Human value systems and types of managers : a theoretical and empirical investigation in Egyptian society
Numerous studies in the behaviour sciences are concerned with the role of human values as a determinant of human behaviour. In recent years an increasing attention is being paid to the subject of human values in the managerial context. Students of managerial behaviour agree that the value system of an individual manager is one of the factors which affect his behaviour at work. The main objective of this research is to investigate the feasibility of classifying the managerial workforce in Egypt into different types according to their systems of values, and to demonstrate how data about types of managers could be used in improving managerial performance in Egypt. Another objective of this study is to investigate the role of culture in the formation of the value system of a specific cultural group. To carry out these investigations, a theoretical framework was developed. Two instruments were included in this framework: (1) The Personal Value Questionnaire (P.V.Q.) [developed by G.W. Ailport]. (2) The Managerial value Questionnaire (M.V.Q.) [developed in this study). Both instruments were based on the work of the German philosopher Edward Spranger "Types of Men", in which he classified human personalities into six types according to six classes (dimensions) of values (i.e. Theoretical, Economic, Aesthetic, Social, Political and Religious values). The data of this study was derived from: (1) A national sample of 256 Egyptian managers. (2) Two cultural groups ((246 Egyptian business students] and (595 American business students from D. Palmer's study of "Personal Values and managerial Decision]). The Egyptian Managers: Personal and managerial value profiles of the Egyptian managers were identified. Although the two profiles appeared to be dissimilar, a link between them was found. This indicates that the value system of the Egyptian manager is not simply a unitary system which expresses a single profile (a rank order of importance) of the six value dimensions in both personal and managerial lives. Rather, it is an interlocking network of dominant ( personal) and variant (managerial) patterns of values. When used as a discriminatory variable, the managerial value profile proved to be useful in identifying four types of managers that exist in Egyptian society (i.e. Economic, Social, Political, and Religious managers). The four types differ in their primary value orientations and are expected to differ in their organizational performance, especially in their perception of daily problems, their interpretation of the organization policies and goals, and their dealing with individuals and groups. The analysis of the managerial value profiles of the four types of managers suggests that only the Economic and Religious managers could be motivated to serve the objectives of business organizations in Egypt. They are expected to give a predominant position to such organization's goals as high productivity, organizational growth and profit maximization. The Two Cultural Groups: A cultural contrast of the personal value profiles of Egyptian and American business students marked five significant differences between the two groups. The analysis of these differences emphasized the role of Islamic culture in shaping the personal value profile of the Egyptian group. Finally, a proposed model (including six dimensional equations) for the classification of a specific manager into one of the four types (i.e. Economic, Social, Political, and Religious managers) was designed.