Theory A, Theory B and Theory C of managing people at work

Birendra Nath Singh


Managing people and productivity are prime concerns of modern business organizations. Many empirical studies were conducted during the era of scientific management (Taylor, 1911) to investigate What and How? McGregor’s (1960) epic theory — Theory X and Theory Y, categorizing all employees into two groups and prescribing methods to motivate and control them was the best. However, his findings also suffered strong criticisms, creating research gaps. The objective of this study was to investigate further and to conclude that there are three major groups named Theory A, Theory B, and Theory C. Amongst them, a middle group — Theory B is most dominant, having all capabilities to significantly influence productivity and prosperity of organizations. The methodology used was qualitative, based upon intensive and critical shop-floor observations. Since this study was not empirical, it had many limitations requiring further researches. Therefore, rightly recommended that future studies should correlate the impact of technological advancements upon motivations and productivity of the modern business organization (Veitch, 2018).

Keywords: Motivation, Productivity, Theory X, Theory Y, Theory A, Theory B, Theory C

Authors’ individual contribution: The Author is responsible for all the contributions to the paper according to CRediT (Contributor Roles Taxonomy) standards.

Declaration of conflicting interests: The Author declares that there is no conflict of interest.

JEL Classification: D23, J81, M12

Received: 05.05.2021
Accepted: 30.07.2021
Published online: 03.08.2021

How to cite this paper: Singh, B. N. (2021). Theory A, Theory B and Theory C of managing people at work. Corporate Governance and Organizational Behavior Review, 5(1), 69-75.

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