The idea of an emergent organization is not new but it is getting increased attention these days and Beth Comstock’s ‘rules of thumb and useful modes of understanding for managing ourselves and others in The Emergent Era’ is a nice list of some things that all companies should pay attention to.
- Organize around information flows; ditch hierarchy and bureaucracy.
- Empower individuals.
- Replace long lists of rules with a good M.O. (modus operandi and mindset orientation)
- Get Used to Living in the “In Between.” (i.e. with uncertainty)
- Open up new feedback loops – positive and negative
- Tap into the power of minds and machines.
Beth is a senior executive at GE and has been involved in their innovation efforts for many years. She, among many others, are thinking about how companies are going to need to evolve and what they will look like 5, 10 and 15 years from now. They will look very different than they look today. This article is a brief but good introduction to some of the ways in which companies will need to change the ways they are structured and the ways they behave.