Whyte, William Foote
April 1965
Industrial & Labor Relations Review;Apr65, Vol. 18 Issue 3, p305
Academic Journal
The article focuses on developments of human behavior in work organizations. Organizations in which people regularly perform work for pay have certain important characteristics in common that set themselves off from other types of organizations such as voluntary organizations and political parties. In the first place, a new way of looking at organizations has been established, sharply in contrast to the old formulations. Whatever the merits and deficiencies of scientific management, it was and is essentially a normative doctrine, telling one how a man in the industry ought to behave. While the labor economists have made important contributions to this area of knowledge, until the invasion of the behavioral scientists they tended to focus their attention upon union-management relations at the level of the official leaders of the two contending parties. They provided no systematic way of relating the day-to-day events in the work place with the high level dealings of the leaders. In this respect, the contribution of organizational behavior has been two fold, to substitute for the normative approach an intensive and extensive examination of the way people really do behave in the shop and to carry this examination down from the level of formal leadership to the rank and file.


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