Organizational Management Basics

Organizational Management Basics

By the end of this lesson, you are expected to:
– understand what an organization is
– learn the importance of organizational culture
– identify the type of organizational culture that your company embodies

Organizing is a systematic process of structuring, integrating, coordinating task goals, and activities to resources in order to attain objectives.

Organizing typically follows planning and reflects how the organisation tries to accomplish the strategic plan. It involves the assignment of tasks, the grouping of tasks into departments, and the assignment of authority and allocation of resources across the organization. Organizing is important because it follows from strategy in that strategy defines what to do and organizing defines how to do it.

An organization is a social unit of people that is structured and managed to meet a need or to pursue collective goals. Organizations are open systems linked to an external environment.
There are a variety of legal types of organizations, including corporations, governments, non-governmental organizations, political organizations, international organizations, armed forces, charities, not-for-profit corporations, partnerships, cooperatives, and educational institutions.
An organization has a management structure that determines relationships between the different activities and the members, and subdivides and assigns roles, responsibilities, accountability and authority to carry out different tasks. Let’s see what are the difference between these concepts?*


Authority is the formal right of a person to make decisions, to issue orders, and to allocate resources in order to achieve goals.

Authority is vested in organizational position, accepted by the subordinate, and flows down the vertical hierarchy.


Responsibility is the subordinate’s duty to perform the assigned task, which is the flipside of the authority coin.


Accountability brings both authority and responsibility together and requires the subordinates to report and justify task outcomes to superiors in the chain of command.


Delegation is a transfer of authority and responsibility from a superior to subordinate, but accountability still rests with the superior.

Organizational culture
Organizational culture is embedded in the every day working lives of all cultural members. Manifestations of cultures in organizations include:
– formal practices: pay levels, structure of the hierarchy, job descriptions, and other written policies;
– informal practices: behavioral norms, unwritten rules that have been developed over time and are considered valid;
– the organizational stories employees tell to explain “how things are done around here”
– rituals: Christmas parties and retirement dinners
– humor: jokes about work and fellow employees
– jargon: the special language of organizational initiates
– physical arrangements: interior decor, dress norms, and architecture
Organizational Culture Profile (OCP)

One typology that has received a lot of research attention is the organizational culture profile (OCP), in which culture is represented by seven distinct values:1- innovative
2- aggressive
3- outcome-oriented
4- stable
5- people-oriented
6- team-oriented
7- detail-oriented

Why is organizational culture relevant?

It is important to know the culture of an organization in order to understand how it functions and how best to implement policies and change.

What makes an organizational culture the way it is?

We mentioned the informal and formal practices, office design, etc., but where do they come from? Some key elements that influence organizational culture include:
– History (long established, new, product of mergers and acquisitions)
– Ownership (entrepreneurial, partnership, institution, state, many small shareholders, family, co-operative)
– Operating Environment (global, national, regional, local)
– Mission (profit, charity, growth, loss leader, quality, mutuality)
– People (graduates, manual workers, multi-national, accountants, actuaries, salesmen)
– Management Style (paternal, hire and fire, benevolent, despotic, sharing, controlling)

Other important elements: Decision making, power, hierarchy, information flow, etc.

Types of organizational culture
Charles Handy, born in 1932 in Ireland is a well-known philosopher who has specialized in organizational culture. In his book ‘Understanding Organizations’, he identifies four main types of organizational culture, also known as the Gods of Management Theory:*

Power Culture [Zeus]

This is also known as Club Culture. There are some organizations where the power remains in the hands of only a few people, usually around one dominant figure. They are the most important people at the workplace and the major decision makers. These individuals further delegate responsibilities to other employees.

In such a culture, the subordinates have no option but to strictly follow their superior’s instructions. The employees do not have the liberty to express their views or share their ideas on an open forum and have to follow what their superior says.

This is often symbolized by a spider web, as power flows along the lines from the center.

A power culture is usually a strong culture, though it can swiftly turn toxic. The collapse of Enron, Lehman Brothers and RBS is often attributed to a strong power culture.

Role Culture [Apollo]

Role culture is a culture where every employee is delegated roles and responsibilities according to his/her specialisation, educational qualification and interest to extract the best out of him/her. In such a culture, employees decide what they can do best and willingly accept the challenge. Every individual is accountable for something or the other and has to take ownership of the work assigned to him. Power comes with responsibility in such a work culture.

This culture can be symbolised by a Greek temple, because it is based on functions and is a very common type where communication flows up (in varying degrees) but never or seldom across (bureaucracy).

Task Culture [Athena]

Organizations where teams are formed to achieve targets or solve critical problems follow the task culture. In such organizations, individuals with common interests and specializations come together to form a team. There are generally four to five members in each team. Every team member has to contribute equally and accomplish tasks in the most innovative way.

This culture can be symbolised by a net, as power flows up, across and down in a matrix structure. Jobs are project or task oriented and very flexible with no structure.

Person Culture [Dionysus]

There are certain organizations where the employees feel that they are more important than their organization and are more concerned with their own self. The organization in such a culture takes a back seat and eventually suffers. Employees just come to the office for the sake of money and are never fully committed. They are seldom loyal towards the management and never decide in favor of the organization.

This culture can be symbolized by a cluster or constellation, as individuals are important. Such an organization is rare and difficult to manage. Some partnerships are like this and professors within academia also fit this profile if interested in their own interests.


We started this lesson by defining an organization and some general characteristics. We then addressed the cultural aspect of organizations and ended with the different types of cultures.

Jim Rohn Sứ mệnh khởi nghiệp