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Changing Conversations in Organizations: A Complexity Approach to Change (Complexity and Emergence in Organizations)

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0415249140
ISBN-10: 0415249147
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Must of the thinking about orgazational change suggests that we can choose and design new futures for our firms. Questioning this idea, this book also describes an approach to change and development informed by a complexity perspective..
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Product Details

  • Series: Complexity and Emergence in Organizations
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (September 22, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415249147
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415249140
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,183,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Patricia Shaw wrote a great book because it gives a completely different view on the contribution of the "change" consultant to organizational change. Don't introduce models and schemas but initiate and fuel conversations in the organization not as a planned event but as a way of working. The strong point of this book is that Shaw lets the reader look into her consultant kitchen and takes you along with her "discoveries". It is a must read for every consultant with an urge to initiate all kind of change initiatives in organizations. And it is the most concrete example of the where the complexity 'school' from Ralph Stacey stands for I could find.
I have only one objection to this otherwise fantastic book. Shaw finds it necessary to set herself aside from all the other alternative change approaches in her last chapter. I would have liked this book even more if she just had skipped that chapter.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have 30 years experience in consulting, change and project management. I have written beautiful reports - but I was often frustrated that they rarely changed behaviour. This book helps me to pinpoint how I can help my clients to work differently. There is some really great wisdom here! Very accessible and practical. I'll keep going back to this book when I hit those problems again.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr. Shaw's work hopefully will re-ignite more action research in transformative organizational change.

There is a long thread of academic conversation that suggests major change is vastly complex and chaotic to say the very least. Predetermining the endpoint in major business change/re-engineering has proven to be highly unsuccessful for decades. New thinking about lasting change is called for. Dr. Shaw, in reflecting on her consulting experiences highlights these issues and, at the same time, offers an approach/mindset that change agents should seriously consider.

I can personally attest to the efficacy of such a stance in affecting change.

Jeff Marsh Ph.D.
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