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Joseph N. Scanlon: the man and the plan

Joseph N. Scanlon: the man and the plan Purpose – The paper aims to describe the career and contributions of Joseph Scanlon in gaining labor‐management cooperation through employee participation and sharing the gains from cost savings. Design/methodology/approach – The paper makes use of archives and unpublished sources; correspondence with Scanlon's daughter and a previous colleague; Scanlon's writings; and secondary sources as needed. Findings – Joseph Scanlon used his experiences to develop a plan that encouraged union‐management cooperation and workers and managers sharing gains from improved productivity. Scanlon's background is examined and how his colleagues at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, especially Douglas McGregor, provided the venue for his ideas to flourish and gain widespread acceptance. An analysis of 117 studies over a period of six decades is used to identify the conditions that appear to promote or to interfere with the Scanlon Plan. Practical implications – The Scanlon Plan illustrates a means to promote labor‐management cooperation and a means to involve employees through sharing cost savings. Originality/value – This is the first biographical study to use archival and unpublished sources to provide new insights into Scanlon and how his plan for cooperation and Gainsharing developed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Management History Emerald Publishing

Joseph N. Scanlon: the man and the plan

Journal of Management History , Volume 15 (1): 18 – Jan 9, 2009

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1751-1348
DOI
10.1108/17511340910921763
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The paper aims to describe the career and contributions of Joseph Scanlon in gaining labor‐management cooperation through employee participation and sharing the gains from cost savings. Design/methodology/approach – The paper makes use of archives and unpublished sources; correspondence with Scanlon's daughter and a previous colleague; Scanlon's writings; and secondary sources as needed. Findings – Joseph Scanlon used his experiences to develop a plan that encouraged union‐management cooperation and workers and managers sharing gains from improved productivity. Scanlon's background is examined and how his colleagues at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, especially Douglas McGregor, provided the venue for his ideas to flourish and gain widespread acceptance. An analysis of 117 studies over a period of six decades is used to identify the conditions that appear to promote or to interfere with the Scanlon Plan. Practical implications – The Scanlon Plan illustrates a means to promote labor‐management cooperation and a means to involve employees through sharing cost savings. Originality/value – This is the first biographical study to use archival and unpublished sources to provide new insights into Scanlon and how his plan for cooperation and Gainsharing developed.

Journal

Journal of Management HistoryEmerald Publishing

Published: Jan 9, 2009

Keywords: Industrial relations; Modern history; Employee participation; Gainsharing

References