Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Significance of a Socially Networked Organization

This for me illustrates the necessity for a socially networked, team environment organization. Protecting your top performers:
The Dark Side of High Achievement  (Hat Tip--William Reichard via Google Plus)

 In the movies and on stage, the leader usually fails because “absolute power corrupts absolutely,” a la Charles Foster Kane. Or, as in the case of Macbeth, the leader is tortured by thoughts of a sin for which he can never atone. In real life, however, many managers face similar problems even when they have committed no major sins and when their power is far from absolute. Indeed, becoming isolated and self-obsessed is something every business leader should fear, not just corporate titans but also middle managers and owners of small companies. To the detriment of their firms, their employees, and most of all themselves, many managers cling to the techniques that got them to the top long after those techniques have become obsolete.

One reason for this has to do with the personal attributes that lead to success within an organization, says Thomas DeLong, Professor of Management Practice at Harvard Business School. Characteristics such as a high need for achievement and a focus on task accomplishment, which are invaluable in precocious new employees, can lead to counterproductive habits once a person has attained a managerial position. High achievers, while intelligent and hard working, are often terrible at taking criticism and examining their own weaknesses. Driven by their need for tangible accomplishments, these people end up managing their professional images at the expense of their core skills and their personal relationships.
Culture matters. A socially networked culture matters more. A team environment is intrinsic to a socially networked culture. High performer sports teams know this. They protect their top talent.

This also illustrates the strength of a learning organization. Today's socio-economic environment is evolving too fast, is too chaotic, too complex for anybody's knowledge, skills and techniques to last long.
A learning organization understands this, and creates an environment where learning is part of the everyday experience.

1 comment:

  1. In the days of steam power if someone said, "A vastly improved engine" folk would, of course, assume steam ... yes? "Framing" isn't just a concept. It really is how our brains work.

    So when I agree with "socially networked", thinking especially about non-governmental organizations and other civic entities ... folk think of FB and Twitter and (latest big thing!) G+. So what happens? I get the frame crammed into my brain.

    Mid-70s I pondered how we could network NGOs in Canada. I came up with an "issue-oriented" scheme. Brass tacks ... nuts&bolts, hammer&tongs ... focus on the sweet spots, the real problems and bottle-necks and areas of natural collaboration.
    What happens everytime I bring it up? Folk who are totally enamored with FB chit-chat can't see out of the box ... and I come off as some weirdo crank. (Shall we talk about the history of innovation? huh huh /*grin*/)

    Today was a break-through for me; all these years I've been using "subjective narrative" as a way of referring to how folk naturally talk about what they truly care about. Today I discovered "operant subjectivity" (Trust academics to hide it away under an ugly term!)

    this by way of hello