By Richard A. Swanson
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Extra resources for Analysis for Improving Performance: Tools for Diagnosing Organizations and Documenting Workplace Expertise
Thus, futures theory, in the context of planning for the future in uncertain conditions, in no way resembles the reductionist view of most strategic planning efforts that end up with a single strategy. The language and tools of alternative futures and scenario building are intended to create a true picture of the facts, the potential ﬂux in those facts, and the decision-making agility required of the future. Futures theory is critical for sustainable performance in that it prepares one to recognize and cope with an evolving future state.
Eventually, in even the most humane organizations, people with obsolete know-how Theoretical Foundation of Performance Improvement 35 are discharged to allow the hiring of people who seemingly have the capacity to perform in the present system or the ability to reshape the systems. A systems-thinking person would judge these erratic organizational pulsings as ineffective and inefﬁcient. As a positive response, the remainder of this book provides the tools to systematically diagnose and document workplace performance and expertise—the critical ﬁrst steps in performance improvement.
Systems thinking demands that analysts understand the powerful inﬂuences that driving forces in the environment have on the organization as a system and the challenges and opportunities these driving forces present to decision makers throughout the organization. The organizations that developers study are open systems; that is, they take in inputs—energy, materials, people, capital, and so on—from the environment. They then process these inputs and, in due time, return them to the environment in the form of outputs: goods and/or services.
Analysis for Improving Performance: Tools for Diagnosing Organizations and Documenting Workplace Expertise by Richard A. Swanson