This paper is to introduces the Cynefin model and its practices which can be used to address the uncertainty of the modern world. The practices that are introduced can be used to compliment traditional approaches to project, programme and portfolio management. This provides a more comprehensive approach that reflects the needs of management in an ever more uncertain world.
Quel style de management adopter en fonction du type d'environnement ou de projet mené? Quelle posture de leadership est la plus pertinente dans un environnement incertain? Je vous propose ci-après une piste de réflexion mettant en lien les domaines du modèle Cynefin et l'intelligence émotionnelle.
The Belgian professor and consultant, Nick van Heck, likes to say, in a purposefully provocative manner that “Disruptions do not exist. They are only an excuse for the unprepared”. For him, leaders need to challenge their assumptions about what strategy and planning are about and how they are structured. He continues: “Strategy should not be about guessing the future but preparing for whatever may be!” I support this way of thinking.
In Switzerland, there are more than 4'000 contaminated sites needing remediation in the next decades. Some of the remediation projects are especially large – over 100 Millions € - and highly complex. On behalf of the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN), the authors developed a guideline (in press) to support the authorities which are challenged by such complex projects. After having identified the success factors and key challenges of three sites being currently remediated, a project typology, based on four dimensions (technical, legal, socio-relational and management), has been developed. Further, a complexity grid, inspired by the project complexity model of Kathleen Hass, has been developed, allowing a qualitative identification of the main sources of complexity. Finally, success factors, recommendations and tools for key elements like goal-setting, decision-making and steering, stakeholder-management, project-organisation, participation and communication, planning, uncertainty and risk-management, culture and leadership, are suggested.
by C. F. Kurtz, D. J. Snowden In this paper, we challenge the universality of three basic assumptions prevalent in organizational decision support and strategy: assumptions of order, of rational choice and of intent.
In a complex adaptive system we have dispositionality not causality, so when we act we cannot know what will happen. That means we need to maintain the ability to respond quickly, something I brought in at the end when I talked about complexity approaches to project management.
I promised yesterday to clarify some aspects of Cynefin. This was triggered by Roger's Linked In post and some of the response (reported yesterday) but it is not a specific response. Rather see it as a summary of multiple responses both articulated or otherwise over the last few years.
Philippe Vallat's insight:
Cynefin Framework clarified by Dave Snowden. Must read!
Overcoming Perplexity - Frames of Mind Required for Engaging with Complexity, by Aiden Choles
Max-Neef (1991) defines perplexity as the outcome of a situation for which we cannot recognise a precedent, has kept us in a dead-end alley and barred the road to imaginative, novel and bold situations.
Philippe Vallat's insight:
The frames of mind for dealing with complexity:
- situational awareness
- and holding a healthy respect for the restraint/action paradox.
By attending a very inspiring workshop with Robert Dilts about « Leadership in times of uncertainty » in Bruxelles this week-end, some analogies with the Cynefin Framework of Dave Snowden (that I presented previously) emerged in my mind. Taking as base the « Revised Leadership Table » by D. Snowden, I put on the paper some reflexions about further leadership dimensions.
Philippe Vallat's insight:
Feedbacks, comments, thoughts, suggestions are welcome!
I was pleasantly surprised to hear that several thinkers, practitioners, and researchers have teamed up to “further the application of complexity science in software development as well as in the larger organization”.
Welche sind die besonderen Risikoquellen in komplexen Projekten und Systemen? Kann man sie identifizieren und rechtzeitig vorbeugen oder mindestens reduzieren? Ist das traditionelle Risikomanagement geeignet und ausreichend, um den Faktor „Unsicherheit“ zu bewältigen?
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