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Lecture 1

COMM 151 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Scientific Management, Behavioural Sciences, Human Relations Movement

Course Code
COMM 151
Christopher Miners

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COMM 151: Introduction to Organizational Behaviour 2018-01-12
Short History of Organizational Behaviour:
Turn of the 20th century
o Goods were often produced by skilled craftsmen from beginning to end, resulting
in low productivity
Early 1900s
o Rapid industrialization and factory work
Asking “what can we do to get workers to do more in less time
Scientific management (Taylorism)
o Came about in the early 1900s
o Thought that productivity came from three sources
High degree of specialization
Routine procedures
Decision-making power in upper management
o Shortcomings of Taylorism
No creativity, not engaging (intellectually or otherwise)
Boring, no learning or skill building, no sense of achievement
Lose sight of significance of work
Strict rules can lead people to do the bare minimum or even rebel
No way to communicate to management ideas, insight, or solutions on
problems seen by front level employees; thus, organizations fail to adapt
1920s and 1930s
o Human relations movement: “what social factors influence the behaviour of
o Hawthorne studied the effects of interventions on performance by adding factors
such as breaks, hot meals, and shorter days
Saw greater productivity with each added benefit
Continued to increase when all of the improvements were taken away,
because the workers responded favourably to the special attention that
they were receiving
This demonstrates the importance of psychological factors at work
o The contingency approach
o If… then…
Organizational Behaviour:
The field of behavioural science that examines how individuals act, think and feel in
organizations by studying individual and group processes.
Negotiation Exercise:
“So much of what we hear and what we’re taught turns out to be false on closer
scrutiny... if it is important, take the time to figure out for yourself whether it is really
Outcome in a negotiation depends on ability to cooperate, not compete
find more resources at
find more resources at
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