To what extent is management in the voluntary sector diferent from management in "conventional" commercial concerns

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This essay is a discussion on the following topic: "To what extent is management in the voluntary sector different from management in "conventional" commercial concerns" The essay has three parts. The first part defines what the voluntary sector is, its key characteristics, and its similarities with commercial, or business, concerns.


Any discussion of the management of organisations must begin with an understanding of the nature of human organisations and why they exist. Like the humans that establish them, each organisation exists for a purpose, a set of goals or objectives that have to be achieved or may only be achieved, if people group together and organise themselves (the word "organisation" comes from the Greek meaning 'tool') (Niemark & Tinker, 1986).
An organisation therefore has many purposes such as to give a decent return on investment as in the case of most private sector organisations by selling a product or service. Public organisations such as the National Health Service exist to deliver a public service or promote a social cause in behalf of the government.
Organisations may be classified according to their purpose, and following this convention, Duncan (1983) distinguished six types: (1) private-sector; (2) public-sector; (3) not-for-profit; (4) institutional; (5) voluntary sector, and (6) mixed organisations. Table 1 gives a summary of each of these organisational types, their specific purposes, and examples of each.
Thus, a voluntary sector organisation according to this definition is a temporary or special purpose group that provides services to its members. However, Drucker (1985, p. 105-106) and Kotler et al. (1987, p. ...
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