Introduction To Management Thought Business Essay


Management Thought are said to be the theoretical frameworks for studying management. These are derived from the assumptions about human beings and firms for whom they work. The learning of management has evolved through various cycles as various scholars from different eras developed theories on what they anticipated would turn into a good management practice.

The major management thoughts that have been adopted around the world include Classical, Behavioral, Quantitative, Systems and Contingency School.

Frederick Winslow Taylor

Born on 20th March 1856 in Philadelphia, Frederick Winslow Taylor was one of the first management consultants. He sought to improve the efficiency of the industries. He was an American mechanical engineer and had passed out of the Stevens Institute of Technology in the year 1883. He formulated the Scientific Management as he felt that by scientifically analyzing work, it would be possible to find 'one best way' to do it.

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Taylor had written a series of articles published in 'The American Magazine' called 'The Principles of Scientific Management'.

According to Taylor the basic management theories and practices were poor and he emphasized that management should be studied as a discipline. He sought to ensure that the workers should cooperate and help the management in achieving its targets. This partnership would ensure that the firm would develop best results and there would be no requirements for trade unions.

Taylor's contribution is regarded as an important step towards achieving the perfect factory system of production.

Introduction to Scientific Management

Scientific Management is the study of management that formed, analyzed and managed the workforce. It is the process which was formulated on the idea of knowing exactly what you want your men to do and seeing that they do it in the best and cheapest manner. It is the process of applying science to the production process.

In the period prior to the scientific management, the owners or managers of the company usually depended on their personal skill and judgement while taking decisions in regards to problems, this resulted in facing trial and error situations. Scientific management helped in developing a procedure through which decisions were taken based on a scientific method through a procedure of identifying the problem, formulating various answers to the problem, anticipating the results, evaluating the progress and finally establishing conclusions.

Scientific management has helped in solving the problem of wasted human efforts. Scientific management, in its attempt to promote efficiency in the workplace, became important in offering the greatest amount of service to the public in the least amount of time while expending the least amount of resources.

Based on the Scientific Management various management theories were developed in the future which includes the now famous Ford 'Model T' manufacturing process.

Principles of Scientific Management

Taylor developed 4 significant principles which include:-

Science not Rule of Thumb

Harmony not Discord

Cooperation not Individualism

Development of each and every person to his greatest efficiency and prosperity

Through this principle Taylor stated that all the decisions that managers/owners take to combat problems should be based on some scientific study and not based on Rule of Thumb. Decisions which are not scientific are more prone to errors and hence it leads to massive problems such as inefficiency of workers and wastage of precious resources (money, machinery etc). According to Taylor the finest way to increase the efficiency of the workers was possible by scientific study and analysis. This is possible through proper identification of the traditional processes through proper work-study. Leading to unification of the best processes and creating a standard process which is ought to be implemented by the all the departments of the firm.

For example, in the process of manufacturing a car it is better to divide the workload among the work-force by assigning each of them to perform a certain task rather than making each worker to produce the whole car himself. Thus this will lead to inefficiency and dissatisfaction among the work-force. While the division of work will lead to specialization.

In earlier days arguments used to take place frequently between the entrepreneurs/managers and the workers. The managers had to perform the task of completion of work at any cost from the labour. Taylor felt that these arguments helped none. Therefore he suggested that there should be total agreement and harmony between the workers and the managers for the better performance of the firm. Taylor worked towards developing a system of complete harmony among the workers and managers. He was able to achieve this by suggesting that the company should share the profits of the firm with the workers. And at the same time the workers should contribute to the best of their abilities for the benefit and progress of the enterprise.

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Taylor observed that whenever the workers or the manager tried to bring in new procedures or new methods of production, the other group always opposed it. This in fact led to strikes and protests which would threaten the existence of the firm on a whole. Taylor emphasized the need to ensure that the groups always interact and listen to each others suggestions which leads to substantial reduction in cost and will boost the morale of the workers.

Earlier most of the employees were not giving their all while working. Taylor developed a process through which only the workers who are fit mentally and physically should be given jobs suit their capabilities. This will ensure that every worker will be more efficient as he will be able to perform to the best of his ability and will be given a job that suits him. The workers will have a more positive outlook to their work and will be more satisfied with what they are doing.


Born in 1880 Elton Mayo was a well known Australian sociologist who was known for his work as the founder of Human Relation Movement. Elton helped in the development of Behavioral management as he had discovered the social man and the fact that a social man requires this at his work place. According to mayo workers responded to the feelings. He conducted researches to prove his management theories. According to Mayo the better the relationship between the employer-employee the better will be the performance as the workers would be willing to work with more hard work for an employer who treats them with dignity.


The behavioral school of thought started taking place in the 1950s. It is the natural development of employee relations for the betterment of the enterprise or the organization the employees work for. It is believed that the good understanding of the employee behavior at work like motivation, clashes, group changes, and their expected outcome will help not only help to improve the firms performance but also will create a level of satisfaction in the employees behalf. Employees are soul beings considered to be great resources and assets to an organization who have to be managed. Through innovative management experiments behavioral school produces efficient outcomes. The behavioral theory was often referred as the development of human relation through which human aspect of work was defined.


Hawthorne studies are the experiments held by Mayo which has contributed a lot to the world of management. It was divided in two studies which was held at the Hawthorne Works of Western electric. The first study was done by a group of engineers that conducted the experiment to verify the bond between the workers efficiency with that of the lighting level. As they progressed through the experiment they came to know that employee efficiency increased even when the lighting level decreased, this took place till the workers were incapable to see what they were performing.

After some time the second experiment was held by Mayo in a bank wiring room in which group of five women were supervised. They were given special benefits as to leave the premises with self authorization, free meals, and distinct variation in payment of their work force. Through practice of this experiment there was a significant increase in the resulted productivity.


The main aim of these theories is to point out the similarities as well as the differences between the scientific school of management with that off the behavioral school of management. The basic contrast and comparison is to analyze the employee relationship with the workforce as well as the workplace in which the school of thought manage and control the employees to get the task completed.


For Taylor task were divided into parts in a way that each part should be determined after scientific verification. But according to Mayo individuals were motivated to respond to their task in a unpressurised management.

Scientific management was defined in a way where managers were held responsible for the supervision of the work, and the task was forced upon the workers by maintaining a stable and an intimate cooperation. On the other hand Mayo defined employees main concern was related to their satisfactory needs rather then monetary nature.

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Taylor believed that the morale incentive was the prime motive to drive workers to perform better. While Mayo considered communication and huge sense of recognition in the organization would provide a more secure experience for the employees.


Both the schools had their own use regarding the principle and ideas but their common motive behind their theories were regarding workers efficiency relating to the productivity

Even though both the schools were different in their experiments they together approached and shared a common goal which was efficient productivity.


This project has helped me understand the scientific thought of management and behavioral school of management. I came to know that both have been instrumental in helping develop theories for the future. Both of the above aim at the welfare of the employees and that helps to increase the productivity which will help to enhance the performance of the firm.