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Theory Z is the name applied to the so-called "Japanese Management" style popularized during the Asian economic boom of the 1980's. In contrast Theory X, which stated that workers inherently dislike and avoid work and must be driven to it, and Theory Y, which stated that work is natural and can be a source of satisfaction when aimed at higher order human psychological needs, Theory Z focused on increasing employee loyalty to the company by providing a job for life with a strong focus on the well-being of the employee, both on and off the job. According to Dr. William Ouchi, its leading proponent, Theory Z management tends to promote stable employment, high productivity, and high employee morale and satisfaction.
Ironically, "Japanese Management" and Theory Z itself were based on Dr. W. Edwards Deming's famous "14 points". Deming, an American scholar whose management and motivation theories were rejected in the United States, went on to help lay the foundation of Japanese organizational development during their domination of the world economy in the 1980's. Deming's theories are summarized in his two books, Out of the Crisis and The New Economics, in which he spells out his "System of Profound Knowledge". He was a frequent advisor to Japanese business and government leaders, and eventually became a revered counselor. Deming was awarded the Second Order of the Sacred Treasure by the former Emperor Hirohito, and American businesses ultimately tried unsuccessfully to use his "Japanese" approach to improve their competitive position.zh:Z理论
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