Q1: Basic building blocks of organizational structures (Specific examples). The basic building blocks of an organizational structure include division of labor, vertical linkages, horizontal linkages, and informal linkages (The Saylor Foundation [TSF], 2014). Garment manufacturing requires division of labor, or the assignment employees to the following steps: design, procurement, production (cutting, sewing, and, printing), quality assurance, and packing. Vertical linkages are exemplified by the lines of responsibility in a business school between the dean of college, the department chairs, and the department professors. Horizontal linkages are exemplified in the manner in which GE could conduct its divisional planning, wherein the chief executive officer of each company (e.g. John Wood Group PLC, Wellstream Holdings PLC, Dresser, etc.) represent their respective companies in the Energy division meetings. Informal linkages are shown in the closeness of labor union members across organizational levels, including line employees, supervisors, and managers.
Q2: Types of structures exist: Advantages, disadvantages (Examples). The four types of structures include structures that are simple, functional, multidivisional, and matrix (TSF, 2014). Simple organizational advantages include a closer relationship of the owner with customers and employees, a decision-making centralized to the proprietor in all areas of the business, and the like. Its disadvantages include its inability to expand the business (running each areas in the business requires delegation), operations strongly dependent on the limits (e.g. strategic, health, financing) of the proprietor (if the proprietor get sick, operation stops), and the like. Functional organizations result to employee specialization (mastering marketing over production), cost efficiency (scattered employees of similar specialty indicates inefficiency), and the like. Sales personnel of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company had all the time and chances to focus towards improving their sales effectiveness. Multidivisional structures tend to allow for quick action and deeper wisdom and skill. When GE purchased the John Wood Group PLC, only the Energy division was involved in the transaction and integration. The French divisions of McDonald’s misplaced ad quoting a nutritionist that asserted children should not eat at McDonald’s more than once per week resulted to damages its overall strategy of increasing customer, (e.g. children) visits to its restaurants. The horizontal linkages in matrix structures maximize organizational flexibility (a marketing employee who also have direct access to production and operations can maximize each involvement from what are learned from the other two involvements), and the like. These multiple assignments, however, often result to employee confusion and conflict (when all supervising managers demand their programs for employee priority pull the employee in opposing directions), information “logjams” and overlapping responsibilities (Rizova, 2006).
Q3: Control: Importance (2 examples). Organizational control systems allow the tracking of organizational performance, the identification of problematic areas, and the opportunity to take action to address these challenges (TSF, 2014). A sales and inventory system, for instance, tracks daily sales and level of inventory for each supply, allowing for the measurement of daily sales performance against daily targets and providing the procurement department ample time to order supplies before their respective inventory reaches the critical levels. In addition, the annual employee performance review is another form of an organizational control system. Its output provides the management with a better understanding how many employees contributed or not to the organizational goals.
Q4: Different forms of control: when used. The three basic forms of control systems include output control, behavioral control, and clan control (TSF, 2014). Results-oriented output control must be used when tracking employee performance, such as in sales (Ahearne, Rapp, Hughes & Jindal, 2010), against pre-agreed expectations; thus, providing strong grounds for any corrective actions. Action-oriented behavioral control must be used when standardizing personnel behavior when performing certain tasks. It includes such familiar system as the employee code of conduct or the countersigning system for check issuance. Culture-oriented clan control is often used in highly-creative work areas in the organization, such as high-tech firms, to ensure consist high-quality output when behavioral or output controls cannot be implemented (being stifling or quota-oriented).
Q5: Key legal forms of business: implications of choice. The three basic forms of business include sole proprietorship, partnership, and corporation (TSF, 2014). Single proprietorship sets all profits as the property of the owner, and the debts are personal liabilities of the owner, affecting his personal assets. A partnership involves at least two persons owning a firm. However, the mistakes and bad decisions of one partner affect the other. It has the advantage of sole proprietorship not having to be present for the business to operate. A corporation has its own legal personality apart from its owners and managers. Its owners do not directly receive its profits or losses, and not personally liable for the debts of the corporation. Double taxation, however, occurs.
PART II (1-1/2 Pages)
Q1: How is division of labor used when training college football teams: do you think you can use a different division of labor and achieve more efficiency? Within the college baseball team, the head coach supervises a set of assistant coaches who specializes in position-specific skills that each member of the team needs to develop in training (IMG Academy, 2014). At the same time, a junior varsity team trains side-by-side with the ‘senior’ varsity team in addition to the junior’s separate training sessions. I think this current division of labor in the training of the football team members already constitutes a more efficient program compared to the usual program that separates the training of the junior team from the ‘senior’ varsity team.
Q2: Some formal and informal linkages encountered in college: informal linkages in the work place? Formal linkages encountered in college involve the linear link between our professor in the finance class and the dean of marketing; then the dean’s reportorial relationship to the chair of the business department. Informal linkages involve non-official relationships and affinity between the professor in finance and marketing or the management professor’s friendship with the dean of marketing.
Q3: Type of structure best describes the organization of Maryland University College? What lead you to reach your conclusion? The organization of Maryland University College is essentially functional. Its multitudinous department listing shows function-oriented organizational plan of the College (University of Maryland University College [UMUC], 2014). Departments on specific functional purposes, such as the office of evaluation and assessment, DOD relations, and many more are found in entries from A through Z in the list.
Q4: [Office Space] Two types of structures: scenes or themes. In Office Space, two organizational structures were portrayed: the matrix structure of Initech and the simple structure of Chotchkie’s (TSF, 2014). After his occupational hypnotherapy, Peter returned to work ignoring the Initech dress code, takes VP Lumberg’s reserved parking spot, and refused to follow Lumbergh’s directions. The lack of command unity (he had eight bosses) worked with him despite his blatant insubordination of Lumbergh when he instead received promotion from the consultants who were impressed by his bluntness about the office problems. Chotchkie’s epitomizes the simple structure with only one manager. However, Joanna’s problems with the “flair” policy resulted to her disdain against the owner, and eventually caused her to resign angrily from the restaurant.
Ahearne, M., Rapp, A., Hughes, D.E., & Jindal, R. (2010, August). Managing sales force product perceptions and control systems in the success of new product introductions. Journal of Marketing Research, 47(4): 764-776. DOI: 10.1509/jmkr.47.4.764. Abstract retrieved from: http://journals.ama.org/doi/abs/10.1509/jmkr.47.4.764
IMG Academy (2014). Private school program. IMGacademy.com. Retrieved (on 4 November 2014) from: http://www.imgacademy.com/sports/football/prep-school-program
Rizova, P. (2006, April 1). Are you networked for successful innovation? MIT Sloan Management Review. Retrieved from: http://sloanreview.mit.edu/article/are-you-networked-for-successful-innovation/
The Saylor Foundation (2014). Chapter 9: Executive strategy through organizational design. Mastering Strategic Management. [Week 6 Reading Material]
(on 4 November 2014) from: http://www.umuc.edu/visitors/about/departments.cfm