Business philosophies, culture, and management styles are undergoing rapid changes based on the advancements in human life. Scientific management techniques were come into exists in place of traditional management techniques because of the development of science and technology. At the beginning of the twentieth century, Frederick Taylor anchored many studies in scientific management in order to improve the efficiency and productivity of the workers at the workplace. Moreover, big companies were also started some routine studies in order to learn more about the importance of physical environment in improving the efficiency of the workers.
Physical environments such as lighting, temperature, compensation schemes, working hours etc were undergone lot of fine tuning as part of these researches at the workplaces in order to improve the productivity of the workers. The Hawthorne studies were carried out by the Western Electric company at their Hawthorne plant in the 1920's, as part of their researches in scientific management focusing on lighting (Hawthorne Studies, n. d). This paper evaluates Hawthorne Studies, its findings and its significance in modern scientific management techniques. Hawthorne Studies, its findings and significance in modern scientific management Harvard business school professor Elton took six women employees from the factory and segregated them from the rest of the employees under the leadership of a supervisor.
Mayo made frequent changes in the working environment and marked the respective changes occurred to the productivity of the experimental group. He has changed working hours, rest breaks, lunch time etc many times in order to finalize the optimum values of these variables which can provide optimum results (Human relations contributors, 2010). The major findings of the Hawthorne studies were the experimenter effect and the social effect.
The experimenter effect was that making changes was interpreted by workers as a sign that management cared, and more generally, it was just provided some mental stimulation that was good for morale and productivity while the social effect was that it seemed that by being separated from the rest and being given special treatment, the experimentees developed a certain bond and camaraderie that also increased productivity (Hawthorne Studies, n. d). I don’t have many surprises after going through the findings of the Hawthorne Studies.
It is an acceptable fact nowadays that work environments play an important role in determining the productivity of the workers. Employees always like to work under suitable working conditions. The mindset of the employees determines their performance at workplace. An employee may develop positive attitude towards his work only when the employer was able to provide good working environment. Even though Hawthorne Studies succeeded in establishing the necessity of controlled work environment for increasing productivity, it is difficult to identify the critical working environment using this study.
Most of the findings of this study were subjective can vary at times. Constant updating is required to identify the perfect working environment which is another drawback of this study. Hawthorne Studies put the base for more researches in the scientific management. Even though some of the findings of the Hawthorne Studies were controversial, industrial world took the need for scientific management researches more seriously only after the Hawthorne Studies In short, Hawthorne Studies motivated scientific management researchers more to undertake further studies even though its findings were controversial in the current world.
References 1. Hawthorne Studies. (n. d). Retrieved from http: //www. analytictech. com/mb021/handouts/bank_wiring. htm 2. Human relations contributors. (2010). Retrieved from http: //www. accel-team. com/motivation/hawthorne_02.html