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.
In two sessions, we interviewed Eric Barends, the Managing Director of the Center for Evidence-Based Management (CEBMa). Eric is based in Amsterdam (the Netherlands) and advises management teams and boards of companies and non-profit organizations on evidence-based management and development. In this first session Eric discusses the foundation of evidence-based management and its benefits in business.
The aviation industry has reached an unprecedented safety level. This is an outstanding achievement taking into consideration that global air traffic is on the rise and every new aircraft becomes technically more sophisticated. Of course, one of the reasons for this achievement is superior technology. However, without a crew that performs well technology would be useless. A considerable body of evidence indicates that one reason for this strong safety track record in aviation is due to airlines conducting Crew Resource Management trainings as means to improve team performance. Initially inspired by management as a team development intervention, Crew Resource Management has become a de-facto standard in the aviation industry. Is it time for management to re-adapt what the aviation industry has developed to the next level?
In line with our critical thinking approach here at CQ Net, in this blog post we want to look beyond the traditional management understanding of organizations as machines. Sociology has a long tradition in offering theories and systems of thought on how societies, organizations and teams work and relate to each other. One of these approaches is 'social systems theory'. Carlton Clark has a look at this grand social theory and its implications for management practitioners.