In an interview on innovation in management featured in the McKinsey Quarterly (2008, No. 1), author and strategy guru Gary Hamel talks about the need to radically change how we design and manage organizations. I particularly liked this quote:
The old model was, “How do you get people to serve the organization’s goals?” Today we have to ask, “How do you build organizations that merit the gifts of creativity and passion and initiative?” You cannot command those human capabilities. Imagination and commitment are things that people choose to bring to work every day—or not.
Hamel also shares some interesting thoughts on where the art & science of management is headed in the future:
Increasingly, the work of management won’t be done by managers. It will be pushed out to the periphery. It will be embedded in systems. I think we’re on the verge of what I would call a postmanagerial society. The idea that you mobilize human labor through a hierarchy of overseers and bureaucrats and administrators is going to look extraordinarily antiquated a decade or two from now.
There is a danger ... of creative apartheid. Too many executives seem to believe that while a few people in the company may be really clever and creative, most folks aren’t. When you look at companies like Toyota, you see their ability to mobilize the intelligence of so-called ordinary workers. Going forward, no company will be able to afford to waste a single iota of human imagination and intellectual power.
An interesting article that's well worth checking out.