How to Run Any Organization

By Theodore Caplow | Go to book overview
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2: Communication

The Guv'nor addresses:

Co-Director Michael Yates as Mike Assistant Director Michael Yates as Michael Sectional Manager Michael Yates as Mr. Yates Sectional Assistant Michael Yates as Yates Apprentice Michael Yates as Michael Night-watchman Michael Yates as Mike

STEPHEN POTTER


Communication and consensus

The manager's task of holding the organization together requires an adequate flow of information upward and downward, and inward and outward. The adequacy of this information flow is measured by the consensus that results from it; that is, the extent to which members of the organization come to agree about the organization's goals.

With high consensus, an organization will have few quarrels; with intermediate consensus, there will be many quarrels, but most of them will be resolved or contained; with low consensus, there will be frequent and severe conflicts and any one of them may lead to a crisis.

Communication and consensus are intimately related, but the relationship is too complex to be reduced to a simple formula. On the one hand, the improvement of consensus ordinarily requires

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