Standard Process Kill Productivity Because Standardizing Destroys Local Knowledge

(c) 2010 Ardfern (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Most executives that implement a PeopleSoft or SAP are surprised that productivity takes such a dive in the departments that these systems were supposed to automate. Departments that are dependent on the data see some productivity increase as information becomes more available, but many tasks that used to take a moment (or could, if you were pal-ly with the clerks) now takes a long time. T…

On Successfully Bringing Change to An Organization

Black man working large electric phosphate smelting furnace make elemental phosphorus, TVA chemical plant Muscle Shoals, AL). 1942 by Alfred T. Palmer (via LOC)

Since I’m having a tough time with my case study, I’ll try putting down some things that I think are true about organization change in general.

Forrest’s Postulates on Organizationa…

How to Break Through the “Impermeable Clay Layer” of Middle Managers

Marine Sgt. at New Orleans, La. By Howard R.Hollem. Library of Congress collection via Flickr.

In the last post on implementation, APFG commented that the middle layer in the company is where you have most of the problems. Since almost everyone says this, let’s take a look at why.

Let’s admit that it is not always true: the middle layer in a company isn’t always the source of the problems. There are often people at the top who are resistant to change and there are people at the bottom…

CRM Implementation Woes: How to Make It Work

New York-to-Paris automobile race: [Automobile stuck in snow]

McKinsey Consulting came out with a CRM article the same week I read Mark Van Clieaf’s comments about how to succeed at CRM — he says to run it through Marketing before, during and after implementation. McKinsey’s piece (Anupam Agarwal, David P. Harding, and Jeffrey R. Schumacher, “Organizing for CRM”, McKinsey Quarterly) has some very amusing things to say:

In our experience, no…

What You Can Change & What You Can't

I went to the library here in town, which has a great selection of business books, to start some reading I needed to do on Chris Argyris’s action science. A reviewer on Amazon suggested a book by Martin Seligman, Learned Optimism, as the second book in a learning series. When I looked online before I left the house, the local public library had a copy, saving me a discouraging trip to the loca…

How Do You Know If The Training Was Worth It?

Training in China for the AP1000 reactor. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

While reviewing training literature recently, I stumbled on Daniel R. Tobin’s The Knowledge-Enabled Organization: Moving from “Training” to “Learning” to Meet Business Goals through some serendipitous web searches. My enquiry first led me to his website that dealt with “The Fallacy of ROI Calculations for Training”. An obvious ploy to perk up my ears. The article is an abbreviated version of t…

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