Building Better Business

Chandana Rathnasiri Hewege, researcher with Swinburne University, argues that management theory would be revitalised with social science input. In particular, Hewege focuses on management control. This term describes how organisations monitor the behaviour of employees. The aim is to improve efficiency and make better use of resources. This can be done through formal processes like enforcing rules and account keeping. It can also be achieved through informal ways, such as promoting a unified organisational culture and promoting shared values.

The main theory of management control is limited because it presumes all managers will agree with and enforce organisational objectives. It also presumes that workers will be passive in following the rules. Social science focuses on alternative views that incorporate culture and power. Hewege shows that in multicultural organisations, workers may actively be in conflict with managers because their ideas are culturally at odds.

Drawing on social science, Hewege argues that should take cultural differences into consideration in order to improve managerial relationships.

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