Last Updated 06 Jul 2020

A review of McGregors X and Y

Category Motivation
Essay type Review
Words 2854 (11 pages)

Theory X worker works with a Theory Y worker or a Theory X worker works with a theory Y manager (vise versa) will one of them have an effect on the other, or will things stay the same? Introduction God created everything naturally In this world to work. God asked Adam to mend his garden, asked Noah to build the ark; he created animals to be hunters and gatherers as there Job to survive in this world. Thousands of years later it is still a very natural thing for people to work. Humans still naturally wake with the full intent to apply their life to something.

It does not have to be the average monotonous daily, but work o humans Is as natural as flying Is to a bird. However, having the natural ability to work does not mean that there are not lazy or hard working people; there are two distinctive types of workers, an "X" worker and a worker. An "X" worker is typically a lazy worker, one who dislikes work and will do anything to avoid any obligations or duties. "X" workers also must be controlled, and given direction in order for them to achieve a performance goal for the day.

A Y worker is typically self-directed, they learn to seek and accept responsibility, and have high potential for the work force; though both are still Intended to work. There are also two different types of productivity is essential and getting the most work or productivity out of the day. Style is the participative style. Employees will do the work they have to do with out being told what to do and when to do it. The two theories test the performance experience of employees.

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If Theory "X" is represented by worker "A" who is a bad worker, always late to work, and does an unacceptable work, one can naturally assume that they hate their Job situation or are lazy. If Theory is represented by worker "B" who is a better worker, never has to be told what to do, shows up on time ND does an outstanding Job around the office, then one can assume that they love their work and would be willing to do anything for their place of business, but if a theory Y manager (vise versa), will one of them have an effect on the other, or will things stay the same?

Not everybody is influenced by someone, although people will do what they want considering, human nature is to follow by example almost like a monkey see monkey do. Literature Review In the sass's, Theorist Douglas, McGregor examined theories to study performance of individual's interactions and work style between workers at the work place. He designed it with the idea that a workers performance technique is based on motivation and social behavior. "McGregor Theory X and Theory Y were the foundation of the "Human Side of Enterprise" (Cunningham).

Theory X is based on three core assumptions. "One, The average human being has an inherent dislike of work and will avoid it if at all possible, Two, Because of this human characteristic of dislike of work, most people must be coerced, controlled, directed, and threatened with punishment to get them to put forth adequate effort toward the achievement of equines objectives versus Just personal objectives, and three, the average person prefers to directed, wishes to avoid responsibility, has relatively little ambition and wants security above all else (Cunningham).

According to Organization Theory: However, in situations where it is possible to obtain commitment to objectives, it is better to explain the matter fully so that employees grasp the purpose of an action. They will then exert self-direction and manage to do better work - quite possibly by better than if they had only been carrying out and order, which they did not fully, understand.

Once control becomes persuaded that it is underestimating the potential of its human resources, and accepts the knowledge given by social science researchers and displayed by Theory Y assumptions, then it can invest time, money and effort in developing improved applications of the theory. McGregor realizes that some of the theories he has put forward are unrealizable in practice, but wants managers to put into operations the basic assumption that staff will contribute more to the organization if they are treated as responsible and valued employees (McGregor).

McGregor believed Theory X individuals wanted to learn that work was a very natural thing, despite their lazy perspective they wanted to improve self-discipline and self- growth. McGregor believed Theory X employees saw their work as the freedom to try and do tough and challenging work by themselves. The manager's Job was to try and unite the workers and make them strive for self-development in the business and Theory Y was difficult to enforce in a factory setting or in big warehouse areas. Patricia Travis said, "Theory Y according to McGregor was conducive to participative problem solving.

He believed it was better to describe in full the task or topic at hand so that employees grasped the purpose"(Travis). Theory Y employees would show self-direction and self-control and honestly wanted to do better work and would do better work if they were to do a Job that they understood completely compared to a Job they did not fully understand. Managers found that the participative approach to problem solving showed much better results over the authoritarian order of controlling their employees and constantly nagging them. According to James Nellie who wrote in the Journal of Social Behavior and

Personality "Theory X and Theory Y workers did not differ in their perception of the scenarios. However, additional analysis revealed that Theory X and Theory Y workers differed significantly in their perceptions of the effectiveness of the unethical behaviors portrayed in some of the scenarios" (301-311). The workers would understand the idea of the Job that was needed to be done but would not fully follow through one hundred percent on how the Job needed to be done. Sometimes it all just depends on how the manger relays the message to the worker and how the worker perceives it.

Theory X and Theory Y style management have been a great practice to develop positive management styles and techniques. In the earlier years especially in the first few decades of the 20th century Theory X was dominating the business world and was the lead style to the mechanistic system of scientific management. Tim Handle wrote in the "Guide to Management Ideas and Gurus" that, "Theory X is an authoritarian style where the emphasis is on "productivity, on the concept of a fair days work, on the evils of feather-bedding and restriction of output, on rewards for performance (2003). Several managers are persuaded by the Theory

X style but usually receives negative effects. McGregor questioned that management style and decision-making depended on which type of theory worked on their team. McGregor calls the management X theory the "stick and carrot" method of management. Managers would have to "police" their staff, and the workers would need to be pressured, scared and disciplined. This created a very frustrating and dark work environment for the managers and the workers. Theory Y assumes that people will exercise self-direction and self-control and will do everything on their own and will finish a Job with out being bribed or threatened.

According to Business Destination Theory Y states "employees actually become more productive when more trust and responsibility is delegated to them" (2012). Y workers want to work, they want to be productive, and the act of accomplishing work and doing it well is a motivator. Y managers go with the flow and Just allow the workers to work. The Y theory stance is in a unique position; it has heightened awareness of management responsibilities for employer-employee relationships. McGregor urged many companies to try and use the Theory Y design or adopt it.

McGregor believed it could titivated human beings and bring out their highest potential and help them achieve bigger goals. Theory X only satisfied a large number of the lower level needs and was nowhere near as productive. As stated before, Theory X expresses distrust in employees who are only working for money, or who try to get away by doing as little paycheck and you most certainly can not always be looking over the shoulder of the employees to make sure they are doing there Job correctly. Theory Y employees are almost the dream employee for a manager.

Theory Y employees want to work towards a common goal, and they are able to organize themselves. As a manager those are the workers that you want, the one's that you do not have to baby sit. These studies have shown that there is not one perfect approach to managing a X or Y worker. But from the research one can decide "the best method all depends on the nature of the work to be done" (Harvard Business Review). After significant research and collected data research has revealed that companies with highly expected tasks will perform better with dignified procedures.

With uncertain tasks that require much brain use and problem solving, businesses that are not as organized and do to put a great deal of emphasize on self-discipline and self worth struggle to get the job done. But over all, it all depends on the development of the company and the business that fits the nature of the Job that needs to be done. A worker's performance can be dependent on a worker's environment or surroundings. A Theory X worker will apply themselves a fraction more and work a little harder if they are in the right conditions of hard working individuals. (Vise Versa) for the Y worker.

If a Y worker is in an atmosphere of sluggish, not really wanting to work people they can potentially follow in those footprints. It is human nature to follow by example. This is why leadership is necessary. Leadership needs to take a stand to help fix and figure out problems a team may have. If a manager has three X workers and eight Y workers then the manager knowing that there is an impact on one worker from another should find a way to intermingle the works to keep them on and track hard working. If the X worker, works with the Y worker long enough eventually there should be some improvements.

And of course this goes the other way as well, but a company wants the best results not the worst. So a company should not have their best errors, working with the worst workers. Methodology Twenty Graduate Level students enrolled in a Organizational Behavior class at a Liberal Arts University participating in two fifteen question surveys. Most of the students are from a varied educational background but all had at least a Bachelors degree, and all understood the theory being tested. The first of the two surveys was to indicate weather the situation and management style is the "X" or style and to find out how they would handle the situation.

The second survey was to indicate whether the person prefers being managed by the "X" or style. Once figuring out who is an "X" and who is a the data will be analyzed and then each candidate will be separated into there respected category they belong to. Once the survey takers are separated into there respected category I will use these two surveys to try and prove if a Theory X worker works with a Theory Y worker or a Theory X worker works with a theory Y manager (or vise versa) will one of them have an effect on the other, or will things stay the same?

I will look at all of the results and see if their answers lead towards them being affected by the other work or not. The information will be seed to see if they need a little extra push from the people around them or if they can handle most tasks with out having to be nagged and rode the whole time by a boss or someone one on the management team. In analyzing all of the surveys and calculating all of the results several re-occurring themes surfaced and proved many things to be true.

In the event of trying to prove if a person was an X or Y worker seventy five percent of the survey takers said that they were Y workers. This is something that was assumed from a graduate level class at a prestigious university; one can figure that most, if not all, would be self-disciplined, ND hard working individuals. Of the 20 survey takers only twenty five percent were considered X workers. Of the twenty people surveyed on whether or not they preferred the X or Y management style not a single individual preferred the X management style, including the X style workers.

The results showed a large number of different results as expected, but the results were about what one would expect. But with these results my hypothesis was unanswered. Of the twenty people that were surveyed five of them were X style workers and 1 5 of them were Y style workers. Of the twenty people that were surveyed, all of them preferred the Y style management. After reviewing the surveys and the most prominent themes were established the tasks of understanding the monkey see monkey do attitude between X and Y workers and X and Y managers was unclear.

The surveys, although showing who were X and Y worker showed that the X workers preferred the Y style management. This shows that a person who needs a little push or a little more observation on the work floor can potentially learn or adapt better with a Y style manager. But at the same time the survey showed that even a Y style worker if paired with a X style manager or a X style worker can forget their Y style ways. It all Just depends on the individual person and there work style.

With a better population of people taking the survey more facts and findings can be found, but with my test subjects and the surveys that they took these are the results found and help support my theory. Discussion McGregor believed that, workers wanted to work and that they would act like mature adults, and actually wanted to do what was best for the company. McGregor also believed that if management with a intended instructions explained things intended, the worker would do what was necessary, and likely, employees would collaborate without being intimidated.

McGregor knew that many of his suggestions would be really hard to adapt to, maybe even near impossible to apply to the work place, but McGregor believed that when people, or staff, or any type of worker is treated with respect and treated like a worker rather than a trained monkey that the workers would give more and work harder and give as close to one hundred percent as they could.

Limitations One limitation to this study could be that only small portions of people surveyed and, with the majority of these people being in their early twenties could these individuals have enough life experience and work experience to know exactly how to answer the questions. If the survey had encompassed a broader range of the American population, the results may have been different. Since Management Theory X is an older style maybe the older generation or the baby boomer generation may prefer that form of management a little more.

Also with the older generation most where Generation Y is considered a little more lazy and not as self motivated. Generation Y may prefer the Y style management but is actually an X style worker. Another limitation to this study is the selection of survey participants. The survey participants were not selected randomly but used because they could immediately o the survey. The survey takers may have had previous knowledge of the theory, which could have effect the outcome. If the survey population had been selected randomly, there would have been a number of people surveyed who were not educated on the theory or not aware of the concepts.

Knowledge of the concepts may have survey the takers to answer a certain way therefore creating different results. Despite these possible limitations, the results still stand and have many applications to practice and research and were still used to find answers Conclusion Though Theory X and Theory Y are basic and easy to understand, they provide a path or the future theorist and other people that want to study the nature of how people work and understand the changing world of human behavior with large amounts of information and research.

The Theory was easy to study and understand, and it also allowed data collection to be Just as simple. From the above data, and of the students surveyed they preferred the Y work style but all had a preference towards Theory Y than Theory X management style. Even though the data shows one thing it may not technically have a significant, positive relationship between the overall outcomes or hat there is even a monkey see monkey do attitude. Therefore, the hypothesis of this research paper is not confirmed.

A review of McGregors X and Y essay

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