Discuss about the Foundation Management for Hospitality & Tourism.
Scientific management is defined as a process through which maximum efficiency is realized through normalizing tasks by segregating work into small pieces. The concept of scientific management approach aimed to improve labor productivity by following certain principles. It was developed by Frederick Taylor towards the end of 19th century. Human relations approach on the other hand, was developed later and focuses more on achieving goals through improved relationships, recognition and motivation of workers themselves. Modern management theory tries to revise and refine its predecessors in attempt to unify them. Although the basic principles in scientific management theories remain relevant even in modern management approach, there are some key aspects that completely differ. Contrary to scientific management approach, modern management approach stipulates that no one best way of doing this will apply for all situations.
This was developed during industrial revolution when large scale factories were created. The solution to management problems, made by Frederick Taylor by developing scientific theory of management, has greatly contributed to the current management practice. It has contributed in solving management problems like organizational inefficiencies, safety issues, supervision, conflict and industrial unrest. Scientific management was characterized by what Taylor referred to as principles of scientific management. From these principles, work is standardized based on measurements and formulae where workers are matched to tasks with respect to their skills (Shaw, 2017). Coordination of activities and separation of planning and execution are emphasized. The principles are based on science, which is the tool used in formulation of procedures to ensure cooperation as opposed to individualism, maximum output instead of restricted output and development of human resources to achieve highest efficiency and prosperity. Contribution of this approach to work is evident in organization of labor such that work is not based on technical superiority but instead focuses on division of labor then integration of tasks to achieve a common goal. Management uses this science to integrate methods, policies, planning and people to achieve objectives. “Taylorism” has led to differentiation of skilled and unskilled labor, improved productivity and reduced craft based work. Today, it is used in manufacturing and in mass production. Division of labor still forms the basis of work organization. Human resource managers are still concerned in fostering cooperation. Limitations associated with this approach are that it resulted to repetitions that bring about boredom and promotes deskilling.
Human Relations Movement
Human relation school portrays organizations as system of interdependent human resources. Mary parker added a measurement of human aspect to the study of organizations. Chester Barnard’s theory views organizations as systems of coordinated human activities (Feldman & Worline, 2016). This study emphasizes on understanding human behavior such as motivations rather than economic factors. This is because employees are found to be social as opposed to economic beings. Work should be viewed as group activity since groups exert strong impacts over individuals. Social factors help productivity to increase, therefore employees’ performance can be improved by cultivating good relations and trust between managers and workers. Informal work groups are found to influence performance as was observed in “Hawthorne effect”. Cooperation is an important aspect of productivity and this is connected to the importance of interpersonal skills among managers, who should as well have skills in controlling and planning (Loonam, 2014). Such human factors lead motivation based productivity, job satisfaction and cooperation between workers and their supervisors. Attention paid to the role of leadership and supervisory development, motivation and harmony at place of work are key things that can be used to gauge productivity in this perspective. On the other hand, conflict between needs of human workers and those of management of organizations demotivates employees.
Modern Management Theory and Practice
Modern period with regard to management theory is recent period starting from 1960 to present. This has drifted from extreme human relations thinking about morale and productivity (Robledo, 2016). Modern management wants equal emphasis on machine and human workforce. Principles of management, which are key features of scientific management, reached a point which marked the beginning of modern approaches to management where they needed to be revised and refined in attempt to reach perfection. A new approach that needed to unify different approaches and inclusive of emerging needs was develop and became what is known as modern management theory. This approach of management is sensitive to aspects such as social responsibilities of various societies such as employees, trade unions, customers and shareholders. Three streams of thinking have arisen from it: quantitative (mathematical) approach, systems approach and contingency approach.
This approach emphasizes on use of mathematical models as universally recognized analysis tool as they provide a good channel for precise explanation of relationships and concepts. It considers variables and inputs in a quantitative basis which can be modelled to help management in decision making. Different tools and quantitative techniques such as simulation, linear programming are increasingly being used to cover a wide scope while studying current problems. It is based on assumption that all aspects of management can be treated in quantitative terms. However, it is recognized that sound judgement in managerial decisions is critical and that mathematical models cannot be substituted (Suddaby, 2015). Contributions of this approach are very significant in the field of management. This has boosted development of orderly thinking of managers by bringing about exactness to managerial processes. This approach has its limitations. It is narrow since it is merely based on solving certain managerial problems that are specific to certain situations. In real life situations, executives are required to make decisions quickly with no time to wait all the information necessary to develop models. The assumption made in this approach that all variables in decision making are measurable is not realistic. Furthermore, information available with regard to decision making based on mathematical models are not always up to date.
This approach tried to unify its predecessor schools of thoughts. Organizations are viewed as open systems composed of interdependent subsystems whose interaction contribute to orderly totality of an organization. It is based on the idea that things and processes in an organization are inter-related and interdependent. Various components of the system should to be studied with regard to their interdependent relationship instead of isolation of each (Devers, et al, 2014). The system is composed of a boundary that defines external and internal environment. The system receives information from outside that undergo changes within the internal environment of subsystems and gives output to the external environment. It is therefore dynamic and responsive to changes in the environment. System approach is important in managerial perspective because it aims to solve objectives of an organization in an open system manner. It is easier to locate non performing subsystems and fix them without altering the performance of other subsystems (Harrison, et al, 2015).
This approach has contributed in analyzing the functions of complex organizations such as project management organizations. Subsystems interactions help to bring interrelations aspects to managerial functions of planning, organizing, controlling and leading. This approach is advantageous over others since it is thought to be very close to reality. However, it may not be applicable to large and more complex organizations. It is regarded vague as it fails to provide any technique to managers.
Contingency or Situational Approach
This is the latest and it is an improvement of system approach. It is based on the fact that management problems are different at different situations and should be handled so as to cater for the needs at the situation. As opposed to scientific theory of management, contingency approach views problems as situational other than repetitive and thus one best way of management does not always apply. The behavior of one sub unit is in contingent with its environment (Alonso, et al, 2016). To change the behavior of a sub unit, then to one must change the situation influencing it. This approach emphasis on internal and external environments, which are the sub systems of an organization, which are analyzed and integrated to provide practical solutions to problems for given situations. The subsystems analysis helps in determination of organizational designs and managerial actions that are critical in making most appropriate decision for specific situations.
In contrary with management theory about universality, contingency approach stipulates no one best way of doing things will apply in all situations. Managers should prepare strategies and policies according to situations the problems arise in. It emphasizes that for such managerial strategies to be effective, adjustment must be made in response to changes in the environment. Diagnostic skills need to be improved for an organization be ready and anticipate for environmental changes. Managers need to have human relations skills in order to accommodate change (Sharma, 2016). Contingency approach forms a basis of brighter ways for development of management theory in future.
This approach makes a realistic view in management and disregards validity of universal management principles. It advises executives to be creative and innovative by being situation-oriented. However, this approach does not have theoretical base hence it is upon an executive to weigh between options before taking an action.
Management theories are vital in analyzing the managerial problems. Different theories have been formed to help in this analysis. Each of them has contributed to modern management. Scientific management theory forms the basis of management approaches. Human relations builds on the same but emphasizes more on human aspect. However, modern theories of managements are not in total agreement with scientific approach. They reject the idea by scientific theory of management that all aspects in management can be modelled mathematically and argues that there is no one best way that will work in all situations.
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