Earlier we described the polarized view that many management theorists take toward the formal and informal organizations, but not all of them have been so aligned with one side or the other.
One person, Chester Barnard, stood out from the crowd in understanding how the rational and emotional interact in the workplace, and his work and wisdom now seem to have been well ahead of their time. A decade before “the happiness boys” hit MIT, Barnard not only explained that organizations were both rational and emotional, he also defined the terms informal and formal organization—one of the first business thinkers to do so. Unlike many of the theorists we cited earlier, Barnard spent most of his career as an ...

Get Leading outside the lines: How to Mobilize the (in)Formal Organization, Energize Your Team, and Get Better Results now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from nearly 200 publishers.