Balancing Acts: A Human Systems Approach to Organizational Change
Balancing Acts is about organizational change. It offers consultants and managers a simple, powerful way to think about change, and describes a four-phase iterative process for implementing change. The book is full of examples of change initiatives in different types of organizations, and confronts head-on the problems and pitfalls that often arise. Conklin explains why organizational change can be so difficult, and shows that by balancing a set of competing psychological and systemic challenges interveners will increase their chance of success.
Conklin shows that human groups function as complex systems, and that a change initiative is not a linear progression toward a predefined conclusion. Instead, change is an iterative process that involves a search for feasible and useful solutions. The book’s central argument is that while leading or supporting this search, consultants and leaders must balance four critical concerns. They must balance confrontation with compassion, participation with observation, assertion with inquiry, and planfulness with emergence.
- Imprint: Rotman-UTP Publishing
- World Rights
- Page Count: 344 pages
- Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
Author InformationJames Conklin is an associate professor in the Department of Applied Human Sciences at Concordia University and an investigator at the Bruyère Research Institute.
Table of contentsPreface
Part One: Thinking About Change
1.Terms of Art
2. Doing Things to People and Doing Things with People
3. Searching for Answers
Part Two: The Doing of Change
4. The Relationship Between Interventionists and Stakeholders
5. Creating a Contract with your Client
6. Exploring the Client System
7. Making Sense of Things
8. Implementing and Evaluating the Intervention
9. The Ethics of Intervention
10. Changing the Future of Planned Change
Subjects and Courses