A Business Encyclopedia

Administrative Theory

Definition: The Administrative Theory is based on the concept of departmentalization, which means the different activities to be performed for achieving the common purpose of the organization should be identified and be classified into different groups or departments, such that the task can be accomplished effectively.

The administrative theory is given by Henri Fayol, who believed that more emphasis should be laid on organizational management and the human and behavioral factors in the management. Thus, unlike the scientific management theory of Taylor where more emphasis was on improving the worker’s efficiency and minimizing the task time, here the main focus is on how the management of the organization is structured and how well the individuals therein are organized to accomplish the tasks given to them.

The other difference between these two is, the administrative theory focuses on improving the efficiency of management first so that the processes can be standardized and then moves to the operational level where the individual workers are made to learn the changes and implement those in their routine jobs. While in the case of the scientific management theory, it emphasizes on improving the efficiency of the workers at the operating level first which in turn improves the efficiency of the management. Thus, the administrative theory follows the top-down approach while the scientific management theory follows the bottom-up approach.

Fayol has given 14 principles of management with the intent to improve the functioning of the managers. To know about these, visit the link below:

Henry Fayol’s 14 Principles of Management

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