A Brief Historical Interlude: On the Glacier Metal Company

E. Forrest Christian elliott jaques, Underachievers, Wilfred Brown Leave a Comment

(The next post today will address the Underachieve issue directly. This one describes why Wilfred Brown is important to listen to. We’ll refer to these things later.) As Paul Holstrom pointed out, my telling of the story about the Glacier guys coming up with Timespan was a bit off. They had been having a pint and were talking about the …

Prom rejection (2009) by Mjt16. Public domain.

Why Requisite Organization Fails: People Don’t Like the Implications

E. Forrest Christian requisite organization 10 Comments

Let’s face facts: Requisite Organization (RO) means that a lot of people (1) aren’t as “smart” as they think they are, and (2) the system in which they have succeeded is built on sand. And that’s a big reason why RO doesn’t succeed. When people read about work levels and Requisite Organization — especially Bioss’s Career Path Appreciation (CPA) and …

Why Work Levels Are Rejected: Others Are Selfish Fallacy

E. Forrest Christian Managing, Motivation, Theory Leave a Comment

While reading the excellent and highly recommended book by Heath & Heath, Made to Stick, I came upon this passage about Maslow’s Hierachy of Needs: Imagine that a company offers its employees a $1,000 bonus if they meet certain performance targets. There are three different ways of presenting the bonus to employees: Think of what that $1,000 means: a down …

Typical traction lift design-(c) 2011 Harrihealey02 (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Wikimedia

Misunderstanding Requisite Organization

E. Forrest Christian Theory 5 Comments

I was poking around to see if Alison Brause had done anything on this election and found an interesting opinion piece on her Requisite Organization based study over at the Boston Globe’s site. I’m not particularly a fan of the Brause report — something smells a bit bad about basing the evaluations on debate transcripts — but the author [UPDATE: …

Employees at Mid-Continent Refinery [ca. 1943 Tulsa, OK (LOC). By John Vachon]

Communities of Practice and Management Hierarchy: Can it work?

E. Forrest Christian Knowledge, Reviews - Articles 6 Comments

In this blog post from 2004, I muse on the interaction between the network forms of Communities of Practice and managerial hierarchies (cascades of Real Bosses, not simply organizational charts). I wonder if now, years later, this is still valid. Let me know what you think. How do Communities of Practice (CoP) interact with the self-organizing principles that Elliott Jaques …

Dome of the Belgian royal greenhouses in Laeken (external). (c) E. Forrest Christian

Requisitely Organize to Build Social Capital at Work

E. Forrest Christian requisite organization 7 Comments

Can Elliott Jaques’s theory of Requisite Organization and trust-building hierarchies mesh with Francis Fukuyama’s social capital arguments regarding trust and trust-building within a culture? According to Jaques in the introduction to Requisite Organization: A Total System for Effective Managerial Organization and Managerial Leadership for the 21st Century (1996) the aim of requisite organization theory of management structure is: to develop …

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Time Span of Discretion Matters, and not Complexity

E. Forrest Christian requisite organization, Theory 11 Comments

Time Span of Discretion is what determines the size of the role, and not some measure of “complexity”. Harald Solaas, who wrote a comment to “Does Requisite Organization Really Work Over the Weekend?“, has written an article entitled “Why Is Requisite Organization (RO) Theory So Difficult to Understand?.” In it, he relates the following story about working with Elliot Jaques …