Do many Chief x Officers make an organisation more intelligent?

I stumbled on to this question when I noticed in the media that were more and more reports of Chief Officers than of the already familiar CEO (Chief Executive Officer.) I have managed to accustom myself to CFO and COO. But with Chief Knowledge Officer, Chief Learning Officer, Chief Digitalisation Officer I am starting to have concerns about where this development might lead. We are now talking about the C-Suite, meaning the executive level. Not so long ago, vice presidents were flooding the carpeted floors. What will follow? Wikipedia (as of 05.05.2020) lists a good 50 CxOs. Amazingly, no Chief Project Officer. Why not actually? At least he can be found on the websites of international project management organisations. OK….

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The thing about decisions

I often get the urge to write in reaction to things that have a negative impact on me. Not necessarily just aggravations. Often it is people making things too easy for themselves. I notice time and again, for example, that there are spelling mistakes on many signs, or that journalists, who ought to be trained in this area, cannot get their grammar right. I’m neither a language specialist nor a purity fetishist, but I do believe that it doesn’t hurt to at least make an effort when you do something. It makes your own statements and actions a lot more credible.

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Sex, Drugs and Corona (Part 2)

Editor’s note: We have already introduced this friendly animal to you in 2019 with the article “Blame Management.” For the following text we thought it would be appropriate to get our “scapegoat” out of the archive once again!

After part 1 of this work finally exposed the perfidious and anti-democratic machinations of the big brewery mafia without mercy, now the announced continuation.

What has Sars-Cov2 to do with guilt? The answer is short and to the point: I have an suspicion.

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Home Office in Quarantine

Up to now, some of my colleagues have worked from home because they wanted to do it themselves (and sometimes their managers had to be convinced). Those who received management blessing then took special care to appear just as professional from home as from the office – or even more professional. The webcam background was checked for telltale elements that could allow conclusions to be drawn about private life, and any acoustic disturbances were also eliminated. It is better to sweat with the window closed than to risk the noise of the nearby carnival penetrating through the phone.

And all this is – at least in my experience – suddenly quite different…

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Simple? Complicated? Complex? Or already chaotic?

Can the Cynefin model help in matters of the heart?

Quite a while ago, the so-called Cynefin model (from the Welsh word meaning “habitat”) achieved quite a bit of notoriety. It is a typology of a system or project that provides a clue as to what kind of explanations and/or solutions apply or might be helpful in uncertain contexts.

The model is divided into four categories or contexts: simple, chaotic, complex and complicated.

Now from time to time I too use one of those platforms where you can tell other people something (about yourself). On this particular platform I was told someone I knew had updated his or her relationship status to “complicated”.

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Agililly – an emergency

Clarification: Since we are now trying to better understand companies and organizations as living organisms, what appealed to me about this posting was turning the highly topical and much sought-after characteristic of agility into a person – Agililly. With the constant indispensable companion and pioneer Scrummy in the role of Scrum Master – a mostly overworked and often ignored evangelist for the necessary principles and practices. The fact that the scene takes place in a hospital should not really come as a surprise.

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Feeling strategies – with dedication and passion against blind trust

This is a new text from our “guest writer” Christoph Henties.

A chorus on strategy

“Felt is not recognized.

Recognised is not formulated.

Formulated is not proclaimed.

Proclaimed is not understood.

Understood is not agreed.

Agreed is not applied.

Applied is not maintained.

Maintained is not felt. Felt is not…!”

Whether you are a jazz or classical music fan, love pulsating swing or soulful ballads, everyone can musically intonate the above chorus, the “strategy song”, in their own way. And as a rule, harmonies and songs, especially if you like them, become a catchy tune in your memory – they play themselves, so to speak, almost involuntarily recurring in your “spiritual ear”. How nice it would be if this metaphor also applied to companies‘ extensively elaborated strategic plans.

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Risk management or self-deception? (2)

Are the common approaches to risk management in projects still up to date?

I think not.

In a world in which more change takes place every day than in the whole of 1880, the almost exclusive focus on what is known and experienced is de facto pure arrogance paired with ignorance (and this also applies to Central Switzerland).

Even iterative approaches such as Scrum, which are rightly said to be better suited to rapid change and high complexity, provide only partial concrete answers. Shorter sprints and transparency about the state of the delivery outcomes are very helpful, but do not turn a turkey into a visionary yet.

But how can we position ourselves in projects in such a way that we are better prepared for unknown unknowns, or perhaps even draw something positive from them?

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