Outcome: Types of Formal Organizations

Describe characteristics of formal organizations

We live in a time of contradiction: while the pace of change and technology are requiring people to be more nimble and less bureaucratic in their thinking, large bureaucracies like hospitals, schools, and governments are more hampered than ever by their organizational format. At the same time, the past few decades have seen the development of a trend to bureaucratize and conventionalize local institutions. Increasingly, Main Streets across the country resemble each other; instead of a Bob’s Coffee Shop and Jane’s Hair Salon there is a Dunkin Donuts and a Supercuts. This trend has been referred to as the McDonaldization of society.

What you’ll learn to do:

  • Understand the different types of formal organizations and describe bureaucracies
  • Identify the concepts of the McJob and the McDonaldization of society


The learning activities for this section include:

  • Reading: Formal Organizations
  • Reading: The McDonaldization of Society
  • Self-Check: Formal Organizations