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Lecture 1

BU398 Lecture 1: Chapter-1

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Wilfrid Laurier University
Jennifer Komar

Chapter 1 – Organization and Organization theory Evolution of Organization theory and Design Historical Perspectives • Scientific management (efficiency is everything) – argues that decisions about organizations and job design should be based on precise, scientific study of individual situations, e.g. having standard procedures for doing each job, selecting the right workers, training workers, carefully plan the work, and provide wages to increase output • Administrative principles (how to get organized) – looked at the design and functioning of the organization as a whole, e.g. having workers receive orders from one superior, having management practices in place o Contributed to the development of bureaucratic organization • Hawthorne studies (what about people?)– argues that positive treatment of employees improved their motivation and productivity, and this lead to revolution in worker treatment Current Challenges • Globalization – the environment of companies are becoming more complex with rapid advances in technology and communications, and having remote locations, e.g. intel has office’s working for them in Indian because they can do the job for 50 to 60 percent less than in United States • Ethics and Social Responsibility – lots of fraud and scandals happening back in the days and made the image of corporate executives to be portrayed as crooks, they must start being a role model of good ethical behaviors • Speed responsiveness – is to respond quickly to environmental changes, organizational cries, or shifting customer expectations • The digital workplace – advance in technology is affecting the workplace, e.g. employees perform much of their work on computers, leaders must be technologically savvy and able to manage relationships on the web in order to keep up, with technology we are able to eliminate the middleman and is affecting every industry and saving costs • Diversity – organizations increasingly operate on a global playing field, the workforce and customer base is changing dramatically, this growing diversity will bring lots of challenges such as maintaining a strong organizational culture while supporting diversity, balancing work and family concerns What is an Organization? • (1) Social entities (group of people) that are (2) goal directed, (3) designed as deliberately structured and coordinated activity systems (people with designed jobs or like rules/policies that you have to follow) and (4) linked to the external environment • Organizations exists when people interact with one another to perform essential functions that help attain goals Types of Organizations • For profit businesses – direct their activities toward earning money • Non-profit organizations – direct their efforts toward generating social impact, financial resources comes from government grants and individuals and corporate donations Importance of Organizations • Bring together resources to achieve desired goals • Produce goods and services efficiently • Facilitate innovation rather than a reliance on standard products and outmoded ways of doing things • Use modern manufacturing and information technologies • Adapt to and influence a rapidly changing environment • Accommodate challenges of diversity, ethics, and coordination • create value for owners, customers, employees Perspectives on Organizations • closed system – would not depend on its environment, environment is assumed to be stable and would focus on internal efficiency • open system – must interact with the environment to survive; it both consumes resources and exports resources to the environment • system – is a set of interacting elements that acquires inputs from the environment, transforms them, and discharges outputs to the external environment • subsystems – perform the specific functions required for organizational survival, e.g. boundary spanning, production, maintenance, adaptation, management • Organizational Configuration • henry mintzberg suggested that every organization has 5 parts: o Technical Core – includes people who do the basic work in the organization, where the primary transformation from inputs to outputs take place o Top Management –provides direction, strategy, goals, and policies for the entire organization or major division o Middle management – responsible for implementation and coordination at the departmental level o Technical support – helps the organization adapt to the environment, e.g. engineers and researchers to scan the environment for problems o Administrative support – responsible for the smooth operation and upkeep of the organization, e.g. recruiting and hiring, compensations and benefits, employee training Dimensions of Organizational Design – two types of organizational dimensions • Structural dimensions – provides labels to describe the internal characteristics of an organization, they create a basis for measuring and comparing organizations o 1.) Formalization – refers to the amount of written documentation in the organization, e.g. job descriptions, regulations, policy manuals, e.g. universities has high on formalization such as rules in terms of dropping out, or adding class, or transferring o 2.) Specialization – the degree to which organizational tasks are subdivided into separate jobs, if high, then the employee performs only
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