What are the main differences between a mechanistic and an organic organization? What sort of organization would be easier to work with if its management were to switch from one type to the other? What kind of relationship should there be between a mechanical and organic organization? What are some of the benefits of each? What are some of the problems associated with each?
Relationship Between Organization and Management
Let’s start by examining how the relationship between an organization and its management will work if if mechanistic organizational design is used. In mechanistic organizational design, the basic structure is decentralized, meaning that the decisions are usually made by high-level officials or the president. The president will decide everything— whether or not they buy YouTube views for their content marketing, the business model, the strategies they used— everything. This system can be effective because in this organizational structure people have little interaction with one another and it is easy to coordinate things. However, if the organization uses a central command structure then it can have serious problems because people will not be able to cooperate properly.
Organizational systems that are decentralized are less efficient because they do not provide flexibility. They also have limited potential for growth, especially when the number of workers in the organization grows large. In organic organizational structures, there is a great deal more structure because the decision-making process is more democratic, and there is more room for growth. There is more room for progress because workers have a greater degree of latitude when making decisions and there is a greater potential for growth.
Organic organizations, on the other hand, are based upon a more centralized decision-making process. The decision-making process is centralized and is usually represented by a higher-level body such as a board of directors. The board of directors will make decisions according to the rules which have been set down by the company’s governing documents. These decisions will often be controversial, especially if there is a great amount of turnover in the company and the directors do not always get the support of the other members. In this kind of organization, flexibility is paramount because the success of the organization depends upon the ability of its members to change and adapt to changes that may come about in the future. centralized decision-making structures limit the number of times that a company can change its direction, and they limit the amount of money that a company can invest in its businesses.
On the other hand, centralized decision-making structures tend to create a sense of uniformity. People in organizations tend to believe that if something works in the corporate world then it will work in their particular organization. If there is a common core of rules or a set of principles that all companies share then there is less risk that a business idea will take off in one organization but fail in another organization because of the different ways in which the principles and rules are applied. On the other hand, if each organization works in a completely different way then it is easy for business ideas from two completely different organizations to become popular and successful.
Organizational motion is also fostered by the synergistic structure. In a lot of organizations, the people who are running the most complex operations are usually the highest-paid employees. Because of the synergistic structure, people who are running simple, back-office tasks are not given as much respect as the person who directs the most critical operation. It is because of this that many organizations find that they have wasted a lot of time and money training the high-level managers and executives up the ranks because their workers have not been trained in the fine points of operating as a living, changing organism.
Organic living organisms are highly controlled by their environment, whereas most modern businesses are highly mechanistic structures. Organizational design is very important in both highly mechanistic structures like manufacturing plants and highly non-organic structures like offices. Both of these organizational structures need to be highly controlled so that there is no possibility of things going wrong. Because of the problems with organization design many small organizations have found that they cannot successfully adapt to the highly centralized, highly impersonal, and highly controlled organization structure.
A good example of a highly mechanistic business structure is an assembly line. The reason why so many manufacturing companies are becoming highly mechanistic is that the cost savings they realize from not needing to hire as many employees as before, the more efficient way of completing the tasks, and the less waste they accumulate by machine rather than human labour. Because factories are highly mechanized, they often lack a human being’s judgment when it comes to completing tasks correctly. This leads to things breaking down very quickly and being thrown away. Organic organizations on the other hand have a highly organic structure. Organic structures like offices, clubs, and family groups do not employ machines to run their processes; instead, they operate more as living organisms do.