Have you though about what makes your work ‘work’? What makes ‘Getting the Job Done’ Doable? Company owners have and those that mesh science with management have had a dramatic effect on output over the years!
The Science of Management was first introduced in the 1800s by an economist, Adam Smith. He was working to increase the productivity at a factory that made pins, and by separating each task he was able to increase output from 20 pins per employee per day to a whopping 4,800 pins combined. More that doubling their combined out put.
Technically, Scientific Management is the “management of physical efficiency and individual workers” with the aim of increasing out put, but there may be more to it. Early theorist had some success developing specialized individual works talents – the assembly line idea. Insert Henry Ford and McDonald’s here. Both took the idea of specialized workers talents to the extreme and turned a huge profit. Note though that each has trouble keeping a happy, dedicated, committed work force and that many of the jobs studies for this research have sense been replaced by non- emotional robots or other mechanical devices.
Later, an experiment was performed by a man named Taylor who studied loading strips of iron into an open railroad car. By redesigning and breaking down the workers movements Taylor managed to improve the employee’s efficiency and loading from 12.5 long tons a day to 47.5 long tons a day. Once again the assembly line was proven to be highly effective, but Taylor also noted that workers attitude affected their over all out put and that most were motivated by money. This lead to the idea of ‘fair days wage based on a fair days work’, which simply means that employees should be paid extra according to their level of output and paid bonuses for reaching targets.
Taylor’s idea was then furthered studied by Douglas McGregor in the 1960s. He came up with two theories to explain the effect of workers attidude on their work.
Theory X – Employee’s role is to support the management and implement idea toward company goals.
- People have an inherent dislike for work and will avoid it whenever possible.
- People must be coerced, controlled, directed, or threatened with punishment in order to get them to achieve the organizational objectives.
- People prefer to be directed, do not want responsibility, and have little or no ambition.
- People seek security above all else.
Theory Y- Management’s role is to develop the potential in employees and help them to release that potential towards common goals.
- Work is as natural as play and rest.
- People will exercise self-direction if they are committed to the objectives (they are NOT lazy).
- Commitment to objectives is a function of the rewards associated with their achievement.
- People learn to accept and seek responsibility.
- Creativity, ingenuity, and imagination are widely distributed among the population. People are capable of using these abilities to solve an organizational problem.
- People have potential.
McGregor suggested management could use either Theory to motivate employees, but better results would be gained by the use of Theory Y, rather than Theory X. Most employees agree!
Enter Direct Sales! The Direct Sales business model has been around since the beginning of time, but not until the 1900’s did business owners attempt to harness the power of “Social Networking’ and word of moth advertising and boy did they get more that they asked for! One of the biggest success stories of Scientific Management in the 21st century has been in the Directs Sales Industry. This successful business model has capitalized on the Scientific Management Theories and spread their products successfully worldwide by utilizing the bottom up ideas put forward in Theory Y.
How did they do it? The Dawn of a New Age in Scientific Management developed the idea or ‘group work’, an idea that states that women worker better working in groups. Rocket Science right? lol And there was a lot of support from the psychological community. Theorist Abraham Maslow studied The Hierarchy of Needs. He postulated that because individuals want to feel valued in a company and want to have opportunities to move up the managerial ladder that they would work hard in an environment where they felt like they were part of a team and they were in control of their ultimate success. His theories also took in to account that social status and a sense of achievement are bigger motivators and that pay alone does not determine worker output.
Continued study of Human Relations and Interactions later in the latter half of the 1900’s found that Group Work could be successful as it added some social aspects to work and hence motivated staff. One of the strongest examples of this form of management is found in Direct Sales where companies use groups to produce sales and each sale can be traced back to that one group or individual and hence all individuals are bearing a responsibility for total sales increasing motivation and personal success.
Direct Sales is experiencing a huge growth spurt as employees look for environments that fulfill their needs. In 2001, Direct Sales was Largest Sales Force in all of America. Nearly 16 million people are involved in direct selling in the United States. That’s a whole lot of happy workers!
Through successful implementation of Scientific Management Theory it is safe to say that in organizations such as AMWAY, AVON and Tupperware are the wave of the future! Scientific Management plays an important role and will do so for the foreseeable future. Rising Entrepreneurs are attracted to markets where consumer demands are met with a smiling, happy work force! The Modern Work Force will not be joining an assembly line anywhere and business models that depend on this structure will soon be a thing of the past. Todays workers demand more control for more output. Talented, professional business men women are looking for creative, innovative, results oriented environments to ‘Show What They Are Made Of’.
Direct Sales is just that and more!