level at which tactical and administrative decision are made to deploy the organisation’s resoyrces.

Mullins(1989) argued, that management is both a science and an art. By its very nature, management is forced to deal with both, science-based activities, such as the design and operation of manufacturing, and less rational, more intuitive activities, especially those concerning managing and motivating people.

Mintzberg(1973,1975), He concluded the role of managers as follows:

All managers do have regular, ordinary duties to perform.

Rather than being systematic, reflective thinkers and planners, managers simply respond to the pressure or demands of their job.

Managerial activities are characterised by brevity, variety and discontinuity.

MIntzberg(1973) also found that managers’ role remarkably similar and their work can be described in terms of ten vary important roles that can be categorised under three headings: Interpersonal roles, informational roles, and decision-making roles.

Interpersonal roles: One of the most time-consuming and important aspects of managerial role is to work with, direct and represent  people.

International roles: Those in managerial positions have unique opportunities to obtain and disseminate information.

Decision making roles: One of the main parts of any manager’s role is to take decision.

Yokl(2002) notes, though these roles are common to most managerial jobs, the emphasis and importance of these roles varies between managers depending on a range of factors such as organisation size, level of management, level of managerial independence, and the stage the organisation had reached in its life cycle.

Stewart(1976,1982) drew particular attention to demands, constraints and choices in shaping managerial roles

.Demands-these are the expectations that those in positions of power have for a role holder.

.Constraints-these are factors peculiar to the organisation and its environment that limit a managers freedom to manoeuvre.

.Choices-though managers are limited in what they can do by the demands and constraints of their jobs, all managers have a degree of discretion (choice) in what to do and when to do it.

Hales(1986:102) in the researches on the managers role, concluded that: what manager do is, of necessity, an unreflective response to circumstances. The manager has to react rapidly to problems as they arise, take decision in situ and develop a preference for concrete activities.

Mintzberg (1975:49) pointed out: if you ask a manager what he does he will most likely tell you he plans, organizes, co-ordinates and controls. Then watch what he does . Don’t surprised if you can’t relate what you see to those four words.

Managers have to able to change their style of management and exhibit different styles to different parts of their organisation at the same time. Managers can and do adopt both the planned and emergent approaches to change management either alternately or simultaneously as the situation requires.

Managers have to capable under certain conditions, especially when faced with a crisis of restructuring their mental models of how the world is and how they should respond.

Mintzberg(1976) offers some clues as how managers can be successful managers. He concluded that effective and proficient managers are ‘whole thinkers’.

On the negative view, Managers van act to hold back organisations, prevent beneficial change and create a climate of blame and wrong doing where in fighting and discrimination are tolerated. On the positive view, managers can identify opportunities for progress, promote ethical behaviour, recognise the opportunities that diversity brings and create sustainable organisations which achieve harmony with their environment. good managers can create the conditions for growth and prosperity.

Effective managers, are, therefore, for very positive reasons, important to organisation. However they do not operate in isolation or have a totally free rein.

Industrial managers have to rely far less on their personality, important though this maybe, and far more on their knowledge, skills, creating and experience. They are called to perform a wide range of duties and activities.

Managers sometimes may choose or be required circumstances to change their organisations radically and quickly; sometimes they may choose to influence the context to promote or reduce the need for such changes.

In other cases, change may take place more slowly and over a long period. The key factor in all this is to make conscious decision. Those who manage organisations to question and challenge their own and other people’s assumptions.

Even where choices are identified, managers should not assume that exercising choice is easy or that the results will be beneficial for all concerned, including themselves. For this reason, managers have a responsibility in making and implementing choices to consider the implications not just for themselves, not just for their organisation, but for society as well.

Therefore, organisations face many challenges and choices. Some organisations will find that their room for manoeuvre is very limited. Others may find that there is considerable scope for discretion. It is the role of managers to ensure that all available options and choices are identified, and that the choices made take account of both the short and long term interests of all their stakeholders whether these be shareholders, employees,  the managers themselves or the community at large. The worst managers may not be those make poor choices; it may be those who fail to recognise that there are choices to be made.

 

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