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Henri Fayol

Henri Fayol, a management pioneer in the early 20th century, focused his studies on creating efficient systems of organizational administration. Today’s organizations, and the environments in which they operate, are very different to those in Fayol’s times. His views therefore are of little, if any, relevance to management today. Introduction The world has been dynamically changing in the past few decades; however the most dramatic change in the economy as well as the industries has come about since after the world war.

This has happened due to the massive investment in education by the people as well as the extensive research taking place for innovation and forward approach based technologies. The investment in the integrative and the communication based technology specially the internet and the mobile telephonic technology has greatly incremented the position of the economy worldwide making it much different form the economy that was present at the time of Henry Fayol.

The following paper analysis and identifies as to how much relevance do Fayol’s theories of business and strategic planning hold in the new, dynamic, and diverse workplaces of toady Philosophy Underpinning Fayol’s Theories Classical management theory sprung up in the 1800s when it was the main focus of the philosophers and the theorists to quantify and organize development in the economy as well as in specific businesses and companies.

They sought to guide the increasing number of professionals being formed and provide them with specific policies for managing the large scale operations and businesses. “Classical theory sought rationality and order in work through what they called “the one best way,” the most logical division of labor, appropriate structure to relate the activities thus divided (in terms of the variety of activities and the levels of supervision), the correct span of control for directing activities, and the proper allocation of responsibility to a designated authority.

” (Jelinek, 2005) Moreover while these theories originated in the United States, the concept of the theories was applicable in businesses in most areas of the world, making it a globally accepted philosophy for managing large scale businesses specific to manufacturing concerns. Henry Fayol is one of the most influential philosophers of his time. His contribution to the business structuring planning philosophies hold high regard, especially the 14 points provided by him.

These 14 points pertain to strategic planning in an organization and how efficiency in operation as well as effecting, management can be performed by adhering to these fourteen points. These points relate to the specialization of labor to divide the business process into more specific tasks for the labor, the establishment of authority to provide a direction to the management as well as the employees of the businesses, implementing discipline in the organization through strict guidelines, policies and authority, establishment of a unity of command to centralize the decision making in the company, unity of direction and subordination.

Other points include centralization of business; line of authority, remuneration policy based on wage leaders and followers, equity, establishment of the tenure for the personnel of the business, espirit de corps, and order in the organization and it employees. The functions of the management provided by Henry Fayol pertain to planning, directing, decision making, organizing, coordination and disseminating information and command. Contribution of Fayol’s Theories to Management Practices Today The theories presented by Fayol and depicted above were able to revolutionize the way businesses operate in the industry.

He provided specific initiatives which could be taken by the businesses in order to improve their operations as well as effectively manage the personnel and the business processes. “Henry Fayol and Frederick Taylor are generally credited with making the greatest contribution to the development of management as a science. Fayol proposed the concept of horizontal communication between two separate hierarchical levels rather than strict compliance to the chain of command. ” (Pietri, 1974) Even today the strategies and initiatives proposed by Henry Fayol are extensively used.

While the context in which they are used now has considerably changed, the underling principle for the operation of most businesses in America, Europe as well as in Asia is based on the fourteen principles proposed by Henry Fayol. Specialization of labor has become common practice today and the establishment of authority is still employed, however the method of employment has changed. The discipline principle however is not relevant to the world of today due to the diverse operations, target market and the personnel.

The unity of command is also not employed nowadays as it is seen more feasible to have different reporting relationship amongst the employees. The unity of duration is still employed and has been renamed as the vision of the company. The subordination of individual interests is out of style now, however if it were employed today, it would make the operations much more efficient. Remuneration in the organization previously was set by the management but nowadays it is determined by the market forces of supply and demand and other external factors like specialization, skill and goodwill and experience.

As the organizations nowadays have become diverse and multinational in nature the centralization discipline proposed by Fayol has become obsolete. The chain of superiors’ principles is also not relevant now as organization now employ flexible organization styles. The order in the organizations is still employed and the equity is converted into the concept of value. Personnel tenure principle is also not in use nowadays as the employees tend to stay with the organization on their own will and discretion. Tacking initiative however is encouraged in the organizations and businesses nowadays while the Esprit de corps principle is not in use.

This is because the workforce for the organizations has become very diverse and the businesses as a result promote harmony and cohesion in their diverse employees. As a result the statement above does not hold true in extremes as some of the principles proposed by Henry Fayol have evolved, while others are encourage and certain few have become obsolete. Conclusion Conclusively it can be provided that the essence of Fayol’s theories and philosophy can still be applied to the workplace, businesses and the economies of today.

However the method of application has to change as the new case scenario is much different in context, behavior as well as mannerism. This is mostly due to the result of the massive technological investment in the economies, and the integration of technology in the lives of the people. Moreover the characteristics of the consumers and the market has also changes resulting in a diverse product and service offering provided by a diverse groups of companies and businesses.


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vid=1&hid=8&sid=add8affb-557d-4028-bf41-c68194fe9c8f%40sessionmgr9 Lamond, D. , 2004, ‘A matter of style: reconciling Henri and Henry’, Management Decision, Vol. 42 Issue 2, p330-356, 27p, available at: http://web. ebscohost. com/bsi/detail? vid=1&hid=8&sid=4951211e-a950-4b73-ab2c-7acb4261dcc4%40sessionmgr8 Pietri, P. H. , 1974, ‘Organizational Communication: The Pioneers’, Journal of Business Communication, Vol. 11 Issue 4, p3-6, 4p, available at: http://web. ebscohost. com/bsi/detail? vid=1&hid=8&sid=55dcb917-0f27-47e4-bde0-cf92f0ac68a8%40SRCSM2

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