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Rethinking Complexity

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Posts tagged with the category Organizational Culture

Many of today’s complexity-related challenges require leaders to create more space in the workplace for people to share their difficulties and concerns, and explore new ways of addressing them. Whenever we are facing the unknown, doing something we haven’t done before, and unsure how to approach a new challenge or what the outcome...
Over the last five decades, while business contexts were evolving from national to international to transnational and now to global, workplace environments were shifting from “control-oriented” hierarchies to interactive teams to social networking ecologies. Such shifts in perspectives, accompanied by innovations in digital-based...
An emerging field of research informs us about relative “levels” of happiness reported in various countries. I learned that Finns are the happiest people in the world, except perhaps for the citizens of Bhutan, who regularly  report their Gross National Happiness Index.  I assume that the residents of tropical paradises are...
Over time, people across the world have self-organized themselves in a variety of ways. There are tribes, villages, towns and cities. Then there are city-states, nation-states and even empires. All have cultures, even subcultures that make them distinctive and give them an identity. They have borders that create separation and avenues of commerce...
Why does the intelligence of a group matter? What is group intelligence? We spend most of our lives engaged with people in a myriad of activities. Our livelihoods depend on our interaction with others.  For most of us living in modern societies, our success and quality of life are completely dependent on the various groups we belong to...
This is a story about a website. Like many stories, however, the lessons are not about the obvious. It is a story about how redesigning a website created a structure for reconsidering an organization.    I serve on the executive committee of an international organization (actually, a federation of organizations), and have for the last...
Traumatic stress reactions and related disorders comprise some of the most prominent human afflictions in the world today, especially with the pervasiveness of war and terrorism.  In the past three decades there has been growing public interest and focus on the impact of traumatic events on humanity.  This interest has been reflected in...
I love Cheryl Sandberg--her incredible presence, her role as adult supervisor to a difficult tech leader, her social commitment and philanthropy, her role as a parent and spouse, and her new book, Lean In. But I also felt a bit uncomfortable when I read it. I liked and shared her positive emphasis on empowering yourself, and her assumption...
By Pierre-Yves Beaudouin (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/li
As a teenage, Christine LeGarde, the current Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) competed as a member of the French national synchronized swimming team. In an interview with National Public Radio, the reporter pointed out that LeGarde had often compared her IMF role with being a member of her synchronized swimming team. I...
Every generation seems to believe they had it much harder than the one that follows them. The reality is that each generation has its own set of values and unique circumstances that make it not better or worse, but simply different from others. Understanding and accepting these differences as well as dealing with them effectively can help you...
Photo: Harland Quarrington/MOD [see page for license], via Wikimedia Commons
An astounding 70% of U.S. workers are either not engaged or are actively disengaged, according to a 2012 survey by Gallup. Further, these actively disengaged employees are emotionally disconnected from their companies and as a result are less productive, more likely to miss work, more likely to steal, may negatively influence coworkers, and will...
I have started several conversations with colleagues over the last month on the topic of ambiguity tolerance as a competency area for organizational leaders. Ambiguity tolerance has been a focus area of my studies over the last couple of years, so it’s not surprising that I see connections to the topic everywhere, especially since I’m...