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Lyndall Urwicks 10 Principles to Management Essay

Lyndall Urwick has been prolific and an enthusiastic writer on the subject of administration and management. His experience covered industry, the armed forces and business consultancy. Like other classical writers, Urwick developed his ‘principle’ on the basis of his own interpretation of the common elements and processes, which he identified in the structure, and operation of organization. In 1952 he produced a consolidated list of ten principles in administration and management. Urwick’s ideas in general were popular because of their commonsense appeal to managers in organization. In the last decade, however Urwick’s emphasis on purpose and structure has not been able to provide answers to problems arising from social changes and needed for organizational health. Nevertheless his influence on many modern businesses has been enormous. Lyndall Urwick

Urwick was born in England in 1891. He attended Repton and New College, Oxford, and was awarded a B.A. degree in 1913 and a M.A.degree in 1919. He began his career in his family’s glove manufacturing business, Fownes Brothers and Company. Following service in the First World War, he became organizing secretary for Rowntree and Company, a confectioner. He subsequently moved to the position of administrator of the Management Research Groups and then became Director of the International management Institute in Geneva in 1929. When thereat Depression cut short the life of the institute, Urwick returned to England and established the management consultancy; Urwick, Orr and Patterns. 10 Principles

Urwick 10 principles are:
1. The principles of objective – the overall purpose or objective is the raison d’être of every organization.
2. The principles of specialization – one group, one function.
3. The principles of coordination – the process of organizing is primarily to ensure coordination.
4. The principles of authority-every group should have a supreme authority with clear line of authority to other members of the group.
5. The principles of responsibility – the superior is absolutely responsible for the acts of his subordinates.
6. The principles of definitions – jobs, with their duties and relationships, should be clear defined.
7. The principles of correspondence – authority should be commensurate with responsibility.
8. The span of control – no one should be responsible for more than 5 – 6 direct subordinates whose work is interlocked.
9. The principles of balance – the various units of the organization should be kept in balance.
10. The principles of continuity – the structure should provide for the continuity of activities


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