Difference Between Association and Organization

In everyday life, you may come across different association or organization. But, surely, on more than one occasion you confuse one with the other. To avoid this, it is important to be clear about these two concepts. If you want to achieve these, different features can help you recognize each of these definitions, as the case may be.

In this article, you will see everything you need to know to be able to differentiate between associations or organizations. The first thing will be to define each of these definitions and show you their most relevant characteristics. The second thing will be that you see the advantages of a good organization and a good association. Finally, you will see the differences between these two concepts. Specifically, we will discuss:

  1. What are associations and their characteristics?
  2. What are organizations or organisations and their characteristics?
  3. Main advantages of associations
  4. What are the benefits of the organization?
  5. Association vs organization
  6. Why you should know about The Talent Point?

1. What are associations and their characteristics?

association or organization

The association as its name indicates is a type of organization. In this organization, people who have common interests decide to come together on a single platform. Generally, they use the word association to describe the association of friends. From here we can see how the word itself refers to a group of people who come together for a common good.

This group of people meets so that they can promote an idea, a sport, and even an object. Association is a word with a very wide use since it can incorporate many meanings. This includes all kinds of alliances, leagues, cooperatives, conventions, and even fellowships. As said above these groups with like-minded people have a common interest.

If you refer to an institute, we are talking about an organized association that promotes science or art in general education. Currently, all types of existing alliances and leagues are considered to be, in a way, associations. If you talk about the chamber of commerce, we are referring to an association of businessmen to protect commercial interests.

There are professional associations where the participants who join have a particular profession. Among these professions are doctors, nurses, and lawyers among others. The associations present a set of 4 fundamental characteristics that will help us better understand their importance. Next, you will see these characteristics:

1.1 They are a legal personality

The associations are made up of several people or groups. These are subject to regulations that are included in their statutes.

1.2 They have the same interests

The associations have a particular purpose or, failing that, a general one shared by the associated persons. It is not necessary that you have to pursue goals of general interest. Associations can have private purposes without any problem and maintain their structure.

1.3 These are not for profit

All profits, assets, or resources belonging to the association may not be distributed among the partners. In this way, there is no risk that any of the associated persons may lose their investment. These resources should only be used to fulfill the purpose for which the association was founded.

1.4 They have a democratic operation

Within the associations, all the people who are members will have the same rights and duties. In this case, the general assembly will be the highest decision-making body. Here you can establish different types of partners according to the statutes of the entity. All members have the right to participate in the organization, as well as to choose and have the possibility to enter an election to be members of the board.

2. What are organizations or organisations and their characteristics?

In itself, the word organization, depending on its context, has different meanings. This definition implies that associations are also organizations. In this case, corporations also come in and because of this, people usually have certain questions. Among them are what is the Difference between an organization and a corporation.

In itself, the word organization has different meanings depending on the context in which it is used. You can find among them business, sociology, and religion, among others. In the world, you find two large organizations such as the UN and the WHO that are organizations. On the other hand, there are small companies such as associations that can be known as organizations.

These are very typical thanks to the fact that they have a well-defined structure. The roles and functions of officeholders are also well-defined. In management, organizations are an instrument to achieve a goal. In organizations you can find the following characteristics that stand out:

2.1 Your staff

It can be made up of two or more people who work in coordination to achieve an objective. This includes human resources, such as workers and collaborators.

2.2 Its hierarchical structure

Generally, people define this vertically with a management team at the helm. This team is in charge of making all the decisions of the organization. However, it tends to be set up horizontally. In this way, they have a management that delegates tasks to other areas of the organization.

2.3 Your objectives

Organizations can be commercial or short-term or long-term non-profit organizations. You must be clear at all times, as this is what will keep the organization on track.

2.4 Their mission and vision

The mission of the organization will be the purpose that will give meaning to how the company wants to be in the future. An example of this can be the brand that is the national leader in sustainable clothing. This is a company that makes garments that do not hurt the environment.

The vision will be the one that will determine which will be the path that the company will travel to achieve its purpose. A clear example is working on continuous improvement to maintain a cutting-edge company that cares for biodiversity and society.

2.5 Its form of organizational culture

Here you observe the system of norms and the own behaviors that characterize the organization. This is fundamental since it is what gives the identity of an organization.

2.6 Your activity

In organizations, there may be a single activity or there may be several. When you offer products and services, they appreciate it. They have the task of always maintaining their objectives in a concrete and organized way to last a long time.

2.7 Its geographical scope

Organizations can be local, national, international, or multinational. This will occur according to different factors such as their place of origin, their scope of productivity, and the capacity they have to expand. Also, business alliances will be important for this.

2.8 Your legal personality

This is what determines if it is a corporation, a civil association, or another legal form. All entities must complete the legal registration, having rights and obligations to fulfill.

2.9 Your Resources

These can be economic, such as your available capital including investments, or your creditworthiness. Its human resources such as the employees that belong to the organization. Finally, material resources where reference the infrastructure and equipment that employees have to carry out their tasks.

2.10 Their sizes

Organizations can be small, medium, or large. In this way, the hierarchical structure will be defined based on the capacity of resources available to the company. Organizations have no limits on their size as long as you have the right capacity for them.

3. Main advantages of associations

Associations offer numerous advantages that you have to know if you want to join or create one. Because of this, in this section, you will see the advantages of associations. This will also help you distinguish between associations or organizations.

3.1 Training

The associations offer their members the possibility of academic training in different areas. This positions the company in a better position to compete against others. As a result, your prestige in the market increases. Generally, the main interest of the associations is to train their members in topics such as marketing, media management, and more.

3.2 Information power

Associations tend to handle the latest news or information about the market before the competition. This causes an immense advantage because they can predict trends, learn about new products, and more. It is important to highlight that associations can share knowledge.

3.3 Access to financing

Banks generally support associations and grant them loans or financing more easily. Plus, they tend to save their associates money by creating deals with different vendors that could have a big impact.

3.4 Improve market position

Generally, the associations make it possible to reinforce the product of the companies giving them a very positive reputation in the market. A large part of clients begins to have confidence in the companies when they mention that they belong to an association. In addition, associations promote excellence and this generates more confidence in the market.

4. What are the benefits of the organization?

Organizations also have a host of benefits worth highlighting. Next, you will see the main ones.

4.1 Better strategies

It is customary to create strategies to boost their growth and position themselves in a better position in the market. Organizations have a way of operating that makes these strategies successful. The main thing is that all of these are well defined and also shared among all the members; thus everyone participates to achieve the goal.

4.2 They motivate staff

Organizations promote the inclusion of all staff and therefore generate good communication. These things motivate staff to improve and advance as they feel valued. As a result, there is greater productivity in the company.

4.3 Each role is well defined

All the members of the organization, when they enter, are given specific functions. This is something very important because that way everyone knows what they have to do and dedicates themselves exclusively to that. As a result, an efficient division is managed and the objective is reached in an ideal way.

4.4 Good working environment

Organizations are characterized by pushing their employees, so enthusiasm is constantly present. This causes a very comfortable and pleasant working environment in the company.

4.5 There is a good organization

To achieve the objectives, well-established processes and organization charts are required. Therefore, a lot of order is required in the development of the objectives. This causes established strategies to be executed easily and effectively.

5. Association vs organization

association or organization

Generally, these two concepts lend themselves to confusion, since their definitions are very similar. Therefore, there is always the question of associations or organizations. Consequently, in this section, you will see the clearest differences between organization and association.

5.1 Objectives

One of the most significant differences to be able to give if you are talking about an association or organization is concerning the objectives. In an organization all the members that integrate it have a similar role to reach similar goals and work together in one direction and a previously defined function. But, in the association, a different scenario happens, where a set of people huddles who carry similar thoughts, and the goal that they plan to achieve is only restricted to them.

5.2 Size

Organizations are characterized by being varied, that is; they can be from small to medium-sized companies to indispensable global organizations. But, associations are a group of individuals that unite with a particular objective.

5.3 Examples

There are different association or organization in the world and to better understand the difference between them, they will be mentioned. For organizations, the most significant is the WHO and the UN. On the other hand, there are also examples of recognized associations, such as NATO and ASEAN.

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Kate Williams

Kate Williams
Kate is the Global Strategy Director at Connect Group. She is specialized in company formation, international business expansion and employee relocation. She studied in Southampton (United Kingdom) and moved to the UAE in 2014.