Weick on Organizations as Nouns

Over time, how an organization is defined has changed.  Traditionally, there have been common features of organizations that deal with their structure.  Scott and Davis consider organizations to be “social structures created by individuals to support the collaborative pursuit of specified goals.”  All organizations must define objectives, induce participants to contribute services, control and coordinate these contributions, and gather resources and offer products or services, train (or select) participants.  They also must find a way to coincide with the pressures of the workforce.

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Will the law of limited variety stand the test of time and changing environments?

Organizations are reflective of the external environments that they exist in as they are greatly influenced by these settings.  In particular, they “reflect the complexity of their environments.  So, for example, organizations in more complex environments map the complexity of the environment into their own structures” (Scott and Davis, 370).  The more numerous the sources of complexity, the more complex an organization will be in general.  This argument is brought up in Organizations and Organizing and commonly contested by open system theorists.

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How the US-made crisis affected the Global Economy

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In my last post I talked about greed and its involvement in the financial crisis. I want to switch gears and talk about globalization and the emerging challenges that the world’s economy faces in my final paper. In the United States, we have yet to see evidence of a sustained recovery in the housing market. Mortgages delinquencies for both sub prime and prime loans continue to rise along with foreclosures. The commercial real estate sector remains troubled. Two particular uncertainties include the phasing out of government programs that has propped up demand, and the houses working through the foreclosure process potentially resulting in an increase in supply of houses. Much uncertainty still remains as to whether mortgage rates will stabilize and not jump as a result of the phase-out, causing decreased demand for housing. The fate of the homes in the foreclosure process is another uncertainty. If there is a surge in foreclosures, there will be a significant increase in supply of houses on the market, which could damage prices and hinder recovery. Given such uncertainties in the economy the United States faces significant challenges.

As an advanced economy with slower growth, the United States will face difficulties of timing in phasing out stimulus programs. Nevertheless, this US-made recession has affected the entire world’s economy. In my final paper, I will analyze how this recession has affected the world and what programs have been developed to help overcome this recession. Financial institutions need to understand that their actions not only affect the United States economy, but the world’s economy as well. The era of new global financial challenges that the world has arrived at has indeed highlighted not only the interdependencies we see occurring in a globalized world, but also the deficiencies that plague the current world financial systems and institutions. Must global organizations set the standards and redefine the role of financial institutions?  How can global organizations meet the needs of the many challenges that became apparent after the 2008-2009 financial crisis? Should countries collaborate with each other to make these reforms? These are questions that I hope to answer in order to come to a discovery of a solution at large.

Enron on Broadway: Maybe Lay, Skilling, and The Gang Will Have More Success on Stage…

A scene from the hit play "Enron" at the Noel Coward Theater in London.

Apparently not much has changed since Enron’s bankruptcy and fraud ridden collapse in 2002.  It’s eight years later and Enron is still spending loads of money on new ventures of uncertain profitability.  However, this time the organization will actually have to earn its revenues by pleasing consumers on Broadway.

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Administrative Behavior in Enron

I thought it would be interesting to look at how the administrative system of Enron behaved throughout the life of the company.  There were changes in upper level management throughout the business life of Enron and not everyone acted the same as his/her predecessor.  Simon’s Theory of Administrative Behavior (Scott and Davis, 53) talks about an individual’s decisions, how organizations simplify said decisions, and ultimate goals and how they lead to the development of the means-ends chain.  “As DiMaggio and Powell stress, ‘March and Simon…taught us that organizational behavior, particularly decision making, involves rule following more that calculation of consequences'” (Scott and Davis, 56).  I thought it would be intriguing to take a look at how Lay, Kinder, Skilling and the others acted with regards to Simon’s theory. Continue reading

The Importance of Conflict

Organizations and society are both significantly influenced by the conflicts that take place within their respective systems. No system is spared from conflict between individuals or collective groups of people. As Davis and Scott state ” conflict and change are a part of organizational life no less than consensus and stability.”(82) As a result, to gain a better understanding of the functioning of a system, removed form the ideal of how it should operate, the conflicts that occur must be examined. Furthermore, conflict can inspire innovation that reshapes systems and society.

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My Nose, Other People’s Business

The post that I chose to write about, My Nose, Other People’s Business, comes from the perspective of a nosy person.  This post talks about how the writer enjoys talking to people about their business and how they are managing it and whatnot.  This particular person enjoys asking a lot of questions pertaining to how a person feels about their business, if they’re motivated, the direction the business is heading in, etc.  One question in particular that she likes to ask is how healthy or unhealthy the organization feels.

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