Modern to postmodern management: developments in scientific management

Modern to postmodern management: developments in scientific management
Document type
Kemp, Linzi J.
Date of publication
1 July 2013
Journal of Management History. Vol. 19; Number 3
Business & management history: including the development of management thought
Business and management
Material type

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Purpose - The aim of the paper is to evidence the development of scientific management through the lens of postmodernism. Design/methodology/approach - The four principles of scientific management are deconstructed through a postmodern lens. Current management practices are analyzed for indicators of development in scientific management. Findings - The principles of scientific management are found within current management examples; measurement of knowledge production; empowerment; total quality management; teamwork. Scientific management, when deconstructed through the lens of postmodernism, is discovered to have developed over time. Research limitations/implications - The limitation to this study is a precise definition for postmodernism and postmodern management against which to “prove” any findings. The implication is to extend research on the development of scientific management in postmodern management. Practical implications - A practical implication for management practitioners is to apply a tenet of postmodernism to management i.e. there are a myriad of managerial approaches that work. Originality/value - The paper's contribution is that the principles of scientific management originated in modern times and are developed in postmodern management.

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