Am I missing something?

Following the social media as best as I can as an agile 66 year old, it would appear that organizations are undergoing a radical revolution.

  • Hierarchies are being replaced by holocracies and adhocratic configurations.
  • Leadership strives to engage.
  • HR has shrieked “Eureka” having embraced data analytics as the ultimate elixir.
  • Talent needs to be titillated and won over, or else there will be severe intense and painful retention problems.

What am I missing?

I am still very active as a consultant although I put aside one day a week to study history. And I have just not seen all the above happening in the field. Here is what I do see-

So what am I missing?


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18 thoughts on “Am I missing something?

  1. אולי להבין שמערכת ההפעלה מתחלפת וצריך לעדכן את הפרדיגמות הייעוציות.
    זה כנראה לא או או אלא גם וגם.
    ועדיין מחכה לפגישה על כוס קפה.

      • אלון.
        קורים דברים שלא יאמנו.
        המדיה החברתית משנה תפיסות. עולם. דירקטוריונים משנים החלטות עסקיות בעקבות מה שקורה במדיה החברתית. פרשת ביטול ההחלטה למחוק חובות לדנקנר היא רק דוגמא. תראה מה קורה עכשיו עם אבגי. לטוב ולרע זה משפיע גם בארגונים. זה לא יעלם. זה מחייב אותנו לבחון את הפרדיגמות שלנו.

        • I do not disagree. What I am saying is that the way social media portrays organizational life is misleading. I am NOT saying that social media does not influence decision making within organizations.

          • יש אמרה שמיוחסת לרזי ברקאי שאמר בשידור למפיקה בתוכנית שלו: תשיגי לי את האחראי על האינטרנט.
            דרך נוספת להסתכל על הדברים היא שהדרך שבה המדיה החברתית מתארת את הארגון עוד מציאות אחת. היא לא בהכרח המציאות האובייקטיבית. אבל בעולם של ריבוי דימויים ומציאויות זו עוד דרך שבה הארגון משתקף. אפשר להגיד שזה מטעה ושגוי אבל זו פשוט השתקפות נוספת של הארגון. לא במקום בנוסף. עד שימצאו את האחראי על האינטרנט, הארגון יצטרך ללמוד ולהבין את התפיסה שלו במדיה החברתית.

  2. Allon,

    Great – and courageous, as usual – posting!

    I really liked this: “Leaders appear to me over reliant or enslaved to IT driven idiotic practices. People abscond responsibility more than ever.”

    I believe it sad that social media promotes the idea that leadership is formulaic, i.e. that one only need to do these three things… They make it like making dehydrated Lipton’s chicken soup … “just add water”.

    In sadness, these vapid lists (and so -called gurus) actually PRVENT people from generating leadership!

    Leadership has to be developed based upon reality – not some cookie cutter box.

    Keep the light on Truth, Allon.

    Be well, my friend.


    Ed, Drive On!

  3. I tell my MBA marketing strategy class that I teach in Toronto that I don’t Tweak, don’t Twerk, don’t use Twitter, am rarely on Facebook, and nobody has proven how to make money using social media, but challenge the students to teach me.I teach a disciplined strategic planning process, reality, that they can take back to their workplaces and implement right away. Trouble is, while many report success, they bump into IT idiotic practices, bureaucratic HR, and hierarchy that doesn’t care. But there is hope.

  4. Maybe I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. . . (Oooh, I like that!)
    I keep running into CEOs and even HR Directors who ‘get it’ and realize that true leadership and engagement–that is not driven by mechanical or technical givens–happens INSIDE before it happens OUTSIDE.
    They become my focus and my lifeline to the principles that drew me into this work 40 years ago.

  5. Allon, Another good post! I always enjoy your stuff, as you know. To your question, “Am I missing something?” I don’t think you are missing a thing. You are as sharp-eyed as ever. You are noticing the gap between the hype (which social media thrives on) and the actual reality inside organizations.

    • Thanks Terry.
      I am taking a course now on Mid East politics and the media. Lots of incitement occurs by the media creating hype around events that do NOT happen. On both sides.

  6. I think the war zone notion is one that no one wants to talk about, Allon. That people jockey to save their jobs comes as no surprise. That corporate leaders talk out of both sides of their mouths about the importance of people, talent, knowledge and all that jazz comes as no surprise, either. Nor does the sycophancy of HR. Ditto for all the dumb stuff that comes out of IT. I think the reason no one wants to talk about all this goes back to the war zone notion: talk about this and you’ll find yourself out of a job. I think that’s kind of vicious cycle.

  7. Perhaps, the description of the phenomena you are presenting, Allon, is a mere symptom of a deeper cause: the attempt of transposing the under the waterline stuff in organizations (as J Scherer describes it) to the above the waterline realm. Executives are less and less capable of dealing with humans as they are designed, HR and IT are utterly tempted to control the uncontrollable. This makes for organizations less apt at dealing with uncertainty and brings CEOs in shifting their time horizons to warped time, forcing required transformations into mechanistic, predictable, early wins. Fundamentally, we need to become consultants apt at understanding our relationship with time Otherwise, we will mimick the pattern you so aptly describe, Allon.

  8. Can ‘leaders'(?) really lead within the corporate political system?
    Can IT let go of their world of ‘control through ambiguity’?
    Can HR find their place in their power struggle among the game of elitists?
    Can a person be seen as an individual and not a ‘human resource’ or ‘human capital’?
    Can ‘consultants’ forget they have THE answer?
    Can a person really become responsible when they then become the target of blame?
    Can organizations become just people coming together to achieve something without the offer of status and the power over others?

    I don’t think so…. humans have not evolved enough … we are still in the cave afraid of the shadows…

  9. Great post Allon. Too bad indeed many software do nothing new but replicate previous business practices, too bad most of the so called social media is not really that social but it may well be that the hype is just slightly ahead of the game. As you know, innovation in human relations is a very slow process. Meanwhile some are making money and in today’s world nothing is more important. 🙂

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