We’ve been talking a lot about the shifting nature of work at Change Agents Worldwide, including the determination of some first principles. At the same time, I have been reviewing my thoughts on what kind of organizational change is needed. Gary Hamel says that we are moving from an Industrial to a Creative Economy, which requires more independent workers with initiative, creativity, and passion.
What other changes will this creative economy drive? I see changes on several levels.
- Core ideas about valued work:
- from producing tangible goods to intangible services;
- from looking for best practices to constantly developing emergent practices;
- from standardized jobs to being transparent in changing work practices as one learns while working.
- The underlying technology that enables work:
- from centralized factories to distributed and dynamic workplaces.
- Organizational models to get work done:
- from centralized physical workplaces, to decentralized and dynamically changing ones.
- Distribution and sharing of knowledge about how work is managed:
- from schools of business, removed from the workplace, to communities of professionals learning as they work.
- The ideology behind business and work:
- from the principles of scientific management based on:
- standardized practices
- specialized tasks and jobs
- planning and control
- predominantly extrinsic rewards
- to an understanding of complexity and the necessity to continuously Probe-Sense-Respond and engage workers by enabling autonomy, mastery and a sense of purpose.