Friday November 9
Mayo’s Human Relations Theory:
(1) Illumination in the Telephone Relay Equipment Department:
Found that if you turned the lighting up, productivity went up also. Light was made
brighter and brighter, productivity kept increasing. Turn the lights down, productivity
still went up. Turned the lights down again, but productivity just kept increasing.
Productivity only decreased when lights were so low that the workers just couldn’t
see what they were doing.
Came to the finding that workers have social and psychological needs. Workers are
human beings, they like being around other people. Typically there is not much
interaction with the workers in this case, but when Hawthorne came in and
experimenters were paying attention to them and interacting with them, that is what
ultimately increased productivity. This is called the Hawthorne Effect.
(2) The Bank Wiring Room
Managers in this department had no idea how much workers can produce in a given
day. So Mayo tried to find out. He found out that they were only producing half as
much as they could in a day. They were also being paid through piece work. Mayo
told them that if they doubled their output, they could make double their income.
But the workers refused because they believed that the current output was a fair
day’s work. The workers had an idea of how much workers should work, and made
others conform to that norm. They made workers that were working too hard to slow
down, and help encourage other workers that worked slow to pick up the pace.
Job Segregation by Gender
Most jobs are segregated by gender: Some jobs are considered women’s jobs &
generally are occupied by women, such as McDonald’s counter workers; other jobs
are deemed men’s jobs & generally are performed by men, such as McDonald’s
grillers and Combined agents. People think that females (or males) have natural (or
developed) personalities, interests, characters, appearances, manners, &
competencies needed for performing feminine (or masculine) jobs. This logic enables
people to understand and justify employment patters; it also enables women (or
men) to develop strong, healthy identiti