Understanding organizations

Front Cover
Penguin Books, Sep 1, 1976 - Business & Economics - 447 pages
0 Reviews
Charles Handy's revolutionary 1989 bestseller The Age of Unreason catapulted him into the ranks of the top management consultants. Now, in this new edition of his acclaimed study Understanding Organizations, he solidifies his reputation as a seminal business thinker, offering a brilliantly insightful, wide-ranging look at business organizations.Long a bestseller in the United Kingdom, this classic text offers an illuminating discussion of key concepts of concern to all managers: culture, motivation, leadership, power, role-playing and working in groups. Ever mindful of actual business practice, Handy directly addresses how managers can translate the six main concepts into invaluable tools for effective management. He discusses how all organizations need to select, develop and reward their people; to structure and design their work; to resolve political conflicts; to lay down guidelines for their managers; and to plan for the future. In each case, the approaches and techniques described here are invaluable.Equally important, Handy excels at presenting his ideas in colorful, immediately accessible ways, filling the book with illuminating examples and inventive metaphors that range from Tolstoy's ideas on the concept of self, to the many meanings of "good morning," to the conversations that occur in a stopped elevator, to the proper size for a vineyard or an elephant. He shows, for instance, how an optical illusion experiment sheds light on interdepartmental relations, and how the way schoolchildren are typecast by their peers helps explain corporate hierarchies. And along with case studies, graphs, charts, and questionnaires, Understanding Organizations is peppered with boxed sections that offer advice and stimulate thought, brimming with provocative quotations from business wizards such as Peter Drucker, Tom Peters, Warren Bennis, Alvin Toffler, and Rosabeth Moss Kanter, as well as from Aristotle, Shakespeare, Gilbert and Sullivan, Gail Sheehy, and Joseph Heller.What the successful manager knows intuitively, Charles Handy puts into words. His powerful interpretive schemes will help managers grasp the underlying dynamics of their company, make sense of its past, and assess--and shape--its future.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Foreword
7
On the Motivation to Work
23
On Roles and Interactions
53
Copyright

15 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1976)

Charles Handy was born in Kildare, Ireland, in 1932, and was for many years a professor at the London Business School. From 1977 to 1981, Handy served as warden of the St. George's House in Windsor Castle, a private conference and study center concerned with ethics and values in society. He is now an independent writer and broadcaster who describes himself, these days, as a social philosopher. Other books by Handy include Waiting for the Mountain to Move, Beyond Certainty, and The Hungry Spirit.