Niklas Luhmann, one of the most influential sociologists of the 20th century and father of social systems theory, once stated that organizations are made of decisions (Luhmann 2000). He even went further and argued that every decision taken builds on past decisions which accumulate to an organization’s future. On a more practical level, making the right decision can be a matter of life and death in high-risk environments such as aviation, medicine, or the military. In business, management and organizations, decision-making quality is a key determinant of good performance. We will take a look at the state of decision-making in the business sector and how Evidence-based Management can help managers, professionals and other stakeholders to improve decision-making quality.
Organizational agility is one of the key trends in almost all areas of management. Most of the available knowledge about when to apply an agile approach and how to apply it is related to product development. However, there is much more to organizational agility than the well-known product development tools such as SCRUM and Kanban. Especially in an environment characterized by Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity (VUCA), an agile approach is your first choice. In this blog we provide you with a practical guide that helps you decide when an agile approach makes sense for your team, organization or project, as well as with tips on what you should consider when you want to apply such an approach.
Is the 21st century the downfall of the hierarchical organization? Taking into consideration current discussions about agility, delayering and network organizations one could think that the days of the hierarchical organization are numbered. We have a look behind those claims and come up with a set of arguments why hierarchies will remain one of the most important forms of organizing in the 21st century knowledge economy.
More and more organizations start to experiment with organizational forms beyond traditional hierarchies. Some of them are incredible successful while others cease to exist. In this blog post we have a look at what organizational design is, what are the novel organizational forms that emerge and whether they are actually that novel, with a set of questions with both academic and practical considerations that can be explored in the future.
Project teams are the new functional departments of modern organizations which come together to understand stakeholder needs and find solutions that delight them. It is virtually impossible to escape teams for professionals today which makes the question of managing them a key concern. Almost all employees working in and for organizations need to acquire the knowledge and learn the skills for building strong project teams, facilitate them through the stages of group formation thereby ensuring that synergistic efforts lead to higher performance. We provide you a comprehensive guide how to manage project teams to deliver high performance in this blog post.
When we speak informally about an individual’s personality, we may be referring to any number of qualities, from their temperament to their sense of humor, even the kind of media they like. However, in the social sciences, the study of personality focuses on enduring, reliable traits about a person that can be measured, and which are useful in predicting behavior (Saucier & Srivastra, 2015). The leading perspective on personality within the social sciences is the Five Factor Model, or the “Big Five”, which describes individuals in terms of their openness to experience, conscientiousness, agreeability, extroversion, and neuroticism.
Bold decisions that drastically change what is taken for granted have always been traits of leaders that attract and inspire people. The rise of social media and other means of online communication such as blogs, online communities and intranets allow leaders to spread bold ideas and big plans easier than ever before to their target audience and the wider public. On the one hand, this tremendous speed of communication is a powerful lever to mobilize people and initiate change on a level and magnitude never seen before. On the other hand, change is always accompanied with unintended consequences that backfire, if not handled properly.
Soft skills also called people or management skills get increasingly important in our 21st knowledge economy. In contrast to many hard skills, management skills cannot be substituted by technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and search engines. This is reflected in an ever growing demand for online and face to face management training programs. As a result, hundreds of millions of Euros are invested in management training activities every year. However, only a small fraction of the training content is transfered back on the job (Griffin, 2011) or adds value to the training participants. Drawing and theory and science, we derive six criteria you should look for when selecting a good management training program.
Management trainings are an important part of most corporate training programs. However, in a VUCA world, organizations are more and more starting to move from a management training to a management learning approach. We have a look at the shortcomings of traditional management learning and introduce a new approach of management learning that puts emphasis on knowledge quality (evidence), applicability in daily business (context) and adaptability (agility). We do this from a knowledge worker's point of view during an product introduction project.
Organizations utilize personality inventories such as the Five Factor Model of Personality for a range of purposes including selection and recruitment and employee management. Over the last twenty years, HRM scientists and practitioners have identified the Five Factor Model as a useful tool in predicting employee performance across a range of jobs and settings. This blog post describes the Five Factor Model also called Big Five and how the model can be utilized to increase organizational effectiveness.