Mary Parker Follett-Prophet of Management: A Celebration of Writings from the 1920s

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This selection of Follett's writings and lectures, delivered between 1925 and 1933, addresses critical management topics that are relevant for managers today: conflict, power, authority, leadership, control, the role of the individual in the group, and the place of business in society. Commentaries by Warren Bennis, John Child, Angela Dumas, Tokihiko Enomoto, Henry Mintzberg, Nitin Nohria, and Sir Peter Parker are featured. The book also includes a preface by Rosabeth Moss Kanter, an introduction by Peter ...
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Overview

This selection of Follett's writings and lectures, delivered between 1925 and 1933, addresses critical management topics that are relevant for managers today: conflict, power, authority, leadership, control, the role of the individual in the group, and the place of business in society. Commentaries by Warren Bennis, John Child, Angela Dumas, Tokihiko Enomoto, Henry Mintzberg, Nitin Nohria, and Sir Peter Parker are featured. The book also includes a preface by Rosabeth Moss Kanter, an introduction by Peter Drucker, and an epilogue by Paul Lawrence. Their reflections underscore the contemporary significance of Follett's ideas and testify to the eloquence and truth of her observations. Also available in paperback.

Follett's essays on management, originally delivered as lectures in the late 1920s, have long been considered well ahead of their time, promoting leadership and business concepts that are today, ironically, called "new paradigms." In this collection are Follett's original essays with present-day commentaries by a stellar array of modern business thinkers, including Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Peter Drucker, Warren Bennis, Nitin Nohria, and Henry Mintzberg, that highlight the validity and relevance of her work to contemporary managers.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This book aims to return Follett to her rightful place in the pantheon of classic business writers. A preface by Rosabeth Moss Kanter and an introduction by Peter Drucker attest to the fact that she merits such attention. The book contains extracts of Follett's writings on specific subjects: conflict, authority, power, and the place of the individual in society and the group. Each extract is followed by commentaries from today's foremost management scholars that underscore the contemporary significance of her ideas. Follett espoused the theory that business was a social institution and advocated an almost complete change of vocabulary in the business world, eliminating terms like grievance and complaints since such words led to automatic negative reactions. Since Follett wrote about the human side of management, there have been several "discoveries" that promote her essential philosophy: the participative management movement of the Fifties and Sixties, the quality-of-work movement of the Seventies, and now the network movement-each of these moving organizations toward a new, more effective, and humane form of management. This extraordinary book belongs in all academic management libraries and any others aspiring to have comprehensive management collections.-Mary Chatfield, Angelo State Univ., San Angelo, Tex.
Barbara Jacobs
What's old becomes new again, a remarkable occurrence in the relatively young field of management. To witness the recycling of ideas from such neglected visionaries as Bostonian Mary Parker Follett, one has only to look at the resurgency of total quality management--and its real roots. Editor Graham selects 11 of Follett's lecture essays delivered or published between 1925 and 1933 that prove without a doubt that the concepts of "empowerment" and "horizontal management" began with her. Contemporary gurus of business from Peter Drucker to Rosabeth Moss Kantor add flourishes and today's meanings to Follett's philosophies. Yet the experts admit that this turn-of-the-century social worker in her insistence on mutual problem solving and business' debts to society, among other ideas, was way ahead of us all.
Booknews
Presents selections from Follett's writings on business organization and management, some culled from her lectures on topics such as authority, leadership, the role of the individual in the group, and the place of business in society. Contemporary management experts from America and Japan comment on Follett's writings. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780875845630
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/1994
  • Series: Harvard Business School Classics Series
  • Pages: 309
  • Product dimensions: 6.31 (w) x 9.55 (h) x 1.34 (d)

Table of Contents

Editor's Note
Preface
Introduction: Mary Parker Follett: Prophet of Management 1
Mary Parker Follett (1868-1933): A Pioneering Life 11
Pt. 1 The Psychological Foundations of Business Organization
1 Relating: The Circular Response 35
2 Constructive Conflict 67
Commentary. Follett: Constructive Conflict 87
3 Power 97
4 The Giving of Orders 121
5 The Basis of Authority 141
Commentary. Mary Parker Follett's View on Power, the Giving of Orders, and Authority: An Alternative to Hierarchy or a Utopian Ideology? 154
6 The Essentials of Leadership 163
Commentary. Thoughts on "The Essentials of Leadership" 177
7 Co-ordination 183
Commentary. Some Fresh Air for Management? 199
Commentary. Reflections on Design and the Third Way 205
8 The Process of Control 213
Pt. 2 The Individual, the Group, and Society
9 The Individual in the Group 229
Commentary. The Individual in the Group 240
10 The Individual in Society 247
Pt. 3 Business - The Way Ahead
11 Business in Society 267
Commentary. Most Quoted - Least Heeded: The Five Senses of Follett 282
Epilogue 291
Bibliography of Mary Parker Follett's Writings 297
Index 299
About the Contributors 307
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