The Standardization of Efficiency and Its Implications for Organizations

Harry Hall


Time has become increasingly utilized as a tool for organizations to increase productivity and control workers. Since the advent of the mechanical clock in the fourteenth century, time has structured organizational experience. This increased precision has lead to the standardization of efficiency. The struggle for greater efficiency creates an organizational environment where the worker is dissociated and dehumanized--subsumed by the machine. Time and technology work in concert to improve efficiency In addition to the mechanical clock, computers and the Internet have also contributed to the conquering of time in the organizational sense. It is the instantaneousness of communication that has lead to the initial feeling of time being conquered. Social interaction is one of the fundamental drives of humanity, and this interaction is threatened by the standardization of efficiency. Implications for organizations are discussed, followed by an exemplar involving the changing nature of investing. Finally, ideas for reclaiming the pre-modern conceptualization of organizing are suggested.



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