Communication and Assembly
In the context of an organisation, communication means an ability to find other individuals and organisations who wish to address the same motivator as oneself. Once communication is established and ongoing, the individuals have assembled and can be described as an organisation.
For much of the history of humanity we have only been able to communicate face to face, and this has limited our ability to form organisations. Indeed, it is interesting to note that the evolution of communication has followed that of the hierarchy of needs. Alarm calls are associated with a creature’s existence needs; mating displays with its procreation needs; behavioural symbols, such as grooming, dominance, etc., with its relatedness needs; writing and more long-distance communication with its growth needs.
Much of our interaction is still face to face, of course. So, individuals in an existing organisation, who experience the same motivator, can assemble physically to form a sub-organisation or an entirely separate one. Individuals in a community can also assemble physically. This is evidenced by the number of groups in the UK that protest against local building development.
However, in the present day, we also have technologies which enable us to communicate with many people over very long distances, e.g., the telephone, internet, etc. These technologies have developed over time. We have, therefore, become ever more capable of contacting others who are experiencing the same motivator, and thus, ever more capable of forming an organisation. This growth in our ability to communicate has contributed significantly to increasing social complexity. It has also contributed to our ability to respond to motivators, both positive and negative, and thus, to the nature of our societies. On the other hand, it has created new motivators of both types.
It may be necessary for a significant number of individuals to be affected by a motivator before they assemble into an organisation. The extent to which they are affected also has a bearing. The motivator must be of sufficient significance for people to find communication worth their time and effort. Thus, there can be a threshold below which an organisation does not form.
A charismatic individual or one willing to put in much time and effort can help in the assembly process. However, their personal motivation may or may not be the same as those affected by the motivator.
In the West, we have a fascination with organisational structure. Owing to their competitive nature, this is particularly the case for business organisations. There is, therefore, a vast body of information on the internet, and apart from describing the basics, I will not attempt to repeat it here.
Organisational structure defines how activities for the purpose and maintenance of the organisation are carried out. Usually, there is a division of labour. Each member’s role and how it fits into the overall system is defined. A simple club, for example, normally requires a chair, a secretary, and a treasurer as a minimum. Typically, organisations comprise a number of sub-organisations with particular responsibilities. They may be divided according to function, geography, or a matrix combining both. For example, a business may comprise several departments with responsibilities for procurement, production, marketing, and sales. A police force may be divided into northern, southern, and central departments.
Organisations also form part of larger parent organisations. For example, nations may combine to form political, cultural, economic, or geographical alliances. Smaller organisations in a nation may collaborate to form functional sectors, or geographical alliances.