Organisation Behaviour

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Option 3:
Evaluate the statement that ‘organisational structure reflects and reinforces an unrealistic view of human rationality (Knights & Willmott, 2007)’.


Different authors have different definition toward organizational structure. Mintzberg (1979) defines the organization structure is defined as ‘The sum total of the ways in which it divides its labour into distinct task and then achieves coordination between them’ (Mintzberg, 1979, p.2 cited in Knights and Willmott, 2007, p.197). In simple words, organizational structure is talking about the structure of an organization, how a company categorise their workers or management to achieve their goals. Basically, organizational structure is talking about the management system that include organic and mechanistic management system.

In an organization, there will be a lot of matters happened because of the organization structure. Hence, people keep discover different management structure to assist in organizational structure like Taylor and Ford that influence the organization structure by using scientific method to classified the work of an organization and control the achievement of the organization (Fayol, 1949; Taylor, 1911cited in Singh, 2009). Lewin (1958) cited in Burnes (1996) provided that the planned model that designed for the organizational change is the best model.

However, is there any the best structure for organization? When we treat one structure as the best structure for organization, we must consider the factors that will make the structure no longer applicable. Environment is the important influences that we cannot ignore about.

The unstable of environment led the organization structure keep on changing. One of the changes in the structure of organizational was from mechanistic management system to organic management system. Mechanistic and organic of organizational structure are two formally form of management system that applied in organizational structure (Burns and Stalker, 1961). As what Kulmala and Uusi-Rauva (2005) claims that competition was changing from firm level to network level, which means from centralisation to decentralisation.

Changing Of Environment

More than 2,000 years ago the Greek philosopher Heraclitus(536-470 BC) claims that everything was continuous keep on changing and there was nothing permanent (Smith, 2011). Organizational structure is also the same, there are no the best structure for an organization since the environment is keep on changing. ‘‘There is no one best way to organize’’ and ‘‘any ways of organizing are not equally effective’’ (Galbraith, 1973 cited in Singh, 2009, p.954).

Environment and organization are interdependent, they depend on each other between an organization (pugh et al. 1963 cited in Child, n.d.). Burns and Stalker (1961) cited in Singh (2009) proposed that appropriate organizational structure depends on environmental factors. Coulson-Thomas (1991) cited in Strachan (1996) argues that business organizational is increasingly face unprecedented change in social, economic, political and business environment.

Burn and Stalker (1961) cited in McMillan (n.d.) claims that an organization must match and follow with the rate of change in its environment if the organization want to reach a maximum performance or achieve their goals. The performance of an organization depend on how they construct their structure to align with the environment (Mintzberg, 1979 cited in Nandakumar , Ghobadian and O’Regan, 2010). An example that shows the change of technology that led to the changes of organizational structure, the manner of hardware and software development resulted in architectures evolving over time, at the same time organization structures developed special forms to suit and fit their specific environmental and strategic requirements (Mukherji, 2002). An effective structure or strategy can promotes competitive advantage to strengthen...
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