Deal and Bolman in their book “Reframing Organization” theorized that organization can be analyzed and viewed via a series mental assumptions, and ideas or models. Persons employ these models to comprehend and negotiate the territory or entity. Deal and Bolman employed the phrase “frames” to depict the mental picture. According to them, an organization can be perceived via for main frames which include cultural or symbolic frame, structural frame, political frame, and human resources. This paper assesses Google Inc. organization based on the Bolman and Deal for frame leadership. Google is a multinational technology company that is American based and which specializes on products and services related with internet. These services and products include hardware, online advertising technologies, software, search, and cloud computing. The company was established in 1998 by Sergey Brin and Larry Page as a search engine. The company headquarters are located in Mountain View, California. The company’s mission is to organize the information in the world and make it generally useful and accessible. Its vision is to give access to the information of the world in a single click (Google.com, 1).
The Structural Frame
The structural frame is regarded as the classical or extra traditional method that is used to design and manage organizations. According to Bolman and Deal an extensively accepted organizational structure image comprises of top-down directives cluster, specialized tasks, close supervision, and sequential work. Structure offers a blueprint method.The organization leader attempts to implement and design a structure or process suitable to the circumstances and problems at hand. The goal of structure frame in an organization include to clarify goals of an organization, to control the external environment, to create a clear structure suitable to environment and task, clarify the authority line, and center on logic, facts and task rather than emotions and personality (Thompson, 1). Google contains a technically matrix organizational structure which is cross-functional in nature but with substantial level of flatness. This organization structure contains three basic features that include flatness, product based and functional based definition. The structure clearly defines individual roles, and tasks, and a clear cut line on the power boundaries; showing the senior personnel in each functional area and those who are accountable to the top in the authority.
The functional aspects define all employees based on their area of operation. For instance sales and marketing team, production team, design and engineering team, and accounting team among others. The company also classifies employees based on products they are involved in developing. For instance there are employees purposed for creating nexus devices and others who focus on fiber business. Google organization structure also contains some elements of flatness. This implies that although the company structure has hierarchical element where there are seniors to report to in each department, function or production category, the company’s groups, teams or employees can comfortably bypass middle management and directly report toEric Schmidt, the company CEO. Beside this the employees of the company can as well hold meetings and share information among teams.Although the flatness aspect of the company structure promotes the interaction between the executives and the workers, it may make middle management fell inferior and dishonored and thus, it may act as one of the company’s major weaknesses.
The Bolman and Deal approach is believed to be very helpful when information and goals are clear, when technologies are strong, when reactions of cause and effect are well understood and where is low uncertainty, low ambiguity, little conflict, as well as stable genuine authority.Bolman and Deal describe organizational structural frame as its environment, rules, technology, roles, policies, and goals. This is clearly portrayed in Google organization structure. The organization has clear goals that govern the organization operation. The organization focuses on organizing the information of the world and makes it generally useful and accessible.
To accomplish this, the company has adopted various modern IT technology and has also taken part in inventing more technological techniques to ease is service provision techniques and to create modern technological products which are unique and highly useful in transforming life of its users. Creativity is highly embraced in this company particularly in engineering functionality. This makes it easy for the company to create unmatchable products. Since its creation, Google has been operating under stable authority of a CEO who was initially Larry Page, the CEO roles are defined by the company and thus, even with a change of the CEO the company’s top authority must follow some protocol in operation. The company is currently operating under stable and genuine authority of Eric Schmidt (Smuthson, 1). The organization contains policies which governs the functionality of all in the company, particularly the suppliers and employees and which govern employees’ behaviors. To be able to continue working with the company the employees and the suppliers must a bid by the law that governs their general operations. These laws, policies and rules ensures that each stakeholder operate effectively based on their defined role and as per their line of operation in the Google company.
Google works with users globally those who have signed in and those who have not signed in. The company has diverse products which all depend on the internet. While some of its products appear to be public such Google search engine, there are other that are private such as Gmail and Google + account which ought to be private. In this regard, the company has rules that govern its customers or users across the globe which governs the use of these products. Most of the highly employed rules include privacy and security rules and measures. Google products depend highly on internet use which means there is always involvement of a third party to connect the company products to its customers or users. This sometimes subjects the company to some forms of conflict. Although these conflicts sometimes just impact the customers, there are others that are extended to the company creating some form of legal issues. For instance the company’s services and products have in some jurisdictions been subjected to blockages and restrictions which are government initiated. Such conflicting interference may yield to a loss of current advertisers and users, and augment the cost and impair the company’s aptitude to attract new advertisers and users and thus destroying the company’s growth and revenues.
The involvement of the third party; internet provider, in the company create a high level of uncertainty in the company’s operation and effective structural frame. The company’s financial goals and expansion objectives are highly determined by the company ability to sell its goods and services to the right individuals or to those who need them. Some of the internet providers are considering taking or have taken measures that include legal actions that would increase cost, disrupt, or degrade user access to various products of the company by prohibiting or restricting the utilization of their infrastructure to facilitate or support Google offering, or by altering increased fees to the company. This increases the company’s operation uncertainty. Despite this, some of the modern technologies could chunk online ads, an aspect that would highly harm the company’s business. Thus, despite of clear goals, rules, and policies, the company structure is experiencing a number of uncertainties which clearly impact its success and general operations (Abc.xyz, 12).
Human Resource Frame
The main human resources frame principles is the relationships, skills, and needs or the organization’s human element. The frame of human resource, as provided by Bolman and Deal, regards to individual’s commitment, energy, attitudes and skills as important resources with ability to either break or make an enterprise. The significance of this method is that organizations might be very energizing, creative, and productive place. Leaders who work based on this view perceive individuals as the organization core, and make an obligation to respond swiftly to the needs of the people. Loyalty and commitment are consequently garnered. Google human resource management system cannot be termed as the best based on Bolman and Deal provision.
However, the company is employing too much effort to ensure that it offer the best working environment for its workers by identifying human resources processes that are not embraced or that are despised by the workers. Normally, workers attitude, commitment and energy are normally influenced by how the company treats its workers. This includes the working policies and code of conduct governing the employees, employee development system, the adapted reward system, leaves and other benefits. The company tries to influence its workers attitude, skills and commitment by offering a work environment that gives them a chance to try their new skills and to employ their creativity.
Employees always get a chance to develop new things, to share ideas, to try their ideas using company resources and to even communicate directly to the company CEO in case on feels his or her ideas are viable but are being ignored by those on top of them in their line of authority.Google relies more on skilled personnel who play a great part in developing most of the company essential and unique product. The workers group is highly innovative and creative and thus, standing as the backbone of the company’s success. The company thus focuses more on hiring and retaining main and qualified personnel who play a great part in ensuring that the organization is serving its customers as needed and producing the best products ever. Google performance depends more on efforts and talents of highly skilled people (Abc.xyz, 5).
The Bolman and Deal human resource frame stresses both on empowerment and support.Google has highly invested in its human resources development by employing more of its resources in human resources support and empowerment. The company clearly understands that its future success relies on its growing ability to retain, identify, motivate, hire and develop personnel that are highly skilled for all organization areas of operations. The technology industry is experiencing great competition for qualified workers whereby some of the company’s competitors have taken direct interest to the employees working for Google. In this regard, the company is aware that it requires a lot of effort to ensure high level of workers retention.
However, Google has not employed all the measures it is capable of to ensure a high level of retention among key employees. The company employs equity award compensation programs and appreciates that this may not be enough in motivating and retaining existing workers or even attracting new workers in the company. Some of the measure the company has taken to try to empower its employees includes giving commendable compensation packages. The compensation packages of the company are above average and competitive. For instance the company offers high wages and salaries. The workers also receive free meals among other benefits and incentives. The company’s offices typical design emphasizes on creativity and fun which retain and attract innovative and creative workers. Mentoring and couching are used by the company’s human resources department as a way of developing and retaining workers with leadership ability. All this assist the company in increasing its level of human resource retention and attracting new ones (Lombardo, 1).
Based on Bolman and Deal the human resources-style business leader listens tentatively and communicates with openness and warmth. Issues are effectively and appropriately confronted, but in a supportive way. This approach is regarded to be usefully employed especially when morale is declining or low. Google has in the past demonstrated its ability to investigate problems being experienced by the workers in the company, especially those that would trigger workers turnover in the company. According to Manjoo (1), the company recently experienced a massive turnover from female workers from the company. Google human resource personnel were able to investigate the matter and established why female workers were not happy in the company. A thorough evaluation on the matter established variation with the maternity paid leave period given to women in California compared to other regions. While women in California received 12 months of paid maternity leaves, women in other regions only received 7 months of paid maternity leaves and consequently women felt unhappy about this and considered to move out to establish a better employer who would care for their needs. This revelation resulted to change of maternity leave plan in 2007 after an extensive consultation with women in the company, where new mothers were offered five months full benefits and full pay maternity leave. They were also permitted to split this time based on their wishes which included taking their maternity leave before their due day. In addition, the company started giving all new parents seven weeks off in all its branches in the world. This demonstrates the company’s ability to appropriately and effectively confront problems at hand and solve them effectively. The strategy Google employs to manage its customers can thus be regarded as one of the company’s strengths.
The Political Frame
The perception of power and power are the core of the political concept frame as presented by Bolman and Deal. This involves not just authority as uttered by the structural frame, but also as authority as gained though sets of skills, personality traits that include coercion, and personal reputation. The main political power of the Google Company comes from Sergey Brin and Larry Page the co-founders of the Google Company. The two demonstrated a great level of skills when they created the first search engine and used this idea to establish an international technology company which serves all individuals using network in the world. This built their reputation and demonstrated strong personality traits which are associated with hard work, and determination to beat all the olds. Larry and Sergey have also been involved in Google company expansion by facilitating mergers and acquisition, initiating for the development of new innovative products which makes Google rank at the top among other technology companies in the industries.
Bolman and Deal also perceives political frame of organizations as screaming and alive political grounds which host an intricate web of group and individual interests. Political leaders in this case comprehend the organizations’ political reality and can handle it. These leaders understand to manage limited resources and conflict. Conflict is controlled as political leaders develop a power base and utilizes it carefully. The leaders make agreements based on compromises. She or he is capable of assisting groups to see harmonies and makes them to operate as a team to attain the organization goals. This situation is clearly demonstrated in Google by the flatness of its organization structure. During Larry’s time as a CEO, he tried to increase the political power of a CEO by allowing workers, teams and groups to by bass their supervisors or immediate seniors and consulting him directly. This gave him an upper hand in understanding the needs of his employees and nurturing small ideas grown among individuals in a team or groups. This strategy helps the company CEO to handle any conflicting situation before it gets out of hands. In addition, it gives them an opportunity to negotiate with workers to reach into an agreement by making compromises on both ends. This ensures that the power of the CEO is felt by all in the organization. By doing so the company CEO is able to manage scarce resource of skilled manpower which is highly contested in the industry.
The company CEO and the two company founders; Larry and Sergey, have established weekly meeting with the company employees. They have also established the café or a special email where the company employees get the opportunity to directly ask question to Larry, Sergey and Eric among other executives regarding various company issues which are taking place or that are intended to be implemented. The company café and offices are structured to inspire connections between the employees and the staff across and in teams, and to initiate a conversation regarding play and work. The company’s top executives have employed this technique to ensure that they always have a chance to read the employees climate, mood, and attitude and to identify any aspect that would cause chaos in the organization in the future. This gives them a chance to come up with strategies to harness the situation before it start affecting workers performance and hence organization running. This is one of the company’s leadership strength (Google, 1).
The Cultural/Symbolic Frame
The symbolic or cultural frame according to Bolman and Deal seeks to illuminate and interpret primary issues of belief and meaning which make symbols very powerful. It portrays a world that is very diverse from traditional standards of linearity, certainty, and rationality. In this case, stories, vision, ceremonies, myths and rituals that assist people to establish passion, purpose, and meaning are the key. This method is organic in nature, and it is runny, recreated, and continually renewed as the organization changes. The symbolic or cultural organization leader depends on developing a foundation of common values and beliefs and in this manner mean is created eventually. Since its creation Google adapted the “Google” logo which originated from the phrase “googol” which is the mathematical phrase for a 1 followed by zeros, 100. This has always been the company’s long since it was established. However, the company has been changing its choreography from time to time. It also changes the colors of the letters from its initial design in 1997, it adopted a new choreography and colors in 1998 and in 1999, the company changed its design again. However the colors that were adopted during this time remains. This logo has stood as the main symbol which identifies Google among other companies in the world. The symbol is extensively known for the company search engine which the most popular search engine in the world. The symbol makes it easy to identify the company’s products, including the upcoming and less popular products. Google symbol represents the company’s image and most of the customers get to buy their new products even without having a lot of information about it since the company has managed to develop brand loyalty to its customers. Thus, this logo or symbol has played a great part in growth and development of the company and thus, it is one of the company’s strength (Google.com, 1).
Google Company has since its creation embraced the culture of creativity, innovation and teamwork. Thus the Google symbol always creates the picture of innovation and creativity to all who sees it. This culture act as the major reasons as to why the organization has always been successful and highly competitive in the past. The symbol therefore acts as the brand strength and it play a great role in marketing new products in the company. To workers the Google logo symbolizes an organization that honors skills and talent. The company has a culture of hiring determined and smart individuals, with high ability to innovate and come up with creative ideas. The company prefers ability more than experience (Smuthson, 1). Despite of all the company workers sharing common visions and goals the company embraces a culture of diversity. The company employs workers from all cultural background, and ethnicity to represent the global audience, just like the customers the company serves. The company also have a culture of providing its workers with fun activities that include foxtrot, Frisbee, beekeeping, and cycling. Thu to workers and job seekers, Google is perceived as a perfect work environment where talent are natured, where individual uniqueness is valued, and where workers get a chance to grow professionally and enjoy life. The company tries to uphold an open culture which is frequently related with start-ups where each person directly plays a part and feels at easy sharing opinions and ideas. Google culture is considered as the main contributor to the organization great success experienced year after year and thus it is one of the company’s main strengths (Google.co.uk, 1).
Recommendation on the Organization Leadership Based on the Four Bolman and Deal Frames
Google Inc. is a very powerful company that has established a strong form of leadership which has enabled it to grow and to expand internationally. It is the leading company in the globe in most of the products it offers, the most popular products being its search engine. Some of the company’s weaknesses based on the Bolman and Deal frames include the structural flatness that provide general workers an opportunity to bypass their immediate supervisors or middle managers and communicate directly to the company CEO or founders. Although this has got its own advantages especially in the political frame, this may make middle managers to feel undermined. This can affect their usefulness in the organization. To resolve this, the company should consider establishing a strategy where hierarchy is respected and the direct connection can still be implemented. For instance, hierarchy should always be respected in functional or product related matters such that in case an employee has an issue directly related to his or her area of operation, the rules should dictate that that issue be handled first by the immediate manager and if it needs further clarification, it should be forwarded further by the manager to the CEO, where by the involved employee should be involved in its discussion. This will eliminate any negative feeling that can be created by by-passing an authority. Another major weakness is the involvement of the third party; internet provider to make the company products accessible. Although is a tricky issues which impact the company marketability, since some even block the access of Google product through their internet platform. To resolve this, the company should consult wider before creating or releasing a product to ensure that their products are accepted by all. It should also consider making a partnership with the main internet providers in the world to ensure that their products are accessible to all and no limitation or restriction employed to their access.
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