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Understanding Organizations Hardcover – December 2, 1993

ISBN-13: 978-0195087321 ISBN-10: 0195087321 Edition: 4th

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Product Details

  • Series: Understanding Organization
  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; 4 edition (December 2, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195087321
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195087321
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.4 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,089,308 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"An exceptional book getting to the basics of an organization. The use of resource materials is the most accomplished." --Dr. Richard H. Fabris, Jersey City State College

About the Author


Charles Handy is a visiting professor at the London Business School as well as a writer and management consultant. His books include The Age of Unreason, Waiting for the Mountain to Move, and Inside Organizations.

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Customer Reviews

I also highly recommend reading all his books and listening to his audio recordings.
Stephen Parry
Although this book is not simple to read and is very comprehensive, it is an excellent introduction to understanding organisations (yes, just like the title).
Gerard Kroese
If you are interest in learning more, improving yourself, I highly recommend this book to you.
Hung Kwan Yee

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Gerard Kroese on December 30, 2000
Format: Paperback
Charles Handy is one of Britain's management gurus. This original edition of this book was written while he was professor at the London Business School. Although this book is not simple to read and is very comprehensive, it is an excellent introduction to understanding organisations (yes, just like the title).
The book consists of three parts. Part I introduces a set of models/frameworks, for better understanding of people and organisations. Handy selected six themes common to organisations - motivation, roles and interactions, leadership, power and influence, workings of groups, and cultures of organisations. Each of these themes receives an excellent, extremely in-depth literature review, which all have been updated in this 4th edition to include the latest literature and trends. Handy looks at each of these themes from various angles and does not really push the reader into any dominant one; "This book is eclectic. ... It is wise to be eclectic, to pick from each anything that helps, to compile the sort of personal anthology which is what book aims to be." In addition, Handy uses a large number of quotes from other academics to explain his comments.
In Part II, Handy looks at each of the themes introduced in Part I and their impact on organisations. This part is a lot less academic and Handy tries to apply the models/framework introduced in Part I into practice. "One bookcase for the theorectical models, another for the tips and hints on current practice. The discussion in this part is not intended to be a review of best current practice but rather an interpretation, often a provocative one, of the implications of some of the theories that we say we all subscribe to.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Parry on January 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
Charles Handy has been very influential shaping my attitudes to work, life styles and the management of organisations. This is a great primer for new students. I also highly recommend reading all his books and listening to his audio recordings.

His later works outline succinctly the demands changing corporations and globalization place on individuals and society. A very inspirational and thought provoking commentator, he positions the world of work in the larger context of ethics and morality. He also explores the human struggle to maintain individuality, spirituality, choice, freedom and dignity
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By kkant@singnet.com.sg on December 10, 2000
Format: Paperback
If you want a good grasp of the key concepts in organisational behaviour, Mr Handy has done a fantastic job of putting it in an inexpensively priced book which covers most if not all topics in the subject. In fact, even if you are not taking organisational behaviour as a subject, it is still relevant in Human Resource Management & Development courses. For the established HR practitioner, it would be a useful book to have on your work-shelf which you can occassionally dip in, to refresh yourself on key concepts.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It is easy to read, clearly written and with interesting citations and quote
It is written with knowledge and passion
It is a valid companion for any organisational behaviour handbook
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If other authors usually limit their book with one idea which they try to stretch to 220 pag book, then Handy doesn't promote one and his, but gives a holistic overview of what has been done by others and lets the reader to have a helicopter view of the subject.
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