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A Fast Learner's Guide to Leadership

The Human Relations Movement

The human relations movement was spearheaded by Elton Mayo and his associates in the 1920s and 1930s.  It clashed directly with Taylor's theories. 

Mayo's theories illustrated a new paradigm.  Mangers, found Mayo, should not only look at finding the best techniques and methods to improve output, but should also look at human affairs.  While Scientific Management looked at technology and processes, Mayo found that the real key to high productivity lies within the people and "work units," or groups, in the organization.   Effective organizations, the Human Relations Movement found, develop around the employees, looking primarily at human feelings and attitudes.  Cooperative goal setting (setting goals with employee as well as manager input) and personal growth and development are key to effective businesses, determined Mayo.

The struggle between Scientific Management and the Human Relations Movement are very apparent in current literature about management and leadership.  What is more important:  production or people?  This is a primary question in leadership and management literature today.

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