Thoughts on Business, and how Agile, Lean, Scrum, XP, and Agile Project Management can help businesses run better
Monday, November 2, 2015
Larman's Laws of Organizational Behavior
This is what Craig Larman says on his website. I quote that page in full:
Larman’s Laws of Organizational Behavior
After decades of observation and organizational consulting, here areLarman’s Laws of Organizational Behavior. These are observations rather than laws to follow.
1. Organizations are implicitly optimized to avoid changing the status quo middle- and first-level manager and “specialist” positions & power structures.
2. As a corollary to (1), any change initiative will be reduced to redefining or overloading the new terminology to mean basically the same as status quo.
3. As a corollary to (1), any change initiative will be derided as “purist”, “theoretical”, “revolutionary”, “religion”, and “needing pragmatic customization for local concerns” — which deflects from addressing weaknesses and manager/specialist status quo.
4. Culture follows structure.
or, “culture/behavior/mindset follows system & organizational design”i.e., if you want to really change culture, you have to start with changing structure, because culture does not really change otherwise. and that’s why deep systems of thought such asorganizational learningare not very sticky or impactful by themselves, and why systems such as scrum (that have a strong focus on structural change at the start) tend to more quickly impact culture. i discovered that john seddon also observed this: “Attempting to change an organization’s culture is a folly, it always fails. Peoples’ behavior (the culture) is a product of the system; when you change the system peoples’ behavior changes.”
Here is the originalpage. Some key information on getting organizations to change.