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Management as an Art and a Science

In: Business and Management

Submitted By NiiOdoi
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Management being characterized as an Art, as a Science or both can be debatable. In order to investigate the nature of management, it would be useful firstly to define it. According to Drucker, “Management is about human beings. Its task is to make people capable of joint performance, to make their strengths effective and their weaknesses irrelevant. This is what organization is all about, and this is the reason why management is the critical determining factor”. Nowadays, practically everyone works for a managed institution, large or not, for profit or not. Our living actually depends on Management. The ability we have to contribute to society, depends firstly on the way the institute we work for, is managed and furthermore on our own abilities, devotion and effort. For years now, there has been a great debate on whether management can be characterized as a science or as an art. Some of the most important authors that tried to examine if management is an art or a science are Lester et al. (1998), Watkins (1993), Bohn(1994), Calkins(1959), Schiemann and Lingle(1997), and Weick(1996). Examining the evolution of managerial discourse since 1870 would aid with the discussion on Management being an art, a science or both. According to Barley and Kunda (1992) even though serious theoretical and political differences existed, scholars have merged on a common theory of how American managerial notion has evolved. During the first stage, which terminated in the late 1800s, managerial discourse sought to legitimate coercive shopfloor practices (Nelson, 1975). This phase was characterized by abusive control and threats of violence. By the turn of the century, early forms of mass production and a flourish of corporate merging had prepared the ground for a second phase, during which utilitarian rhetoric became increasingly popular (Wren, 1972). Accomplishing the…...

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