In a complex and crisis-ridden world ‘lessons of the past' are unreliable guides for future action. While ‘management by objectives’ doesn’t equip organisations with the agility or awareness to respond to emergent threats and opportunities. Yet, management thinking 1.0 and 2.0 still dominate organisations today.
1.0 Scientific Management - views the organisation as a machine and its people as component parts. Their work can be commanded and controlled through rigorous automation and focus on efficiency. The result are economies of scale that dominated management thinking for much of the 20th century.
2.0 Business Process Re-engineering - challenged the status quo, demonstrating that organisations could define future outcomes and goals, or values and behaviours for staff to adopt. While scalable information and communication technology could drive improved performance through metrics. This is the dominant management thinking of today.
Management 2.0 has a fundamental flaw - it sees the world as a predictable place
In 1994 Leading Change was published in which Prof. John Kotter highlighted a damning statistic: 70% of all change management programs fail. Yet, despite an assembly line of case studies and continuous BPR improvements in two decades since this figure hasn't improved. For organisations are collections of people and people are rarely interested in having change done to them. So faced with a need to 'adapt or die' business leaders today face a stark choice:
Find a way to do Management 2.0 better or find a more appropriate approach
Management 3.0 Sensemaking is a naturalised approach to leading in times of change. Rather than projecting an idealised future it seeks to understand and manage the evolutionary potential of the present. It puts people first - rather than processes - and taps into mass collaboration to bring the collective intelligence of the entire organisation (and beyond) into play. In short, management 3.0 replicates how the human brain - the most effective adaptive tool in the world - works rather than imitating the machines it creates.
Management 3.0 is already here and it will favour those quickest to adapt.