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Responsibility, function and mission: Perspective refraction as context

After September 11, American authorities declared our world to be the VUKA world: Volatile, uncertain, complex, in ambiguity. The clarification of roles and responsibilities is becoming increasingly important in such a world, which is also accelerated, digitalized and agile!
Because unclarified roles and responsibilities ...

How does something like this happen?

The sociologist Niclas Luhmann  (Kneer & Nassehi, 1993) knew that systems can never be described as a unit. For systems can only be observed where they break or overlap with other systems. Breaking results in coherence.

The management researcher F. Malik (Leading, Performing, Living) states that almost all managers can describe their function, but not the decisive task behind it. One can say that the "what" likes to pretend to be clarified and thus hides the question of the "how". For the mission only becomes visible where it "breaks" with other interfaces, where it comes into contact. From here on the order becomes relevant, until then it can remain unnamed. In the course of a process of clarifying responsibility, the task associated with a particular function can be clarified and linked to main tasks that then need to be advocated.

Process for clarifying responsibility.

The process of clarifying responsibility is not about whether the people involved know what they have to teach and contribute functionally. It is about clarifying what perspective, i.e. what mandate (core responsibility) someone has and how persistently they can defend this mandate where. Classical management theory defines this as conflict management, but it is about how companies create connections out of breaks in perspective.

Perspectives make specific contributions. They organize our actions, give facts a meaning, generate new information, control our future actions and in turn generate: new perspectives. Thus perspectives are tools for finding, supplementing and unifying meaning.

For this purpose, an undivided, organizing picture of the future of the company must be provided! Because, a company must form a unity out of the refraction of perspectives. For this unification in an organizing picture, it is necessary to find rules, define right of way and define playing fields in order to draw good honey from the power of conflict.

The principle of "refraction" is still far too little considered in the general business development doctrine! It sometimes leaks out when it is pointed out that conflicts should be used productively. Well.

But the principle leads to our approach in the course of clarifying responsibilities. It is a top-down process in which core responsibilities, mission and main tasks are defined. In addition, "right of way" rules for the cooperation of the divisions are developed, which are derived from the answer to the question of what the interface services are.