chapter  V
16 Pages

Co-ordination

I HAVE said that we find responsibility for management shot all through a business, that we find some degree of authority all along the line, that leadership can be exercised by many people besides the top executive. All this is now being increasingly recognised, and the crux of business organisation is how to join these varied responsibilities, these scattered authorities, these different kinds of leadership. For a business, to be a going concern, must be unified. The fair test of business administration, of industrial organisation, is whether you have a business with all its parts so co-ordinated, so moving together in their closely knit and adjusting activities, so linking, interlocking, inter-relating, that they make a working unit, not a congerie of separate pieces. In the businesses I have studied, the greatest weakness is in the relation of departments. The efficiency of many plants is lowered by an imperfectly workedout system of co-ordination. In some cases all the co-ordination there is depends on the degree of friendliness existing between the heads of departments, on whether they are willing to consult; sometimes it depends on the mere chance of two men coming up to town on the same train every morning.