Fayol Publishes Administration Industrielle et Générale (Great Events from History II: Business and Commerce Series)
Article abstract: Henri Fayol provided the beginnings of a general theory of management based on his fifty-eight years of successful administrative experience.
Summary of Event
Henri Fayol was born in 1841 to a family of the French lower middle class. He was educated at the National School of Mines at St. Étienne, and at the age of nineteen was graduated as a mining engineer. In 1860, he accepted a job in the mines of the Commentary-Fourchambault Company (Comambault). He stayed with the same employer until his retirement in 1918.
During his years with Comambault, Fayol pursued three different career stages. During the first twelve years, he worked on technical issues, especially the problem of overcoming explosions and fires in the coal mines. From 1872 to 1888, he served as director of operations for a group of mines in the company's coal business. His intellectual efforts during this second stage were centered on geological questions, and his thoughts on this subject were published in three technical monographs.
Beginning in 1888, Fayol took on the greatest challenge of his industrial career. He was appointed director general of Comambault, becoming chief executive of a firm that was on the verge of bankruptcy. “The success with which he carried out those duties,” according to Lyndall Urwick, author of a foreword to Fayol's General and Industrial Management (1949), “is one of...
(The entire section is 2302 words.)
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