Tag: managerialism

The network scientist Emmanuel Lazega studies collegiality and bureaucracy as ideal typical forms of social organisation which co-exist in a fluctuating balance within organisations. Collegiality involves actors recognising each other as autonomous, existing in relationship to each other and necessitating consensus as a preliminary for what will always be non-routine action. Bureaucracy merely requires interaction, […]

In a recent editorial in Current Sociology, Michael Burawoy warns about what he describes as the ascent of the spiralists. He finds these figures throughout the UC Berekely administration, accusing them of being “people who spiral in from outside, develop signature projects and then hope to spiral upward and onward, leaving the university behind to spiral […]

There’s an interesting extract in The Upstarts, by Brad Stone, concerning discretionary effort: what could your employees do if they were properly motivated? I’m fascinated by this concept because of its open-ended character. Once one begins to think like this, it’s always possible to imagine your employees doing more. The full actualisation of discretionary effort is a vanishing point and this […]

I read this description of Schmidt in How Google Works and it immediately prompted the question of how this behaviour percolates down the food chain. How does a Google exec who fails this test then act in relation to their own subordinates? Loc 2524: John Seely Brown, the former director of Xerox’s Palo Alto Research […]

From The New Ruthless Economy, by Simon Head, loc 1209. I wonder what ‘innovations’ have emerged in the ten years since this was book was published? There are at least five distinct types of monitoring software. First, there are what might be called “classic” monitoring products, software that embodies the Taylorist preoccupation with timing and […]

From The Everything Story by Brad Stone: “I don’t know if you guys don’t have high standards or if you just don’t know what you’re doing” “If that’s our plan, I don’t like our plan” “Are you lazy or just incompetent?” “Does it surprise you that you don’t know the answer to that question?” “Why are you […]

It’s hard not to see a common thread in these reports I’ve encountered in recent weeks: A third of GPs in the UK plan to retire in the next five years because of high stress levels, unmanageable workloads and too little time with patients, in a move that would exacerbate the existing difficulty of getting […]