From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Managing uncertainties in networks: a network approach to problem solving and decision making. Psychology Press, Public policy and administration sciences in The Netherlands.
Process management why project management fails in complex decision making processes | UTS Library
Chapter 2 will contrast process management to several other management styles. The starting point of a change process is a substantive design for instance a plan, a brief, a vision, a strategy, a technical design or a list of goals , but this is hardly recognizable at the end of the change process.
The effectuated change may differ strongly from the desired change, or the change may not have happened at all. What is the cause of these disappointing experiences? There are a number of possible explanations , which will be elaborated in more detail in Chap.
Prof.mr.dr. J.A. (Hans) de Bruijn
He depends on others, and can never impose one-sided change. After all, these other parties may amend, frustrate of even obstruct the change—during the decision-making phase as well as during the implementation. As a result, the person who desires a certain change and supports this desire with substantive arguments often fails to convince the other parties. These parties may use other definitions of problems and solutions, and use their own substantive arguments.
In other words, other parties have their own interests, which lead them to take a different view on the problem and to prefer different solutions.
However, a project approach has only a limited meaning in a network of dependencies. They may feel that their own ideas are not sufficiently reflected in the proposed change, and will therefore frustrate the project planning. Only when these other parties are involved in the change, they may recognize their own ideas in the problem definition and solution. And only then will they support the process. This illustrates the need for a process approach: the necessary involvement calls for a process of interaction between these parties.
They need to discuss and negotiate the problems and solutions. These can be defined as: 1. As has been noted before, it is not always easy to reach such agreements. After all, why would parties commit to a set of rules if they disagree, for instance, with the problem definition and solution proposed by the initiator of the change? This is even more relevant when the party in question is aware of the fact that the solution cannot be implemented without its cooperation. Parties will only be willing to reach agreement on the decision-making rules if these agreements offer them sufficient opportunity to serve their own interests.
Rules should therefore always offer such a perspective to all parties in question.
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It should be noted that while the process agreements may be explicit and fully formalized, their nature may also be informal. Peace negotiations are usually characterized by formalized rules, down to the level of agreements on the set-up of the negotiation table and who will be seated where. Rules, however, are often used implicitly. When a manager aims to implement a minor change in his organization, he often follows a kind of process: he consults with certain persons, follows certain steps, has several back-up strategies in case there is no consensus, and so on.
The manager is above all a process manager. He ensures that the process of change proceeds according to plan: the parties adhere to the rules, the parties are heard, communication is effective, decisions are made in accordance with the rules, and so on. There is also a role to play for the process architect. In case of a substantive approach, the design is made by substantive experts. Examples include a policy official who designs a substantive policy plan based upon his expertise, or a spatial planner who makes a proposal for road construction based on an analysis of transport flows.
In case of a process approach, on the other hand, there is a need for a process architect who oversees the realization of process agreements.
It is the process architect who ensures that the process design is appealing to the parties involved: it should offer them sufficient opportunity to serve their own interests. In the case of the policy officer, these parties include those who will be affected by the policy, representatives of other, related policy areas, and potential financers of the new policy; in the case of the spatial planner, they include financers, provincial and local authorities, public transport companies, employer associations, environmental organizations, and so on.
This book describes a number of principles that may be useful in relation to the architecture and management of processes. These principles do not result in unambiguous recommendations about how to act under conditions a, b and c. Rather, these principles are notions that may be of importance, but that still leave room for a variety of processes. Put differently, there is not always one type of process that is preferable in a given situation. On the contrary: reality has shown that several types of process design and process managers may be effective.
For instance, in an interesting analysis of two highly complex and sensitive processes, Curran et al. Table 1. Part I describes a number of introductory notions about process management. Chapter 2 contrasts process management with a number of other management styles. It addresses the main arguments in favour of a process approach, as well as the main risks. Chapter 3 contains a number of principles that may be used in designing a process. Chapter 4 focuses on the actual design of a process: which are the key tasks of a process architect leading to a process design? Once a process design is available, the process will need to be managed.
Part III highlights such process management. Chapter 5 sets out how to guarantee the openness of a process. This openness concerns the actors to be involved and the issues to be placed on the process agenda. Chapter 7 addresses the question of how to give a process sufficient speed.
After all, processes can lead to extremely slow decision making. Chapter 8 discusses content in processes. How can a process be managed in a way that produces substantively rich results? How can we prevent the result being substantively poor for the sake of agreement?
The book concludes with a brief epilogue. References 1. Prentice Hall, New York 2. Negotiat J 20 4 — 3. Dawson P Reshaping change: a processual perspective. Routledge, London 4. De Bruijn JA Managing professionals.
Related Process Management: Why Project Management Fails in Complex Decision Making Processes
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