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Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership [Paperback]

by Lee G. Bolman, Terrence E. Deal
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)


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Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership 4.8 out of 5 stars (12)
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Book Description

August 27, 2003 0787964271 978-0787964276 3
In this third edition of their best-selling classic, authors Lee Bolman and Terrence Deal explain the powerful tool of "reframing." The authors have distilled the organizational literature into a comprehensive approach for looking at situations from more than one angle. Their four frames view organizations as factories, families, jungles, and theaters or temples:
  • The Structural Frame: how to organize and structure groups and teams to get results
  • The Human Resource Frame: how to tailor organizations to satisfy human needs, improve human resource management, and build positive interpersonal and group dynamics
  • The Political Frame: how to cope with power and conflict, build coalitions, hone political skills, and deal with internal and external politics
  • The Symbolic Frame: how to shape a culture that gives purpose and meaning to work, stage organizational drama for internal and external audiences, and build team spirit through ritual, ceremony, and story


Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Become a More Versatile Manager and a More Artistic Leader

In this third edition of their best-selling classic, authors Lee Bolman and Terrence Deal explain the powerful tool of "reframing." The authors have distilled the organizational literature into a comprehensive approach for looking at situations from more than one angle. Their four frames view organizations as factories, families, jungles, and theaters or temples:

  • The Structural Frame: how to organize and structure groups and teams to get results
  • The Human Resource Frame: how to tailor organizations to satisfy human needs, improve human resource management, and build positive interpersonal and group dynamics
  • The Political Frame: how to cope with power and conflict, build coalitions, hone political skills, and deal with internal and external politics
  • The Symbolic Frame: how to shape a culture that gives purpose and meaning to work, stage organizational drama for internal and external audiences, and build team spirit through ritual, ceremony, and story

The core of the book is reframing, a tool for finding new opportunities and options in confusing and troubling organizational situations. The authors show how multiple frames give leaders an edge in decoding organizational complexity. The new edition highlights current developments in organizational and leadership research. It presents new case examples from organizations such as eBay, Enron, Harley-Davidson, the New York City Fire Department, and the U.S. Marine Corps. The book also introduces "Organizational Theory’s Greatest Hits," text boxes that ground the book in the most influential scholarly work. The new edition also offers a rich mix of geographic, cultural, and gender diversity throughout.

Includes on-line instructor’s guide available at www.wiley.com/college/bolman

About the Author

Lee G. Bolman and Terrence E. Deal are the best-selling authors of Leading with Soul. Bolman holds the Marion Bloch Chair in Leadership at the Bloch School of Business, University of Missouri—Kansas City. He consults worldwide to corporations, public agencies, universities, and schools. Deal is the Irving R. Melbo Professor of Education at the Rossier School, University of Southern California, and an international consultant to business, health care, military, educational, and religious organizations.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 3 edition (August 27, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787964271
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787964276
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

More About the Author

Lee Bolman's most recent books include the 5th edition of Reframing Organizations, the 3rd edition of Leading With Soul (both with Terry Deal) and Reframing Academic Leadership (with Joan V. Gallos). Lee holds the Marion Bloch/Missouri Chair in Leadership at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Bolman and Deal's books have been translated into more than ten languages. Bolman lectures world-wide on topics of leadership, change, and spirituality at work. He holds a B.A. and Ph.D. from Yale. Born in Brooklyn, New York, to Midwestern parents, Lee is the father of six, and currently lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Visit his website at www.leebolman.com

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Without a doubt, this book is the authoritative source for applications of psychological motivations and group behavior analyses to how an organization views and reacts to change attempts. It also analyzes different change initiative styles and presents guidelines on how to see them through the eyes of each of the different frames.

The low rating on this book is because it's more useful as a reference than an immediate how-to guide or problem-diagnosis. To apply it, read cover to cover, perform an in-depth observation of your organization and your own skills, and then come up with a plan. So, like I said, it's comprehensive, but neither reads smoothly nor is it immediately applicable for most people.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars THE reference on organizational theory November 18, 2007
Format:Paperback
The fact that Reframing Organizations is often used as a university textbook should be a subtle warning that this is not a quick-read or how-to book. However, it is THE overview of the broad practice of organizational theory. Bolman and Deal utilize models based on four different views of the organization to show how to analyse and comprehend the dynamics of organizational structure and function. As a software engineer I found this "multi-model view to understanding" similar to how we model software systems from a variety of perspectives.

While comprehensive, the book is yet readable and accessible to the layperson, and quickly gives the reader a broad understanding of organizational dynamics and structures viewed through the lenses of the four "frames." This book won't give you quick practical fixes for your organizational problems - but it will give you a broad base of understanding for thinking about the problems you face in organizational life and understanding why your organization functions (or dysfunctions!) the way it does.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Covers All Bases September 3, 2007
Format:Paperback
Often when a book focuses on two distinct audiences (in this case, managers and students - future leaders as the authors say) it fails to satisfy either. Not the case with this classic, as it does a good job of providing a large body of theory and it makes the reading interesting and useful for a practitioner. The four organizational viewing frames - Structural, Human Resources, Political, & Symbolic - help the process of making a textbook readable, but the straightforward writing style, story examples, and real-life illustrations keep it alive, and maybe even keep the student reader awake.

Constantly reminding the reader of the need to `reframe' - look at the situation from a different window frame or pane - may be a useful way to understand a particular problem, but (and there is one but, besides the +430 pages of reading) because the book covers everything from structure to ethics you may not find it as useful to solve the particular problem you identify. The book is recommended for anyone interested in learning about organizations and how and why they function or dysfunction, as the case may be. Dennis DeWilde, author of The Performance Connection
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Making Sense of Organizations May 4, 2004
Format:Paperback
This is an outstanding book for people who want to figure out what is really going on in the organizations in which they work. If you cannot make sense of things at work these days, read this book. It is an excellent book on organizational reality.
This book should also be required reading for all "managers." If you are trying to "run an organization," do yourself, and the people who work for you, a favor. Read this book!
Finally, college and university professors should consider this book for their organizational behavior courses.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite book on organizations of all kinds February 17, 2007
Format:Paperback
I bought this book for a masters course in 1996. In ten years, this is the book I return to more than any other. Indeed, it is perhaps the only book out of all the books in the management coursework I return to again and again. I have bought it for friends going into their first jobs where they have to think about leadership and team-building, power and the drama of the workplace. It has value for me in that it goes beyond the content per se and invites and entrains my mind to stay flexible, because it asks the reader to see "reality" through multiple perspectives which are well-researched, critiqued and articulated in this book. Congratulations and thank you to the authors.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars required reading March 18, 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you're new to an organization or just new to the top position, this is a must read. It's straight to the point and very informative. I wish previous managers had read this prior to their promotions. I went through a management change at a previous job. While much of the new management had been well trained, my direct boss, however, was greatly lacking in management skills. This should be a must read for all new managers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By ymd
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My prof used it as a required text in the course I took. It's great! Through this book I can understand why things didn't work at my previous work experience at a higher ed. institution. I definitely recommend the book to everyone, including those who work at the social sectors as you'll understand why you need to use politics, pay attention to human resource and organization structure!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good reframing January 10, 2008
Format:Paperback
This book is still very timely, but I also highly recommend "Growing Great Employees" by Erika Andersen as an addition to this book. Growing Great Employees: Turning Ordinary People into Extraordinary Performers
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Required for MBA class
This book was required for my core management class and even our professor mentioned there are more effective books available.
Published 15 months ago by Jacksmumjenna
5.0 out of 5 stars Order arrived as described
I had a problem with this order, due to the post office not delivering it to me for almost 2 months. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Jackie
5.0 out of 5 stars Reframing Organzations
This was a book that was required for one of my Master level courses. It was a terrific learning experience that helped to guide me through all the different ways that leaders can... Read more
Published on November 28, 2011 by HLH
5.0 out of 5 stars Book Review
Once again Amazon was a reliable vendor. My used book is in great condition. It also arrived very quickly which was important.
Published on October 2, 2011 by dd
5.0 out of 5 stars Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership
Excellent reading for my profession and my look toward a career move into administration and leadership.
Published on June 24, 2009 by Dorothy Sherling
5.0 out of 5 stars super fast shipping
ordered wednesday afternoon, received book saturday!! in great condition. would definitely order from this seller again!
Published on October 4, 2008 by Debra Brind'amour
4.0 out of 5 stars Reframing Organizations is very good!
Though I had to purchase this book for a leadership class, after reading it, I thought it was very good with lots of useful information.
Published on January 26, 2008 by FAU Grad Student
4.0 out of 5 stars This book was enlighting!
I just started management school and this is the first book I had to read. I must say that if nothing else, this book was enlightening! Read more
Published on January 2, 2008 by Shafter
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast shipping, great condition, thank you!!!
This item was sent as described in a timely manner. Thank you to the seller!
Published on October 2, 2007 by Call me Felix
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