MPT online test __WY

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Question 1

What were some of Henri Fayol’s main contributions to the field of management?

Henri Fayol brought into the field of management some of the most insightful theories on the linkage between organizational performance and management. Unlike the conventional ideas of his time which argued that technical expertise was paramount in corporations, Fayol argued that stellar managerial abilities were more important for success than good technical skills. Additionally, he posited that managerial prowess could be taught and thus, people could become better managers over time. In his principles of management, Fayol noted that employees’ skills could be substantially increased with specialization and division of labor, as these two concepts allowed for higher efficiency. It is equally notable that Fayol demystified the role of managers and insisted that while managers had the authority to give out orders, they had to act in a responsible manner. Additionally, Fayol intimated that there was need to maintained a delicate balance in the involvement of employees in the decision-making process. Undoubtedly, this has remained a key pillar in organizational development even in the contemporary corporations. Closely related to this was Fayol’s principle on equity, whereby he urged managers to ensure that fairness is upheld at all times in the coordination and organization of activities within a firm.

Question 3

 What ideas in organizations were introduced by the human resource approaches?

The early thinking and ideologies regarding management and human motivation were fundamentally influenced by the scientific studies regarding human resource approaches. Over the course of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the focus had been majorly on scientific management. However, this gradually shifted toward the human factor, and the subsequent studies concentrated on the behavioural influences to individual and group performance. In his study, Hawthorne posited that psychological and social influences impacted on performance. Hawthorne observed that output was dependent on earnings, supervision, attention given by the management, and the size of the team. These findings showed the importance of effective supervision and proper remuneration in improving organizational performance. Moreover, Abraham Maslow in his explication of the theory human needs brought in the progression principle. This was an important addition to human resource practice, as it argued that needs are in a hierarchy form and workers will, ultimately, seek to use their abilities to the most creative extent and achieve self-fulfilment. Diughlas McGregor’s insights into the need to shift from Theory X to Theory Y equally marked a turning point in human resource practice as it brought in the reality that under the right set of circumstances, workers could carry out their duties under minimum supervision and in a responsible and independent manner. Closely related to this argument was Chris Argyris’ which maintained that organizational management needed to strike a delicate balance between supervision and engaging employees. He opined that organizations needed to enhance administrative efficiency by treating employees in a mature and responsible manner.