This Industrialization concept research essay help assignment looks at the practices which existed when the concept of industrialization started. There were different systems which were implemented in order to extract more from the employees and for the capital owners to succeed. The concept of subordination of labor is also explained. Later the trend being followed by the firms in the current scenario is also discussed. It can be seen that the firms who have been successful follow completely opposite process of maximizing the control over the employees. Following paragraphs gives the two sides of coins. First the concept of subordination of labor which was exercising control over the employees is explained and later the current practices in place at the large and successful firms have been discussed.
Subordination of Labor
The origins of industrial organization is said to be linked to concept of subordination. This concept says that section of the people who have property or an independent means to sustain themselves as the time progresses they lose their control over the assets. These section of people include the craftsmen, artisans, farmers. Over the time they sell their assets or their assets bought due to competitive and other factors which lead to them being workers. This event is commonly known as the proletarian which leads to increase in the number of the labor force. In this the labor force sells their labor to the individuals with capital. This subordination of the labor can be said to be beginning of struggle which continues to exist between the capital owners and the individuals providing labor.
However the individuals do not directly move into the labor force. There are various stages through which they pass after which they finally succumb and enter into the factories. However the fight between the capital owners and labor does not end when individual join the factories. Capital owners have not find out a perfect solution to extract work from the labor. Over the time there has been tussle between the owners and the labor force.
In terms of subordination labor thinks that they need to be creative in their work and strive to be innovative however the owners want processes in control and standardized so that they benefit.
According to the experts there are mainly two struggles which can be cited to evaluate struggle of human force subordination against the capital owners. The first struggle is cited in which there was strong reaction by the labor force against the labor subordination. This struggle was mainly done by the individuals (mainly artisans and craftsmen) as they did not want themselves to be turned in “wage slaves”. The second struggle is said to be done by the individuals entered factory. They fought against the real subordination.
If one looks at the Industrial Revolution in England then reactions of different individuals can be easily analyzed on how human reacted to the rise of the factory system. Thompson has analyzed the history on how the individuals have struggled against the capital owners for imposing the subordination. After doing indepth analysis he came up with a theory. In this theory he has come up concepts like formation of class, consciousness about class and lastly the class action. He has based his theory on the social class definition which is associated with the identity, experience (Jaffee, 2001).
In industrialization the focus was mainly on how the firms will handle so many employees at a time and bring them under control. The concept of the industrial discipline didn’t exist at that time. Organizations believed that tasks to bring human nature under control were more difficult task as compared to the tasks of implementing a technological change. For an individual it would be difficult for the owners to remove the past life of the individuals. The individuals faced internal conflict (Parker, 2002).
Also the capital owners did not believe in providing appropriate power to the labor. They gave the tasks to the employees and expected them to do the task without asking much questions. They were of the opinion that they knew what they were doing and hence required no suggestion from the employees on how the things can be implemented or improved in the system. The they wanted to have full control over the employees and expected them to implement all the tasks given by the capital owners.
In the current scenario firms have become more alert and proactive in bringing policies for the employee empowerment. There have been many studies across the institutions to empower the employees. They have observed that the by having high involvement, performance and also bringing more commitment from the employees can bring in more economic returns for the firm. Experts have also collected evidence from the different institutions on how the active involvement of the employees is bringing in more revenue for the firms. It has been observed when a firms makes the employees that their future is not secure and do not provide a strong career path do more harm as compared to the firms who layoff the employees which ends the uncertainty. Following paragraph tries to understand the practices which have been implemented by the firms which have been successful in the long run.
Firms provide employment security. Job security is one of the key factors which help the employees work efficiently. It has been concluded that when the firms do not provide employment security it becomes difficult for the employees to be innovative at the workplace and increase their productivity as they will live in constant fear of losing their jobs. It is believed that for many firms it becomes difficult to provide job security due to increasing competition however it is believed that job security is one of key processes for the firms to get high performance from the employees. For e,g in 1990s General Motors changes their working arrangements and mentioned that they will guarantee the jobs of the individuals except in the case of extreme conditions. Firms can easily avail productive work from the employees. Also firm also saves on the cost of hiring, training and grooming the individual it will hire when the times are good. This notion did not exist previously. Thus in the current scenario it is more about employee becoming productive, innovative and has power to take firms to new directions in order to increase the productivity of the employees.
The next thing which drives the performance of the firm is the process of selective hiring. This notion also didn’t exist earlier. In this concept the firm employs only those employees who are eligible for the job (Souza & Costa., 2013).
Another process which has started being implemented in firms is decentralization and also existence of small independent teams which are capable of making and executing their own decisions. This is one of major factors driving growth in firms. Employees are independent to take decisions for the firm. This wasn’t existed in the earlier times of subordination of labor law. This concept is totally opposed to the subordination of labor concept.
Another important process is paying employees based on their performance. This is also totally opposed to the concept of subordination of labor. Company has started paying high wages to the employees who perform better than the other employees. Thus people performance based salary has become the trend for the firms (Huang, Tung, Lo, & Chou, 2013).
Training is another factor which has helped the firms to get more work from the employees. Firms are giving lot of importance in training the employees in skills outside their area of work. This can help the employees improve the productivity and also take more interest in their work. Firms have also started encouraging internal transfer of the employees. This is also one of the important step taken by the firms to show that they value the sense of commitment of the employees and want the employee to stay in the firm rather than work for some other firm. In many firms employees shift from one department to other as the employees has interest in working in that department and he has served well over the past years in a particular department. Thus the firm wants to provide employee a flexibility option so that they stay with the firm (Maier, 1970).
Thus the above processes mentioned have been widely used by the firms in the current scenario. These processes which are completely different or irrelevant to the Taylor concept of the subordination of labor have contributed to the success of the firms and this is evident in many firms in the current scenario.
Thus in today’s age it becomes difficult owners to succeed by not involving the employees in their operations and just treating them as individuals to their labor work. By involving more employees at various levels can help the firm’s high productivity, increased revenues and thus maximization of the shareholders wealth(Lanz, Miroudot & Nordås, 2013).
Firms have left the concept of having complete 100% control over the employees way of functioning. Firms now believe in taking feedback from the employees as well giving them freedom on how perform a task. Firms are encouraging employees to come up with new ideas and to be innovative. Thus they are restricting the employees to work on single task with same routine but also encourage to do more tasks and also if the task can be done in a much better manner in some other ways then informing the firm regarding the process.
At various firms the decision making power has also been shifted to the employees. Many firms have given powers to certain team and employees participate in important decisions making for the firms. This concept was totally nonexistent during the initial days of industrialization where the capital owners only gave decisions and expected them employees to implement them religiously. But currently in many firms this has been replaced. Firms are believing in empowering employees. There are different levels of powers given to them and depending on the importance of the decision the decision making power is given to them. This helps the firm to make the decisions in much faster, removes bureaucracy and also gives the employee a sense of belonging to the firm. If the organization has global operations and the employee for every small decision has to check with the capital owners then it would be problematic plus time consuming for the firm. This will reduce the productivity in the system.
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The firms also want to make employees a part of their success. Many firms have started providing shares to the employees so that they become a part of the firm and have more sense of responsibility towards the firm.
Hence in majority of the firms the concept of providing control over the employees has been abolished and new ways of empowering employees and making employees a part of their successes is being looked at by the firms.
Here we have looked at how in the past the firms used the maximization of the control as their tool to get work done from the employees. They believed in subordination of labor as the way they will progress and make more revenue. However this trend has changed and firms are focusing on empowering the employees rather than having a single decision maker. The practices followed by the firms in the current scenario are totally opposite to the Taylorism where the firm tries to exercise maximum control over the employees. These practices have certainly become outdated and the successful firms are implementing a completely opposite strategy as compared to having complete control over the employees. Various initiatives like decentralization, giving decision powers, forming independent teams, performance based pay have been instrumental in driving the success of the firms and these concept are not aligned with Taylor concept of having control over the employees. Thus the concept of Taylorism has become largely irrelevant in the current scenario as the firms are looking to involve employees more in their functioning and also empowering. The model has been implemented in many firms and these firms are doing exceptionally well.
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Jaffee, D., 2001 ‘The Rise of the Factory System’, Organization Theory: Tension and Change, London, McGraw-Hill, Chapter 3, pp. 42-63.
Taylor, F. W., 1911 Scientific Management, New York, Harper & Row, Chapter 1-2.
Parker, M., 2002 Against Management Polity, Cambridge. Chapter 1.
Maier, C. S., 1970. Between Taylorism and technocracy: European ideologies and the vision of industrial productivity in the 1920s. Journal of contemporary history, 5(2), 27-61.
Lanz, R., Miroudot, S., & Nordås, H. K., 2013. Offshoring of Tasks: Taylorism Versus Toyotism. The World Economy, 36(2), 194-212.