This paper is submitted in requirement of the independent study in Leading Complex Organizations' for the MAOM program for the Spring Quarter.
The organization selected for study is the global company Nestlé Foods. The study is approached from the points of view of organizations as organisms and organizations as cultures. The bases are chapters 3 and 5 of Images of Organization, by Gareth Morgan.
Additionally, the paper embodies material and knowledge from my studies in other disciplines, especially Sustainable Human Ecology to which the organization as an organism correlates. Web material on Nestlé Foods has also been relied upon for this study.
The term organization is widely used to refer to entities such as companies, schools, hospitals, churches, banks, charities, et cetera. The most widely know of such an entity is the United Nations Organization, possibly because of her all embracing and international stature. There are also the Organization of American States' and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries'. It is worthwhile for good understanding to establish the basis of what is meant by the widely-used term organization'. Among the definitions given by Webster's Thesaurus are the following: institution; association; corporation; party; body; team; group; business; society; league.
[...] Thus Nestle Ghana followed the pattern and authority structures consistent with the parent Swiss company. The same organizational structures and position titles and hierarchies were conformed to in all the Nestle units I was familiar with. The same organizational code of conduct was required of every employee at whatever location, in context with the manual which was given to every employee. For each unit of Nestle, the corporate values and norms were conditions externally imposed and requiring compliance from the corporate headquarters at Vevey in Switzerland. [...]
[...] The view is that through ‘natural selection' method of survival of the fittest the environment eliminates the weak in favor of the fittest. This implies that competition weeds out weaker organizations, leaving the strong to dominate the market. While this is true to some extent, organizations of varying strength exist in the same industries. Government regulations may also prohibit monopoly, thus interfering with environmental forces. Monopolies may also exist through government policy, as in water, electricity and telecommunications sectors in some African countries to control prices. [...]
[...] From that location, known as Palais Nestlé, the company has spread its influence throughout the world. Nestlé began its globalization efforts in 1905. Today it sells its products in practically every country in the world. It has set up production plants throughout the continents in every region and in many countries. As far back as 20 years ago Nestlé's globalization reach had penetrated the iron curtain with operations in far Mongolia in Communist China where the state had monopoly over economic activity. [...]
[...] The internal members consist of the employees, the structures and the products that it manufactures. From my experience with working with Nestle Ghana for eleven years, there existed policies to regulate the internal ecosystem to ensure harmony and proper operations. There were employee policies, building and machinery maintenance policies and product manufacturing policies. The external ecosystem comprised the local community and the country as whole, governmental agencies, distributors, suppliers, customers, and other organizations. As an ecosystem member, Nestle Ghana had to maintain the status of a good corporate citizen. [...]
[...] This is in consonance with the view of organizations as organisms that must be good fit with the ecosystem within which they operate. The illustration is given of organizations in Japan which are viewed as collectivities to which employees belong. This mirrors Japanese culture of collaborative spirit of communities, in contrast with the western culture of individualism. Gareth Morgan concludes, therefore, that distinctive characteristics of many other organizational societies are all crucially linked with the cultural contexts in which they have evolved”. [...]
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