The Division of Labor was a new idea set forth over 230 years ago in a world that had it’s economies dominated by the whim of kings and queens. In the mid 1960’s the concept of the division of labor was advanced to a precise management tool with L. Ron Hubbard’s 7 Division Organizing Board. Mr. Hubbard’s organizing board is the greatest insight into the division of labor since it was first announced in 1776 by author, Adam Smith.
I have been doing some study on Adam Smith. As you may already know, in 1776 Mr. Smith wrote “The Wealth of Nations.” It is recognized as the most significant book ever written on economics and wealth. In that book, Smith outlines what was a revolutionary idea at the time: The Division of Labor. Smith is cited as the “father of modern economics” and is still among the most influential thinkers in the field of economics today. The Wealth of Nations was a precursor to the modern academic discipline of what we now call “economics.” In this and other works, Mr. Smith expounded upon how rational self-interest and competition can lead to economic prosperity.
In truth, Mr. Hubbard’s Organizing Board represents the modern application and usage of Mr. Smith’s economic idea. Mr. Hubbard’s advancement is as a highly precise and workable model on how to divide labor based on exact functions, responsibilities and measurable results. To ensure that people can learn and apply this information in business, the Church of Scientology now offers a free online course that teaches the basics of this organizing chart. Additionally, there is a company, Standard Organizing Solutions, Inc., which can help any company develop their own personalized organizing board.
The Division of Labor Defined
This idea relates primarily to the specialization of the labor force, essentially the breaking down of large jobs into many tiny components. Under this regime each worker becomes an expert in one isolated area of production, thus increasing his efficiency. The fact that laborers do not have to switch tasks during the day further saves time and money. Of course, this is exactly what allowed Victorian factories to grow throughout the nineteenth century. Assembly line technology made it necessary for a worker to focus his or her attention on one small part of the production process. Surprisingly, Smith recognized the potential problems of this development. He pointed out that forcing individuals to perform mundane and repetitious tasks would lead to an ignorant, dissatisfied work force. For this reason he advanced the revolutionary belief that governments had an obligation to provide education to workers. This sprung from the hope that education could combat the deleterious effects of factory life. Division of labor also implies assigning each worker to the job that suits him best. Productive labor, to Smith, fulfills two important requirements. First, it must “lead to the production of tangible objects.” Second, labor must “create a surplus” which can be reinvested into production.
In the broadest sense, the extension of the division of labor is the fundamental feature of a modern or developed economy, in which gigantic increases in the volume and variety of production have been attained — but at the cost of massively increasing economic interdependence within larger and larger populations spread over larger and larger geographical areas. In such a complex society, instead of each individual or family attempting to produce all or most of what it consumes, the individual specializes in producing only a few kinds of good or service (or perhaps only small components of a single good or service) and then acquires all other desired goods or services from the production of other specialists by means of mutual exchange (or, in non-market economies, perhaps through coercive or customary transfer).