Article Information

Corporate Profits and Employee Satisfaction: Must They Be in Conflict?
Lawler, Edward E., and J. Richard Hackman
14/1  (Fall 1971): 46-55

The article presents information on corporate profits and employee satisfaction. Corporations should be more concerned about the satisfaction of their employees. Many executives believe that it is difficult for most organizations to have both high profits and satisfied employees. They have heard about the human relations movement and Theory Y. They recognize the importance of treating employees with respect and the value of having satisfied employees. Still they often feel that a choice between satisfaction and profits is necessary and not surprisingly, most feel that they must choose to maximize profits. Why are high satisfaction and high profits often seen as incompatible goals by many executives? We believe that one of the most important reasons stems from many executives' perceptions of the way work has to be designed so as to maximize corporate profits. Since the rise of "scientific management" early in the century, it has been widely assumed that profits could be increased by simplifying, standardizing and specializing the work that is done in an organization.

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