Douglas Mcgregor

2560 Words Jan 31st, 2009 11 Pages
Biographical Sketch of Douglas McGregor

Douglas McGregor (1906 – 1964) is one of the forefathers of contemporary management thinking. A social psychologist, he is most notably known for his Theory X and Theory Y from his 1960 book, The Human Side of Enterprise, which had a profound influence on the management field.

A B.E. Mechanical from Rangoon Institute of Technology, he then earned an A.B. from Wayne State University, and went on to study Psychology at Harvard University.

Armed with a Ph.D. from Harvard, McGregor was the first full-time psychologist on the faculty of Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and helped to found its Industrial Relations Section. He was the President of Antioch College for 6 years, and throughout
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Theory X and Theory Y

McGregor referred to the opposing motivational methods that he identified, as Theory X and Theory Y management. Each assumes that the manager 's role is to organize resources, including people, to best benefit the company. However, beyond this commonality, they 're quite dissimilar. While Theory X represents the traditional view of management, Theory Y represents the newer attitudes in organizational psychology.
This does not mean that all managers believe entirely in Theory X or Theory Y. Most managers probably believe that people are a combination of both, with tendency to behave as one type.
Theory X and Theory Y tend to influence and get influenced by External and Internal Modifiers. This can be understood better from the diagram given below.

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Theory X - Traditional View of Direction & Control

Theory X is based on the assumptions that the average human beings dislike work, wishes to avoid responsibility if at all possible. Therefore most people must be coerced, controlled to achievement of organizational objectives. Theory X management style therefore requires close, firm supervision with clearly specified tasks.

Essentially, Theory X assumes that the primary source of most employee motivation is monetary, with security as a strong second. According to this theory employees will show little ambition without an enticing
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