Deconstructing car assembler productivity
Two generations later in history, social science and management the question is not whether to measure but how to measure and how to evaluate the results of measurement. This paper aims to make a contribution to this debate: negatively, by criticising orthodox productivity measures; and positively, proposing an alternative way of measuring performance differences. The first section of the paper supplies an essential context for the subsequent argument by providing a brief history of productivity's usage since the late 1940s. The second section presents a calculation of car assembler productivity which is then deconstructed to show the problems inherent in orthodox productivity measurement which works by vertical cumulation. The third section then constructively proposes a shift to new ways of measuring lateral difference which open up new terrain.