Frederick maker and machinist at Enterprise Hydraulics

Frederick Winslow Taylor, an American mechanical engineer whose career path would have been different had it not been for failing eyesight which meant he could not take up his place at Harvard College and become a lawyer like his father despite passing the entrance examinations with honors.

He became an apprentice pattern maker and machinist at Enterprise Hydraulics Works. His apprenticeship span over four years after which he became a machine shop labourer at Midvale Steel Works. Here he was quickly promoted multiple times reflecting his talent, hard work, keen eye for details as well as his family ties with the part owners of Midvale Steel. Frederick. W. Taylor rose till a chief engineer of the works, he recognized that workmen were not working their machines, or themselves nearly as much as they could and that resulted in high labour costs for the company.During his time as foreman he expected more output from the workmen, he then began to study and analyze the productivity of both the men and machines to determine how much work should be expected.

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He attained his master’s degree, worked as a general manager for Manufacturing Investment Company before becoming an independent consulting engineer to management. Frederick Winslow Taylor’s work the principles of scientific management theory were published in 1911 which was filled with ideas, examples from places he worked as well as detailed observations made. Scientific management methods called for optimizing the way that tasks were performed and simplifying the jobs enough so that workers could be trained to perform their specialized sequence of motions in the one “best” way (Ref).Before the scientific management, the works were executed by skilled craftsmen learned their work in long internships. They made their own decisions about how their work had to be done. Scientific management took away a lot of this autonomy and converted skilled crafts into a series of simplified jobs that could be done by unskilled workers who could easily be trained for tasks.Taylor focused on improving worker productivity early in his career found glaring inefficiencies in his contacts with steelmakers.

And now to discuss the scientific principles in detail; His stay at Midvale Steel Company and close observational study of different operations in different factories, made him identify defects of management; which were: Lack of clarity of responsibilities by workers and management, Lack of Standards of work, restricted output because of Soldering of work, Lack of job clarity which promotes soldiering of work. The term soldiering in this term a verb means to intentionally restrict labor productivity; to work at the slowest rate that goes unpunished according to (REF). Lack of scientific base for decisions, Lack of division of work, and placement of workers at different jobs without considering their ability, skills, aptitude, and interest. He advised that management should take the responsibility for determining standards, planning work, organizing, controlling and devising incentive schemes.


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