With disruptive business models and capabilities as its aims, digital business moves beyond process improvement and incremental innovation. It enables companies to graduate from using technology for automation to exploiting technology and information as revenue builders, market makers and customer finders.
Having the right team in place to do this is critical to success. A: Gartner has identified five steps for CIOs and digital business leaders to build and advance their digital business dream teams:. A: Versatility will be crucial. People who embody versatility — versatilists, as we call them —tend to be boundary-spanners and interpreters, bridging various domains of expertise and communities of interest, and often conveying, reconciling and resolving different points of view.
Versatilists can walk in the shoes of others, and they have the skill, even the fluency, to speak the languages of business, information, technology and things. CIOs and digital business leaders must enlist versatilists for their dream teams — and not be stingy in doing so. Gartner expects digital business dream teams to need two or three times the number of versatilists required for business as usual. In this discussion we concentrate on the decisional management and control roles of agents in an enterprise.
As explained above control can not be passed unguarded from management agent F to operational agent A but through agent' A's autonomous control. Such controls continuously compete with any other requests to A. A request 'do c' therefore becomes one of the objectives of agent A, and it is executed because of previous commitment by A to grant such request - optimally after consideration by A of the feasibility of such request s. The objectives in A's decision framework must be such that a negotiated request 'do c' is either granted, or appropriate corrective action is taken.
Each role of an agent is a negotiated commitment to perform in the future any and all actions that the role requires. In our model there are four consistency criteria to be maintained when roles are allocated to agents:. Functional adequacy : both qualitatively and quantitatively the agent must have the abilities to perform the functions necessary in the agent's roles Fig.
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No role conflicts: avoid conflicts among the roles played by any given individual agent; and conflicts between the set of roles allocated to one agent and the set of roles allocated to another agent, especially if their plans may be contingent on one another Bernus and Uppington, Shared priorities, policies and values: the agent's individual objectives are part of the agent's decision framework and as tasks compete for the agent's resources the agent must resolve the competition of objectives through applying priorities, policies or values.
If autonomously applied these must be shared such that an agent's decisions can be accepted by the others as valid and justified. Therefore a shared value system and subscription to policies is a necessary condition of negotiation and correct interpretation of commitments Fig. Adequate level of autonomy: It is possible to negotiate with, and request from an agent the performance of each small step of a task or negotiate the entire task as one. If the agent's capabilities allow the definition of the task on a higher level there is no need to extend control to the details of the task See Fig.
Unnecessarily detailed control limits the agent's ability to utilise its faculties and optimise resource usage. Intrusive control lack of autonomy has the potential to stop the agent from co-operating because its own priorities, policies and values negate the needlessly prescribed practices.
The Processes of Organization and Management
These criteria must extend to all elements influenc-ing the agent's behaviour in an organisation e. Since there is little hope that these elements could be made explicit or that it would be socially acceptable to do so, structures must be devised allowing these hidden elements to 'take care of themselves' co-ordination based on limited mutual knowledge.
Agent A can be controlled through specifying task as 'd' rather then over-specifying the control by taking over autonomous control and dictating a,b and c to achieve d. We define the 'static' organisation as one created by management to establish a capability to achieve certain class of objectives.
If day-to-day objectives fall in this class then the organisation functions effectively. Organisational design becomes a means of indirect control because it determines the channels of decision making. Based on the properties of the given organisational design management can determine any current objectives as long as they are in the class for which the organisation was designed. The organisation responds by actions to achieve the current particular objectives and provides feedback for management, closing the control loop.
Under many conditions the static organisation is effective and efficient. However, the organisation will still have spontaneity, since the individual agents' decisional frameworks contain, but are not limited to, the objectives passed on by the organisation. Management will regularly realise that the class of objectives for which the present design was suitable starts covering less and less of actual objectives and adapts the enterprise through regular re-organisa-tion.
However, no organisation can depend solely on static principles: when unexpected changes happen response must be dynamic see 5.
In circumstances where the design by management is always short-lived the environment is perceived as turbulent - although turbulence is not a property of the environment alone, but of the relationship between the environment and the organisation. The dynamic organisation is a configuration of agents designed, built and operated by the involved agents for a given class of objectives using explicit negotiated commitments and not operating based on a status quo. Individual agents build mutual commitment, and abide by established co-ordination and co-operation rules instead of rigidly segregating the authority to design the organisation from operational tasks.
Both static and dynamic organisations are built for a purpose or mission' but their agility is different. A static organisation tends to preserve the present state, a dynamic organisation releases purpose-based commitments when the mission is completed. It is necessary to have commonly available proven reference models of dynamic organisations and commonly accepted co-ordination protocols that can be adhered to in order to form temporary mutual commitments; It is necessary for the individuals in the enterprise to develop a working knowledge of these models and protocols, to enable them to dynamically build the organisation themselves.
The above requirements need to be complemented by responsibility structures to ensure that lost management functions are substituted to retain control of the organisation. Several experiments showed the success of this principle, e. See successful socio-technical experiments in Nordic countries van Houten, , Gibson, Recent designs with agent based integration whether stated explicitly or not include holonic manufacturing, agent co-ordination protocols, and the fractal factory.
Agent based integration is not limited to computer implemented agents but can be applied in purely human implemented organisational structures. See for a comparison of a some models in Tharumarajah et al , Matrix The matrix organisation was proposed with the aim of separating the rigid functional structure of traditional organisations from task-specific project organisation to achieve dynamic behaviour.
In a matrix each individual at any one time belongs to a functional entity and to one or more projects. However, it has been reported that matrix organisations where allocation of tasks and commitment was based on authoritative manage-ment as in a static organisation , the advantages of the matrix did not get realised Evans, Similar results are claimed about failures of workflow systems Klein, The formal organization owns infrastructure, hierarchies of power, systems, and processes.
The social organization focuses on communities, reputation, and fairness. There is a dynamic tension that exists between these two organizations: the formal organization has resources and infrastructure, but increasingly the social organization holds influence and knowledge. If we can manage the dynamic tension, we can benefit. Social leaders bridge this gap: they have a place within the hierarchy, but also the respect of their community.
Becoming Dynamic | SpringerLink
Social leaders are successful because they are invested in co-creating and co-owning the future. They are not afraid of the unknown. They understand that while organizations can still set the direction, they can utilize the community to solve a particular challenge. Instead of telling people what change will look like, social leaders instead ask people to help create the future picture, shaping, and delivering it together. Organizations that do not want to change have often been highly successful in the past.
They view the changes in the market and wider society as mere unnecessary details.
They believe they can weather the storm with their traditional, formal strength. The Socially Dynamic Organization, by contrast, gets stronger with change. Instead of deriving strength purely through infrastructure and hierarchy, the Socially Dynamic Organization is powerful because it has created engaged communities and spaces for its social leaders, employees, and learners to thrive. The Socially Dynamic Organization knows that change is not merely an effort, but it is the backdrop to how everything works.
The resistance to change often sits within communities of individuals who are heavily invested in the status quo: good people doing good work, within a known and static system.
To them, change is uncertainty. How do you change this mindset and create an organization that thrives on change?
How to Create & Maintain a Healthy Organizational Structure
Create social spaces where people can share new ideas organically: Attempting to own and control social spaces is an easy way to hinder emerging social communities and innovation. You can create spaces that are formal or informal. For example, Hackathon days within organizations are a formal avenue for employees to experiment and innovate out-of-the box ways to solve problems. Internal social media channels like Slack are an example of more informal social spaces moderated by employees themselves, and not HR or management.
The five trademarks of agile organizations
Recognize your social leaders: Recognize people who are helping their teams to innovate and change, whether or not they have the formal authority or a formal title. Strong social leaders can emerge from anywhere within an organization. The Socially Dynamic Organization uses success stories to inspire positive change. Involve employees from the ground-up to help co-create new programs—this could be everything from adopting a new travel expense software to new business markets to expand into. If employees give feedback, ensure that your leadership team takes them into account.
Failure is key to change: When we start to hear stories of what went wrong, we are starting to change. This could happen on internal social media, in meetings, or during s between managers and employees. Recognizing and learning from failure is the first step to change and an important part of becoming a Socially Dynamic Organization.