Presentation on theme: "The Changing Nature of Work Automation of manufacturing helped create new jobs and dramatically changed the work environment in both factories and offices."— Presentation transcript:
The Changing Nature of Work Automation of manufacturing helped create new jobs and dramatically changed the work environment in both factories and offices.
Henry Ford Henry Ford was one of the first industrialists to act on the realization that each worker is also a consumer. Ford raised worker wages so they could buy more goods–particularly cars–and reduced hours to make workers more accepting of their boring jobs on the assembly line. Because assembly line work required few special skills, Ford hired workers from all backgrounds, which also created a more loyal workforce.
Assembly line The mechanized plants introduced by Ford seemed to turn humans into robots, with workers doing only one phase of production. While assembly line work required few specialized skills, it required great discipline, which was enforced through limited worker contact. Breaking down skilled work into tiny jobs increased production and profits, raised the wages of laborers, and provided jobs for thousands of people in need of work. However, it also threatened to turn workers into machines.
Scientific management Frederick Taylor argued that developing more efficient working methods would heighten workers productivity, raise their wages, and profit the company. Taylor suggested that time-study experts reduce jobs into their simplest possible components and then analyze each work operation to find ways to minimize the time necessary to do a job. He also suggested that employers offer cash incentives to workers who produced more than the minimum quantities established for their jobs.
White-collar jobs Scientific management affected the layout of offices, which began to resemble assembly lines. The industrial transformation created more white-collar jobs in insurance, banking, sales, and advertising–all of which were indispensable to big business.
White-collar jobs Sales became a science taught in a variety of books and schools. Salespeople learned consumer psychology and devised new marketing techniques such as contests. Companies, in turn, rewarded successful salespeople and sometimes humiliating unsuccessful ones. Advertising became big business. Most advertising workers were young, white college graduates or former newspaper writers. If an advertising worker could stand the pace, he or she could earn 3 times what an automobile maker earned.
Women in the workplace The invention of the typewriter created new jobs for middle-class, high-school educated women. Even if typing paid no better than operating a machine in a factory, the new office work allowed an educated young woman to work in a clean, attractive environment. Women, who did not command high wages or look forward to promotion, found themselves assigned to pools in which they operated all the new office technology–typewriters, dictaphones, and telephones.
Operators and clerks In the same way that secretarial work provided an alternative to nursing or teaching for female high-school graduates, telephone companies and the new department stores offered women without a high-school diploma a pleasant alternative to factory work or domestic service.
Gender segregation By the 1920s offices and stores had two distinct cultures, neatly divided by gender. Women dominated in the clerical, unskilled professions that involved simple, repetitive routines. Womens jobs provided little chance for advancement except to positions of cashier or executive secretary, or perhaps marriage. Men, on the other hand, found jobs as managers, senior cashiers, chief clerks, head bookkeepers, floorwalkers, salespeople, or advertising workers. Energy, initiative, and creativity paid off and could lead to better jobs.