Tag Archives: complex systems

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Brexit: Crisis and Opportunity for Britain and the EU – a Systems Perspective

“In a multi-layered complex system stability is achieved by having the big and/or slow processes govern through constraint the smaller, faster processes. Sudden change can take place in a complex system when agents at one level escape the constraints usually … Continue reading

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Bloody Ships – Bloody Systems: A Managerial Reflection on the Centenary of the Battle of Jutland

“There seems to be something wrong with our bloody ships today…” remarked Vice Admiral David Beatty to his Flag Captain. Beatty was commander of the Battle Cruiser Fleet at Jutland, and his cool comment belied the scale of the catastrophe. … Continue reading

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Cultivating Organizations – Background to The New Ecology of Leadership

I am now publishing my blogs both here and on LinkedIn. In this case this article is already on the site (in Latest News About the Book), so just the link is here. It’s an article I wrote last year for … Continue reading

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Changing Our Models of Change: Nothing Lasts Unless It Is Incessantly Renewed”

In a blog last year, Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the Royal Society of the Arts wrote “Ideas about social and economic reform are only as useful as the model of change that goes with them.” I agree completely. We … Continue reading

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Capitalism as an Ecological Process

On April 2 The Economist published a book review of Valuation: Measuring and Managing the Value of Corporations, a 700-page manual on corporate finance and shareholder value published by McKinsey & Company. The views in both the book and the … Continue reading

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The VW Debacle: How Large Successful Organizations and Institutions Can Become “Bad Barrels” And What To Do About It

The outlines of Volkswagen’s comprehensive program to defeat national auto emissions laws are becoming clearer. According to the New York Times the company began installing software designed to cheat on emissions test in 2008, when they realized that their new … Continue reading

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To Kill a Zombie: Ending Shareholder Primacy

The theme of the Drucker Forum to be held in Vienna November 13-14 this year is “The Great Transformation: Managing Our Way to Prosperity”. In the run-up to it Simon Caulkin wrote a mainly excellent article in the Financial Times … Continue reading

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Disrupting Disruption Theory [Part III]: Transforming Human Organizations

This is the third in my series of blogs triggered by Harvard history professor Jill Lepore’s criticism of HBS professor Clayton Christensen’s theory of disruptive innovation. Although her curiously jumbled assessment was wide of the mark, it presented an opportunity … Continue reading

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A Theory and a Hammer: Managing With Incentives (Part II)

I spent the past week teaching a leadership class at the Kenneth Levene Graduate School of Business at the University of Regina. At the same time my HBR blog “Is Management Due For a Renaissance” has been attracting continuing comment … Continue reading

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Exploring The Ecology of Leadership: the Power of Analogical Thinking

I spent the past week in California working with a senior management team from a large global corporation as part of their extensive executive development program. This was my third time with the same organization and I had worked hard … Continue reading

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