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Bureaucracy is the structure intended to implement the actions of an organization. It is what keeps an organization functioning when its staff changes. Without forms and the regulations, you don't have an organization - you have the potential for a cult. The structures are what makes it about more than just whoever works there at the moment. Bureaucracy puts the "organize" into organization.

That does not mean that bureaucracy should rule your work. It should help the work get done. The work does not come second.

Bureaucracy has a bad name because in many organizations, and especially in the governments of many countries, bureaucracy effectively means red tape and self-interest, rent-seeking and even blatant corruption.

The perception of the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of a bureaucracy depends in part on the status of the person or organization dealing with it. For example, a Westerner visiting or working in a developing country is likely to be frustrated at the immigration department's bureaucracy and process for issuing and extending visas. However it is easy to forget that a person from that developing country going to a Western country is likely to face much, much greater difficulties, and a very high chance of not being allowed in at all.

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Attribution: This page includes content from the Blood and Milk blog by Alanna Shaikh, posted under the CC-BY-SA license.[1]