What Comes After Management 3.0

What Comes After Management 3.0?

What is the Next Big Thing after managing organizations based on science?

One question I get a lot is this one:

“Is your next book called Management 4.0?”

The 7,000 people who asked me this same question in the last two years (rough estimate) usually add a smile or snigger, to indicate the intention of a friendly joke.

And I take it kindly.

Because their question is valid:
What’s Next?

Well, that depends.

Management 1.0 (or scientific management) has its roots in reductionism. Treating the organization like a machine. Improving the individual performance with carrots and sticks.

“The beatings will continue until morale improves!”

Management 2.0 (or total quality management and many others) has its roots in holism. Treating the organization like an army trying to win a war, together. Focusing on whole-system optimization, while ignoring individualism.

“There’s no I in team!”

Management 3.0 (or managed self-organization) has it’s roots in complexity. Treating the organization like a network of people. A community with an emergent purpose. Focusing on growing value, between parts and the environment. Without taking stupid shortcuts.

“To every complex problem, there’s an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.”

Management 4.0, what will that be?

Well, you tell me.

What will scientists come up with after reductionism, holism, and complexity?

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  • luxspes

    It will be about getting to be antifragile instead of efficient, avoid evil blackswans, take advantage of good blackswans in other words about avoiding being a turkey

    • jurgenappelo

      Thanks for you input! But I disagree.
      Antifragile is the same as complex, which means it’s Management 3.0.
      The brain, the Internet, the human immune system etc. are all antifragile because they are complex adaptive systems.

  • Tobias Leonhardt

    I think the next thing will be that “we” will “discover” that we are more than a brain. The next thing will be a holistic approach in thinking & learning with the whole body. That we will experience that will, creativity and the intuition to navigate in complex systems comes from the body. That – what we know from neurobiology today – neuronal pattern changes much faster (or only) when we have enthusiastic full body learning experiences. The next thing will be that we integrate this in our management toolbox. We will see more body work in companies to let go of your tensions and blockages within our body to release limitation in our mind: to don’t get stopped by boarders, fear and pain and be able to go beyond…

  • Anton Rossouw

    Jurgen I think the next wave of management should be about fostering the leadership capabilities to create beneficial conditions for complex systems to flourish over the longer term (3,5,8,13 years…), as opposed to the immediate short term “management” of the system.

    Management 4.0 should be about transcending our short timeframe focus on weeks, months and tax-years towards creating long term sustainability. So its about working together to create beneficial long term change across connected ecosystems.

    Many current management practices (Agile included) focuses on the benefits to be gained by localised short term iteration and learning, which is perfectly valid, but we tend to forget that natural systems evolve non-linearly over longer “big-picture” time scales. Darwin showed us this parading shift.

    Such reflection on leadership activity should include Darwinian concepts of natural selection as well as artificial selection, punctuated equilibrium, ecosystem richness, and the evolution of technology as an extension of intelligence.

    In summary its about combining our understanding of what actively happens at short term timescales with how it influences and drives long term sustainability. This data should be used in the context of evolving many “right” small decisions to lead to optimised systemic sustainability and beneficial complexity that enhances survivability and sustainability over the long term.

    Management 4.0 is about the shift from short-term to long-term, whilst retaining the importance of local interaction, and recognising that survival is essential but extinction a real possibility.

    • Fernando Poblete Arrau

      I agree with you, anonymous guy

  • Gerardo Barcia

    I think more than management 4.0, we need Software Engineering 3.0 before, that complements the current trend.The next step could be the complexity of selection, in a world with many many frameworks and tools.

  • Anatoli Babenia

    The next thing is to analyze how all these people can work if the flow of money suddenly stopped. To analyse how to back up human interaction if new generation doesn’t have jobs, prospects and have to live in a world of religious wars and depleting resources. Try to invent blueprint for machine that will help new people to grow, clear the innovation bottleneck and keep newcomers motivated.

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