Are the Classical Functions Put Forward by Henri Fayol in 1949 Still Valid and True Today?

1249 Words Apr 8th, 2013 5 Pages
Academics for years have been pondering the effectiveness of classical approaches to newer conceptualizations within management functions. Are the classical functions put forward by Henri Fayol in 1949 still valid and true today?, or are the theories put forward by other academics such as Mintzberg more valid?, or would the scientific type management concepts be more fitting?. To answer such questions this report examines two Journal journals, “Are the classical management functions useful in describing managerial work?” (Journal 1) and “Some effects of Fayolism” (Journal 2). By analyzing the different arguments put forward, I aim to conclude which theory is more appropriate to management study today.
In journal 1, Carroll and Gillen
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Upon the empirical studies, there is sufficient evidence to merit the classical approach in its functions being used by managers.
However Mintzberg did not agree with Fayol’s theory. Mintzberg felt that “Fayol’s fifty year description of managerial work is no longer of use to us” (Mintzberg, 1971 pp 39). Mintzberg proposed a different model consisting of ten work roles; interpersonal roles (figurehead, leader and liaison), informational roles (monitor or nerve center, disseminator and spokesman) and decision-making (entrepreneur, disturbance handler, resource allocator and negotiator). However this model came under scrutiny by competing theorists. The author used many examples and refers to experiments done by other academics to criticize Mintzberg’s theory. McCall and Segrist (1980) limited the number of roles Mintzberg claimed, on the basis that certain roles overlapped each other and could not be called separate. Lau, Newman and Broedling (1980) limited the model to four factors (leadership and supervision, information gathering and dissemination, technical problem solving, and executive decision making) upon the findings of their experiment. The flaws within the Mintzberg Model rose due to the ‘observable physical’ approach taken. The journal

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