McGregor's Theory X and Theory Y

McGregor (1969) distinguishes between managers who manage ina Theory X style and those who manage in a Theory Y style. assumptions that Theory X manager make about employees were said to include:
  • employees need and respond to close direction and control people prefer to avoid work if they can
  • employees do not want to accept responsibility
  • employees have to be coerced to achieve organizational objectives
The assumptions made by Theory Y manager about employees were said to include:
  • Individual and organizational goals can be integrated
  • work is a natural activity
  • employees will respond positively to objectives to which they are committed
  • emotional satisfaction can be achieved at work
  • employees will, under right conditions, accept responsibility.

The values of this classification is to identify the assumptions of other managers and yourself. On the face of it, the Theory Y style is more enlightened, but the basic point is that the style adopted needs to fit the situation.
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