Off The Rails Autumn 2009

Marxism at Work: A Brief History of Micromanagement

Published on: Thu, 19/11/2009 - 09:48

(with apologies to any historians)

A recent encounter with a mystery shopper at my ticket office window got me thinking about the increasing pressure that management are exerting on the staff to conform to a predetermined script of words and behaviours.

The history of elite groups trying to control and enhance the productivity of their workforce is a long and not very pretty one. Slavery was a preferred form of workplace discipline in past eras and to this day has not been entirely eradicated. This 'holistic' approach to micromanagement contains within it severe risks for the manager because

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