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A Very Short, Fairly Interesting and Reasonably Cheap Book About Studying Organizations (Very Short, Fairly Interesting & Cheap Books) [Kindle Edition]

Chris Grey
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £14.99
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Book Description

Electronic Inspection Copy available for instructors here

The first two editions of this book were a runaway success with students who loved the lively, focused and challenging discussion of classical and current ideas about organizations and their management.


This new edition, which can be used across a range of management courses, has been updated in light of the continuing financial and economic crisis. It shows how this grew out of a thirty year experiment in 'new capitalism' and links this to changes in the world of work organizations in terms of growing insecurity and inequality and to shifts in the status of management. Containing a new foreword, the third edition provides a challenging discussion of core, classical ideas but also covers issues such as new forms of control, identity regulation and the ethics and politics of studying organizations.


Chris Grey shies away from the sterility of conventional textbooks, offering students an accessible and palatable overview of the field of organization studies that questions and challenges the traditional literature.

Click here to visit Chris Grey's accompanying blog and read his comments on current news stories and how they relate to themes in the book.

Product Description


'Loved the book. I read it quickly. I will re-read it with a pencil in hand this time'
Patrick Nadeau
Software Consultant

'A highly entertaining polemic...This slim volume more than lives up to its title' -
Stefan Stern
Financial Times

'One of the most valuable and interesting books we have read during our MBA at Cardiff inspiration to us' -
Eleni Platitsa
MBA Student, Cardiff Business School

'Grey...has important things to say and he says them with rigour, warmth and a great deal of intelligence...He informs the analysis with humour and humility. It is the most valuable management book I have ever read' -
Debora Campbell
Australian Financial Review BOSS Magazine

'Chris Grey has produced a book many of us have wanted to write for a long time, but have not had the guts to do' -
Andreas Diedrich
Goteborg University, Sweeden

'A highly readable, insightful and enjoyable up-to-the-minute text' -
Marta Calas and Linda Smircich
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA

'I've been waiting for someone to come along and write a book such as this one' -
Janne Tienari
Lappeenranta University of Technology, Finland

'It helped open my eyes to the organizational world around me' -
Kyle Parker
First year undergraduate student in Business Studies, Massey University, New Zealand

'I would like to thank you for such an interesting book that I couldn't put down' -
Kate Sweeney
MPA student Liverpool University

'Very much enjoying reading "A Very Short...About Studying Organizations" - the chapter on Fast Capitalism and the End of Management seems particularly apposite at the moment. Very reflective of some of the themes I am teaching at the moment (and getting into arguments about!)' -
Hugh M. Davenport, Senior Lecturer - Field of Leadership & HRM
University of Northampton

'I wanted to write to you to tell you how much I appreciate your book - as evidenced by the coffee stains and frayed edges, it is a book I cannot live without and I will use it as I continue my education and in to my career' -
Wanda V. Mitchell
Masters student in Healthcare Management and Organization Development, Milano, The New School for Management and Urban Policy, New York

'Indispensible and subversive' -
Simon Caulkin
The Observer

'Every page has something interesting to say, a great example, a sharp polemic, a superlative popularization, a thought-provoking eccentricity or a new take on something banal and tired' -
Yiannis Gabriel, Professor of Organizational Theory
University of Bath

'This book has carved itself a permanent spot on my bookshelf as I ordered a fresh copy off Amazon after the library finally took their copy back' -
Tim Hannigan
Masters student in Information Systems, London School of Economics and Political Science

'This is a racy read and rightly challenges the stuffy, often unreadable prose found in academic outlets' -
Royston Greenwood
University of Alberta, Canada

About the Author

Chris Grey is Professor of Organization Studies at the School of Management at Royal Holloway, University of London. Before that he held Professorships at the Universities of Warwick and Cambridge. He is also Visiting Research Fellow at Cambridge and has been Velux Foundation Visiting Professor at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark, Visiting Professor at the Université Paris-Dauphine, France and a Visiting Fellow at the Stockholm Centre for Organizational Research, Sweden. Between 2010 and 2012 he was a Leverhulme Major Research Fellow. For six years he was Editor-in-Chief of Management Learning and is currently an Associate Editor of Organization and a European Co-editor of the Journal of Management Inquiry. Apart from publishing numerous articles in academic journals, he co-edited Rethinking Management Education (Sage, 1996), Essential Readings in Management Learning (Sage, 2004) and Critical Management Studies: A Reader (Oxford University Press, 2005), co-authored Making Up Accountants (Gower Ashgate, 1998) and is the author of Decoding Organization. Bletchley Park, Codebreaking and Organization Studies (Cambridge University Press, 2012). He currently has an eclectic mix of research interests, including the organization of intelligence and security agen­cies, but his real passion is detective novels and he will one day write the definitive contribution to that genre. He was born in Croydon (Britain’s ‘New Manhattan’!) in 1964 and may very well be one of the leading organizational theorists that town has produced.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 447 KB
  • Print Length: 184 pages
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd; Third Edition edition (23 Oct. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #95,176 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the best! 8 Feb. 2014
This is a book I keep coming back to - and remembering....
The title is very misleading – this is a book about power which, for me, contains more incendiary material than Marx, Lenin, Che Guevara and Al-Quada rolled together. It is written by an academic who can actually write clearly - and who sees it as his job to interpret for us the significant parts of academic work. Although I have some tough comments, it is one of the best reads!
The book promises much at the start - with iconoclastic attacks on the types of writing about organisations - but left me, at the end, only with the impression sociologists generally do and which indeed the author anticipates half way through in a paragraph entitled - Why are you always carping? "You may well be thinking, he says, something along the lines - will nothing ever satisfy you? Older approaches to organisations have been condemned as dehumanising and degrading. Human-relations-type approaches are manipulative. Culture management is brainwashing. Now we have non-hierarchical, personally-focused and trust-based organisations (he attacks Richard Semmler's writing about Semco) and you are still whinging". Quite!
I know you can't say a great deal about the study of organisations in 180 pages - but the book's de-constructivism is a bit repetitive.
And I was shocked to see no references to those whose study of organisations were practically grounded and focussed - eg those associated with the Tavistock Institute such as Emery and Trist; or Revans (action-learning). No mention of Eliott Jacques who was associated with Glacier Metal. Nor of the OD consultant, Roger Harrison, who worked with Charles Handy (also not mentioned) on the idea of organisational cultures (The Gods of Management).
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars 15 Nov. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
book bought by mistake but none the less interesting iin its content.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 13 Feb. 2015
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An excellent little book that does exactly what it says on the tin.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
5.0 out of 5 stars I like it, but my undergraduates--not so much 22 Feb. 2014
By PhDBlonde - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I like the fact that Grey expresses common sense on a solid foundation. Do organizations change? For the most part, not really. Hierarchies have been around since time commenced I suppose. This text is a solid look at the view that doesn't espouse TQM, SIx Sigma, culture management and the like as a way to organize and manage. It's refreshing actually!
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