Analysis Paper #1 1
Kenyon StanleyDr. WhiteCOMM 6041 February 2011Analysis Paper #1In my nearly forty years of living, I have worked for a large number of organizations. Themajority of those organizations have consistently used machine-like metaphors to describe themselves totheir employees and the general public. The Men¶s Shelter of Charlotte is one such organization wherethe machine metaphor was communicated to the clients, staff and public. During my tenure at the shelter,management consistently sought out new scientific methods which would (in theory) get the most production out of staff at the cheapest possible cost. The outcome of such studies resulted in astandardization work roles, and continued perpetuation of a strictly vertical communication channel.Additionally, the job tasks were standardized to such an extent that more effective ideas were rarely (if ever) adopted simply because those tasks were deemed ³not the shelter way´. Furthermore, managementwould over-emphasize the notion that every employee was replaceable as a means to exact compliance.Sadly, the machine metaphor utilized by The Men¶s Shelter of Charlotte contributed in their high turnover rate, low morale and a reduction in services to the homeless community.With the roots of the machine metaphor dating back to Frederick the Great in the mid-18
century, the utilization of the machine metaphor has stood the test of time. The relevance is evident bythe fact that most of today¶s organization still prefer to communicate in accordance with classicalmanagement theory. According to Eisenberg, E.M., Goodall, H.L., Jr., & Trethewey, A. (2010),organizations that prescribe to classical management theory believe that production is at its best when thelabor is divided among employees, there is a strict hierarchy of offices and a codified set of rules tomonitor performances (p. 69). Furthermore, in classical organizations, employers have no regard for employees¶ personal lives. Basically, work and home life are too separate entities and don¶t mix.