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Orgnisational Behaviour Notes

Orgnisational Behaviour Notes

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Published by kamdica
Orgnisational Behaviour Notes
Orgnisational Behaviour Notes

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Published by: kamdica on Oct 18, 2009
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A simple structure is an organisational design with low departmentalisation, wide spans
of control, authority centralised in a single person, and little formalisation. Its strengths
are its flexibility, speed, and low cost to maintain, but a major is that it's most effectively
only in small organisations. But as an organisation grows, the structure tends to
become more specialised and formalised. When contingency factors favour a
bureaucratic or mechanistic design, one of two options is likely to be used. Firstly,
functional departmentalisation can be expanded into the functional structure, which is
an organisational design that groups similar or related occupational specialties
together. The other option is the divisional structure which is an organisational structure
made up of autonomous, self-contained units. However, many of today's organisations
are finding that the traditional hierarchical organisational designs aren't appropriate for
the increasingly dynamic and complex environments they face. A response to this is
the team-based structure made up of work groups or teams that perform the
organisation's work.
In a matrix organisation, specialists from different functional departments are
assigned to work temporarily on one or more projects being led by project managers,
while in the project structure, employees are more permanently assigned to projects.
Another approach involves autonomous internal business units, each with its own
products, clients, competitors, and profit goals. Then there is the boundaryless
whose design is not defined by, or limited to, the horizontal, vertical, or
external boundaries imposed by a predefined structure. Finally, some organisations
have adopted an organisational philosophy of a learning organisation—an
organisation that has developed the continuous capacity to adapt and change because
all members take an active role in identifying and resolving work-related issues.

5.1.4 The implications of technology on organisational
structure and design

Technology has had a profound impact on organisations and the way they are
structured, particularly with regards to how if affects communications, and, in turn, how
communications affects organisational design.
Information technology has radically changed the way organisational members
communicate. Two of the most important developments are networked computer
systems and wireless capabilities (which are making it possible for organisational
members to be linked anytime, anywhere, with obvious impacts on work and job
design). In a networked computer system, an organisation links its computers together

Managing Organisational Behaviour MGT701
Module 5 Control and Decision-making

Page 90

Master of Business Administration

through compatible hardware and software. Examples include electronic mail or e-
mail, voice-mail
(where a spoken message is digitised, transmitted over a computer
network, and stores the message on disk for the receiver to retrieve later), facsimile
(or fax), teleconferencing,
which allows a group of people to confer simultaneously
using telephones or e-mail (and can also be used to form virtual groups, thus saving
time and money, and allowing for better access to intellectual capital), electronic data
interchange (EDI)
(allowing organisations to exchange standard business transaction
documents), and intranets (which are internal organisational communication systems
that use internet technology and are accessible only by organisational members).
Telecommuting is a work design option in which workers are linked to the workplace
by computers and modem, while virtual workplaces are offices that are characterised
by open spaces, movable furniture, portable phones, laptop computers, and electronic
Properly employed, the above options can remove geographic boundaries from both
work and job design and the deployment of team-based roles. As a result, there are
also time savings, allowing for increased employee and organisational productivity,
and, when aligned with an appropriately flexible organisational culture, a more optimal
balance of work, leisure and family concerns.

Reading 5.1

Nadler, D, & Tushman, M. 2001, ‘The Organization Of The Future’, in The
Organizational Behavior Reader, eds J.S. Osland, D.A. Kolb, & I.M. Rubin, Prentice
Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey. (See Chapter 19, pp. 527-540).

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