Management Approaches in the Current Organizations

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The Human Relations Theory and Classical Management Theories

The human relations theory and the classical management theories represent two standpoints of management on the opposite ends of the spectrum. The difference emerges from the different approaches that organizations employ to ensure a smooth floor of operations. One view concentrates on looking at employees as the only aspects to get work done, while the other focus is on developing a business organization in addition to behaviors and employee motivation. Under the classical management theory, the management comes up with multiple levels of workers to increase efficiency and productivity. The employees in an organization that uses such a theory are answerable to other employees above them. On the other hand, the human relations theory is more concerned with workers in a workplace than the rules, processes, and procedures (Cummings, Bridgman, & Hassard, 2017). The approach enhances communication between employees at different levels, and improvement in production is achieved through motivation of people. The contemporary approaches to management apply the two theories differently. Most organizations employ the two theories to capitalize on the advantages associated with each approach. Analyses of the management approaches of various organizations show that the human relations theory is commonly applied in the present-day approaches to management than the classical theories of management. The essay will focus on the real-life examples of management approaches in different organizations to show how the contemporary approaches to management are more reflective of human relations theory than the classical theories of management.

The X and Y Theories by Douglas McGregor

The management approaches in the current organizations are deeply rooted in the comprehension of the X and Y Theories by Douglas McGregor. The hypotheses are focused on how the organization views its employees and what the company needs to do to attain its strategic goals. The theory Y asserts that employees want to work, that they are self-motivated and responsible, that they aspire to succeed, and that they have a clear understanding of their positions in the organization. The theory X, which is not common in current organizations, assumes the opposite of theory Y. The hypothesis is based on the account that employees are lazy, unmotivated, that they only seek financial security from their jobs, and that the best way to make them perform is through discipline and proper closer supervision. The current approaches to management are reflective of theory Y than theory X (Runté & Mills, 2006).

Management Approaches in Contemporary Organizations

The human relations theory is reflective of the current styles of management because most companies, for example, Coca-Cola, give more freedom and opportunities to employees to apply and develop confidence in their capabilities. As opposed to the approaches in which people worked depending on instructions from above, the contemporary organizations allow workers to capitalize on their capabilities fully in their line of work. In such a big organization like Coca-Cola, employees are motivated to achieve their professional aspirations as well as the objectives of the organization. In spite of the existence of different levels of management in the companies, the purpose of the management team is more of a motivational role than a supervisory function (Reece & Brandt, 2001). Workers, especially the heads at various levels, are selected depending on their ability to inspire workers below them to remain focused on the main objective as well as remaining dedicated to maximizing their outputs.

Creating a Friendly Work Environment

Most organizations today treat employees as if the job is like any other natural thing like rest or play. Organizations create friendly work environments for their employees by discouraging pressure and harassment in the place of work. In such approaches, the functions of the management team are based on the relationship between the managers and the employees. The level of bureaucracy is normally very low to allow workers the freedom of doing what they believe is right and helpful to the organization (Warner, 2007). Such provisions make it easy for employees to exercise their duties without pressure from the top management team. Managers are obligated to share the objectives of the big picture of the organization to help their juniors remain focused on what is expected of them. Sharing the major goals of a company among the top managers and junior members of staff is a motivation factor because employees feel to be part of the achievements that have been realized. The human relations theory is also reflected on in the contemporary management approaches through the dedication of businesses to empower employees to innovate and enjoy autonomy by making as many independent decisions as they can handle. Giving freedom to workers is fundamental because it nurtures their creativity and increases confidence levels which empowers them to make proper decisions without external influence (Hyten, 2009).

Recognition and Rewards

Provision of appropriate recognition and rewards has become a common practice in many business organizations operating in the present days. The strategy is used by managers as a way of motivating employees who have achieved something in relation to their responsibilities in the company. Such approaches are not available in the approaches that rely on the classical theories. The most prevalent way of rewarding employees is promoting them to the upper level as well as increasing their salaries. Achievers can as well be recognized through delegating more responsibilities to them as a sign of trust and confidence in them (Herbst & Houmanfar, 2009). The management teams across the world are relying on a number of strategies that motivate employees to encourage the non-achievers to be challenged and achieve something. Managers have realized that a common objective among employees is to ascend to the top management positions because of the remunerations as well as the privileges and a chance to handle more complex duties. Employees work hard and are motivated by the fact that a tangible achievement will guarantee them a promotion or salary increment. Because of that belief, the managers leave employees to struggle towards meeting the objectives of the company.

Integration of Sociology and Psychology with Management

The current approaches to management integrate sociology and psychology with management. Most corporations have come to the knowledge that an organization is synonymous with a social structure of intergroup and interpersonal relationships. Priority is given to the management of people because it is the basis of success for any organization. Business organizations now believe that the management can get the work accomplished from the employees through satisfying their psychological and social needs (Cruz & Meisenbach, 2017). The styles are in line with what the human relations theory advocates, and the top management aims to achieve the organizational goals through the consideration of the social and psychological needs of their juniors. Some past research studies established a connection between satisfaction of the social and psychological needs of employees and their performance at the place of work (Reece & Brandt, 2001). Satisfaction of the needs is a key aspect of improving performance among employees. The current approaches to management ensure that the work environment does not interfere with workers' relationships with their families, sexual intimacy, and having friends in the working environment. Satisfaction of employees' social and psychological needs is a guarantee for improved service delivery and performance among workers (Grandey, 2004).

Proper Communication and Decision Making

As one of the pillars of the human relations approach, workers ought to be informed about everything and be given a chance to participate in the decision-making process. The current approaches to management embrace proper communication in the organization and updating workers concerning the latest developments in the company (Hardy, Phillips, & Clegg, 2001). Also, the decision-making process reflects the aspects of human relations theory because it gives a chance for workers to fully participate in the decision-making process.

Evolution of Management Approaches

Management approaches have evolved so much as compared to the past styles of management. The human relations theory is evident in the contemporary approaches to leadership because managers do not rely on the organizational structure but on the motivation of employees. The main function of the managers and supervisors at various levels is to create an environment that is friendly and to motivate workers rather than to monitor what junior employees do.


Cruz, D., & Meisenbach, R. (2017). Expanding role boundary management theory: How volunteering highlights contextually shifting strategies and collapsing work–life role boundaries. Human Relations, 71(2), 182-205. doi:10.1177/0018726717718917

Cummings, S., Bridgman, T., & Hassard, J. (2017). A new history of management.

Grandey, A. (2004). Book Review: Emotions at work: Theory, research and applications for management. Human Relations, 57(10), 1351-1355. doi:10.1177/001872670405701009

Hardy, C., Phillips, N., & Clegg, S. (2001). Reflexivity in Organization and Management Theory: A Study of the Production of the Research `Subject'. Human Relations, 54(5), 531-560. doi:10.1177/0018726701545001

Herbst, S. A., & Houmanfar, R. (2009). Psychological Approaches to Values in Organizations and Organizational Behavior Management. Journal of Organizational Behavior Management, 29(1), 47-68. doi:10.1080/01608060802714210

Hyten, C. (2009). Strengthening the Focus on Business Results: The Need for Systems Approaches in Organizational Behavior Management. Journal of Organizational Behavior Management, 29(2), 87-107. doi:10.1080/01608060902874526

Reece, B. L., & Brandt, R. (2001). Effective human relations in organizations (7th ed.). Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co.

Runté, M., & Mills, A. J. (2006). Cold War, chilly climate: Exploring the roots of gendered discourse in organization and management theory. Human Relations, 59(5), 695-720. doi:10.1177/0018726706066174

Warner, M. (2007). Kafka, Weber and organization theory. Human Relations, 60(7), 1019-1038. doi:10.1177/0018726707081156

October 30, 2023

Business Economics

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