Management control system of an organization is the structured facet of management, the formal vehicle by which the management process is executed. In most organizations, systems exist for planning, organizing, directing, controlling and motivating. Depending on the level of appropriateness and quality of the management control systems, the task of management is either facilitated or hindered. The end goal of a management control system is achieving organizational objectives. Because employees (agents) do not always give their best efforts for achieving organizational objectives, management control systems need to strive for aligning goals of agents (e.g., employees, subordinates) with that of principals (e.g., senior management, owners). Agency theory and its extension, principal agent model, provide insights to the problem of goal congruence and suggest remedies, at least in the Western cultural context. Whether the agency theory presumptions, predictions and prescriptions are universally applicable is an important issue in management. Their validity in different cultural contexts is largely unknown. The available literature to date indicates the possibility that agency theory may not be valid in non-western cultures. However, further empirical research is needed in non-western cultures to shed more light to this issue.
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