Friday, June 18, 2004

How Org charts lie!

Tons of money has been put into collaboration technologies, but not much effort into understanding what the socio-cultural ties that make us collaborate are . This article form Harvard Business Review, an excerpt from the Hidden Power of Social Networks by Rob Cross and Andrew Parker, elaborates into the intricacies of collaborative working.

"It has taken us years, and I think we are still not sure if we are getting things right even after substantial reengineering projects, a move to teams, new HR practices, two acquisitions, and a ton invested in technology. By now we should have reduced costs and created a more nimble company without a focus on hierarchy or fiefdoms. But it's tough to ensure that this is really happening. Most of us in this room have thousands of people we are accountable for stretched across the globe. It's impossible to manage or even know what's going on in the depths of the organization. I mean, each of us can fool ourselves into thinking we're smart and running a tight ship. But really the best we can do is create a context and hope that things emerge in a positive way, and this is tough because you can't really see the impact your decisions have on people. So you just kind of hope what you want to happen is happening and then sound confident when telling others".
—Executive vice president, commercial lending



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