My five cent for the Stoos Gathering 2012

On Jannuary 6th and 7th a group of 20+ authors, thinkers and practitioners on new management approaches meet in Stoos Switzerland. They will discuss how management might make its way adapting to changing environments (see also here: http://www.noop.nl/2011/12/global-management-warming-starts-in-switzerland.html).

Some input here from my side, as I am not sure, if I can make my input for this valueable discussion in 100 words (as per Jurgen Appelo’s invitation). But I will try with as few as possible.

So this goes out to the organizers of the Stoos Gathering 2012:

I do believe future management and respective change is aligned with three core viewpoints.

A) education of managers: business schools and universities lay the groundwork of future manager’s thinking and probably most of the later behaviour. There we are introduced into concepts about economics and business administration – many of them worth knowing rather in terms of history and adapting for new approaches. We need to teach true leadership targeting at highly dynamic and changing markets as well as self-organizing, complex structures there.

B) Value systems of organizations: many organizations are driven by pure market rules. Generally fine, but hits its limits Very soon, if we only think in shareholder values, short-term profits and related bonus and rewarding systems. So we truly need to rethink the value system with an eye on customer relationships, the organization of people as a whole.

C) Roles of middle management: former Taylor-oriented organizations needed lots of people for getting a complicated organization done. With the potentials of IT systems this has beend dramatically changing during the past 20 years. Today we might be more flexible with flater hierarchies and self-organized teams, but we still run the old system. There are potentials for middle managers as coaches and servant leaders, making sel-organization happen. As long as we can’t get them on board, theses structures are rather barriers for true change.

Three core aspects I believe and any of them needs to be addressed with the key essentials for change:

1) there needs to be a clear need for all involved parties.

2) there needs to be a shared vision amongst involved parties in order to start a journey.

Addressing the three topics above, I would recommend an integrational approach of all dimensions, including existing structures, because for long-term success I rather believe in evolution instead of real revolution. When considering change of management approaches, styles and behavior, we need situative thinking, because there will no “one size fits all” solution.

But what new approaches will have in common is a new attitude towards value-oriented systems – an increase in value for customer-orientation, focus on values of products and services, the value of sustainable organizations, people and their work environment and last but not least conveying value-oriented concepts at universities.

Have a great meeting at Stoos. I am as excited about the output and follow-ups as all the other hundreds of people, who raised their high interest. Great things get started by some engaged people with moving ideas. Just think about today’s huge organizations started up in garages. Or think about the Agile Manifesto settled ten years ago in the mountains of Salt Lake City. Looking forward to supporting the journey of new management.

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