Showing posts from July, 2011

Fugue for Norepinephrine, Dopamine, and Oxytocin

I have written before about two very different ideas of management, Theory X and Theory Y, and how they engender different organisational structures, and very different working environments. Most of what I, and others, have written about Theory X/Y, uses the model as a basis for exploring outwards, from the individual to the organization. I believe it is just as important to explore in the other direction, going inwards. There are several paths open to inwards exploration: psychology, philosophy, religion, ethics, but in this article, I’ll take a short but brisk walk along the path of neuroscience. Let's recap Theory X and Y very briefly: Theory X and Y represent endpoints on a spectrum of attitudes managers may have towards the people who work for them. Theory X says people are basically lazy and motivated by self-interest and external rewards only. According to Theory X, people will always seek to maximize the monetary rewards they get, and minimize the work they put in.