The Unfolding Organization

In essence, then, management and organization are not classically ordered in a linear manner. Simple divisions between marketing and finance, or between “energized” and “harmonic” learning, are merely explicate, surface manifestations of a deeper, implicate reality. In such a holographic view of reality, the most profound, inseparable reality is the absolute and infinite state of interconnectedness: within this ultimate source all individuals (or organizations) are contained in potential form. Above that individuals are aware of themselves, but also of their connectedness. On the immediate surface individuals (or, again, organizations) consider themselves to be totally separate. Let us begin on the surface, organizationally speaking, and descend progressively toward the absolute source, relating aspects of learning (chapter 13) to levels of organization.

The reactive organization

The reactive organization, at its most basic, reacts to individual people and events, in a tangible, immediate, and short-term way. Therefore, it exhibits a reactive style of managing and learning, and a myopic operational outlook, individually associated with the exuberance of childhood.

The typical street trader – offering you whatever he happens to have in stock, just to physically capture your attention – is a reactive case in point. His senses are alert, but his thoughts and feelings are comparatively inert. “Managing by wandering about,” incorporating Tom Peter's famous ...

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