Four Management theories SMEs should understand

(This is a contributed post)

Coming up with an idea is a piece of cake, as is putting it into practice. Hell, finding funding isn’t tricky any longer thanks to market saturation. The hardest thing by far is to be a manager. If only people saw things the way you did, there would be no need to fail. Alas, humans are emotional, temperamental, and need constant praise and attention. Frankly, it can be exhausting.

As the boss, it’s your job to ensure that the company and the people work efficiently. But, as the last paragraph pointed out, this is an incredibly tricky proposition. If only there were research on the topic that could help…

Taylor’s Scientific Management

Don’t worry because Frederick Taylor’s hypothesis isn’t nearly as complicated as it sounds. “Taylorism” as it is known, is the process of allowing technology to lead innovation and business decisions. According to the man himself, it is better placed to show patterns and reveal insight because it uses actual data. The other side of the coin is simply letting someone’s gut do the talking, and that is risky if they haven’t eaten. However, don’t make the same mistake he did and forget about the human factor. Workers need integrating into the system to ensure they aren’t playing second fiddle and bounce to a competitor.

Fayol’s Administrative Management

For those who find Taylor’s approach too outdated, Henri Fayol has the answers. Sure, his theory dates back to the 19th century also, yet they have left a mark on modern businesses. To this day, companies use his original research to interact with employees and maintain their happiness levels. In simple terms, it’s a framework for bosses around the world. For example, Fayol believed in the importance of a tidy workspace. OfficeCleanz is a firm that has benefited from this, and you can too by preserving the office’s cleanliness.

Fayol also described 14 Principles of Management: Division of Work, Authority and Responsibility, Discipline, Unity of Command, Unity of Direction, Subordination of Individual Interest, Remuneration, Centralization, Scalar Chain, Order, Equity, Stability of Tenure, Initiative, and Esprit de Corps.

The Kaizen Approach

As you may gather from the name, Kaizen was developed n Japan and is a handy tool. Its stated use is to introduce small changes in the workplace and workforce to boost efficiency. In lots of ways, it has had as big an impact on the industry as the administrative management principle. Imagine all the ways you attempt this approach on a daily basis. Why this works well is that it includes the employees. Kaizen believes they are best suited to comment and analyse as they are boots on the ground. Thus, using this efficiency theory will automatically tell workers that you value their opinion.

Mayo’s Human Relations Theory

Elton Mayo decided to run an experiment, and he was surprised by what he found. By changing features of employee life at a factory in Chicago, he deduced that this improved productivity. However, it wasn’t just because of the new implementations. His conclusion, based on the fact that there was a bump in output regardless, was that workers valued the attention. Using Mayo’s work, managers can keep morale high by introducing changes irrespective of effectiveness.

Do any of the above pique your interest?

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