Specifically, Elton Mayo wanted to find out what effect fatigue and monotony had on job productivity and how to control them through such variables as rest breaks, work hours, temperature and humidity. In the process, he stumbled upon a principle of human motivation that would help to revolutionize the theory and practice of management. Elton Mayo selected two women, and had those two select an additional four from the assembly line, segregated them from the rest of the factory and put them under the eye of a supervisor who was more a friendly observer than disciplinarian.
Mayo dad frequent changes In their working conditions, always discussing and explaining the changes In advance. Relay Assembly The group was employed in assembling telephone relays - a relay being a small but intricate mechanism composed of about forty separate parts which had to be assembled by the girls seated at a lone bench and dropped into a chute when completed. The relays were mechanically counted as they slipped down the chute. The Intent was to measure the basic rate of production before making any environmental changes.
Then, as changes were Introduced, the Impact to effectiveness would be measured by Increased or decreased production of the relays. Feedback mechanism Throughout the series of experiments, an observer sat with the girls in the workshop noting all that went on, keeping the girls informed about the experiment, asking for advice or information, and listening to their complaints. The experiment began by introducing various changes, each of which was continued for a test period of four to twelve weeks.
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The results of these changes are as follows: Work Conditions and Productivity Results under normal conditions with a forty-eight hour week, including Saturdays, and no rest pauses. The girls produced 2,400 relays a week each. 1. They were then put on piecework for eight weeks. 1. Output increased afternoon, for a period of five weeks. 2. Output increased, yet again 3. The breaks were each lengthened to ten minutes. 3. Output rose sharply 4. Six five-minute breaks were introduced. 4. The girls complained that their work rhythm was broken by the frequent 5.
Output fell only slightly pauses 5. The original two breaks were reinstated, this time, with a complimentary hot meal provided during the morning break. 6. Output increased further still 6. The workday was shortened to end at 4. 30 p. M. Instead of 5. 0 p. M. 7. Output increased 7. The workday was shortened to end at 4. 00 p. M. 8. Output leveled off 8. Finally, all the improvements were taken away, and the original conditions before the experiment were reinstated. They were monitored in this state for 12 more weeks. . Output was the highest ever recorded - averaging 3000 relays a week Elton Mayo's Conclusions on Job Performance Elton Mayo came to the following conclusions as a result of the study: The aptitudes of individuals are imperfect predictors of Job performance. Although they give some indication of the physical and mental potential of the individual, the amount reduced is strongly influenced by social factors. Informal organization affects productivity. The researchers discovered a group life among the workers.
The studies also showed that the relations that supervisors develop with workers tend to influence the manner in which the workers carry out directives. Work-group norms affect productivity. The Hawthorne researchers were not the first to recognize that work groups tend to arrive at norms of what is "a fair day's work. " However, they provided the best systematic description and interpretation of this phenomenon. The workplace is a social system. The researchers came to view the workplace as a social system made up of interdependent parts.
The worker is a person whose attitudes and effectiveness are conditioned by social demands from both inside and outside the work plant. Informal group within the work plant exercise strong social controls over the work habits and attitudes of the individual worker. The need for recognition, security and sense of belonging is more important in determining workers' morale and productivity than the physical conditions under which he works. The major finding of the study was that almost regardless of the experimental manipulation, rocker production seemed to continually improve.
One reasonable conclusion is that the workers were happy to receive attention from the researchers who expressed an interest in them. Originally, the study was expected to last one year, but since the findings were inexplicable when the researchers tried to relate the worker's efficiency to manipulated physical conditions, the project was incrementally extended to five years. Conclusions on Job Performance Applying the Hawthorne Effect to Employee Motivation Suppose you select a management trainee and provide specialized training in management skills not currently possessed.
Without saying a word, you've given the trainee the feeling that she is so valuable to the organization that you'll spend time and money to develop her skills. She feels she's on a track to the top, which, in turn, motivates her to work harder and more effectively. This motivation is independent of any particular skills or knowledge she may have gained from the training session. That's the Hawthorne Effect at work. In a way, the Hawthorne Effect can be construed as an enemy of the modern manager. Carrying the theory further toward cynicism, it could be said that it doesn't matter how you manage, because the - Benefits of the
Hawthorne Effect Elton Mayo realized that the women, exercising a freedom they didn't have on the factory floor, had formed a social atmosphere that also included the productivity- tracking observer. They talked and Joked with one another. They began to meet socially outside of work. When these women were singled out from the rest of the factory workers, it raised their self-esteem. When they were allowed to have a friendly relationship with their supervisor, they felt happier at work. When he discussed changes in advance with them, and allowed them a form of participation, they felt like part of the team.
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