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Work organisation & society.

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SY1910: WORK, ORGANISATION & SOCIETY SEMESTER 2 2001-2002 JIAO XUE B.A. (Hons) IBFE The field of management has been devoted much of studies and researches since the beginning of the twenty-first century. From the classical management theory to the professionalisation of management, from the emergence of managerial hierarchies to the inter-professional competition, however, the development of management studies has for a long time not been easy to answer the basic question, 'What do managers do?' Controversy always lies in the clashes of the view of 'managers as rational actors' or 'bounded rational actors', and 'managers as cultural icons' view. Based on these perspectives, arguments have also been developed over the issue of how important the managerial leadership is for the running of effective organisations. But it seems to be clear that, without a proper answer to these questions, how to design planning or information systems for managers, or even how to improve the practice of management, will be a myth. The answer provided by Drucker states that "The manager is the dynamic, life-giving element in every business. Without his leadership 'the resources of production' remain resources and never become production. ...read more.


planner'; whereas he perceive that managerial work has strong attachment to 'line action', and involves performing a great deal of various regular duties, the folklore says 'the effective manager has no regular duties to perform'. He also overthrown the folklore that 'the senior manage needs aggregated information, which a formal management-info system best provides', by introducing the fact that great attractions lie in the 'verbal media', such as phone calls and meetings. Instead, he described the manager's job in terms of various roles, or organised sets of behaviours identified with a position, of which comprise ten roles. These ten roles can be classified into three categories: Interpersonal roles, which include figurehead, leader and liaison roles. These roles in turn give rise to the three informational roles, which contain monitor, disseminator and spokesman roles. These two sets of roles enable the manager to play the four decisional roles, of which include entrepreneur, disturbance handler, resource allocator and negotiator roles. Detailed analysis can also be found from his article, The Manager's Job (Harvard Business review, Jul-Aug, 1975, 49-61). Mintzberg concludes the implications of this study as "managers cannot 'professionalise'; and successful managers rely on personal qualities". ...read more.


(Drucker, 1995, 195). Based on those comments and arguments, it may seem reasonable to believe that no job is more paramount to society and organisations than that of managers. Because it is the managers determining 'whether our social institutions serve us well or whether they squander our talents and resources' (Mintsberg, 1973). Conclusion might be drawn based on different views of contents and importance of managerial work and leadership. Managers' job compromises a wide range of activities, and can be analysed through the 'rational actors' and 'cultural leader' perspectives, both the classical management theory and newly developed cultural approach provide theoretical supportable base to them. Due to the importance of managerial work and importance, it is worthwhile to study it realistically, in the hope of making significant improvements in its performance. Reference: Buchanan, David and Huczynski, Andrzej. 1997. Organisational Behaviour: an introductory text. Third Edition. Europe: Prentice Hall. Drucker, F, Peter. 1995. The Practice of Management. London: Heinemann. Morgan, Gareth. 1998. Images of Organisation. First Edition. London: Sage. Pugh, Derek, S. 1997. Organisational Theory: selected readings. Fourth Edition. London: Penguin. Thompson, Paul and McHugh, David. 1995. Work Organisations. Second Edition. London: MacMillan Press. Thompson, Paul and McHugh, David. 2002. Work Organisation. Third Edition. New York: Palgrave. ...read more.

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