Markku Räisänen | 17.06.2011 | Show comments 2
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Organizational Rhythm in Change

rockWhy so many managers are saying: "Our speed in change implementation is far to low" and on the other hand so many people working in those very same organization are complaining: "We have too many and too fast changes in our work".

Is there something we haven't noticed yet?

Frijof Capra, physicist, systems thinker, and author who wrote the following on "rhythmic models" in nature: "Finding these rhythmic models can help us understand the passages between structure and rhythm: Rhythmic models seem to be present at all levels. Atoms are models of probability waves, molecules are vibrating structures and organisms are multi-dimensional interdependent fluctuating models. Plants, animals and human beings go through cycles of activity and of rest and all their physiological functions oscillate according to rhythms of diverse periodicity. The composing elements of an ecosystem are interrelated by cyclical exchanges of matter and energy; civilizations develop then decline in evolutionary cycles and the planet as a whole has its rhythms and its recurrences as it spins around its axis and the sun"

An organization is also a living thing and it has its own natural rhythms. Some of organizations feel comfortable in rapid changing environment where everything will be changed within months and some other organizations have developed rhythm where even smallest changes will take years.

People have selected their work place according to rhythm which is suitable with their own rhythm of life or not?

Do we need to take organizational rhythm in account more carefully while planning and implementing the change programs?

If yes, how to do that in appropriate way?


Change Managers Implementation rhythmic models structure organization rapid change

2 kommentarer

Leksa | 21.06.2011 klo 15:36

I like the metafore! Chaning the tempo sometimes requires selecting a different tune. Some music is destroyed if played too quickly; a slow ballad is a slow ballad. What would your organzational music be like? Do the players have to practice more to play quicker? If you'be played swing, turning to bebop could be difficult.

Juha Lipponen | 21.06.2011 klo 21:59

Great post Markku! It is certainly true that it's good to take into account the "natural frequency of change" in organizations. An over-eager change agent in a naturally slow organization can be quite an 'elephant in a china shop' in many ways. I guess that's what Leksa is referring to ;) Sure, there are situations that you have to show to an organization that you need pick up your speed of change.

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