Committee Organizational Structure: Definition, Types, and Pros/Cons

What is Committee Organization?

A committee organization represents a group of people with various kinds of knowledge, which is formally constituted to solve specific problems of the organization. A committee helps to gather collective ideas and information, and properly analyze them which helps to make strong managerial decisions and solve difficult problems.

During the course of the operation committee organizational structure, various problems may arise in the organization, to solve such problems, the management constitutes committees by gathering the members from the concerned fields.

And, in accordance with the provided information and suggestions from the committee members, the management takes decisions and solves problems. This helps to minimize the workload of top-level management.

  • According to Newman – A committee consists of a group of people specifically designed to perform some administrative acts. It functions only as a group and required the free exchange of ideas among its members.
  • Fred Luthans – Committee consists of groups that are formed to accomplish a specific objective.
people are discussing in a committee of the organization

Types of Committee Organization

A committee is common in all types of organizations. A committee may be of two types: Executive Committee (Permanent Committee) and Advisory Committee (Ad Hoc Committee).

  • Permanent Committee (Executive Committee) – Permanent committees perform their functions on a regular basis. They are involved in the planning and decision-making functions of the organization. They solve all types of problems that crop up in the organization.
  • Advisory Committee (Ad Hoc Committee) – Ad Hoc Committee is formed for a specific purpose to play an advisory role. An Ad Hoc Committee is formed for a temporary period and automatically dissolved after completion of the given work or time.

The primary functions of a committee organization are to suggest and guide the management in decision-making procedures and in solving problems of various departments such as marketing, finance, production, personnel, etc.

Depending upon the size, nature, and situation of the organization various types of committees can be formed.

Related: What is a Line Organization? Meaning, Types, Pros, and Cons

Advantages and Disadvantages of Committee Organization

Advantages of Committee Organizational Structure

1. Quality of Decision

Quality of decision is one of the major advantages of committee organization. Here, members have knowledge from various fields, and experiences are gathered. Through gathering collective ideas and analyzing them they come to the right decision for solving the complex problems.

2. Setting Objectives, Plans, and Policies

Every organization is formed with definite objectives, to achieve them, and it is necessary to formulate plans and policies. Committee provides the framework for setting organizational objectives. It also provides suggestions and information for making plans and policies to achieve defined objectives.

Related: Organizational Structure: Definition, Types, Process, and Importance

3. Participative Management

Committee organization ensures the participation of competent members in management. Here, all the members have the right to put their ideas and views into the decision-making process. The democratic process is taken into consideration in the decision-making.

4. Reduce Bias and Conflicts

The committee facilitates the development of relations among members and their relation with the line management. They help in maintaining close communication and transformation of information among authorities.

Thus, there is less probability of bias or decision-making mistakes. In a similar way, the development of mutual relationships helps to resolve conflicts among members.

Related: 13 Easy Ways To Manage Conflicts in the Workplace

5. Dealing with Complex Problems

Committee organization facilitates dealing with complex and difficult types of problems. In some situations, during operation, many complex or critical problems may arise in an organization.

It is more difficult to solve such problems by line authority and even by the top management. In such cases, committees are formed by pooling experts from the concerned field so that it becomes easy to resolve such problems in a systematic manner.

6. Commitment To Implement

A committee is formed to resolve complex and difficult problems. Members of the committee are experienced experts in their own fields. Besides, expert representatives from top-level management are also involved in committees. They come to a conclusion after a detailed discussion and evaluation of the impact of alternative decisions.

7. Pooling Authorities

In the process of investigation and research, some authority of the top management is also shared among the committee members. The committee embers can perform their work independently by remaining within the defined area.

All the members have equal authority in the committee. Thus, executive levels come to a conclusion with the help and mutual consent of all the committee members.

Disadvantages of Committee Organizational Structure

1. Creating Conflict

Conflict is common in committees because of more heads. In some situations, committee organization creates confusion or conflicts in the decision-making process. Ideas or views of a member may be in conflict with the views of other members.

2. Delay in Decision

The committee members take more time to discuss the various factors of a problem. The valuable time the committee members spent on the discussion. The delay in the decision may result in an extra financial burden to the management.

3. Probability of Diversion

In some cases, committee discussion may be diverted to other subject matter. In such a situation, committee members can not come to a conclusion within the given time frame. They have to meet many times to come to a suitable outcome.

4. Tendency of Shifting

It is common to shift the tendency of decisions to committees. When the executives feel difficult to take a decision on important problems, they often shift it to the committee. This attitude of line authorities minimizes their initiative and creativity, which provides a negative impact on organizational performance.

5. Lack of Secrecy

Maintaining secrecy of internal matters is difficult in committee organization. All the members of the committee discuss the problems in detail and in the process they get knowledge about internal matters of the organization. Thus, there is more probability of leakage of internal plans and strategies of the organization.

6. Distribution of Responsibility

In committee organizations, most of the members are concerned about the decision-making process. In some situations, the committee may take the wrong decision and in such a case no members individually take responsibility for the wrong decision on behalf of all the members. Everyone wants to shift the responsibility to other members of the committee.

7. Splits Accountability

In a committee organization, nobody is held accountable for a decision made by a committee. A committee’s decision is known as nobody’s decision just because it is everybody’s decision. Problems in the organization may arise when any mistake is made in the decision-making process. And, nobody wants to take full responsibility for the mistake on behalf of all members of the committee.

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