Structure and Behavior
The study of the structure on one hand, and the study of the human
behavior in the organizations on the other hand, must be combined
through a systematic study. Chiavenato, in reference to Schein, establishes
that it is necessary to remark the difference between behavior and
structure, the structural aspects are static elements in the organization
and refer to the arrangement of its different components, for example,
the departmentalization, the authority and the responsibility given,
the number of hierarchical levels, the control area or environment,
Schein says that "The deficiency of this approach is not in
the fact of being mistaken, but in the fact of being incomplete".
In order of being able to analyze an organization it is necessary
to understand it, which makes us, complementary, study its behavior
as a human group.
The behavior is dynamic and refers to the cultural norms which determine
the environment of an organization, to the quality of the human communications,
to the positions and functions assumed by the persons inside the groups,
to the ways in which problems are faced and resolved, to the values
and the methods of the organization, to the styles of leadership applied,
to the competence and cooperation between people and groups.
"Illusion and reality are the two big components of our lives.
But when we ignore reality, reality shows a revenge" José
Ortega y Gassett
One of the most dangerous illusions is the fact of thinking that
the development or the progress of the human being and the organization
can be generated just by modifications within the structures.
Just when the "social climate" is good and the relationships
between the members go on properly, when the business is exempted
of major conflicts and every individual is, at least, somehow motivated
and has understood the importance of harmony and group work, when
each worker feels he is improving as a human being through his work
within a shared activity in cooperation, it is possible to be sure
about the efficiency of the organization. Therefore, if the development
of the organization is pretended, the existent behaviors between people
and groups must be studied and something done about it.
Each organization, seen as a social system, tends either -depending
on the will of its high management positions or proprietary- to foment
determined values, habits, attitudes and behaviors within its integrants;
and generally by counter position, tends to discourage all those who
go against the "establishment" (according to the psychologist
and sociologist Guy Aznar this happens not only in the organizations
but also happens in the entire society.) This behavior, wished and
fomented by the organization, we should name it as the formal behavior,
the one expected by those who are the authority.
On the other hand, since the structures of the organizations are
filled by people, and given that they demonstrate, in different ways,
their personality in the execution of their work, framed by certain
styles of relationships with other individuals of the organization,
Chiavenato says that "these styles end up being structured as
traditions which reign over the variety of interpersonal relationships
within the organization". Such traditions hardly could be changed
just by the modification of the formal structure. Here we are, then,
in front of the phenomenon of informal behavior.
According to Chris Argyris, the organization is essentially dynamic
and is composed by formal and informal groups with different goals,
remarking three types of processes within it:
The socializing Process: each individual adapts his goals to the
goals of the organization, becoming an agent of the organization.
It can be noticed this way that there is a formal socialization and
an informal socialization.
The personalizing Process: each individual tries to satisfy their
The process of Fusion: According to Argyris is both processes (the
socializing and the personalizing one) match this produces the process
of fusion, confounding the goals of the individual and the goals of
the organization, being this situation, of course, the ideal level
a manager should wish reach. If this does not happen, an unbalance
will be produced which result will depend, on each case, from the
combination of the powers of the socializing and personalizing processes.