Today’s managers are the shamans, magicians and jugglers of the business world. They are asked to perform feats of marvel: to make decisions that seem impossible to make, to steer processes which are careening out of control, to navigate the seemingly perilous rapids of change and to come out on top. No matter how large or small a company is, complexity is bound to arrive as regularly as the morning mail. Management traditionally reacts in a knee-jerk fashion to complexity, by attempting to reduce it. Managers thus confronted wish for fewer meetings, less wasted time, decreased pressure to decide and more time to complete their management duties. The revolution of change is forcing managers to rethink their mission. Business never was an undertaking for the meek. To be in business means to take risks, to be confronted with the unknown and to steer the uncontrollable. Both the entrepreneur and the intrapreneur have made an intrinsic decision for complexity.

Yet, what are the roots of this longing for a reduction of complexity? Why does management tend towards simple, yet often ineffective solutions? It is no wonder with the fast pace of business today which generates complexity that continuously challenges and often overwhelms with its constant demands. Contributing complexity factors are markets that require constant supervision, personnel that clamors for a sense of security, pending decisions that demand conflict skills and the public, which is going to judge by its own merits, regardless of the decisions made.

The book «CompleXellence – The revolution of change» will show you how to emerge from complexity fitter than ever. It will provide tips on how to maneuver in complex, living systems, how to use decisive soft factors to reach your goals, and where to apply the lever most effectively: The key is to co-design complexity rather than attempting to reduce it. This means parting with many of the beloved illusions of postmodern management. 

Seven primary themes lead to the understanding of CompleXellence :

  1. We are in transition from the Information Society to an Imagination Society in which content, values and emotional relevance drive the imagination.
  2. Complexity affects us comprehensively. It is always subjective, never purely objective; complex problems affect me simultaneously as a human being and as a maker of rational business decisions.
  3. Complexity is the meta-level of change. Those who handle change processes better, faster and with less pain are equipped to deal with complex systems more openly and with fewer strictures, while the opposite is true for those who cannot.
  4. Complexity can be designed. Designs are primarily and most successfully implemented on the levels of perception and communication.
  5. Complexity design is accomplished using modern, subtle techniques and tools of the imagination – with Spins & Slots as transmitters. These new methods are not only effective in the formal «first organization», but to an even larger degree in the informal part, the so-called «second organization».
  6. CompleXellence arises from comprehending the powerful interdependence of the first and second organizations and the influential techniques of the new economy of attention.
  7. CompleXellence can be evaluated and cultivated. A unique Fitness Radar™ delivers information about a company’s market fitness, change fitness and corporate fitness.
CompleXellence will become the core competency for future leaders, particularly the ability to be a convincing communicator who can orchestrate complexity virtuously and almost playfully. The acknowledgement that we are human beings and not human doings is the decisive factor. As human beings we need recognition and love. Whatever meets these basic needs increases CompleXellence.

CompleXellence – The Revolution of Change

Hans Rudolf Jost

352 pages

Corporate Edition English and German combined

ISBN 9-905327-11-2

A & O Publishers, 2000

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