Describe Two of the Organisational Metaphors Studied and Discuss the Advantages and Disadvantages of Each.

Powerful Essays
Topics: Management
DESCRIBE TWO OF THE ORGANISATIONAL METAPHORS STUDIED AND DISCUSS THE ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF EACH.

This essay explores the concept of studying organisation styles metaphorically, particularly as perceived by Gareth Morgan (1986). The essay begins by describing two of the organisational metaphors, specifically the mechanistic organisation and the organisation as a brain being the most diverse of the metaphors used. It then reviews the interpretation of theorists writing on the subject and explores the practicalities of these organisational styles. In exploring these interpretations the essay discusses the advantages and disadvantages of each of the styles of organisation and endorses the continuous improvement of the brianlike organisations, but also seeks to highlight potential limitations which may arise.

"A metaphor is a figure of speech in which a phrase is applied to something that it does not literally denote in order to imply a resemblance." (Collins English Dictionary, 2002)

The image created by metaphor allows us to make comparisons and see similarities between how, in this case, different organisations are run and describe the organisations in a way that can easily be recognised.

Gareth Morgan (1986) has widely promoted the value of using different metaphors to look at organisations. The first metaphor, the organisation as a machine, is possibly the easiest to understand. Morgan (1986) explains how this style of organisation underpins the development of bureaucracy. The mechanical metaphor was dominant for most of the last century, and is associated with the work of Taylor & Fayol (Pugh & Hickson 1989). When we think of an organisation as a machine we imagine a very systematic approach which is frequently seen in bureaucratic organisations. They usually have strict processes and chains of command with a hierarchical, top down style of management.

These organisations are conceived of a series of functional departments carrying



References: Books Argyris, Chris, 1996, On Organizational Learning, Blackwell business. Morgan, Gareth, 1996, Images of Organization, New Edition. Mullins, Laurie J., 2002, Management and Organisational Behaviour, 6th edition, Prentice hall Oakland, John, 2000, TQM Text with cases, 2nd edition, Butterworth Heinemann. Peters, Thomas J and Waterman, Robert H Jr., 1992, In search of excellence Lessons from America 's Best-Run Companies, Harper Collins Publishers. Pugh, D S & Hickson, D J, 1989, Writers on Organizations, Penguin Business. Senge, Peter M., 1997, The Fifth Discipline, Century Business. Books Handy, Charles, 1993, Understanding Organizations, 4th edition, Penguin Books. Oakland, John, 2000, TQM Text with Cases, 2nd edition, Butterworth Heinemann. Torrington, Derek, Hall, Laura and Taylor, Stephen, 2005, Human resource Management, 6th edition, Prentice Hall.

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Satisfactory Essays

    Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of unisexual schools. Boy schools and girl schools shoot up very rapidly both in foreign countries and at home. In China, girl schools have enjoyed a very long history since one hundred years ago. Many sociologists and educationalists present their views on this issue from different angles. In this essay, I will zero in on the advantages and disadvantages of the controversial phenomenon. (60 words) Some parents prefer to send their children to boy schools…

    • 459 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Discuss the advantages and disadvantages to QVL of using budgets as an aid to decision - making. 16 One of the advantages to QVL of using budgets as an aid for decision making is that they will improve their productiveness.The implication is that QVL will increase the direct control of their Managing Director Evan to the business. Because,Evan is «frequently out of the office and spends most of his evenings in a hotel room checking up on production and installation schedules, customer requests…

    • 361 Words
    • 1 Page
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Describe the Advantages and Disadvantages of using Referendums in the UK? (25 marks) A referendum is a vote given to the public which is determined by the government, and is used to help answer an important political or constitutional question to which the public must vote a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’. One advantage of using referendums in the UK is that they enable the public that are over 18 to approve or disprove important constitutional changes. An example of a one being used for this purpose is…

    • 862 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Accounting for partnerships Accounting for partnerships – Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of partnerships. Identify and discuss the Financial Accounting Standards (FAS) that govern accounting for partnerships including both creation, operation, and liquidation. What are the tax consequences of partnerships. The legal definition of a partnership is pretty simple. It is an association of two or more persons who have not incorporated; and carry on a business for profit as co-owners…

    • 1945 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Better Essays

    Discuss the relative advantages and disadvantages for men and for women, of being single (=unmarried, unattached). Are these different in different countries? It is a common saying that if someone is being single, that people is a loser. However, there are a lot of people keen on being single even if someone who is married or attached for the advantages of being single. It should not be taken granted that every single people are loser or having good life. For people come from different countries…

    • 1170 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Topic 4 – Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of using short-cuts in an organisational setting The shortcuts in organisations are used for valuating the characteristics of co-workers. In organisations, the managers are always assessing their employees, also the make judge about their employees performance and efficiency at work. The perception of individuals may derive from the time environment, mentality, purposes, and history of the perceiver. The great significance in perception takes place…

    • 1976 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    debts and liabilities the business accrues. There are lots advantages by being a sole trader. The first advantage is easy formation. The formation of sole proprietorship business is very easy and simple. No legal formalities are involved for setting up the business excepting a license or permission in certain cases. The entrepreneur with initiative and certain amount of capital can set up such form of business. Another advantage of sole proprietorship is flexibility in operations. The sole proprietorship…

    • 1066 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    force Automation (SFA) is used to automate functions of sales and sales force management (). SFA is an integrated system of computer software and hardware that performs sales functions. The use of SFA has many advantages for both sales managers and can give the company a competitive advantage over its competitors. However, SFA is not advantageous for all companies. The most primary function of SFA is that it ties together sales functions such as expense reports, sales call scheduling, territory…

    • 693 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    the patient’s customary environment and form a strong partnership between the individual, public resources and resources in the individual’s environment (The History of Madness in Canada, 2009). Deinstitutionalization has some advantage and disadvantages. One of the advantages of deinstitutionalization it that patients are able to develop more meaningful lives by being involved with activities of their choice without the constraints of the hospital. Individuals are able to develop relationships with…

    • 415 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Topic: “Advertisements do more harm than good.” Discuss. In general, advertisements promote products or services to the public. Advertisers use all sorts of gimmicks to promote their own product. For example, fast-food restaurants promise attractive toys and prizes in “scratch and win” competitions. As a result, children badger their parents to take them to that particular fast-food restaurant. Many advertisements make misleading claims and promise instant solutions to people’s problems. For example…

    • 986 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays