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Lecture 7

SOC 107 Lecture 7: Social Organization: Life in Bureaucracies - Mar 20, 2017

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SOC 107
Melanie Knight

SOC 107 - Lecture 7 - Mar 20, 2017 Social Organization: Life in Bureaucracies Bureaucracy - A large organization structured hierarchically to carry out specific functions to make it more efficient - SI would focus on - The bureaucratic form of organizations - How behaviors are shaped The pervasive effects of bureaucracies - When do we encounter bureaucracies? - School, work, government, religion, family, society/nation, legal system, “from womb to tomb” - How are we shaped by bureaucracies - Wouldn’t function without it - There are costs to the pervasiveness of bureaucracies - Abuse of authority, lack of power, misuse of authority, takes a lot of time, emotional toll, money → power in hierarchy, navigate it better - Individualism been transformed into a “bureaucratic individualism” - Creates an additional layer The bureaucratization of modern life - Prior to the industrial period, Canada was essentially an agrarian society - Industrial Revolution (19th cent) - Economic production processes were slowly removed from the home - Rise of the industrial city and the working class (proletariat) - Factory system brought the introduction of labour wages and mechanized methods of production - Efforts to make workers more efficient led to the development of a technique called scientific management - Scientific management - The main proponent of scientific management was Frederick W Taylor - Scientific management seeks to use research and formal principles to reorganize the labour process efficient and productivity - His scientific management involved a series of specific steps - Main elements of scientific management - 1) find the one “best way” to perform each task - Time management → organized efficiently around time (shift times, break time) - The use of time saving devices → punch in clock/clock out, company car, microwave, debit/credit card - Standardization of tools → everyone has the same thing, iPad, cash register, scanner - Standardization of work methods → “has to be done like this”, folding a shirt, make the burger - Instruction cards for workmen → training manuals - Task allocation → problematic, reducing a certain amount of work to a smaller amount of people - 2) carefully match each worker to each task - 3) closely supervise workers, and use rewards and punishment as motivators - Employee of the month, raises, tips, commission - 4) the task of management is planning and control - Need someone overseeing the workers, take away ability to adapt, lack of creativity, lack of enjoyment - To apply his solution, Taylor created planning departments, staffed them with engineers, and gave them the responsibility to - Develop scientific methods for doing work - Establish goals for productivity - Establish systems of rewards - Train the personnel in how to use the methods - We have seen an exponential increase in the rise of bureaucratic managers and experts (white collar workers) - A fundamental change to the labour market in the past 30 years is the decline of goods producing industries and the rise - Deindustrialization - GDP industrial sector - 72% → Services - 13% → Manufacturing - 7% → Natural resources - 8% → Other (including construction and utilities) - There are 11 main industry groupings within the service sector - Wholesale trade (the business of rese
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