McGregor a psychologist based his theory on his studies of human behaviour. He put together two contrasting types or worker. It is based on the perceptions that managers have of their employees


Theory Y is a participative style of management which “assumes that people will exercise self-direction and self-control in the achievement of organisational objectives to the degree that they are committed to those objectives”. It is management’s main task in such a system to maximise that commitment.


Theory X assumes that individuals are lazy, work-shy and constantly in need of a good prod. It always has a ready-made excuse for failure—the innate limitations of all human resources. 

McGregor Theory X and Theory


He says that all workers can be categorised



Theory X features Results of theory x style
·         Dislike work ·         Discourages new ideas
·         Have no ability ·         Quality suffers
·         Should be tightly controlled ·         Labour turnover is high
·         Threats and coercion are used. ·         Profits suffer
·         Any manager dealing with Theory X people is a controller ·         Disinterested staff.


Theory Y                                   Results of Theory style

·         Like work ·         Encourages Intrapreneurship
·         Very able workers ·         Quality is key
·         Can be loosely managed ·         Happy workforce
·         Staff are encouraged ·         High profits
·         Managers are facilitators ·         High productivity