Management Style

In his book, The Human Side of Enterprise, published in the early 1960’s, Douglas McGregor presented two highly influential ways of viewing people’s motivation in the workplace, known as Theory X and Theory Y. This self scoring assessment consists of 30 questions describes in detail some of the assumptions that underpin McGregor’s X and Y theories, helping managers to determine their existing style. It also raises awareness about the implications of this in the way that they relate to and communicate with others in different circumstances.

Your scores from the Management Styles Questionnaire will have a direct impact upon how you perform in a number of different competency areas. Drawing upon McGregor’s Theory X and Theory Y, the Management Styles Questionnaire gives respondents a picture of how they prefer to look at things in the workplace, in particular attitudes toward and relationship with others.

This profile outlines assumptions about each theory, shows the behavior model and explains typical performance of each managerial style in four broad areas:

  • Administrative
  • Cognitive
  • Communication
  • Supervisory

Where Theory X assumes that people are lazy, lack ambition, dislike responsibility and prefer to be led, Theory Y assumes that people have an innate ‘need’ to work and want responsibilities and achievement. Managing Theory X and Theory Y perspectives then becomes very challenging, with an ‘ideal’ being a successful combination of the two.


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