Assignment O N Bureaucracy

Topics: Bureaucracy, Max Weber, Management Pages: 6 (1785 words) Published: October 25, 2011
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A bureaucracy is a form of organization based on logic, order, and the legitimate use of formal authority. Bureaucracies are meant to be orderly, fair, and highly efficient. The Bureaucratic approach to management was developed around the start of twentieth century by an important writer, Max Weber, a German Sociologist. The bureaucratic approach depends on five principles that are; 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) Specialization of work Formal Rules & Procedures Impersonality Well-defined hierarchy Employee selection and promotion

1. Specialisation of work
Any piece of work must be broken down into a few clearly defined tasks. This describes the degree to which activities in an organisation are divided into separate jobs. An entire job is not done by one individual but instead is broken down into steps, and each step is completed by a different person. So that members of an organisation will know what is expected of them and will develop special skills for their own tasks. Managers saw other efficiency that could be achieved through work specialization. Employee skills of performing a task successfully increase through repetition. Less time is spent in changing tasks, in putting away one’s tools and equipment from a prior step in the work process, and in getting ready for another. Equally important, training for specialization is more efficient from the organization’s perspective. It’s easier and less costly to find and train workers to do specific and repetitive tasks

2. Formal Rules & Procedures
A comprehensive set of rules and procedures that provides the guidelines for performing all organizational duties is clearly stated. All administrative acts, functions and decisions are found by rules which are formulated and recorded in writing. Rules are designed to ensure uniformity of action and equality of treatment. They save time and effort by obviating the need for deriving a new solution for every problem or case. Written rules and work procedures serve as guides to action by managers and workers.

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This explains what is expected from an employee in any particular organisation; for example, retail companies have rules and procedure telling workers how to handle customer complaints.

3. Impersonality
As a matter of principle, the members of the administrative staff should be completely separated from ownership of the means of production. In addition, the organization’s property which is controlled within the spheres of the office is completely separated from the personal property of the officials. This principle focuses on treating everyone in the same way, no matter who they are, because there are formal rules and procedures in the organization. An example of this would be if a manager and a lower-level manager both failed to hand in a report on time, the same disciplinary action would be taken against both of them.

4 Well-defined Hierarchy
In an Organization with a well-defined hierarchy there are several levels of authority with clearly defined reporting structures and relationships. Through a series of delegations a hierarchy is created under which each lower office is under the control and supervision of a higher one. That is an Organization has a pyramid-shaped hierarchical structure that ranks job positions according to the amount of power and authority each possesses. Power and authority increase at each higher level, and each lower-level position is under the direct control of one higher-level position. 6)

5. Employee selection and promotion
Career development involves managing someone his/her career within an organizations. It includes learning new skills, and making improvements. Thus, there is a meritocracy system that involves, all employees are selected on the basis of technical competence and promotion is assessed on. This process lead to an equal opportunity system that allow merits to be exploited and rewarded. Both employer and employee may come out as winners....
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