1 Organizations and Environment Organizations are deemed as having a social contract with society; they are approved legitimacy

for the purpose of serving the social good. This constructive function includes the manufacture of products and services as well as their fair distribution. Organizations function by combining together human skills and knowledge with technology and material resources to manufacture products and services. However, organizations may also be the source of negative social outcomes. Such would include social problems related with monopolies; unsafe merchandise, unfair labor practices, and also the ecological problems brought about by industrial mishaps and industry-related pollution. These negative effects of the organization have therefore influenced concepts of social control, through laws regulations and social customs, offered by political science, sociology and economics. The effect of incorporating factors within and outside the organization has led to the expansion and development of various perspectives in shaping the concept of organizational theory. Perspectives regarding the management of the organization would involve the contingency view where environmental changes and uncertainty, technology and size are considered as environmental factors affecting the effectiveness of an organization. Based on this perspective, a stable environment would produce mechanistic organizations that underline centralization, standardization, formalization and specialization to attain consistency and efficiency. On the other hand, unstable environments would bring about organic structures that give importance to decentralization to accomplish adaptability and flexibility. Rules, policies and procedures are used as a guide in decision-making for regular tasks and problems; and general problem solving systems are required in 1

uncertain and unpredictable non-routine problems and tasks. The art perspectives belies scientific principles and theories and rely on the social and political environment surrounding a certain management issue, making use of their own knowledge of a condition rather than general rules, to verify a solution. The scientific perspective presents the notion that there are principled managerial practices for certain circumstances based on scientific foundations where a rational and objective method to determine the correct solution is used; general principles and theories based on constructing and testing hypotheses are followed. These differences in perspectives cannot be disregarded because each perspective contributes to great understandings on how diverse organizations are. The contingency perspective aptly describes the Food Chain Franchise Business, particularly Dunkin’ Donuts. It has started from a small food business where the organizational structure is simple and then grew to a business with several outlets. Increase in recognition and demand then led to franchising the business. What was once a simple food chain is now a franchisor that has to control all the other franchisees to maintain the standard quality of the products. Innovations in organizational structure, manpower recruitment, and technology have been incorporated to meet the growing demands as well as maintain production methods, quality, and distribution procedures. New departments being put up as needed to answer to any requirement that may arise. Changes therefore are vital so as to cope with the changing needs of the entire business organization and not just that of the single franchise.


2 Mechanistic Versus Organic Characteristics Dunkin Donuts is generally mechanistic in nature. The primary reason would be that it follows a highly formalized structure where most processes and procedures have been authorized administratively. The main objective for this is to maximize output and minimize waste, underlining efficiency. All procedures involved with the production of donuts and pastries up until the service given at the counter have a standard operating procedure. Standard Operating Procedures are the bread and butter of this type of business and thus must be strictly adhered to. This clearly emphasizes the importance of internal knowledge as opposed to the organic management system. These characteristics are rather appropriate in the sense that day to day operations are rather the same in nature and what really differs are the bigger sales targets as chains multiply. As the business has always believed, it has become this big because it was true to its tried and tested success formulas called the Fair Franchising Standards. On the other hand, it is important to note that at the equally tasked support departments such as production, marketing, sales and distribution, finance and administration, managers practice the organic management system where solutions are being formulated for the improvement of the entire organization. Therefore one organization can still have the characteristics of the other management system although it may be predominantly the other. 3 Complexities as Driver in Organizational Structure and Technology Ensign reasonably states that the task being performed by the organization in line with its technology is a very significant determinant of the organizational structure. “Over a period of time, organizations tend to move toward greater complexity” (Ensign,


1998), and such complexities are primarily found in its technology. As technology changes, so do the organizational structures and procedures to best fit the change being undergone. Hatch on the other hand, presents technology as imaged in the modernist perception contained within the organization while the environment is outside. These technologies are combined with resources to come up with outputs needed by the organization. As in the symbolic-interpretative perception, it was mentioned that the organization of the society influences the shape of technology. Both affects the other and is again dependent on circumstances, situations, culture and environment. The key to all these complexities is the ability of the organization and its employees to modify and adapt when the need arises. Given any situation, change is indeed constant and thus must be given ample open-mindedness and readiness to give up a theory or a perspective to accommodate a new one for the benefit of the organization as a whole. 4 Organizational Cultures Dunkin Donuts is very much modernist in terms of organizational culture. It relies heavily on traditional structures, standardized operating procedures, standards of quality measurements, rules, regulations and routine practices. These have been tried and tested by the founders that have led to the franchise’s current success. This knowledge is etched in stone, protected by each employee with utmost care as it is his bread and butter. Daily operations are almost always predictable. New employees seek to be at par with the pioneer employees in knowing the sacred standards. Walls on employee areas are all meticulously displayed with Organizational Structures, Standard Product Measurements, and Standard Procedures on all possible situations such as customer complaints,


equipment malfunction, and all sorts of troubleshooting. All employees are given a copy of the company’s Code of Conduct as well as the business standards which are to be regarded as bibles while employed in the company. 5 Physical Structures and Power Modernists view organizations as real entities operating in the real world, a physical structure with formal organizational positions within which power is acquired and used. Power or success lies on its capability to operate and manage the organization with the use of its knowledge. Postmodernists on the other hand view organizations as arenas or sites where power can be manipulated by different subjective perspectives or points of view. This perspective aims to expose abuses of power claiming that “everything is text” (Derrida, 1978) using language as a means to observe the organization. 6 Compare and Contrast Modernists contain power within the authorized and knowledgeable weighing heavily on bureaucracy or clan control leaving very little or no power at all to the lower ranking employees. Control is usually maintained, conflicts addressed through the rational systems. Critical Studies are heavier on the drama as social, economical and political structures, as well as ideologies are challenged to be at least more democratic. Hegemonic practices thrive because however unjust the working arrangements are, the laborers are at the mercy of the proprietors for many reasons, but mostly because control is still tied up with the resource – money. Conflict is inevitable when the clanging of the mass laborers is much too disgruntled. Power lies on who can get more out of the business deal. Postmodernism on the other hand is more inward in approach in that it


aims to control the self in conflicts and emerge powerful when the outcome is betterment of self. In all these major groupings however, "social order exists only as a product of human activity” (Berger and Luckmann, 1956.) and whatever varied reasons there are to why people consent to their own domination still leans heavily on cultural environment. Still, “while it appears that culture is over and above us, it as also clearly an outcome of human initiative, interaction, reaction, and resistance.” (Mills, Helms Mills, Orshow, Bratton, 2007) 7 Organization Advantages and Disadvantages A small local Accounting Services Firm would very much likely use a simple organizational structure. The owner managing the firm would supervise and monitor all accounting jobs of accountant employees for every engagement the firm would have and would make major decisions for the firm. The advantages would be that there is control on all business operations as communication is open and frequent thus decisions are made rapidly. The set-up is simple and informal making it open and flexible to innovation or change. However, such a set-up is very demanding on the owner. There is also limited specialization thus complex tasks may be given to employees. This structure would best fit in conditions where there is a single product or service offered. The Food Chain Franchise Business uses a functional structure. Departments are set-up according to functions and managers have the advantage of supervising similar tasks related to their roles. Production, marketing, sales and distribution, accounting and finance, human resources, administration, and others are managed by department heads thus overall supervision is high and coordination can be easily achieved. Employees in


the same department also develop higher skill learning due to this coordination. However the disadvantage is that there is lesser interaction between departments and between people belonging to other departments. There is even a danger of department competition as to which department is more efficient losing focus on the organization as a whole. A functional structure would work best with less complex organizations dealing with one or a few products or services and where environment is relatively stable allowing the organization to pursue objectives through consistent strategies.


REFERENCES Berger, Peter and Luckmann, Thomas. The Social Construction of Reality: A Treatise on the Sociology of Knowledge. New York: Anchor Books, 1966. Derrida, J. Writing and difference. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1978. Ensign, Prescott. Interdependence, coordination, and structure in complex organizations: implications for organization design. Canada: Richaed Ivey School of Business, 1998. Hatch, Mary Jo with Cunliffe, Ann. Organization Theory: modern, symbolic, and postmodern perspectives. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. Mills, A., Helms Mills, J., Orshaw C., and Bratton J., Organizational Behavior in a global context. Canada: Broadview Press, 2007.


Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful

Master Your Semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer: Get 4 months of Scribd and The New York Times for just $1.87 per week!

Master Your Semester with a Special Offer from Scribd & The New York Times