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Groups and Organizations. Social Groups Bureaucracy Evolution of Formal Organizations Challenges. Social Groups. Social Group- is made up of two or more people who identify and interact with one another.

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groups and organizations

Groups and Organizations

Social Groups


Evolution of Formal Organizations


social groups
Social Groups
  • Social Group- is made up of two or more people who identify and interact with one another.
  • A primary group- is a small social group whose members share personal and enduring relationships, bound by primary relationships.
  • A secondary group-is a large and impersonal group whose members pursue a specific goal or activity. Secondary relationships involve weak emotional ties and little personal knowledge of one another.
two leadership roles
Two Leadership Roles
  • Instrumental leadership-a group leadership that emphasizes the completion of tasks.
  • Expressive Leadership- a group leadership that focuses on collective well-being. Expressive leaders take less of an interest in achieving goals than in raising group morale and minimizing tension and conflict between members.
leadership styles
Leadership Styles
  • Authoritarian leadership- focuses on instrumental concerns, takes personal charge of decision-making, and demands strict compliance from subordinates. This leadership can be fast acting and is appreciated in crisis.
  • Democratic leadership-is more expressive and makes a point of including everyone in the decision-making process.
  • Laissez- faire leadership- Derived from the French word-to leave alone.
in group and out group
In-Group and Out-Group
  • Out-Group- is a social group commanding a member’s esteem and loyalty.
  • In-Group- a social group commanding a members esteem and loyalty.
formal organizations
Formal Organizations
  • Formal organizations- large secondary groups that are organized to achieve their goals efficiently.
  • Formal organizations such as business corporations and government agencies, differ from families. Formal organizations operate in a deliberate way, not to meet personal needs but to accomplish complex jobs.
  • Utilitarian Organizations-one that pays people for their efforts. Example, large businesses generate profits for their owners and income for their employees.
Normative Organization- to pursue some goal they think is morally worthwhile. Sometimes called voluntary associations, these include community service groups (Lions Club, League of women voters, Ted Cross).
  • Coercive Organizations- have an involuntary membership. People are forced to join these organizations as a form of punishment (prison) or treatment (psychiatric hospital).
  • Early organizations had two limitations had two limitations, however. First, they lacked technology to communicate quickly, to travel over large distances, and to collect and store information. Second, tradition is strong in pre-industrial societies, so organizational goals were to preserve cultural systems, not to change them.
  • Bureaucracy-an organizational model rationally designed to perform tasks efficiently.
Six key elements of the ideal bureaucratic organization according to Max Weber:
  • 1. Specialization- Our ancestors spent most of their time looking for food and shelter. Bureaucracy, by contrast, assigns individuals highly specialized duties.
  • 2. Hierarchy of offices- Bureaucracies arrange personnel in a vertical ranking of offices. Each person is supervised by “higher-ups” in the organization while supervising others in lower positions, forming a pyramid shape.
3. Rules and regulations- Cultural traditions counts for little in a bureaucracy. Instead, rationally enacted rules and regulations guide a bureaucracy’s operation. Preferably in a predictable way.
  • 4. Technical competence- Bureaucratic officials and staff have the technical competence to carry out their duties. Bureaucracies typically recruit new members according to set criteria and regularly monitor their performance.
  • 5. Impersonality- Bureaucracy puts rules ahead of personal whim so that clients as well as workers are treated uniformly. From this detached approach stems the faceless bureaucratic.
6. Formal written communication- According to an old saying, the heart of bureaucracy is not people but paperwork. Rather than casual face-to-face talk, bureaucracy relies on formal written memos and reports. Which accumulate in vast files and guide the operation of the organization.
organizational environment
Organizational Environment
  • Organizational Environment- factors outside the organization that affect its operation. Include: technology, economics and political trends, population patterns, other organizations.
problems of bureaucracy
Problems of Bureaucracy
  • Bureaucratic Alienation
  • ~Weber was keenly aware of bureaucracy’s ability to dehumanize the people it is suppose to serve. The same impersonality that fosters efficiency also keeps officials and clients from responding to each other’s unique personal needs.
  • Although formal organizations are intended to benefit humanity, Weber feared that people could end up serving formal organizations.
  • Beaucratic Inefficiency and Ritualism
  • ~Inefficiency- the failure of an organization to carry out work that exists. Some times it takes up to three years or receive a computer.
Red tape- refers to a tedious preoccupation with organizational routine and procedures.
  • Bureaucratic ritualism- designate a preoccupation with rules and regulations to the point of thwarting an organizations goals.
  • Bureaucratic Inertia- the tendency of bureaucratic organizations to perpetuate themselves. Formal organizations tent to take on a life of their own beyond their formal objectives. For example, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has offices in almost all U.S. counties, even though only one county in seven has working farms.
  • Oligarchy- the rule of the many by the few.
the evolution of formal organizations
The Evolution of Formal Organizations
  • The problems of bureaucracy stem from two organizational traits: hierarchy and rigidity.
  • I. The First Challenge: Race and Gender
  • ~During the 1960’s big businesses exclude women and other minorities. As a result, the vast majority of managers were white men.
  • Women are found to be more information focused rather than imaged focused as men tend to be. Secondly, women place greater value on communication and share information than men do. Women are flexible and can give employees greater autonomy. Thirdly, women emphasize the interconnectedness of all organization operations.
II. The Second Challenge: The Japanese Organization
  • ~Japanese organizations reflect that nation’s strong collective spirit.
  • 1. Hiring and advancement- U.S. organizations hold out promotions and raises in salary as prizes to be won through individual competition. In Japanese organizations, however, companies hire new school graduates together, and all employees in the group receive the same salary and responsibilities.
2. Lifetime security- Employees in the U.S. expect to move form one company to another to advance their careers.U.S. companies are also quick to layoff employees during an economic setback. By contrast, most Japanese firms hire workers for life, fostering strong, mutual loyalties. If jobs become obsolete, Japanese companies avoid layoffs by retraining workers for new positions.
  • 3. Holistic involvement- Whereas we tend to see the home and the workplace as distinct spheres, Japanese companies play a much larger role in worker’s lives. They provide home mortgages, sponsor recreational activities, and schedule social events.
4. Broad-based training- U.S. workers are highly specialized and many spend an entire career doing one thing. But a Japanese organization trains workers in all phases of its operation, again with the idea that employees will remain with the company for life.
  • 5. Collective decision making- In the U.S. key executives make the important decisions. Although Japanese leaders also take responsibility for their organization’s performance, they involve workers in “quality circles” to discuss decisions that affect them.
  • These organizations are characterized by organizational loyalty.
III. The Third Challenge: The Challenge of Work
  • ~Many of today’s jobs are different from a century ago: The work of designers, artists, writers, composers, programmers, business owners, and others now demand creativity and imagination.
  • ~Ways work differs:
  • 1. Creative autonomy-Executives can set production goals but cannot dictate how to accomplish tasks involving imagination and discovery. Highly skilled workers have creative autonomy, which means they have little day-to-day supervision as long as they generate good ideas in the long run.
2. Competitive work teams- a strategy first used by Japanese organizations, draw out the creative contributions of everyone and, at the sane time, reduce the alienation often found in conventional organizations.
  • 3. A flatter organization- The pyramid shape of conventional bureaucracy is replaced by an organizational form with fewer levels in the chain of command.
  • 4. Greater flexibility- The typical industrial age organization was a rigid structure guided from the top. The ideal model in the information age is a flexible organization, one that both generates new ideas and, in a rapidly changing global marketplace, adapts quickly.
the mcdonaldization of society
The “McDonaldization” of Society
  • Our culture is becoming “McDonaldized” an awkward way of saying that we model many aspects of life on this restaurant chain.
  • McDonaldization: Four Principles
  • 1. Efficiency-
  • 2. Calculability-
  • 3. Uniformity and predictability-
  • 4. Control through automation-