The Disadvantages of Macro & Micro Level Organizations

by Brian Bass; Updated September 26, 2017

The size of an organization, in part, dictates the management of the organization at the macro and micro levels. The size of the organization also helps to determine how many levels of management the organization needs. When there is a wide gap between the macro and micro levels of management, different cultures began to emerge in the organization, potentially creating problems.

Macro Level

The macro level of the organization typically consists of the organization’s board of directors. The board of directors can come from within the organization or outside of the organization. Typically, the board of directors’ level of knowledge about what happens within the organization at the micro level is minimal or nonexistent. In large organizations, the board of directors commonly offer expertise in certain fields of the organization without overseeing the application of this expertise. This disassociation is a disadvantage when it comes time for the organization to implement the expertise. This also creates room for interpretation at the micro level because of the degree of separation. This can occur even if the board of directors established strict guidelines for the application and implementation.


The personnel at the macro level may not fully understand if the current infrastructure of the organization has the talent, finances, materials, technology and processes in place to implement the strategy conceived at the macro level of the organization. Management typically serves as the liaison between the macro and micro levels of the organization. Management applies the directives from the macro level to the micro level of the organization that ultimately carries out these directives. At the same time, effective management also conveys the micro-level needs of the organization to the upper macro level of the organization.

Micro Level

At the micro level, the organization focuses on the individual group dynamics of the organization. How employees interact with one other and how employees work affects the organization as a whole. One of the primary disadvantages at the micro level of the organization is that individual employees make judgments in their work beyond the directives given by the macro level of the organization. These judgments often lead to mistakes that can cost the organization time and money.


Macro factors affect the long-term strategies and objectives of the organization. In creating these policies, an organization needs to create a culture that facilitates the implementation of the directives from the macro level to the employees at the micro level that actually carry out the directives. This, in theory, should diminish the separation that exists between the macro and micro levels of the organization and make the organization more effective in responding to mistakes and implementing changes.


  • "Organizational Design: A Step-by-Step Approach"; Richard M. Burton, Gerardine DeSanctis and Borge Obel; 2006
  • "Human Resource Management: Essential Perspectives"; Robert L. Marthis and John H. Jackson; 2011

About the Author

Brian Bass has written about accountancy-related topics and accounting trends for "Account Today." He works as a senior auditor specializing in manufacturing and financial services companies for one of the Big 5 accounting firms. Bass hold a master's degree in accounting from the University of Utah.