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Give a critical outline of Taylor's ideas on "scientific management".

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Essay Title: Give a critical outline of Taylor's ideas on "scientific management". As the creation of large factories or industries that employed large numbers of people to perform tasks by rote on a piecework basis shifted the emphasis from the skilled worker to the simple labour, the more ambitious, motivated and intelligent were quick to note that income and social mobility were increasingly associated with soft jobs such as management and sales rather than physical work. Taylor published his book named "The Principles of Scientific Management" in 1911 which first time introduced the concept of task allocation, aim to breaking task into smaller and smaller tasks allows the determination of the optimum solution to the task. The key idea of scientific management is the cooperation between the management and the human beings. In this essay, I will focus on the main elements of scientific management, how this system actually worked, also, some problems within Taylor's scientific management, and particular solution for those problems will be provide. The main elements of the Scientific Management are: "Time studies Functional or specialized supervision Standardization of tools and implements Standardization of work methods Separate Planning function Management by exception principle The use of "slide-rules and similar time-saving devices" Instruction cards for workmen Task ...read more.


Task allocation is the concept that breaking task into smaller and smaller tasks allows the determination of the optimum solution to the task. "The man in the planning room, whose specialty is planning ahead, invariably finds that the work can be done more economically by subdivision of the labour; each act of each mechanic, for example, should be preceded by various preparatory acts done by other men." (Taylor, Frederick W., 1964, P.38) The main argument against Taylor is this reductionist approach to work dehumanizes the worker. The allocation of work specifying not only what is to be done but how it is to done and the exact time allowed for doing it, is seen as leaving no scope for the individual worker to excel or think. This argument is mainly due to later writing rather than Taylor's work as Taylor stated "The task is always so regulated that the man who is well suited to his job will thrive while working at this rate during a long term of years and grow happier and more prosperous, instead of being overworked." (Taylor, Frederick W., 1964, P.39) Taylor's concept of motivation left something to be desired when compared to later ideas. ...read more.


work and who merely cracks the whip over the heads of his workmen and attempts to drive them harder work for low pay. No more will it tolerate tyranny on the part of labour which demands one increase after another in pay and shorter hours while at the same time it becomes less instead of more efficient." (Nelson, Daniel, 1941, P. 139) Taylor's system was widely adopted in the United States and the world. Although the Taylor system originated in the factory production departments, the concept of separating planning from execution was universal in nature, therefore, had potential application to other areas, such as production support services, offices operations and service industries. A basic tenet of scientific management was that employees were not highly educated and thus were unable to perform any but the simplest tasks. Modern thought is that all employees have intimate knowledge of job conditions and are therefore able to make useful contributions. Rather than dehumanizing the work and breaking the work down into smaller and smaller units to maximize efficiency without giving thought to the job satisfaction of the working. Encouragement of work based teams in which all workers may contribute. Such contributions increase worker morale, provide a sense of ownership, and improve management-worker relations generally. ...read more.

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