The Ripple - Edition 3/2021 (Website)

With the advance of neuroscience, the ubiquity of networks as well as their sheer power has been revealed. An average human brain contains appro- ximately 10 billion nerve cells which are interlinked in a vast network of 1 trillion (!) connections known as synapses. It is the patterns of these interconnections which gives rise to our sensory perception, memory, know- ledge and consciousness. Everything we feel, taste, see, and know is a conse- quence of the power of networks and interconnections.

A M I ND S H I F T I N T HE RO L E O F L EADE R S H I P I N ORGAN I ZA T I ON S I S V I T A L Currently the prevailing metaphor for organizations is a "well-oiled machine". This paradigm predicates that the role of leadership is to guarantee that all the parts of the machine are working appropriately. What are the implications of this approach? The end goal is usual- ly to obtain the maximum amount of output possible from the entire process. How does a change in metaphors make a difference in our understanding of leadership? Let’s conduct a thought experiment to explore the impact of a new metaphor starting with the following question:

What happens if some component inside an

If our natural world is organized around the network principle, it is natural to recognize our organizations as networks as well. Grasping to understand this network reality has significant implica- tions for our understanding of the role of leadership in organizations. In addition, it requires a mindset shift. Likewise basic cells are currently understood to consist of networks of molecules. This concept gave birth to the science of network biology. Even atoms are regarded as networks of energy.

organization is not working as effectively as it should be?

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