Isaac Guzmán Valdivia: biography of this expert in administration

Isaac Guzmán Valdivia is a personage of Mexico of century XX. Although he studied law, he made a significant contribution in the field of philosophy, sociology and the Mexican business world, particularly in the area of ​​administration.

Having ideas contrary to what the employers thought of his time, he knew how to change the course of the business sector in his country by doing it from within, that is, by being part of the employer.

Below we will see in more detail who went through a biography of Isaac Guzmán Valdivia, In which we will know his life and the ideas of his main works.

    Brief biography of Isaac Guzmán Valdivia

    Isaac Guzmán Valdivia was a Mexican philosopher, sociologist and businessman who distinguished himself for bringing a new social approach to business administration. Through his work he gave importance to the influence of foreign administrative thought in the development of administration as a practical science in Mexico.

    His work covered concepts related to both Mexican society and economic society., In addition to highlighting the freedoms that people should have as citizens of their country and workers of organizations.

    first years

    Isaac Guzmán Valdivia was born on October 22, 1905 in the state of Guanajuato, Mexico, And their parents were Gilberto Guzmán Venegas and Josefina Valdivia de Guzmán, both also indigenous guanajuatenses. He studied all his primary education in public institutions.

    It continued studying in its native region, finishing its university studies in the State School, at the moment the University of Guanajuato, where it would receive its title of lawyer in Right and Notary Public on October 20, 1928. its graduation in 1930 began to dictate social science classes in this same institution.

    Years of teaching

    He began to teach courses distributing the chair of general theory of the state in his Alma mater and, later, he would give History of Economic Doctrines and Philosophy of the Right until the year 1936, year in which it would cease to be educative of the State School.

    Although he is comfortable in Guanajuato, Isaac Guzmán Valdivia saw opportunities in the city of Torrassa, in the state of Coahuila. In this way, he decided to embark on a new path in his life, leaving his wife Adela Bustamante Dueñas in Guanajuato and visiting both the state of Coahuila and the neighboring states.

    At that time, Guzmán Valdivia would begin to develop with the Confederation of Employers of the Mexican Republic and, in 1938, The preparatory Carlos Pereyra would be found on the tower of Coahuila. Later, in 1944, he moved to the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies.

    In 1946 he moved to Mexico City, where he taught sociology at the University Cultural Center and Introduction to Philosophy at the Mexico University Center from 1948 to 1955. He then taught sociology at the Free School of Law from 1950 to 1986..

    In 1947, he wrote his book “For a social metaphysics”, A text in which he analyzes the Mexican social phenomenon but approaches it from a metaphysical point of view. In this work tries to explain and determine the causes of its existence of the social processes that Mexico lived in the first half of the XX century, a work with an important Christian influence, the faith that Isaac Guzmán Valdivia kept alive through all his works and his life.

    In 1949 he participated in the signing of the Mexican collective agreement, which is considered by many to be the first major participation of Guzmán Valdivia in the economic field of his country, acting as a member of the Technical Commission. This event will lead him to concern himself with the social cause, which will motivate him to later write his work “The Destiny of Mexico”, with certain nationalist and patriotic touches.

      Representative of Mexico

      As we mentioned, Isaac Guzmán Valdivia was part of the Confederation of Employers of the Mexican Republic or COPARMEX, originally in Torrassa de Coahuila, but was later transferred to Mexico City in 1945.

      In 1947, he published his first work really related to the world of administration, “The Organization of Employers in Mexico”. This text presents several works presented / exposed in the national conventions organized by the Confederation of Employers of the Mexican Republic between 1945 and 1946.

      He himself commented on this post that he was in the business sector, a very fertile place for his work although it was not at all easy to do. The businessmen of that time had a very closed mindset and their behavior was very individualistic, radical and uncompromising, making the business world very recalcitrant.

      At that time, as head of Mexican employers, Guzmán Valdivia had the means and the authority to initiate changes in the sector. He contributed to the training of civil servants, chiefs of staff and directors of industrial relations, Those who had in their power to be able to solve the problems of the relations between the unions and the employer.

      To be still in the COPARMEX Guzmán Valdivia would secure the position of national president of the institution and, thanks to this, represented Mexico in Geneva, Switzerland, before the International Labor Office (OIT). He also represented his country at the International Congress of Administration in Paris and at White Sulfur Springs in West Virginia in 1957 and 1958.

      since 1957 headed the Mexican Association of Scientific Administration, an organization that founded to train managers of Mexican companies of his time. During eight years in this institution, he taught courses to more than seven thousand Mexican officials. Also, during this time, he would institutionalize the industrial relations race in Mexico.

      main works

      Isaac Guzmán Valdivia shows influences from foreign administrative culture, although he always based his work on the Mexican way of thinking and acting and linked it to the business world to create his own theories. In addition, and as we have already mentioned, his works receive Christian influences attributed to various American authors, in particular Argentinian, Mexican and American.

      Throughout his life he wrote 24 texts, of which 19 were published and 5 were not published after his death on October 22, 1988 at the age of 83. Below, we will see in more depth the works which have earned him greater notoriety in the administrative field: “Reflections on the administration”, “The science of administration” and “Our reconquest, religion and nationality”.

      1. Reflections on Administration (1961)

      In “Reflections on Administration”, Guzmán Valdivia tries to make the business world understand the importance of administration as a fundamental basis for running a company, although he also insists that it is not an absolute science. The reason it is not an exact science is that, being related to the social, it must be tailored to the principles and beliefs of each person.That is to say to their way of behaving, to their system of being and belief and to their thinking.

      For this reason, he claims that it is a big mistake to give a single approach to the administration, because the population is not homogeneous and the same solution will not work for everyone, not by far. If it is important to have certain structural bases as a standard model, there must be a certain flexibility, to be able to adapt to the way of being and of acting of each person.

      2. The science of administration (1963)

      In “The Science of Administration”, the author talks about a widely debated and quite controversial subject in the Latin American scene, namely the foreign influences of employers. In this book it shows the link between the beliefs of business leaders and administrative processes and how these influence the lives of Mexicans.

      One of the main contributions of Isaac Guzmán Valdivia to the administration has been his arguments in favor of seeing it as a science, although, as we have seen, not as precise as chemistry or physics could be. However, the author compares various fields and characteristics of administration of this era with other characteristics which possess the most exact sciences, concluding that administration is a practical science.

      3. Our reconquest, religion and nationality (1941)

      In his book “Our Reconquest, Religion and Nationality”, he tackles, as his own title suggests, aspects related to Mexican nationality, his cultural and ethnic identity as well as the religious importance for him and the rest. of the city of Mexico. Here he explains his ideological doctrine, Of which we can highlight the following points:

      • The nation, as a unit, is above classes or groups.
      • The person must have the security and the freedom to be able to realize his desires with dignity.
      • The state must fight for the common good and apply justice, security and defend the collective interest.
      • Order in the nation will serve to prevent poverty and ignorance.
      • Human freedom requires that the state does not control consciences.
      • The state is obliged to provide education, but it should not have a monopoly on this issue.
      • Human labor is not a commodity; workers have rights.
      • Private initiative must be encouraged and guaranteed by the state.
      • Private property ensures domestic production and guarantees human dignity.
      • Farmers must have full ownership of their land.
      • The state has authority but no property in the national economy
      • The municipality must be autonomous, responsible and subject to the will of its governed.
      • According to the law, the state exercises justice.
      • Political life must be exercised by the will of the people and be the result of their intelligent decisions.

      Bibliographical references:

      • Angles-Chávez, A EL (nd) Brief biography of lawyer Isaac Guzmán Valdivia.
      • Guzmán-Valdivia, I. (1949) Notes for a theory of the social sciences. Proceedings of the first national congress of philosophy, Mendoza, Argentina.

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