1939 - Kanada

The management theory of Henry Mintzberg basics are that management skills cannot be taught in a classroom, but can only be enhanced through authentic experiences - Emergent Strategies.


Mintzberg suggests that organizations can be differentiated along three basic dimensions:


(1) the key part of the organization, that is, the part of the organization that plays the major role in determining its success or failure;


(2) the prime coordinating mechanism, that is, the major method the organization uses to coordinate its activities; and


(3) the type of decentralization used, that is, the extent to which the organization involves subordinates in the decision-making process.


These roles defined in terms of managing: (managing by information), (managing through people), and (managing through action) are further broken down into organizational structure dominated by the following (5) styles:


The simple structure. A young company before its entrepreneurial founder has had to let go of some of the strings. Such organisations are often autocratic and, as Mintzberg put it, vulnerable to a single heart attack.


The machine bureaucracy. A company with many layers of management and a mass of formal procedures.


The professional bureaucracy. An organisation that is cemented together by some sort of professional expertise, such as a hospital or a consultancy. This is usually the most democratic type of organisation, partly because it is often set up as a partnership.


The divisionalised form. A structure where there is little central authority, but having clearly defined expectations. It is the form most frequently found among modern multinationals.


The adhocracy. This type of organisation frequently found in the computer world, is full of flexible teams working on specific projects. It is also the structure found in Hollywood and, according to Mintzberg, is the structure of the future.


Furthermore management fall into ten roles:

  1. Figurehead
  2. Leader
  3. Liaison
  4. Monitor
  5. Disseminator
  6. Spokesperson
  7. Entrepreneur
  8. Disturbance Handler
  9. Resource Allocator
  10. Negotiator


Famous Quotes:

  1. “Companies are communities. There’s a spirit of working together. Communities are not a place where a few people allow themselves to be singled out as solely responsible for success.”
  2. “Managers who don’t lead are quite discouraging, but leaders who don’t manage don’t know what’s going on. It’s a phony separation that people are making between the two.”
  3. “Technologies tend to undermine community and encourage individualism.”
  4. “If the private sectors are about markets and the public sectors are about governments, then the plural sector is about communities.”
  5. “This obsession with leadership… It’s not neutral; it’s American, this idea of the heroic leader who comes in on a white horse to save the day. I think it’s killing American companies.”
  6. “We’re all flawed, but basically, effective managers are people whose flaws are not fatal under the circumstances. Maybe the best managers are simply ordinary, healthy people who aren’t too screwed up.”
  7. “Basically, managing is about influencing action. Managing is about helping organizations and units to get things done, which means action. Sometimes, managers manage actions directly. They fight fires. They manage projects. They negotiate contracts.”
  8. “Strategy making needs to function beyond the boxes to encourage the informal learning that produces new perspectives and new combinations… Once managers understand this, they can avoid other costly misadventures caused by applying formal techniques, without judgement and intuition, to problem solving.”
  9. “Effective managing therefore happens where art, craft, and science meet. But in a classroom of students without managerial experience, these have no place to meet — there is nothing to do.”
  10. “Theory is a dirty word in some managerial quarters. That is rather curious, because all of us, managers especially, can no more get along without theories than libraries can get along without catalogs — and for the same reason: theories help us make sense of incoming information.”


The concept of an organization

"... a system which is composed of a set of subsystems..."


Features of an organization


Composed of individuals and groups of individuals
Oriented towards achievement of common goals
Differential functions
Intended rational coordination
Continuity through time

Structure of an organization

Definition"... institutional arrangements and mechanisms for mobilizing human, physical, financial and information resources at all levels of the system..."



  • Division of work into activities
  • Linkage between different functions
  • Hierarchy
  • Authority structure
  • Authority relationships
  • Coordination with the environment



  • Complexity
  • Formalization
  • Centralization


Connsiderations in designing organizational structure






Principles of Organizational Structure



Unity of command
Scalar principle
Responsibility and authority principle
Span of control
- functional
- product
- users
- territory
- process or equipment


Rationale for assembling institutional units

 Grouping of staff

 · Disciplinary

· Functional
· Commodity or production area
· Geographical
· Project

 Flow of authority

· Line
· Matrix
· Modified matrix