Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Incoherent confusion

To reach the high level of digital maturity, an organization of today or the future needs to create a new paradigm shift, replacing confusion with paradoxical balance. 

Organizations rise and fall, not on the quantum of plans and resources, but on the capabilities to lead and manage, yet most important to execute.. Disconnect occurs when wishful thinking at higher levels detaches from reality at lower levels; when misinformation leads to misjudgment; when hierarchical business systems are dysfunctional, silo thinking or bureaucracy is propagating; when misalignment of "do what you say, say what you mean, mean what you do" cause culture inertia; when value proposition fails to be translated into meaningful operational deliverables; when the work is not done right and needs to be redone, then business disasters emerge. How to handle all those issues smoothly, ameliorate business fluidity and improve the overall organizational manageability.

Information incoherence: Information and knowledge do not stand still! It flows into the company, it flows out of it, and it flows outwardly in terms of products and services deliveries. In fact, information is the gold mine all forward-thinking organizations dig to capture business foresight and customer insight. However, there are inherent dangers of too much information or incoherence in exponential growth of information and the body of knowledge that surrounds us causes miscommunication, poor judgment, or ineffective decisions, etc. Miscommunication is a common pitfall which is often caused by misinformation or perception gaps. Also, if there's a lack of quality information and holistic understanding, the business intends to solve symptoms but cause more problems later on or perhaps on the other side of the company.

The ability to explore intangible information assets becomes far more decisive to build competitive business advantage for the long term as effective Information Management can capture the real-time business insight and customer foresight for discovering the new areas which contribute to the business growth, or spot the opportunities to increase revenues. Streamlining and standardization of information management processes is an essential prerequisite to providing effective information integration solutions and achieving information synchronization.

Hierarchical dissonance: In a static business environment, hierarchy performs well, to keep things under control and give business systems stability. However, in the fast paced business dynamic, it causes change inertia, perpetuates bureaucracy and impedes the business speed. Many times, communication bottleneck and collaboration ineffectiveness is a dissonance between upper and middle management or middle management and frontline employees. Thus, organizational hierarchy must have enough central control to achieve coordination toward the large-system goals, and enough autonomy to keep all subsystems flourishing, functioning, and self-organization.

Digital organizations are systems, system hierarchy is different from command control hierarchy. It is possible through highlighting system successes and failures to argue when hierarchies have contributed to both outcomes, and normally digress thereafter into blame or claim games. In management practice, the highly complex and dynamic system needs to be elaborated in a well-organized effort, to make hierarchical systems adaptive so that they can respond to the challenges of a more complex, interconnected, and interdependent world.

Cause-and-effect confusion: Contemporary society is getting more and more complex, the very natural attempt of humans to take the very powerful techniques of mathematics, such as techniques of linear mathematics or logic and apply it to the world very quickly, come up against insurmountable difficulties for managing today's dynamic, and cause confusion and dysfunctional business management system. In addition, Linear models are usually about simplifications. They are valid only within limited conditions, coming from attempting to isolate and understand the dynamics of the individual functions in the enterprise, but it perhaps leads to errors and incorrect results, especially when moving from the modeled world to the real world because there are many interdependent components in the business. The consequence of all of this is that the “classic” management doesn’t take a systemic approach to management.

In running today’s dynamic organization, a simple variable can be both cause and effect. Linear thinking implies the whole is equal to the sum of its parts, but it’s only part of a story. Problem-solving based on linear logic and analytics can sometimes cause more problems later on if ignoring the interdependence of a variety of connected issues. The predictive “cause and effect” in system dynamics can include nonlinear cause and effect models, and develop nonlinear business problem-solving scenarios. We have to leave our old mechanistic view of the world behind us and look at the world through new eyes as a world of nonlinear systems. As a matter of fact, understanding nonlinearity as the very characteristic of the digital ecosystem could be at the tipping point for the digital paradigm shift.

The most common anecdote is how managers/leaders tend to restructure if they sense things are becoming dysfunctional, and often with mixed results. To reach the high level of digital maturity, an organization of today or the future needs to create a new paradigm shift, replacing confusion with paradoxical balance of creativity and process; innovation and standardization, etc. There must be enough central control to achieve coordination toward the large-system goals, and enough autonomy to keep all subsystems flourishing, and functioning for achieving high-performance results.


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