Definition of an organization? Characteristics and types

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In this session, we will discuss the definition of an organization and its characteristics organization, types of organization.

Definition of Organization?

According to the definition of organization. The organization is the backbone of management because without an efficient organization no management can perform its function smoothly. Organizations need people and people need organization. Organizations are important at every level of human life. They surround us. They have become a part and parcel of our life. People are born into an organization. They are educated by the organization. Most of their life is spent working for the organization.

Organizations in human associations. They are established to achieve goals. The organization has a structure. They have the technology. Organizations are complex. They operate in a dynamic environment.

In other words, the definition of an organization refers to the act of putting things into a logical order or the act of taking an efficient and orderly approach to tasks, or a group of people who have formally worked together.

According to Amitai Etzion

Organizations are Planned units, deliberately structured for the purpose of attaining specific goals.

Robbins and Decenzo define the definition of organization:- Organization as a systematic arrangement of people brought together to accomplish some specific purpose.

Ricky Griffin defines the definition of organization:-Organization that is a group of people working together in a structured and coordinated fashion to achieve a set of goals.

In the session on the definition of an organization, we will also discuss the characteristics of an organization.

The characteristics of an organization can be dedicated to the following points.

  1. Goal-orientation
  2. Collection of people
  3. Structure
  4. Technology
  5. Contunity
  6. Environment
Definition of an organization? Characteristics and types


In the whole world of organization and whole people of the world are struggling to achieve something that’s one is Goals. So that goal is that part of an organization or people life whole are thinking to achieve them. So organizations are goal orientation. Goals are created by the organization. Goals provide a reason for the existence of the organization. They provide direction and guide the action of the organization. organizations are end results to be achieved. They have shared goals. (Goal can be derived from of single or multiple. The importance of goals is survival, profit, growth, welfare, leadership, efficiency. Goals bind the organization member together. (definition of organization).

Collection of People

People are that part of an organization where people can’t be work there the organization can’t be achieved them any organizational goals, so that organization is a human association. They make the organization. its consists of people working together. People have established goals. They perform a variety of activities to achieve goals. People interact with each other at work in an organization, so that there is born social interaction.


Structure defines job and relationship. The structure involves differentiation of activities and integration of efforts. Differentiation is concerned with the division of work. Division of work is divided individually among the whole of organization members. The work is subdivided into tasks to achieve specialization. A hierarchy of authority is established and responsibility is defined. Integration is concerned with the coordination of individual efforts. it achieves unity of action and harmonization of efforts. it links the activities of various units. it keeps the activity goals focused. The position and the responsibility in the organization of people formally defined by the structure. It tells what they are supposed to do. Rules, norms, and standards guide their behavior. (definition of organization).


We all know about technology. Technology is the type of character display in the organization. like if there is no technology in the organization then the organization can’t be performing anything. So that technology needs organization. organizations transform inputs into outputs. People use technology to perform activities. So it is represente by equipment, techniques, skills, and processes. It is essential for the functioning of the organization.


Continuity provides stability. Most organizations have continuity. Organization involves people, and people generate different needs, they can leave the organization or some may die too. This doesn’t affect the organization to stop and increase or decrease in the size. that’s why every organization has its own continuity. like that, A good manager can leave but another better man can take over the charge of the organization. organization adapts to changing environments to survive.


This one is the last topic which is the environment. Organization exits in a dynamic environment. it is influence by the environment also the environment is influence by the organization. So that the forces in the environment are economic, social-cultural, political, and technological. All influence the ability of an organization to attain goals.

In the session on the definition of organization, we will also discuss the types of organizations and their advantages and disadvantages.

The types of an organization can be dedicated by the following points.
  1. Functional organization structure
  2. Divisional organization structure
  3. Matrix organization structure
  4. Line or scalar organization structure
  5. Line and staff organization structure
  6. Horizontal or flat organization structure
  7. Network organization structure
Definition of an organization? Characteristics and types

Functional organizational structure

According to the functional organizational structure. It involves the position with the level of responsibility at the top and goes down from there. functional organization structure is one in which managing and directing the employees, are group as per the functions or types of work.

This type of organization is advantageous because each supervisor is specialize in a particular field and he attends to one factor in all the departments. Sometimes is call this type of organization “Taylor’s organization” so that this type of organization was the first time introduce by f.w Taylor. So Taylor said that the well-qualified Forman required brain, education ( special or technical knowledge) manual strength, tact, energy, honesty, judgment or common sense, and good health. (definition of organization)

So Taylor believes that a man with three of these qualities could be hired at any time. If four were required, it was necessary to secure a higher-priced man. Therefore, Taylor employe functionalize bosses and as for as the workman was concerned, instead of coming in contact with the management at one point, so that only he was to receive his daily orders and help directly from eight different bosses.

Advantages of functional organizational structure
  1. This system provides more specialized knowledge and guidance to individual workers through experts.
  2. This system helps mass production by standardization and specialization.
  3. Unnecessary overloading of responsibilities will not be there, as was in the case of line organization.
  4. If any operation needs improvement, it can be improve even up to the last moment.
  5. Considerable expansion of the factory is possible.

The disadvantage of functional organization structure

  1. Shifting of responsibility is possible.
  2. It is complicate from the control point of view as every functionalized expert feels himself to be superior to the over and there is no one-man control over the workers. so that, it makes discipline problems difficult to solve among lower level.
  3. By employing high-waged experts, the total cost of a job may become high.
  4. Their initiative cannot be utilize. As line workers will not be using their skills.

Divisional organization structure

According to the divisional organizational structure. it involves dividing the whole activities in the organization. like that each division can have its own marketing team, sales team, IT team, etc. The structure works well for large companies. Empowers the various divisions to make decisions without everyone having to report to just a few executives. Depending on your organization’s focus, there are a few variations to consider. (definition of organization).

Market-based divisional organizational structure. it is separate by market, customer, or industry types. A large consumer goods company, like Target or Walmart, might separate its durable goods ( clothing, electronics, furniture, etc.).

Product-based divisional organization structure:- It is separate by product line. for example, a tech company might have a division dedicated to its cloud offerings, while the rest of the divisions focus on the different software offerings. like that Adobe and its creative suite of illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, etc.

Geographic divisional organization structure:- It is separate by region, territories, or districts, offering more effective localization and logistics. Companies might establish satellite offices across the country or the globe in order to stay close to their customers.

Matrix organizational structure

A matrix organization has a complicated structure in which the reporting relationships are set up as a matrix grid instead of the traditional vertical hierarchy. Employees in a matrix organization generally report to both a product or project manager as well as a functional manager For example a department head. The structure facilities the horizontal flow of information and skills.

In matrix organizations employees must report to more the one person. Matrix management structures are found mainly when there are big projects or product development processes. The drow on employees from a wide range of functional disciplines for assignment to a team. However, the employees still remain in their respective positions. (definition of organization)

There are three main types of matrix organization

Weak functional matrix-The project managers have only limited authority. The balanced functional matrix-The project manager is assigned to oversee the project. power is shared equally with functional managers. The strong functional matrix-The project manager is primarily responsible.

The advantages of matrix organization are summarize here
  1. Supervisors have the flexibility to choose the best employees for a project.
  2. It allows a dynamic organizational chart with varying responsibilities for employees.
  3. Employees have the opportunity to learn and foster skills outside their primary roles.

Also, the disadvantages of matrix organizational structure are summarize here

  1. There could be conflicts of interest between the needs for project organization and department organization
  2. The organizational chart is prone to regular changes.
Line or Staff organization structure

Line and staff organization is a modification of line organization and is more complex than lined organization. The line and staff organizational structure can be seen in a large organization. The functional specialistic and order to the line and staff organization. The staff has basically advisedly nature and useful doesn’t process command authority over the line managers. So in an organization that has the production of text style. The production managers marketing manager, finance manager. Maybe treated as line executed and the department header by then maybe called line department. (definition of organization).

In other words, personal managers deal with the requirement, training, and replacement of workers. The quality control manager ensures the quality of the product and the public relations manager is the executed performance staff function.

And the advantages of line and staff organizational structure are summarize here.

Line officers can consistent mainly on the doing function. As the worker of planning and investigation in the performance by the staff. The specialization provides for expert advice and efficiency in management. Science the organization comprises line and staff function. The addition can be taken essay. The staff officers supply complete factual data to the line officers. Covering activities within and without their own units. This will helps to great coordination.

Also, the disadvantages of line and staff organization structure are summarize here

Confusion and conflict may arise between line and staff because the allocation of authority and responsibility is not very clear and the members of lower-level may be confused by various line orders and staff advisors. Staff generally advise the line and the line decides an act. Therefore the staff feels powerless too much reliance on staff officers. May not be beneficial to business because line official may lose much of their judgment and limited. ( definition of organization)

Horizontal or flat organizational structure

The flat organization has a structure with few levels of middle management between leadership and employees or in some cases no middle management at all. Small organizations and startups often have flat structures because they have fewer employees and less of a need for hierarchical management.

And the advantages of horizontal or flat organization structure are summarize here

  1. Greater communication between management and workers.
  2. A better team as fewer management layers increases interaction between employees on different levels(layers).
  3. Less bureaucracy and easier decision making
  4. Fewer management layers may reduce costs as managers cost more than non-managers. Also, employees at the higher levels in the organization expect to be paid more than those on the lower levels.

Also, the disadvantages of horizontal or flat organization structure are summarize here

  1. Employees may have more than one manager as there are a number of managers at the same level in the organization.
  2. May hinder the growth of the organization especially if managers have wide spans of control.
  3. Structure limited to small organizations such as partnership, cooperative, and private limited companies.
  4. Lack of layers may reduce opportunities for higher-level strategic management.
Network organizational structure

The network structure is a newer type of organizational structure view as less hierarchical, more decentralized, and more flexible than other structures. In a network structure managers coordinate and control relationships that are both internal and external to the firm. (definition of organization).

And the advantages of network organization structure are summarize here

  1. Motivated functioning in the hub organization
  2. Utilization of best capabilities
  3. less environmental uncertainty
  4. Flexibility of structure
  5. Boon for small firms

Also, the disadvantages of network structure are summarize here

  1. Coordination the biggest problem
  2. Problem of reliability
  3. lack of close control

Relates articles

  1. Meaning of Centralization | Features, Types, and Importance
  2. Delegation of Authority | Meaning, Types, Process, and Importance
  3. Meaning of Authority | Characteristics, Types, and Importance
  4. Process of Structuring an Organization | organizational structure types
  5. Approaches to Organizing | 3 Important Approaches

35 thoughts on “Definition of an organization? Characteristics and types”

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