Traditionally books on organization have a chapter on Line and Staff. Today this is too simple a distinction to cover all the different kinds of relationships that can exist between managers and specialists and the varying problems that may arise. Managers have to deal with an ever-increasing number of specialities which develop out of new technology, such as the computer, or which, as the result of increasing complexity, are hived off from the manager’s job, such as long-range planning staffs. Managers stand in many different kinds of relationship to these varied specialists. Large organizations have a wide array of specialists, but small organizations are also likely to need some specialist help. The aim of this chapter is to look at these relationships, to analyse the kind of problems that arise, and to discuss what can be done to try and reduce them.
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