Steve Denning’s book The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management consists of several parts. In the introduction part, the author discusses the role of management in today’s market system. Moreover, he gives the overview of the history of management and explains the meaning of the term radical management. He states that “marketplace has changed” and “workplace has also changed”. In order to provide a long-term growth, all organizations must “forged reliable relationships with their customers”. (Denning 2)
Besides, the author states that it is very important to continuously seek new and economical ways to provide services in a proper way. He is sure that “they need constant innovation”. Those problems that can be found in today’s workplace and that prevent successful development of organization are not connected with the personal fault of the managers. These problems are the fault of the entire system which restricts the capacity of the staff to contribute to the common cause and limits the organization’s productivity. That is why the author of the book decided to introduce some new approaches to management which can help to improve the organization’s performance and productivity. Steve Denning uses a lot of examples of different workplaces where his new management approaches have already been implemented.
In the part I of the book The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management, Steve Denning represents seven principles of continuous innovation which should be introduced in any organization. They include the following ones:
• Principle I: Delighting clients;
• Principle II: Self-organizing teams;
• Principle III: Client-driven iterations;
• Principle IV: Delivering value to clients in each iteration;
• Principle V: Radical Transparency;
• Principle VI: Continuous self-improvement:
• Principle VII: Interactive communication. (Denning 57)
In the second part of his book, the author discusses the ways of implementation of the above mentioned principles of continuous innovation. He argues that it is very important to make everything possible in order to adhere to the principles of radical management. (Denning 4)
THE SEVEN PRINCIPLES OF CONTINUOUS INNOVATION IN THE WORKPLACE AND THEIR SIGNIFICANCE IN TODAY’S ENVIRONMENT
It is known that today radical management as a fundamentally new approach is based on seven principles of continuous innovation in the workplace. The first principle is focused on the fact that the major goal of the work is to delight clients. As today we enter the age of the so-called “customer capitalism” which demands new type of management, the first principle of radical management will be of great importance. (Martin 58) Besides, the principles of traditional management based on producing the appropriate quantity of goods and services and earning money for the shareholders cannot be effective in the new age of management. Only radical management can improve the performance and productivity.
The second principle is based on the fact that the work should be organized in the self-organizing teams. Self-organizing teams will give an opportunity to increase the employees’ motivation, elicit the talents and improve the entire work in organization. Of course, the idea of team work is not a new one. Many managers have already implemented this idea into practice. However, in radical management, it is necessary to use client-driven iterations in combination with interactive communication and radical transparency.
The third principle means that it is necessary to work in client-driven iterations. Instead of using the long term plans as it was provided in traditional management, radical management requires to organize work in some short periods of time in order to deliver the values to clients each time.
The fourth principle of continuous innovation in the workplace is based on the fact that each iteration should provide value to customers. (Denning 141)
The fifth principle is based on the total openness when the managers should foster radical transparency. It is clear that the organization cannot achieve its major goals based on continuous value innovation if the employees in the workplace are not honest and tell only those facts which the others want to hear. The openness should be multileveled. It means that the team members should be honest at all levels and not only with each other.
The sixth principle is based on the fact that self-improvement is an essential feature of the team members. Radical management requires continuous self-improvement, while in traditional management the supervisors bear responsibility for productivity, but not the team. (Denning 183)
The seventh principle of continuous innovation in the workplace is based on the use of interactive communication. The above mentioned six principles demand enhanced communication capabilities of the team members at any level. It means that all managers should use interactive conversations and ask open-ended questions in order to give their team members more freedom in expressing their ideas. (Denning 207)
Although the above mentioned principles are not new and each of them has already been introduced in the workplace, in radical management it is necessary to use all the principles together as an integrated complex system where all the components are interlinked.