1. Making direct reference to your reading assignments, explain what is meant by the machine metaphor of modern organizations. How does this machine metaphor of organizations apply to Weber's concept of bureaucracy?
2. Please provide a detailed example of how at least one contemporary company has successfully employed scientific management principles. (Doing research on the company will enhance your answer. Be sure to properly document any sources you used.)
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1. As you explicate the machine metaphor, I feel like the notions of routine and structure strongly characterize modern organizations so well. Since modern organizations have targeted goals, mission statements, and blueprints, they embody so much precision, like a machine encompasses.
At my last job, for example, we devoted the first few months on the job by creating "Smart Goals" collaboratively as a team. These goals covered both short and long term objectives for an entire year, thus validating the importance within modern organizations to have structure, precision, and order.
Similarly, since a machine has a definite, predictable order to it, there is typically a hierarchy also involved in an organization's overall structure as well. It is also epitomized by efficiency, predictability, and a sense of routine, much like a washing machine or blender!
In my last job, for example, organizational structure warranted a chief leader who was followed by an assistant; under the assistant, we were organized ...
Weber's concept of bureaucracy is examined using the machine metaphor in this short tutorial.