Reviews the roots of management theory, and discusses how, in the early part of this century, an overlooked, different interpretation of Max Weber’s work could have affected those roots. Examines Lowell L. Bennion’s dissertation, Max Weber’s Methodology , published in 1933, which is the first book‐length interpretation in the English language of Weber’s sociological thought. Maintains that this interpretation of Weber is central to the argument that the greater contribution of Weber to management theory lies in the central role of power and conflict in relationships, and the important question of “Why do people obey?”. Concludes that this view of Weber prompts a rich array of research questions confirming the importance of Weber’s thinking for management scholars today, and demonstrates the relevance of Weber far beyond his contribution of bureaucracy as an efficient organizational form.
Journal of Management History (Archive) – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 1, 1996
Keywords: Conflict; Individual behaviour; Management theory; Managerial power