Insight into today's economic and financial problems comes, in this revealing book, from an understanding of how and why the practice and the teaching of management has developed as it has. Gordon Pearson, who has spent equal parts of his long career as a practising manager and a management educator, clarifies through rigorous historical review the difficult issues around management with which we struggle today, such as why management custom and practice so often lead to contravention of the law. Pearson reviews how management became a practice and body of understanding, the development of its crucial role in economic progress, and then how its corruption came about as a result of malign theory, leading to the dominance of the bonus payment culture and short term deal-making that plague us today. Understanding management's past, suggests Pearson, will help its improvement for the future. Contributing to that understanding, this challenging book sheds light on how management might be renewed and on the benign role it could play if freed from the restraints of inappropriate economic theory. This book is not just a history or a sociological analysis of management. It gives a broad, practically informed, critical view of the subject that will be welcomed by any reader with a professional or an academic interest in practice, theory, and context.
With a first degree in management sciences from Warwick University, Gordon Pearson has carved out a distinctive position focusing on the good and bad impacts of economic and behavioural theory on the practical realities of business management. His industrial line responsibilities have included most management functions as well as general and strategic management. His specialist experience in mergers and acquisitions, were the basis of his first book, 'The Strategic Discount', a critique of accounting's short termism. He subsequently completed a Ph.D. in strategy, innovation and culture at Manchester Business School. His academic inputs, which have included heading up the Department of Management and the MBA programmes at Keele University, are mainly focused on a critical analysis of theory's impacts on practice. His related challenging blog site is at www.gordonpearson.co.uk.
Contents: Prologue; Part 1 The Emergence of Management: Creating the first economic surplus; An economic theory of industry and commerce; Industrialization and management responsibilities; The developing economic and political context. Part 2 The Rise of Professional Management: New world, big business and educating management; Division of management labour; Theories of management; Management in practice. Part 3 The Educated Fall of Management: Seduction by the new strategic management; Friedman and business-friendly government; Business schools versus management education. Part 4 Management for New Responsibilities: The emerging perspective. Epilogue; Bibliography; Index.