Complexity And The Experience Of Leading Organizations (Complexity As The Experience Of Organizing)

Douglas Griffin; Ralph Stacey

The perspective of complex responsive processes draws on analogies from the complexity sciences, bringing in the essential characteristics of human agents, understood to emerge in social processes of communicative interaction and power-relating. The result is a way of thinking about life in organizations that focuses attention on how organizational members cope with unknown as they perpetually create organizational futures together. Providing a natural successor to the Editors' earlier series (Complexity and Emergence in Organizations) this seriesComplexity as the Experience of Organizationsaims to take this work further by taking very seriously theexperienceof organizational practitioners, and showing how taking the perspective of complex responsive process yields deeper insight into practice and so develops that practice. In this book, all of the contributors work as leaders, consultants or managers in organizations. They provide narrative accounts of their actual workaddressing questions such as: What does it mean, in actual everyday terms, to lead a large organization? How do leaders learn to lead? What are the apparent or real contradictions inherent in the experience of leading? In considering such questions in terms of their daily experience, the contributors (all experienced leaders) explore how the perspective of complex responsive processes assists them to make sense of their experience and so to develop their practice.Complexity and the Experience of Leading Organizationsoffers a different method for making sense of an individual's experience in a rapidly changing world by using reflective accounts of ordinary everyday life in organizations rather than idealized accounts. The editors' commentary introduces and contextualizes these experiences as well as drawing out key themes for further research. Complexity and the Experience of Leading Organizationswill be of value to readers from amongst thoseacademics and business school students and practitioners who are looking for reflective accounts of real life experiences of leadership in organizations, rather than further prescriptions of what life in organizations ought to be like.

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