Subordination of Labor a Necessary Condition for Term Paper

  • Length: 8 pages
  • Subject: Business - Management
  • Type: Term Paper
  • Paper: #27677488

Excerpt from Term Paper :

subordination of labor" a necessary condition for establishing an employment relationship? Are there other necessary conditions?

The capitalist take-over of production was at first merely formal. Capitalists took control of production methods via ownership and employed workers in their privately owned factories. Workers agreed to labor for the owners, because they believed that this was a more financially and socially beneficial relationship than working for their own farms, on their own privately owned land. The formal subordination of labor to capital thus is necessary in a situation of private enterprise, where labor can be rented cheaply to work on preexisting property owned by capitalists.

Why is the "real subordination of labor" described as a fundamental aspect of management? How does the unique nature of the human factor make this form of subordination problematic?

It is only later, in part under the pressure of workers' struggles, when capitalists begin to invest heavily in the technological changes that are at the heart of relative surplus value of labor that the resultant changes in the organization of work occur. This is when the real subordination of labor to capital comes to fruition -- as technical changes make it cheaper for larger organizations to produce goods, only a few capitalists can own the means of production. However, human 'factors' still see themselves as individuals, even within such a dehumanizing process.

What do humans lose in the process of "formal subordination" and "real subordination"? What do they gain?

Humans do not need to maintain factories that they labor in, as they used to have to maintain farms with private ownership, nor must they pay for costly technical changes and advancements. In exchange for autonomy of the regulation of their day, the workers gain freedom of leisure time and independence through privatization, and do not have to worry about maintaining and owning the means of production.

Imagine yourself as one of the factory owners during the Industrial Revolution. You are having trouble recruiting and retaining workers, and getting them to do what you want them to do. What techniques would you use to accomplish your goals of achieving efficient and profitable production?

Rather than pay workers by the piece, regular workers should be paid more than day laborers, and workers who adhered to proven standard operating procedures should also be rewarded with greater pay.

One of the important points to keep in mind when you think about the rise of the factory system is that working for someone else for money in a building was a totally novel and foreign arrangement. Today it is assumed to be the natural way people work. What things do most workers in the United States today take for granted -- or simply expect -- when it comes to working? What kinds of things would be viewed as foreign, novel, or inappropriate?

Having to provide one's own tools of trade would be viewed as odd, or having to pay for one's workspace in most industries. Possessing specialized knowledge would be odd as well, before training, in many workplaces. In some workplaces too, a lack of respect for hierarchy, tenure, or a denial of benefits such as pensions or healthcare would be considered out of order.

On page 49 there is a quote from Bendix that defines "managerial ideology." Dissect the meaning of this quote and state the meaning of managerial ideology in your own words (as if you were explaining it to someone else). Which of Morgan's metaphors is most closely associated with this concept?

Managerial ideology could be described as the ideology of the middleman or woman given the ability to neither administrate others as his or her field of expertise -- a middleperson who is neither a capitalist owner nor entirely subordinate, the manager acts as a bureaucratic and organizational bridge.

Chapter 4 Questions

Chapter 4 is entitled "The Human Organization," and the theories reviewed are considered alternatives to those of scientific management. Why did there need to be an alternative approach to organization? Why the emphasis on the "human"? How do "human" approaches differ from scientific management?

Human beings have psychological needs that cannot be determined scientifically from an outside observer and systematically reduced to a series of physical or standard operating procedures. Thus the need for human or psychological elements in the management of individuals in business, as opposed to subsuming individual human creativity and human will totally, as in scientific management.

What do the Hawthorne experiments tell us about the human factor of production? What are the methodological and managerial lessons learned from these experiments?

Humans function differently in organizational contexts than they do individually, and there are advantages to human 'team' reinforcement as well as individual reinforcement.

The Hawthorne experiments drew attention to informal work groups. Based on your experience working or spending time in organizations, provide some examples of informal work groups. What role did they play for the workers and for the larger organization?

Work groups can be loose, informal social circles, encompassing everything from a group softball team to more formal groups of individuals engaging in education at the urging of the organization, former trainee groups, and groups of individuals of similar social backgrounds, such as a 'gym group' or lunchtime group that all bond in ways that add additional cohesion to the organization.

Can you think of any connections between the theory of symbolic interactionism (reviewed in Chapter 1) and the informal work-group processes?

Groups derive social identification through not only their symbolic identifications with trades or organizations, but to their loyalty to organizations within a larger organization, even if these bonds are social in nature. Because work teams, even when informal are 'at work,' they still contribute to a positive or negative work environment.

Do you think the term used by Barnard -- "common moral purpose" -- is a good way to describe what happens in work organizations? Why or why not?

Work can be not moral, but at least morally neutral -- however, the sense of social bonding between workers at work can serve a powerful, positive social function.

In your own work experience, did you ever feel any conflict between your personal interests (what Barnard called the "individual personality") and the nonpersonal demands (the "organizational personality")?

One's creativity and desire to learn can feel stifled by organizational protocols, as well as the desire to achieve one's own personal desires, and even simple work demands can create conflicts between work and home in terms of family needs.

What are the implications of Maslow's need hierarchy for the organization of work and management?

Beyond financial remuneration, managers have other incentives to deploy to motivate workers -- but initial base needs such as adequate pay for work must be met first.

Go to the Maslow's Need Hierarchy Explanation Part 2 website below. Explain the meaning and significance of the three different shapes in the diagrams -- the triangle, the upside-down triangle, and the diamond.

The triangle shows that there are more needs on the base of the needs pyramid, and these needs must be satisfied before the higher needs are attended to, although these basic physical needs may seem lower and more common in nature.

Table 4.1 lists Pfeffer's Sixteen Practices for People Management. The text notes that in the rationales for these practices, the "symbolic" is emphasized as much as the "substantive." What does this mean? Can you provide some examples?

Leadership often is manifest by example in a symbolic fashion, or in terms of providing personally articulated examples and vision as well as through actual deeds -- like a military leader who fights beside his or her men and women, even if his or her days in infantry are long past, and this is not his or her area of expertise. The mere symbolic willingness to get one's hands dirty is powerful -- like the United States President dining with troops during a wartime Christmas, rather than in comfort at the White House.

Go to the NCS Campbell Leadership Index website below. Scroll down to the "CLI Scales." Within each category select the one trait that you think is most important for leadership and organizational success. Defend your selections.

Influencing, organizing, helping, analyzing, creating, producing, and adventuring are all important -- but the one category that is most important is the capacity to influence, as all other categories of leadership may be delegated to some extend.

Chapter 5 Questions

Table 5.1 outlines some of the elements of bureaucracy according to Max Weber. Explain in your own words why these principles would advance the objective of efficiency and rationality.

Bureaucracies are based upon past organizational precedents -- by forcing human entities to conform to preexisting and successful standard operating procedures efficiency is attained in a rational fashion by all, in theory.

The concept of formalization gets at one of the central elements not only of bureaucracy but also of organization more generally. How does the process of formalization produce efficiency? How might it ultimately become an obstacle to…

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