Balancing Acts: A Human Systems Approach to Organizational Change

By James Conklin

© 2021

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.

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Product Details

  • Imprint: Rotman-UTP Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 344 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP006717

  • AVAILABLE NOV 2021

    From: $24.02

    Regular Price: $36.95

    ISBN 9781487540272
  • AVAILABLE NOV 2021

    From: $24.02

    Regular Price: $36.95

Quick Overview

Balancing Acts presents an iterative, democratic, and inclusive approach to social change that is suited to the complexities of the twenty-first century.

Balancing Acts: A Human Systems Approach to Organizational Change

By James Conklin

© 2021

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.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Imprint: Rotman-UTP Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 344 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Author Information

    James 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 contents

    Preface
    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

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