Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sheroes: Lillian Gilbreth

Lillian Gilbreth (b. 1878 d. 1972) known as the Mother of Modern Management, was an American psychologist, an industrial engineer and one of the first working female engineers to hold a Ph.D. Both she and her husband, Frank, were industrial engineers and partners who specialized in time-and-motion studies and pioneered industrial management techniques such as job standardization and incentive wage-plans. Lillian combined her perspectives of an engineer, a psychologist, a wife, and a mother to show her field the importance of the psychological dimensions of work.

In addition having their own careers and business, Lillian and her husband had 12 children together. They applied their rules for production-line efficiency to the way they ran their home and family. The book, Cheaper by the Dozen was written by two of their children about their experiences growing up in such a large family.

After Frank's death in 1924, Lillian became head of the business as well as the family. She was a pioneer in streamlining kitchen design, contributing such innovations as foot-pedal trash cans and storage shelves on refrigerator doors. She was also a college professor and an internationally known management consultant until her death in 1972. Her life and work totally contradicts the conventional notion that a woman cannot combine raising children with a successful career.

Resources: csupomona.edusdsc.eduRemarkable American Women, Life Magazine, 1976.

1 comment:

kara rane said...

12 kids*! great picture of all of them on the teeter~totter~see~saw~ .. she is a remarkable woman..

Related Posts with Thumbnails