Lesson notes, exercises, downloads, and recommended reading are below the video. On mobile, the video will rescale when you play it.

Organizations as Structures: Understanding an Organization as a Structure

One way to understand the nature of an organization is as a structure (the other is as a process). In this video, we look at Organizations as Structures.

Watching this video is worth 1 Management Courses CPD Point*.
(See below for more details)

The Nature of Organizations
This video is part of course module number 6.1.1
Program 6: Managing within Organizations
Course 1: The Nature of Organizations
Section 1: Introduction to Organizations

Other videos in this section include:
– What is an Organization? https://youtu.be/bfqubYe8YNA
– Morgan’s 8 Organizational Metaphors: An Organization is Like a… https://youtu.be/a60rsgbmw2c
– Organizations as Processes: Understanding an Organization as a Set of Processes https://youtu.be/i51iHWLB3hE
– The Features of Organizations: What an Organization Needs https://youtu.be/vVwryqV92KE
– Why do we need Organizations? Structure vs Agility https://youtu.be/o9u0i0wOog4

The nature of organisation can be viewed in two ways: organisation as a:
– process or set of processes
– structure or framework of relationships

Typical organizational structure charts, or organograms, are organizational breakdown structures that represent the organization by its functional roles.

They define the formal relationships and flows of authority. They mirror and are mirrored by physical assets and by the services or products the organization deals in.

In designing organizational structures, Peter Drucker suggested we can base them on analysis of:
 Activities
 Decision-making
 Relationships
I’d add to this the very obvious influence of geography.

In many organizations, the needs for accountability and oversight impose a fairly rigid hierarchy onto the structure. However, later in this course (Section 6.1.2), we’ll look at alternative organizational models.

Usually there sit inside the formal structure other, informal structures.
The formal structure is planned and defined by the executive action. The informal structures form spontaneously, and often arise from the culture, the immediate priorities, and the personalities of managers.

These informal structures often come and go, or morph into new structures rapidly. They are the way rigid organizations are able to adapt quickly to changing circumstances.

Therefore, organizations that seek to quash these informal structures with a strongly controlling culture, often find themselves failing to adapt to new circumstances.

Think about the organizations you know well.
1. What is their structure? (2 MC CPD Points)
2. What formal and informal structures can you recognize? (2 MC CPD Points)

Free Resources
– CPD Tools – https://gum.co/MC-CPD
Paid resources
– Management Courses Onboarding Kit – https://gum.co/MC-ObK ($3)

– Understanding Organizations https://geni.us/oB774Do
– Images of Organization https://geni.us/hrOemEs
– Inside Organizations: 21 Ideas for Managers https://geni.us/YwwL
– Gods of Management: The Four Cultures of Leadership https://geni.us/bpPeC5

Managers Need a Basic set of kit to do your job well. Here are my top recommendations: https://kit.co/MikeClayton/manager-s-work-kit (the links are affiliated)

Management Courses Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Points
You can record your Management Courses CPD points on our free, downloadable CPD record log.
Download it at: https://gum.co/MC-CPD

Each video has two levels of MC CPD points. For this video:
– If you simply watched the video, record 1 MC CPD point
– If you also carried out all of the recommended exercises, score a total of 5 MC CPD points

Links to our book recommendations are affiliated through Amazon

#Management #ManagementCourses #OrganizationsAsStructures


A Thorough Introduction to Organizational Culture [Compilation]
Introduction to Organizations: A Compilation of our Introductory Videos
What is Globalization?
Kim Cameron: Positive Organizational Scholarship
Charles Handy: Philosopher of Organizations
Edgar Schein: The Master of Organizational Culture
Harold Geneen: Data-driven Charismatic Organization
Chester Barnard: Organizations as Networks of People
Max Weber: The Father of Organizational Theory
How we Work: Geert Hofstede’s 6 Cross-Organization Cultural Dimensions
National Culture within an Organization: Geert Hofstede’s 6 Cultural Dimensions
Quinn and Cameron: Competing Values Model of Organizational Culture
Edgar Schein’s 3 Levels of Organizational Culture
Cultural Web: Johnson & Scholes on Where Culture Originates
Introduction to Organizational Culture
Empowerment: The Organization Giving up its Power
French and Raven: Social Power Bases in Organizations
Power in Organizations: The Power of Governance
Robin Fincham: Three Levels of Organizational Power
Amitai Etzioni: How Organizations Secure Compliance
Organizational Power: What is Power?
Virtual Organizations
Brian Robertson’s Holacracy Organizational Model
The Agile Organization
Adhocracy Organizational Model
Peter Senge’s Learning Organization
The Matrix Organization Model
Charles Handy’s Triple-I Company
Charles Handy’s Federal Organization Model
Charles Handy’s Shamrock Organization
Charles Handy’s Gods of Management
Henry Mintzberg’s 4 plus 2 Organizational Types
Edgar Schein’s Two Organizational Cultures
Why do we need Organizations? Structure vs Agility
The Features of Organizations: What an Organization Needs
Organizations as Processes: Understanding an Organization as a Set of Processes
Morgan’s 8 Organizational Metaphors: An Organization is Like a…
What is an Organization? – the Nature of Organizations

Mike Clayton

About Mike Clayton 

Dr Mike Clayton is a (former) Project Manager and now a management educator. Having trained thousands of people at live workshops, seminars, and conferences, he now delivers training mainly via video. He has 14 books with international publishers and runs two successful YouTube channels. He is also the founder of OnlinePMCourses.com

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