From the machine model point-of view, the focus is entirely upon the under- performing part. The non-functioning component is analyzed and an attempt to fix it is made. If it cannot be fixed, the part is simply removed and repla- ced. The success of any intervention is dependent on the leader’s efforts which are external to the actual machine itself.
If all else fails, an organ transplant can be considered. However, this is a highly complex undertaking which ultimately depends upon whether the host accepts the transplant (or not). The replacement "component" (ie. organ) may be fully functional, but if the host rejects it, the problem is not resolved. In contrast to an external fix which is implied by the machine metaphor, in the case of a living network "True change comes from within". An action's success is dependent on a behavioral shift and/or reaction from within the organization itself.
What if we consider an organization as a living network, rather than a machine?
By using a living network focus, attending to a specific underperforming element of an organization would be similar to coping with a malfunctioning organ such as a liver. To develop an understanding of a degenerated liver, it is key not only to look at the compo- nent – the function of the liver itself – but the entire organism which deter- mines an individual’s overall health. Is the underperforming liver the result of alcohol abuse, obesity or some other cause? This approach would indicate that the solution should occur at the level of the organism, not the organ in isolation. From a living system perspective, endeavoring to fix the part alone leads to addressing only the symptoms, not the cause.
HEA L T H A S A NEW L EADE R S H I P PARAD I GM F OR OUR POS T - COV I D WOR L D
First and foremost, what is the purpose of leadership?
As mentioned above, the machine metaphor defines the role of leadership as the individuals who make sure that the machine runs optimally. Moreover, it also implies external operators who maintain and run the “well-oiled” machine.
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