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An organization or organisation (
Commonwealth English The use of the English language in current and former Member states of the Commonwealth of Nations, member countries of the Commonwealth of Nations was largely inherited from British Empire, British colonisation, with some exceptions. English s ...
; see spelling differences), is an
entity An entity is something that exists as itself, as a subject or as an object, actually or potentially, concretely or abstractly, physically or not. It need not be of material existence. In particular, abstractions and legal fictions are usually r ...
—such as a
company A company, abbreviated as co., is a legal entity representing an association of people, whether natural, legal or a mixture of both, with a specific objective. Company members share a common purpose and unite to achieve specific, declared ...
, an
institution Institutions are humanly devised structures of rules and norms that shape and constrain individual behavior. All definitions of institutions generally entail that there is a level of persistence and continuity. Laws, rules, social conventions a ...
, or an association—comprising one or more
people A person (plural, : people) is a being that has certain capacities or attributes such as reason, morality, consciousness or self-consciousness, and being a part of a culturally established form of social relations such as kinship, ownership of pr ...
and having a particular purpose. The word is derived from the Greek word ''organon'', which means tool or instrument, musical instrument, and
organ Organ may refer to: Biology * Organ (biology), a part of an organism Musical instruments * Organ (music), a family of keyboard musical instruments characterized by sustained tone ** Electronic organ, an electronic keyboard instrument ** Hammond ...
.


Types

There are a variety of legal types of organizations, including
corporation A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the State (polity), state to act as a single entity (a legal entity recognized by private and public law "born out of statute"; a legal person in legal ...
s,
government A government is the system or group of people governing an organized community, generally a state. In the case of its broad associative definition, government normally consists of legislature, executive, and judiciary. Government ...
s,
non-governmental organization A non-governmental organization (NGO) or non-governmental organisation (see spelling differences) is an organization that generally is formed independent from government. They are typically nonprofit entities, and many of them are active i ...
s,
political organization A political organization is any organization that involves itself in the politics, political process, including political parties, non-governmental organizations, and special interest advocacy groups. Political organizations are those engaged i ...
s,
international organization An international organization or international organisation (see spelling differences), also known as an intergovernmental organization or an international institution, is a stable set of norms and rules meant to govern the behavior of states a ...
s,
armed forces A military, also known collectively as armed forces, is a heavily armed, highly organized force primarily intended for warfare. It is typically authorized and maintained by a sovereign state, with its members identifiable by their distinc ...
,
charities A charitable organization or charity is an organization whose primary objectives are philanthropy and social well-being (e.g. educational, Religion, religious or other activities serving the public interest or common good). The legal definitio ...
,
not-for-profit corporation A nonprofit organization (NPO) or non-profit organisation, also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a legal entity organized and operated for a collective, public or social benefit, in co ...
s,
partnership A partnership is an arrangement where parties, known as business partners, agree to cooperate to advance their mutual interests. The partners in a partnership may be individuals, business entity, businesses, interest-based organizations, schoo ...
s,
cooperative A cooperative (also known as co-operative, co-op, or coop) is "an autonomy, autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly owned and democratical ...
s, and educational institutions, etc. A
hybrid organization A hybrid organization is an organization that mixes elements, value systems and action logics (e.g. social impact and profit generation) of various sectors of society, i.e. the public sector, the private sector and the voluntary sector. A more gen ...
is a body that operates in both the
public sector The public sector, also called the state sector, is the part of the economy composed of both public services and public enterprises. Public sectors include the public goods and governmental services such as the military, law enforcement, infra ...
and the
private sector The private sector is the part of the economy, sometimes referred to as the citizen sector, which is owned by private groups, usually as a means of establishment for profit (economics), profit or Non Profit, non profit, rather than being owned by t ...
simultaneously, fulfilling public duties and developing commercial market activities. A
voluntary association A voluntary group or union (also sometimes called a voluntary organization, common-interest association, association, or society) is a group of individuals who enter into an agreement, usually as volunteering, volunteers, to form a body (or organ ...
is an organization consisting of volunteers. Such organizations may be able to operate without legal formalities, depending on jurisdiction, including informal clubs or coordinating bodies with a goal in mind which they may express in the form of an
manifesto A manifesto is a published declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government. A manifesto usually accepts a previously published opinion or Consensus decision-making, publi ...
,
mission statement A mission statement is a short statement of why an organization exists, what its overall goal is, the goal of its operations: what kind of product or service it provides, its primary customers or Market (economics), market, and its geographical ...
, or in an informal manner reflected in what they do because remember every action done by an organization both legal and illegal reflects a goal in mind. Organizations may also operate secretly or illegally in the case of
secret societies A secret society is a club or an organization whose activities, events, inner functioning, or membership are concealed. The society may or may not attempt to conceal its existence. The term usually excludes covert groups, such as intelligence ...
,
criminal organization Organized crime (or organised crime) is a category of transnational organized crime, transnational, national, or local groupings of highly centralized enterprises run by criminals to engage in illegal activity, most commonly for profit. While o ...
s, and
resistance movement A resistance movement is an organized effort by some portion of the civil population of a country to withstand the legally established government or an occupying power and to disrupt civil order and stability. It may seek to achieve its objectives ...
s. And in some cases may have obstacles from other organizations (ex: MLK's organization). What makes an organization recognized by the government is either filling out
Incorporation (business) Incorporation is the formation of a new corporation. The corporation may be a business, a nonprofit organization, sports club, or a local government of a new city or town. In the United States Specific incorporation requirements in the United ...
or recognition in the form of either societal pressure (ex:
Advocacy group Advocacy groups, also known as interest groups, special interest groups, lobbying groups or pressure groups use various forms of advocacy in order to influence public opinion and ultimately policy. They play an important role in the developm ...
), causing concerns (ex:
Resistance movement A resistance movement is an organized effort by some portion of the civil population of a country to withstand the legally established government or an occupying power and to disrupt civil order and stability. It may seek to achieve its objectives ...
) or being considered the spokesperson of a group of people subject to negotiation (ex: the Polisario Front being recognized as the sole representative of the Sahrawi people and forming a partially recognized state.) Compare the concept of
social group In the social sciences, a social group can be defined as two or more people who interact with one another, share similar characteristics, and collectively have a sense of unity. Regardless, social groups come in a myriad of sizes and varieties ...
s, which may include non-organizations. Organizations and
institutions Institutions are humanly devised structures of rules and norms that shape and constrain individual behavior. All definitions of institutions generally entail that there is a level of persistence and continuity. Laws, rules, social conventions a ...
can be synonymous, but Jack Knight writes that organizations are a narrow version of institutions or represent a cluster of institutions; the two are distinct in the sense that organizations ''contain'' internal institutions (that govern interactions between the members of the organizations).


Structures

The study of organizations includes a focus on optimising
organizational structure An organizational structure defines how activities such as task allocation, coordination, and supervision are directed toward the achievement of organizational aims. Organizational structure affects organizational action and provides the foundat ...
. According to
management science Management science (or managerial science) is a wide and interdisciplinary study of solving complex problems and making strategic decisions as it pertains to institutions, corporations, governments and other types of organizational entities. It is ...
, most
human Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread species of primate, characterized by bipedality, bipedalism and exceptional cognitive skills due to a large and complex Human brain, brain. This has enabled the development of ad ...
organizations fall roughly into four types: *
Committee A committee or commission is a body of one or more persons subordinate to a deliberative assembly. A committee is not itself considered to be a form of assembly. Usually, the assembly sends matters into a committee as a way to explore them more ...
s or
juries A jury is a sworn body of people (jurors) convened to hear evidence and render an impartiality, impartial verdict (a Question of fact, finding of fact on a question) officially submitted to them by a court, or to set a sentence (law), penalty o ...
* Ecologies *
Matrix Matrix most commonly refers to: * The Matrix (franchise), ''The Matrix'' (franchise), an American media franchise ** ''The Matrix'', a 1999 science-fiction action film ** "The Matrix", a fictional setting, a virtual reality environment, within Th ...
organizations *
Pyramid A pyramid (from el, πυραμίς ') is a Nonbuilding structure, structure whose outer surfaces are triangular and converge to a single step at the top, making the shape roughly a Pyramid (geometry), pyramid in the geometric sense. The base o ...
s or
hierarchies A hierarchy (from Greek: , from , 'president of sacred rites') is an arrangement of items (objects, names, values, categories, etc.) that are represented as being "above", "below", or "at the same level as" one another. Hierarchy is an important ...


Committees or juries

These consist of a group of peers who decide as a group, perhaps by voting. The difference between a
jury A jury is a sworn body of people (jurors) convened to hear evidence and render an impartiality, impartial verdict (a Question of fact, finding of fact on a question) officially submitted to them by a court, or to set a sentence (law), penalty o ...
and a
committee A committee or commission is a body of one or more persons subordinate to a deliberative assembly. A committee is not itself considered to be a form of assembly. Usually, the assembly sends matters into a committee as a way to explore them more ...
is that the members of the committee are usually assigned to perform or lead further actions after the group comes to a decision, whereas members of a jury come to a decision. In
common law In law, common law (also known as judicial precedent, judge-made law, or case law) is the body of law created by judges and similar quasi-judicial tribunals by virtue of being stated in written opinions."The common law is not a brooding omnipres ...
countries, legal juries render decisions of guilt, liability, and quantify damages; juries are also used in athletic contests, book awards, and similar activities. Sometimes a selection committee functions like a jury. In the Middle Ages, juries in continental Europe were used to determine the law according to consensus among local notables. Committees are often the most reliable way to make decisions.
Condorcet's jury theorem Condorcet's jury theorem is a political science Political science is the science, scientific study of politics. It is a social science dealing with systems of governance and power, and the analysis of politics, political activities, politi ...
proved that if the average member votes better than a roll of dice, then adding more members increases the number of majorities that can come to a correct vote (however correctness is defined). The problem is that if the average member is subsequently ''worse'' than a roll of dice, the committee's decisions grow worse, not better; therefore, staffing is crucial.
Parliament In modern politics, and history, a parliament is a legislative body of government. Generally, a modern parliament has three functions: Representation (politics), representing the Election#Suffrage, electorate, making laws, and overseeing ...
ary procedure, such as
Robert's Rules of Order ''Robert's Rules of Order'', often simply referred to as ''Robert's Rules'', is a manual of parliamentary procedure by U.S. Army officer Henry Martyn Robert. "The object of Rules of Order is to assist an assembly to accomplish the work for which ...
, helps prevent committees from engaging in lengthy discussions without reaching decisions.


Ecologies

This organizational structure promotes internal
competition Competition is a rivalry where two or more parties strive for a common goal which cannot be shared: where one's gain is the other's loss (an example of which is a zero-sum game). Competition can arise between entities such as organisms, ind ...
. Inefficient components of the organization starve, while effective ones get more work. Everybody is paid for what they actually do, and so runs a tiny business that has to show a
profit Profit may refer to: Business and law * Profit (accounting) Profit, in accounting, is an income distributed to the ownership , owner in a Profit (economics) , profitable market production process (business). Profit is a measure of profi ...
, or they are fired. Companies that utilize this organization type reflect a rather one-sided view of what goes on in
ecology Ecology () is the study of the relationships between living organisms, including humans, and their biophysical environment, physical environment. Ecology considers organisms at the individual, population, community (ecology), community, ecosy ...
. It is also the case that a natural
ecosystem An ecosystem (or ecological system) consists of all the organisms and the physical environment with which they interact. These biotic and abiotic components are linked together through nutrient cycles and energy flows. Energy enters the syste ...
has a natural border –
ecoregion An ecoregion (ecological region) or ecozone (ecological zone) is an ecology, ecologically and geographically defined area that is smaller than a bioregion, which in turn is smaller than a biogeographic realm. Ecoregions cover relatively large a ...
s do not, in general, compete with one another in any way, but are very autonomous. The
pharmaceutical company The pharmaceutical industry discovers, develops, produces, and markets drugs or pharmaceutical drugs for use as medications to be administered to patients (or self-administered), with the aim to cure them, Vaccine, vaccinate them, or alleviate s ...
GlaxoSmithKline GSK plc, formerly GlaxoSmithKline plc, is a British Multinational corporation, multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology company with global headquarters in London, England. Established in 2000 by a Mergers and acquisitions, merger of Gl ...
talks about functioning as this type of organization i
this external article
from ''
The Guardian ''The Guardian'' is a British daily newspaper. It was founded in 1821 as ''The Manchester Guardian'', and changed its name in 1959. Along with its sister papers ''The Observer'' and ''The Guardian Weekly'', ''The Guardian'' is part of the Gu ...
''. By:Bastian Batac De Leon.


Matrix organization

This organizational type assigns each worker two bosses in two different hierarchies. One hierarchy is "functional" and assures that each type of expert in the organization is well-trained, and measured by a boss who is a super-expert in the same field. The other direction is "executive" and tries to get projects completed using the experts. Projects might be organized by products, regions, customer types, or some other schemes. As an example, a company might have an individual with overall responsibility for products X and Y, and another individual with overall responsibility for engineering, quality control, etc. Therefore, subordinates responsible for quality control of project X will have two reporting lines. The United States aerospace industries were the first to officially use this organizational structure after it emerged in the early 1960s.


Pyramids or hierarchical

A
hierarchy A hierarchy (from Greek: , from , 'president of sacred rites') is an arrangement of items (objects, names, values, categories, etc.) that are represented as being "above", "below", or "at the same level as" one another. Hierarchy is an important ...
exemplifies an arrangement with a
leader Leadership, both as a research area and as a practical skill, encompasses the ability of an individual, group or organization to "lead", influence or guide other individuals, teams, or entire organizations. The word "leadership" often gets view ...
who leads other individual members of the organization. This arrangement is often associated with the basis that there are enough to imagine a real pyramid, if there are not enough stone blocks to hold up the higher ones, gravity would irrevocably bring down the monumental structure. So one can imagine that if the leader does not have the support of his subordinates, the entire structure will collapse. Hierarchies were satirized in '' The Peter Principle'' (1969), a book that introduced ''hierarchiology'' and the saying that "in a hierarchy, every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence."


Theories

In the social sciences, organizations are the object of analysis for a number of disciplines, such as
sociology Sociology is a social science that focuses on society, human social behavior, patterns of Interpersonal ties, social relationships, social interaction, and aspects of culture associated with everyday life. It uses various methods of Empirical ...
,
economics Economics () is the social science that studies the Production (economics), production, distribution (economics), distribution, and Consumption (economics), consumption of goods and services. Economics focuses on the behaviour and intera ...
,
political science Political science is the science, scientific study of politics. It is a social science dealing with systems of governance and power, and the analysis of politics, political activities, political thought, political behavior, and associated c ...
,
psychology Psychology is the science, scientific study of mind and behavior. Psychology includes the study of consciousness, conscious and Unconscious mind, unconscious phenomena, including feelings and thoughts. It is an academic discipline of immens ...
,
management Management (or managing) is the administration of an organization, whether it is a business, a nonprofit organization, or a government body. It is the art and science of managing resources of the business. Management includes the activities ...
, and
organizational communication Within the realm of communication studies, organizational communication is a field of study surrounding all areas of communication and information flow that contribute to the functioning of an organization. Organizational communication is const ...
. The broader analysis of organizations is commonly referred to as
organizational structure An organizational structure defines how activities such as task allocation, coordination, and supervision are directed toward the achievement of organizational aims. Organizational structure affects organizational action and provides the foundat ...
,
organizational studies Organization studies (also called organization science or organizational studies) is the academic field interested in a ''collective activity, and how it relates to organization, organizing, and management''. It is "the examination of how individua ...
,
organizational behavior Organizational behavior (OB) or organisational behaviour is the: "study of human behavior in organizational settings, the interface between human behavior and the organization, and the organization itself".Moorhead, G., & Griffin, R. W. (1995) ...
, or organization analysis. A number of different perspectives exist, some of which are compatible: * From a functional perspective, the focus is on how entities like businesses or state authorities are used. * From an institutional perspective, an organization is viewed as a purposeful structure within a social context. * From a process-related perspective, an organization is viewed as an entity being (re-)organized, and the focus is on the organization as a set of tasks or actions. Sociology can be defined as the science of the
institutions Institutions are humanly devised structures of rules and norms that shape and constrain individual behavior. All definitions of institutions generally entail that there is a level of persistence and continuity. Laws, rules, social conventions a ...
of
modernity Modernity, a topic in the humanities and social sciences, is both a historical period (the modern era) and the ensemble of particular socio-cultural norms, attitudes and practices that arose in the wake of the Renaissancein the " Age of ...
; specific institutions serve a function, akin to the individual organs of a coherent body. In the social and political sciences in general, an "organization" may be more loosely understood as the planned, coordinated, and purposeful action of human beings working through collective action to reach a common goal or construct a tangible
product Product may refer to: Business * Product (business), an item that serves as a solution to a specific consumer problem. * Product (project management), a deliverable or set of deliverables that contribute to a business solution Mathematics * Pr ...
. This action is usually framed by formal membership and form (institutional rules). Sociology distinguishes the term organization into planned formal and unplanned informal (i.e. spontaneously formed) organizations. Sociology analyses organizations in the first line from an institutional perspective. In this sense, the organization is an enduring arrangement of elements. These elements and their actions are determined by rules so that a certain task can be fulfilled through a system of coordinated
division of labor The division of labour is the separation of the tasks in any economic system or organisation so that participants may specialise (specialisation). Individuals, organizations, and nations are endowed with, or acquire specialised capabilities, and ...
. Economic approaches to organizations also take the
division of labor The division of labour is the separation of the tasks in any economic system or organisation so that participants may specialise (specialisation). Individuals, organizations, and nations are endowed with, or acquire specialised capabilities, and ...
as a starting point. The division of labor allows for (economies of) specialization. Increasing specialization necessitates coordination. From an economic point of view, markets and organizations are alternative coordination mechanisms for the execution of transactions. An organization is defined by the elements that are part of it (who belongs to the organization and who does not?), its
communication Communication (from la, communicare, meaning "to share" or "to be in relation with") is usually defined as the transmission of information. The term may also refer to the message communicated through such transmissions or the field of inquir ...
(which elements communicate and how do they communicate?), its autonomy (which changes are executed autonomously by the organization or its elements?), and its rules of action compared to outside events (what causes an organization to act as a collective actor?). By coordinated and planned cooperation of the elements, the organization is able to solve tasks that lie beyond the abilities of the single element. The price paid by the elements is the limitation of the
degrees of freedom Degrees of freedom (often abbreviated df or DOF) refers to the number of independent variable Dependent and independent variables are variables in mathematical modeling, statistical model A statistical model is a mathematical model that emb ...
of the elements. Advantages of organizations are enhancement (more of the same), addition (combination of different features), and extension. Disadvantages can be inertness (through coordination) and loss of
interaction Interaction is action that occurs between two or more objects, with broad use in philosophy and the sciences. It may refer to: Science * Interaction hypothesis, a theory of second language acquisition * Interaction (statistics) * Interactions o ...
. Among the theories that are or have been influential are: *
Activity theory Activity theory (AT; russian: link=no, Теория деятельности) is an umbrella term for a line of eclectic social-sciences theories and research with its roots in the Soviet psychological activity theory pioneered by Sergei Rubinste ...
is the major theoretical influence, acknowledged by de Clodomir Santos de Morais in the development of Organization Workshop method. *
Actor–network theory Actor–network theory (ANT) is a theoretical and methodological approach to social theory Social theories are analytical frameworks, or paradigms, that are used to study and interpret social phenomenon, social phenomena.Seidman, S., 2016. Cont ...
, an approach to social theory and research, originating in the field of science studies, which treats objects as part of social networks. *
Complexity theory and organizations Complexity theory and organizations, also called complexity strategy or complex adaptive organizations, is the use of the study of complexity systems in the field of strategic management and organizational studies. It draws from research in ...
, the use of complexity theory in the field of
strategic management In the field of management, strategic management involves the formulation and implementation of the major goals and initiatives taken by an organization's managers on behalf of stakeholders, based on consideration of Resource management, resour ...
and organizational studies. *
Contingency theory A contingency theory is an organizational theory Organizational theory refers to the set of interrelated concepts that involve the sociological study of the structures and operations of formal social organizations. Organizational theory also a ...
, a class of behavioral theories that claim that there is no best way to organize a corporation, to lead a company, or to make decisions. * Critical management studies, a loose but extensive grouping of theoretically informed critiques of management, business, and organization, grounded originally in a
critical theory A critical theory is any approach to social philosophy that focuses on society and culture to reveal, critique and challenge power structures. With roots in sociology and literary criticism, it argues that social problems stem more from socia ...
perspective *
Economic sociology Economic sociology is the study of the social cause and effect of various economic phenomena. The field can be broadly divided into a classical period and a contemporary one, known as "new economic sociology". The classical period was concerned ...
, studies both the social effects and the social causes of various economic phenomena. * Enterprise architecture, the conceptual model that defines the coalescence of organizational structure and organizational behavior. * Garbage Can Model, describes a model which disconnects problems, solutions, and decision-makers from each other. *
Principal–agent problem The principal–agent problem refers to the conflict in interests and priorities that arises when one person or entity (the "Agent (economics), agent") takes actions on behalf of another person or entity (the "Principal (commercial law), princip ...
, concerns the difficulties in motivating one party (the "agent"), to act in the best interests of another (the "principal") rather than in his or her own interests *
Scientific management Scientific management is a theory of management that Analysis, analyzes and wikt:synthesis#Noun, synthesizes workflows. Its main objective is improving economic efficiency, especially Workforce productivity, labor productivity. It was one of the ...
(mainly following Frederick W. Taylor), a theory of
management Management (or managing) is the administration of an organization, whether it is a business, a nonprofit organization, or a government body. It is the art and science of managing resources of the business. Management includes the activities ...
that analyses and synthesizes
workflow A workflow consists of an orchestrated and repeatable pattern of activity, enabled by the systematic organization of resources into processes that transform materials, provide services, or process information. It can be depicted as a sequence of ...
s. *
Social entrepreneurship Social entrepreneurship is an approach by individuals, groups, start-up companies or entrepreneur Entrepreneurship is the creation or extraction of economic value. With this definition, entrepreneurship is viewed as change, generally entai ...
, the process of pursuing innovative solutions to social problems. * Transaction cost theory, the idea that people begin to organize their production in firms when the transaction cost of coordinating production through the market exchange, given imperfect information, is greater than within the firm. * Weber's Ideal of Bureaucracy (refer to
Max Weber Maximilian Karl Emil Weber (; ; 21 April 186414 June 1920) was a German Sociology, sociologist, historian, jurist and political economy, political economist, who is regarded as among the most important theorists of the development of Modernity, ...
's chapter on "Bureaucracy" in his book ''
Economy and Society ''Economy and Society: An Outline of Interpretive Sociology'' (1921; ; or simply ''Economy and Society'') is a book by political economist and sociologist Max Weber, published posthumously in Germany by his wife Marianne Weber, Marianne. Alongs ...
'')


Leadership

A
leader Leadership, both as a research area and as a practical skill, encompasses the ability of an individual, group or organization to "lead", influence or guide other individuals, teams, or entire organizations. The word "leadership" often gets view ...
in a formal,
hierarchical organization A hierarchical organization or hierarchical organisation (see American and British English spelling differences#-ise, -ize (-isation, -ization), spelling differences) is an organizational structure where every entity in the organization, except on ...
, is appointed to a managerial position and has the right to command and enforce obedience by virtue of the authority of his position. However, he must possess adequate personal attributes to match his authority, because authority is only potentially available to him. In the absence of sufficient personal competence, a manager may be confronted by an emergent leader who can challenge his role in the organization and reduce it to that of a figurehead. However, only the authority of position has the backing of formal sanctions. It follows that whoever wields personal influence and power can legitimize this only by gaining a formal position in the hierarchy, with commensurate authority.


Formal organizations

An organization that is established as a means for achieving defined objectives has been referred to as a
formal organization A formal organization is an organization An organization or organisation ( Commonwealth English; see spelling differences), is an entity—such as a company, an institution, or an association—comprising one or more people and having ...
. Its design specifies how goals are subdivided and reflected in subdivisions of the organization. Divisions, departments, sections, positions, jobs, and tasks make up this work
structure A structure is an arrangement and organization of interrelated elements in a material object or system, or the object or system so organized. Material structures include man-made objects such as buildings and machines and natural objects such as ...
. Thus, the formal organization is expected to behave impersonally in regard to relationships with clients or with its members. According to Weber's definition, entry and subsequent advancement is by merit or seniority. Each employee receives a salary and enjoys a degree of tenure that safeguards him from the arbitrary influence of superiors or of powerful clients. The higher his position in the hierarchy, the greater his presumed expertise in adjudicating problems that may arise in the course of the work carried out at lower levels of the organization. It is this bureaucratic structure that forms the basis for the appointment of heads or chiefs of administrative subdivisions in the organization and endows them with the authority attached to their position.


Informal organizations

In contrast to the appointed head or chief of an administrative unit, a leader emerges within the context of the
informal organization The informal organization is the interlocking social structure In the social sciences, social structure is the aggregate of patterned social arrangements in society that are both emergence, emergent from and determinant of the Structure and ...
that underlies the formal structure. The informal organization expresses the personal objectives and
goal A goal is an idea of the future or desired result that a person or a group of people envision, Planning, plan and commit to achieve. People endeavour to reach goals within a finite time by setting Time limit, deadlines. A goal is roughly simi ...
s of the individual
membership Member may refer to: * Military jury, referred to as "Members" in military jargon * Element (mathematics), an object that belongs to a mathematical set * In object-oriented programming, a member of a class ** Field (computer science), entries in ...
. Their objectives and goals may or may not coincide with those of the formal organization. The informal organization represents an extension of the social structures that generally characterize human life – the spontaneous emergence of groups and organizations as ends in themselves. In prehistoric times, man was preoccupied with his personal security, maintenance, protection, and survival. Now man spends a major portion of his waking hours working for organizations. His need to identify with a community that provides security, protection, maintenance, and a feeling of belonging continues unchanged from prehistoric times. This need is met by the informal organization and its emergent, or unofficial, leaders. Leaders emerge from within the structure of the informal organization. Their personal qualities, the demands of the situation, or a combination of these and other factors attract followers who accept their leadership within one or several overlay structures. Instead of the authority of position held by an appointed head or chief, the emergent leader wields influence or power. Influence is the ability of a person to gain cooperation from others by means of persuasion or control over rewards. Power is a stronger form of influence because it reflects a person's ability to enforce action through the control of a means of punishment.


The interplay between formal and informal organizations

As most organizations operate through a mix of formal and informal mechanisms, organization science scholars have paid attention to the type of interplay between formal and informal organizations. On the one hand, some have argued that formal and informal organizations operate as substitutes as one type of organization would decrease the advantages of using the other one. For instance, if parties trust each other the use of a formal contract is unnecessary or even detrimental to the relationship. On the other hand, other scholars have suggested that formal and informal organizations can complement each other. For instance, formal mechanisms of control can pave the way for the development of relational norms.


See also

*
Affinity group An affinity group is a group formed around a shared interest or common goal, to which individuals formally or informally belong. Affinity groups are generally precluded from being under the aegis of any governmental agency, and their purposes m ...
*
Anticipatory socialization Anticipatory socialization is the process, facilitated by social interactions A social relation or also described as a social interaction or social experience is the fundamental unit of analysis within the social sciences, and describes any volu ...
* Business organization *
Coalition A coalition is a group formed when two or more people or groups temporarily work together to achieve a common goal. The term is most frequently used to denote a formation of power in political or economical spaces. Formation According to ''A Gui ...
*
Collective A collective is a group of entities that share or are motivated by at least one common issue or interest, or work together to achieve a common objective. Collectives can differ from cooperatives in that they are not necessarily focused upon an ...
* Decentralized autonomous organization * History of organizations * List of designated terrorist organizations *
List of environmental organizations An environmental organization is an organization An organization or organisation ( Commonwealth English; see spelling differences), is an entity—such as a company, an institution, or an association—comprising one or more people ...
*
List of general fraternities A fraternity A fraternity (from Latin language, Latin ''wiktionary:frater, frater'': "brother (Christian), brother"; whence, "wiktionary:brotherhood, brotherhood") or fraternal organization is an organization, society, club (organization), clu ...
*
List of international professional associations This is a list of notable professional association A professional association (also called a professional body, professional organization, or professional society) usually seeks to advocacy, further a particular profession, the interests of ind ...
*
List of trade unions This is a list of trade union A trade union (labor union in American English), often simply referred to as a union, is an organization of workers intent on "maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment", ch. I such as attai ...
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Maturity Model Maturity is a measurement of the ability of an organization An organization or organisation ( Commonwealth English; see spelling differences), is an entity—such as a company, an institution, or an association—comprising one or more ...
* Multidimensional organization *
Mutual organization A mutual organization, or mutual society is an organization (which is often, but not always, a company (law), company or business) based on the principle of mutuality and governed by private law. Unlike a true cooperative, members usually do not ...
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Organizational psychology Industrial and organizational psychology (I-O psychology), an applied discipline within psychology, is the science of human behavior in the workplace. Depending on the country or region of the world, I-O psychology is also known as occupational ...
* Organization Workshop * Pacifist organization * Requisite organization *
Service club A service club or service organization is a voluntary nonprofit organization A nonprofit organization (NPO) or non-profit organisation, also known as a non-business entity, not-for-profit organization, or nonprofit institution, is a lega ...
* Size of groups, organizations, and communities *
Umbrella organization An umbrella organization is an association of (often related, industry-specific) institutions who work together formally to coordinate activities and/or pool resources. In business, political, and other environments, it provides resources and ofte ...
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Voluntary association A voluntary group or union (also sometimes called a voluntary organization, common-interest association, association, or society) is a group of individuals who enter into an agreement, usually as volunteering, volunteers, to form a body (or organ ...


References


Further reading

* Baligh, Henry H. (2006). ''Organization Structures: Theory and Design, Analysis and Prescription''. Springer New York. . * Coase, Ronald (1937). "
The Nature of the Firm "The Nature of the Firm" (1937) is an article by Ronald Coase. It offered an economic explanation of why individuals choose to form partnerships, companies, and other business entities rather than trading bilaterally through contracts on a market. ...
" ''Economica'', 4(16), pp. 386–405. * * * Hewlett, Roderic. (2006). The Cognitive leader. Rowman & Littlefield Pub Inc. * * * * Marshak, Thomas (1987). "organization theory," '' The New Palgrave: A Dictionary of Economics'', v. 3, pp. 757–60. * Mintzberg, Henry (1981). "Organization Design: Fashion or Fit" ''Harvard Business Review'' (January February) * Morgenstern, Julie (1998). ''Organizing from the Inside Out''. Owl Books * Peter, Laurence J. and Raymond Hull. '' The Peter Principle'' Pan Books 1970 * * Samson, D., Daft, R. (2005). Management: second Pacific Rim edition. Melbourne, Victoria: Thomson * *


External links


Research on Organizations: Bibliography Database and Maps

TheTransitioner.org
a site dedicated to
collective intelligence Collective intelligence (CI) is shared or group intelligence (GI) that Emergence, emerges from the collaboration, collective efforts, and competition of many individuals and appears in consensus decision making. The term appears in sociobiology ...
and structure of organizations {{Authority control