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82% of CEOs Expect Complexity to Rise, But Most Say Their Companies Aren't Ready — IBM 2010 Global Chief Executive Officer Study
A storm of complexity has been brewing in virtually every aspect of our civilization: personal, relational, technological, commercial, political, and intellectual. The factors contributing to this maelstrom are, not surprisingly, very very complex. We describe the dynamics involved in the Rise of Complexity and the growing response in a framework we call Emergent Value Systems (EVS).
To pack roughly 200 years of history in a few sentences: the ideal of the Republic - Industrial Age was productivity. Productivity was based on the core values of knowledge, efficiency, and delivery, which attempted to solve the problems of ignorance, exploitation, and protectionism from the proceeding age. However, the core strategy of connectivity paired with the fallacy of compartmentalization lead to unexpected and uncontrolled complexity manifested in three conditions: fragmentation, mixing, and flattening.
A new age is currently coming into power to deal with these three conditions:
The Participatory - Network Age
Increasingly, people in and out of our organizations value openness, clarity, and consistency. In a quest for authenticity they demand and offer participation so they can sort the infinite opportunities for connect into relationships that offer value or inspire trust (virtue) and those that do not.
As in previous value systems, citizens of the emerging age must navigate carefully. Ambiguity in the context of openness can easily erode clarity and open the door to catastrophic network effects. Now, more than ever, the direction and identity of any enterprise must be embedded in every person and system, both to survive the complexity storm, and avoid the unexpected compounding consequences unleashed by ambiguity.
This is what we do. We help our clients build participatory strategic culture around the values of openness, clarity, and consistency in their organizations, markets, and communities. We form learning partnerships that create and test the new leadership disciplines for the challenging age ahead. We facilitate processes and environments that translate the embodied DNA of enterprise into everything they do and every way they are experienced.
For more detail, choose an application of our consulting approach to a field of enterprises. We're currently adding applications, so if you're curious about an area of enterprise not listed here, feel free to drop us a line.
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