Culture, Power & Politics in the Workplace As far back as history can be told mankind has struggled between balancing culture, power and politics. Many wars have been fought and many people have placed their lives on the line in order to stand up for what they believe in. The combinations of culture, power and politics have spilled over into the workplace. In today’s business environment individuals have much more to worry about than just completing their assigned tasks. Organizational culture, power and office politics influence day to day operations as well as govern the atmosphere within the organization. The amount of impact that power and politics have in the workplace, directly reflect the organization’s culture formally as well as informally. Organizational Structure Organizational structure within an organization is a critical component of the day to day operations of a business. An organization benefits from organizational structure as a result of all it encompasses. It is used to define how tasks are divided, grouped and coordinated. Six elements should be addressed during the design of the organization’s structure: work specialization, departmentalization, chain of command, spans of control, centralization and decentralization. These components are a direct reflection of the organization’s culture, power and politics. Common Organizational Designs Most organizations fall under one of three organizational designs: simple structure, bureaucracy and matrix structure. The organizational design of a company suggests who makes executive decisions and how they are enforced. The organizational design is typically decided based on the size of the company and market place. Simple Structure Simple structure is widely used by small businesses in which the owner directly manages the day to day operations. The benefit of using the simple structure is that it is simple. One person normally calls the shots and takes full responsibility for the businesses success and failure. “It’s fast, flexible, and inexpensive to maintain, and accountability is clear” (Judge & Robbins, 2007, p.546). Unfortunately, using simple structure as an organizational design limits the business of its full potential, as it grows, it becomes more difficult for one individual to oversee the daily operation and make quick executive decisions. Once an organization reaches this point, it must change its organizational design in order to remain competitive within its market. Bureaucracy Bureaucracy is an organizational design based on the concept of standardization. “It is characterized by highly routine operating tasks achieved through specialization, very formalized rules and regulations, tasks that are grouped into functional departments, centralized authority, narrow spans of control, and decision making that follows the chain of command” (Judge & Robbins, 2007, p.
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The Organisation structure of a company addresses the fact that every organisation has specific units that are responsible for different roles and actions in the organisation and that no department within the organisation stands alone, they are intertwined. The organisational chart or structure should be designed to divide up the work load, responsibilities and roles to be done
An organization is structured in a certain way based on some factors. Size is a factor because the bigger the organization, the more complex its structure. If the company is small, the design is generally simple. A small company does not have to undergo a formal structure. Larger organizations depend more on authority delegation and formal work responsibility, because a bigger company is harder to manage. Another factor is the lifecycle of the organization. An organization undergoes the...
Organizations are initially structured around tasks, and as the organization continues to grow, the structure within the organization takes on many characteristics. Not all structures are advantageous, especially if they are lacking in some areas. There is a relationship between structure and size of the organization that affect the centralization of the organization. At the highest levels, the personality of the chief executive may amend the organizations' structure. The structure within an organization helps define the roles and responsibilities among the members from each department and work group. The four general types of organization structure are functional, divisional, matrix, and project based. “Organizational structure is the skeleton of an organization” (Feigenbaum, 2013) and how these individuals relate to each another. Structure is a statement of the current affairs, not the ideas, intentions or improvement within an organization. When business leaders develop their initial plans for an organization, he or she looks at how to design a company and takes inventory of all the tasks, functions and goals of the business. The leader then develops groupings and ordering of job positions, departments, and human resources to effectively and efficiently perform these tasks. Technology, size, environment, strategy and goals affect an organizational structure and effects, whether they are categorized as mechanistic or organic.
First of all, organizational structure determines the hierarchy, the levels of communication, and how job tasks are formally divided, grouped and coordinated within an organization (Langton, Robbins, & Judge, 2013). There are six key elements that managers need to address when they design their organization’s structure: work specialization, departmentalization, chain of command, span of control, centralization and decentralization, and formalization (Langton et al., 2013). The way in which an organizational structure is constructed and implemented can affect company productivity.
Organizational structure is one of the three key organizational assets that could contribute to the effectiveness of operations of any organization (Zheng, Yan and Mclean 2009) It is joined together by different flows of information, decision processes, hierarchy of authority, specialization and working materials. (Enz 2009; Mintzberg 1980) Furthermore, it also determines the operating workflow, control of information, decision-making in the organization and the line authority (Mintzberg 1980). The facets of the organizational structure, the relationships that exist within it, and how the business processes (Bititci et al 2011) are controlled, determine the managerial style that should be utilized in addition to the strategies the organization could implement. Going further, a company’s organizational design and the parts that constitute it are seen as a contributing factor to superior performance, which ultimately provide an organization with competitive advantage over its competitors. (Enz 2009; Zheng, Yang, and Mclean 2009)
Organizational structure can be defined as the “formal arrangement of jobs within an organization” (Robbins & Coulter, 2009, p. 185). Having a defined and unified structure helps employees work more efficiently. Jacques Kemp, former CEO of ING Insurance Asia/Pacific, realized this need early on in his role. The company had been performing well and recently acquired another insurance company to become “one of the largest life insurance companies in Asia-Pacific” (Schotter, 2006, p. 4). However, Kemp’s proactive personality led him to seek out ways to achieve more efficient coordination between the regional office and business units (Robbins & Coulter, 2009). Kemp noticed that “most business unit managers did not even know the current corporate standards” and he began searching for a way to manage the managers (Schotter, 2006, p. 5). ING Insurance Asia/Pacific’s organizational structure was mechanistic and fairly well structured, but for a company that had recently been involved in a major acquisition and was divided across 12 geographically dispersed markets there was a great need to tweak this structure to unify the company (Schotter, 2006). If I had been in Kemp’s position as CEO, I would have made modifications to the organizational chain of command, formalized business processes, and used technology to stimulate collaboration amongst the region to help this company overcome organizational design challenges.
The Foodcorp is a big organization of more than twenty thousand employees. The structure should help the organization achieved established goals and objectives. Therefore, the appropriate structural design is very crucial. The performance and the efficiency of the organization can be enhanced through specialization and appropriate division of labor. Foodcorp used a matrix structure but the management style of Foodcorp seemed to be a one boss arrangement. Information and decisions directly comes from the top. As we can see from the chart, group members report and communicate primarily with president. In my opinion, this style will work best in a simple organization, but not for a big organization like Foodcorp. If it relies too much on the president, the employees might face with many problems such as delays and bad decisions. Finally, Foodcorp may suffer from its structure. In my ...
In an organization of any size or complexity, employees' responsibilities typically are defined by what they do, who they report to, and for managers, who reports to them. Over time these definitions are assigned to positions in the organization rather than to specific individuals. The relationships among these positions are illustrated graphically in an organizational chart (see Figures 1a and 1b). The best organizational structure for any organization depends on many factors including the work it does; its size in terms of employees, revenue, and the geographic dispersion of its facilities; and the range of its businesses (the degree to which it is diversified across markets).
In order for one to evaluate and identify with the diverse business structures, he/she must be aware of the meaning and standards that makes that structure. Various businesses functions in different ways as the world is full of technology and new structures, company cultures and new ways in which companies are run. In order to fully grasp the concepts of Organizational structure and culture in the movies, I will use the Movie Up in the Air and The Devil Wear Prada movies to analyze a business scenario from them.
Organizational culture is a reflective view of the inner workings of an organization. This culture reflects hierarchical arrangements as it pertains to the lines of authority, rights and obligations, duties, and communication processes. Organizational structure establishes the manner in which power and roles are coordinated and controlled amongst the varying levels of management. The structure of an organization is dependent upon their goals, objectives, and strategy. Determining organizational structure best suited for an organization is generally found within the six key elements of organizational structure and choosing those to implement those best suited for the organization. The six key elements include:
Have you ever wondered what role politics and power play in organizations? When used effectively they can be compatible in reaching the organizations goals. Power is defined as the ability to get someone to do something you want done or the ability to make things happen in the way you want them. (Schermerhorn, Hunt, and Osborn, Chap. 15). Power is important within organizations because it is the way in which management influences individuals to make things happen. When power and influence combine, most of the time 'politics' become involved in some manner which may pose some problems. Organizational politics is best described as management influenced by self-interest through the use of means not necessarily authorized by the organization. Organizational politics have been viewed as an organizations enhancement tool to survive and fulfill goals. Power and Politics, though closely related, share similarities and differences but ultimately work together for the success of an organization.
Organizational structure is the way that an organization arranges people and jobs so that work can be performed and goals can be achieved. Good organizational design helps communications, productivity, and innovation. Many organization structures have been created based on organizational strategy, size, technology, and environment. Robbins and Judge (2011, p. 504) listed three common structures: simple, bureaucracy, and matrix. In this post the author will describe the matrix structure, and discuss its advantages and disadvantages.
Organizations must operate within structures that allow them to perform at their best within their given environments. According to theorists T. Burns and G.M Stalker (1961), organizations require structures that will allow them to adapt and react to changes in the environment (Mechanistic vs Organic Structures, 2009). Toyota Company’s corporate structure is spelt out as one where the management team and employees conduct operations and make decisions through a system of checks and balances.