The Path of Least Resistance for Managers: Designing Organizations to Succeed by Robert Fritz

The Path of Least Resistance for Managers: Designing Organizations to Succeed by Robert Fritz

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Robert Fritz is the founder of a field called "structural consulting" and has worked extensively with Peter Senge, himself known for his theories on "the learning organization." Fritz is also the author of Corporate Tides (1996), in which he explained the "laws of organizational structure." He calls this new book an updated, redesigned, and rewritten next-generation version of Corporate Tides. He explains that organizational structure may impede organizational learning, that achievement in one part of an organization may not be replicated because of organizational barriers. Moreover, he shows that success in one department of an organization may actually lead to difficulties or problems in another; Fritz calls this phenomenon structural oscillation. He explains the key principles of structural tension and structural conflict. He also provides examples that demonstrate why best efforts do not always result in success and suggests ways to redesign organizations so that they can succeed. Robert Fritz's book is his emphasis on looking for patterns and trends present in every business. After reading Mr. Fritz's perspective on why organizations oscillate, it is understood why smart people do stupid things. Mr. Fritz suggests that quite often, the cause is simple; competing goals that rob each other of focus, resources and energy. Mr. Fritz's offers insights on how an organization can create real alignment and more importantly, involvement of the entire organization. This book is a very quick read. It doesn't use the usual format for business-oriented books. All effort is brought to bear in helping me, the reader, look at my situation or my client's situation in a different and clearer light. The quality of consulting can be vastly imp...

... middle of paper ...

...on and sanity; it is simple, but not simplistic.

The insights in this book, if applied, are destined to influence the organization because they follow the basics of a structure's influence on behavior. Change the structure and the organization will change...Change it intelligently and the organization will advance. Buy the book and step to the forefront of organizational leadership...but be forewarned: Bring a teachable spirit. Be willing to unlearn a few assumptions to make room for Fritz's simple and strategic insights. Managers wouldn't begin to think about change in an organization without answering the 11 Questions first (they're in the book). Finally, and for Pete's Sake, Peter Senge wrote the forward for his "friend and mentor" Robert Fritz.

Works Cited

Robert Fritz. The Path of Least Resistance for Managers: designing organizations to succeed.

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