Organizational Effectiveness

Subject: Management
Pages: 5
Words: 1112
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: College

The idea of organizational effectiveness is of immense importance to organizational scientists and managers in public and private institutions. Organizational scholars perceive and define organizational effectiveness in a diverse array of dimensions. For instance, some goal-based approaches define organizational effectiveness in terms of an organization’s ability to attain a predetermined objective (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 31). They also portray effectiveness in terms of an organization’s ability to accomplish multiple goals, and the fit between an organization’s objectives and outcomes. The system based thinkers describe organizational effectiveness in terms of an institution’s ability to use the available rare and valuable resources. Scholars have also developed a variety of measures or standards of organizational effectiveness. Measurements and indicators of organizational effectiveness include efficiency, productivity, profit, growth, turnover, absenteeism, satisfaction, morale, control, cohesion, conflict, communication and stability among others (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 36). The concept of organizational effectiveness is especially crucial for non-profit making bodies because the providers of resources are concerned with the organization’s effectiveness and efficiency in achieving its goals (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 38). This essay discusses ways in which theories of organization can be used to manage a criminal justice personnel, and mechanisms of exercising control in an organization.

Theories of Organizational Effectiveness

The criminal justice personnel provide specialists in offender rehabilitation and community justice work. Its main clients are local authorities, youth offenders and probation services (Kania, 2008, p. 97). Theories of organizational effectiveness are essential in the running of the criminal justice personnel. The main categories of organizational theories include the classical views, human relations theories and contemporary theories. The administrative and bureaucratic perspectives constitute the classical theories of organization. The administrative approach explains how to improve performance and productivity by focusing on an individual employee and the overall management of an organization in totality. The main proponent of the administrative approach was Henri Fayol. Fayol coined fourteen precepts of management, which provide guidance on how to manage a firm. Fayol also identified the main managerial functions as preparation of plans, organizing and controlling.

The criminal justice personnel can achieve effectiveness by encouraging and promoting specialization in various activities or jobs. The management should match staff duties with the authority granted to the employee. The consultancy can achieve effectiveness by promoting unity of direction and command, discipline, cooperation, fairness, centralization of power and assuring employees of their jobs security. In addition, the specialists should be encouraged to give priority to the body’s goals, and be allowed to initiate ideas and implement plans independently (Kania, 2008, p. 111). Max Weber developed the bureaucratic model to explain how the powers of the management can be limited. The criminal justice personnel can use the theory by setting clear rules and hierarchical structures. The rules would ensure objectivity in the functions of management. The organization should also institute strict division of duties, clear flow of command and meritocracy.

The behavioral school demands that the human element be factored in the workplace and management. Notable proponents of this school include Mary Parker Follet, Hugo Munsterberg and Elton Mayo. Elton Mayo is accredited with establishing the human relations movement. This school of thought holds that when the human relations are good an organization registers acceptable performance. This school requires managers to know the psychological factors behind their employees’ conduct. The criminal justice personnel can apply the tenets of human relations by paying attention to the human resources, improving its employees’ welfare and encouraging team work and coupling individual rewards with group incentives (Kania, 2008, p. 127). The main contemporary schools of management and organization include contingency, systems, process and total quality management theories. The contingency theory holds that suitable management action is dependent upon the prevailing circumstances at the time. The criminal justice personnel can apply this perspective of management by addressing staff issues depending on the prevailing situation. The tenets of the systems theory propose that an organization run as a subsystem of a wider system (Kania, 2008, p. 127). Being part of the system the organization gets feedback on its performance from the environment. The organization should use this information to support and improve its personnel.

Ways of Exerting Control

Control is a vital function of management in an organization. It is the process of measuring performance against predetermined standards or plans, identifying deviations, finding the causes of variances and finally taking corrective action (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 148. Methods of controlling include establishing performance standards, measuring performance, setting up organizational structures and the human element controls. The management exerts control by setting performance standards. The standards take the form of clearly defined objectives on aspects such as sales and profit targets and market share. The senior management holds departmental heads accountable for the attainment of the set objectives through job descriptions (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 141). Executives track the attainment of set aims by measuring performance from time to time. On measuring performance, periodic review sessions and performance appraisal are used assess the extent to which has attained or fallen short of his or her targets. The management rewards employees who attain their targets while those who miss are put on programs to improve their performance. Budgets are one of the widely used performance standards across organizations. Budgets are organizations’ plans expressed in monetary elements such as cost, sales, profits, capital consumption and return on investment among others. They enable the management to see relationships and compare the outcome with the set standards. In addition, budgets are positive and convenient ways of establishing the causes of deviations and taking corrective action (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 141).

Organizational structures are also used to exert control on flow of work and performance. The structures are established to meet an organization’s unique functions and needs. The human relations also determine the acceptability of an organization’s outcomes. Human relations practitioners and scholars have identified critical human variables which are fundamental to control (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 167). Critical human variables which are measured in order to mirror success include supportive management, communication, motivation, training and development and performance appraisal. Control is also exercised through supervision. Supervision refers to scheduling, observation, monitoring and oversight of activities. Supervision provides a platform through which the management allocates work, evaluates completed tasks and make suggestions. Some organizational scholars also perceive the process of leadership as a method of controlling. Leaders use predefined rules to influence the conduct of employees in an organization. A leader sets performance goals to facilitate the work, encourages group interaction, provides performance feedback and provides support. Indeed, leadership is a form of personal control (More, Vito, and Walsh, 2012, p. 169).


Kania, R. E. (2008). Managing criminal justice organizations: An introduction to theory and practice. New Jersey, NJ: Elsevieer.

More, H. W., Vito, G. F., and Walsh, W. F. (2012). Organizational behaviour and management in law enforcement (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River: Prentice.