Charles Handy is an eminent management guru who has delivered insightful and humorous analysis of the management task for many years. Highly respected, his "Gods of Management" has delightful, tongue-in-cheek moments. Handy can intellectualise, can carve open an organisation with surgical precision, but he does not suffer fools gladly, does not tolerate pretension, and can enliven intellectual analysis with wit and a down-to-earth, down-to-work approach.
Handy here looks at the management culture of organisations. He sees the typical bureaucracy as having a 'role culture', where everyone knows what job they do and gets on with it. Dynamic organisations he sees as often run by a 'club culture', where quick, intuitive decisions are possible. Then, there's the craftsmanship culture where everything is organised around the task. And, finally, he identifies an artistic, anarchic culture where people are committed to being creative and have little time for allegiance to anyone or anything else.
Handy's is a stimulating analysis and a vital tool if you are to give yourself enough distance to sit back and try to evaluate precisely how your own organisation works. What sort of culture does its management sustain? Could it be improved upon? A highly useful and stimulating analysis which I commend to anyone trying to understand how organisations work.