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Requisite organization

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Industrial & Organisational : Introduction : Personnel : Organizational psychology : Occupations: Work environment: Index : Outline


In organizational development (OD), the concept of requisite organization was developed by Elliott Jaques, PhD, MD.

Requisite organization is a unified whole system model for effective managerial leadership. Jaques advocated that it is the only systematically scientific approach to the effective management of work systems.

Somewhat controversial since some of his conclusions about organizations run counter to the predominant values of OD, Jaques was interested in what makes some organizations highly effective, while others fail to function and produce.

The concepts and practices embedded in Requisite Organization result from over 50 years of systematic, multicultural application of numerous scientific discoveries about the nature of work and the nature of people's varying capacity for work.

Some of the key elements in his theory of organizations

  • Nearly all organizational dysfunction can be traced to poor structure and systems, not deficient employees.
  • OD interventions should focus upon fixing the system rather than fixing employees. Fixing the structure frees employees to work at the their full potential creating increased efficiency, effectiveness, and job satisfaction.
  • Examples of fixing the system and structure include science-based methodologies for:
    • matching employee capabilty to job complexity,
    • appropriately spacing employees capabilty with that of their managers to improve leadership and communication,
    • ensuring the right number of organizational layers,
    • explicitly defining managerial authority and accountabiity,
    • explicitly defining managerial leadership processes,
    • explicitly defining cross functional working relationships,
    • gauging compensation to job complexity (felt fair compensation).

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