Organization Design - Essay Example

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Certain subunits in an organization may get more power compared to others because of the structure and culture of the organization by having increased control over the resources, centrality, and information. This is because of the fact that “Whatever else organizations may be…
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Organizational Design Certain subunits in an organization may get more power compared to others because of the structure and culture of the organization by having increased control over the resources, centrality, and information. This is because of the fact that “Whatever else organizations may be (problem-solving instruments, sociotechnical systems, reward systems, and so on), they are political structures. This means that organizations operate by distributing authority and setting a stage for the exercise of power” (Zaleznik, 1970). An organization is able to control resources when it is capable of generating the resources. For example, in the case of a pharmaceutical company, power is retained by the R&D department because it is the very department that generates resources. Which subunits qualify for receiving the information is dictated by the organizational structure. When a certain subunit in the organizational structure has more control over information compared to other subunits, it is capable of influencing the opinions and accordingly influence the decision making process. Subunits that are central to the organization have more power than others. Manufacturing is central in a low-cost organizational culture. Organizations sometimes need to assign more power to a certain subunit in order to ensure that it makes optimal use of the resources. The balance of power between the different subunits is not always suitable for effective utilization of the resources (Jones, 2010, p. 423). Apart from this, there can be relational ties between the executive managers and the head of one of the subunits, which can become a reason for more delegation of power to that subunit compared to others.
Jones, G. R. (2010). Organizational Theory, Design and Change. 6th Ed. Pearson
Zaleznik, A. (1970, May). Power and Politics in Organizational Life. Harvard Business Review.
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