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What is Orgtology?

videoblocks-binary-tunnel-fly-through-green-view-moves-through-a-tunnel-covered-in-binary-code-numbers-changing-of-ones-and-zeroes-with-a-green-color_s5axbfr0w_thumbnail-small09 The Science of Organisation

What is Orgtology?

The difference between an organisation and a system always fascinated me. In the cycle of life there is no leadership or strategy. There is only algorithm. The honeybee pollinates plants that grows from ground, which the dung beetle fertilises by burying decaying matter deep underground. The antelope who eats plants in turn becomes food to a lion. ...

During the 90's I was quite a "new gimmick" junkie. I followed the latest "management fads", and it did not take much to make me a loyal disciple of anything new and "sexy". I have been a trainer in the field of management and leadership my whole life. In 2004 I began to consult in the sphere of strategy. I loved the Balanced Scorecard approach and practiced it to the finest detail.

As years passed, I found that most models I have worked with had flaws. I could not find one theory that studies the entire functioning of an organisation – as a whole. It was a problem since I consulted in strategy development. This requires one to understand an organisation in its entirety. It led me to create a project approach to developing strategy, which I called "orgamatics". Over the years I created many theories and models around this. Yet, it was only in 2018 when I created an egis concept for an organisational science. It would stretch from the systemic to the dynamic forces within any organisation. It became Orgtology - the science of organisation. The word is a blend between organisation (org-) and the Greek word -logy (science of). In orgtology we abbreviate "organisation" with "Org".

Org is an ongoing cycle of implied processes and abstract thought. Orgtology studies this phenomenon in three parts. The first is to find simple truths about organisation. The second part is to apply these truths to solving complex organisational issues. The third is to grasp that a person studies orgtology. People are unique and differ in intellect and experience. Therefore, the simplicity or complexity in which one can grasp Org, depends on who must grasp it. This will influence the change within Org. Understanding simplicity and complexity is a duality. When one understands something in a simple way, one can begin to ask complex questions. Contrariwise, where one answers complex questions, one begins to grasp simplicity. One depends on the other.

Simplicity is the most complex way to understand Org. In orgtology all duality holds both receptive and projective parts. Simplicity is a receptive element, since it depends on the complexity that it must hold. Complexity is a projective element because it changes simplicity. Yet, the person who does the understanding is unique and unpredictable. This creates uncertainty of outcome. This paragraph explains Hypothesis 2x - the core of orgtology. The simplicity and complexity of Org creates a duality. One is receptive and the other projective. This is the "2" of Hypothesis 2x. Yet, the humans who work with these elements are unique and unpredictable. They are the X-factor. This is the "x" of Hypothesis 2x.

(1) Hypothesis 2x – finding the simple truths of organisation 

Hypothesis 2x states that Org exists through receptive and projective interaction. This creates relations and relationships. A relation is interaction without reciprocity. E.g., You can talk to a rock, but the rock cannot talk back. In this case you relate to the rock, but you do not have a relationship with it. You are related to your uncle or aunt, but that does not mean that you have a relationship with them. Reciprocity is a requirement for a relationship. The more one repeats a dual ritual, the more predictable its output becomes. Predictability reduces risk of performance but increases risk of irrelevance. Humans are unpredictable, creative, abstract, and often irrational. This creates an uncertainty of outcome. Through certainty in output and uncertainty of outcome, Org becomes an interesting phenomenon. This ability enables it to create competitive advantage and innovate. The "2" in hypothesis 2x studies duality. The "x" studies the dynamics that this duality creates.

We call a study of the duality within Org, orgamatics. Its aim is to drive a Relevant and Performing Organisation (RPO). To understand the construct of an RPO, orgamatics holds four base-theories. These are:

1. Theory 2I of Orgtelligence;

2. Theory 2P of Work;

3. Theory 2E of Results; and

4. Theory O of the Relevant and Performing Organisation (RPO).

These theories help us grasp how duality can ensure the performance of Org.

We call the study of the dynamics within Org, organamics. In this we study of the X-Factor. It aims to understand the Relevant and Performing Individual (RPI). RPI's keep Org relevant, thus it is important to attract and keep them. To grasp the construct of an RPI, organamics holds four base-theories. These are:

1. Theory Ix on Intelligence;

2. Theory Px on Paradigm;

3. Theory Sx on Identity; and

4. Theory D of the Relevant and Performing Individual (RPI).

These theories help us to grasp the character of those who must keep Org relevant.

The table below shows the theoretical construct of Org. An Orgtologist will use these theories to help organisations perform and stay relevant.

A chart for the theories of orgtology and its two arms of study: orgamatics and organamics.

In orgamatics, human dynamics play a minor role. In organamics humans are the main concern. That is the best way to distinct them. In this, orgamatics is a more exact science than organamics. The latter has a myriad of unknown variables. One can only understand them through perception.

Hypothesis 2x of Inverse Duality

Hypothesis 2x opens the study of orgtology. It creates eight core theories; four for orgamatics and four for organamics. Its indirect claim is that an organisation can only exist through relations and relationships. To relate, entities must interact, which implies a cycle of projecting and receiving. This means that there must be an exchange betwee...

(2) Orgamatics – working with the duality of Org

Org is intelligent; thus, it can receive and project. Through this duality Org can interact with its environment. E.g., Strategy is projective because it works with the future and aims to dominate. In that, it is disruptive. Operations is receptive because it receives and holds strategy. It must do it in such a way that Org is relevant in the future whilst it performs today. Operations submit to a repetitive past. This relation creates an equilibrium that sustains the existence of Org. Projective elements have a masculine nature, whilst receptive elements hold feminine traits. The feminine part of Org must maintain its construct. Its masculine part will always aim to deconstruct such construct. Together they bring new consciousness, construct, and vitality to any organisation. E.g., operations are the feminine constructive (receptive) part of Org. Strategy is its masculine deconstructive (projective) part. In so, operations bake the bread, whilst strategy makes sure that there is a relevant need for bread. In this binary, one part cannot exist without the other. There can be no strategy without operations, and vice versa. Orgamatics is the arm of orgtology that studies this duality.

(3) Organamics - working with the X-Factor within Org

In Hypothesis 2x, the "x" shows an unpredictable element. This is the X-Factor. According to the hypothesis, two similar organisations will yield different results. This will be the case, even if you replicate them in an exact way. The humans who manage and lead them are not predictable. Therefore, human minds create an X-Factor. This is not a problem. In fact, it is what makes Org unique. Organamics is the arm of orgtology that studies the X-factor.

What is Organamics?

Humans create workplace dynamics. Organamics studies the effect of that. These dynamics stimulate growth, development, and change, which will influence the performance and relevance of Org. The variables that create dynamics get their meaning from context. These variables are intelligence, paradigm, and identity. Jointly they decide how relevant an...

(4) The Relevant and Performing Entity

A construct is the consciousness that holds Org together. It is non-physical. The physical manifestations of Org are just products of its construct. The effect of this is that Orgtologists work with both, the concrete, and the abstract parts of Org.

At the heart of any science is measure. To study Org, we must find a unit of measure. This is a problem since we work with both concrete and abstract things. In orgtology, the smallest objective measure within any organisation is "activity". We know that Org is real and alive because of its relations and relationships - the two judges of activity. We define an activity within time and space. Every activity holds its own intelligence. E.g., an activity has a duration, a place, a risk, opportunity, etc. When we begin to arrange activities in sequence, we create outputs. Where a sponsoring environment responds to such outputs, they create outcomes. Collectively, this movement will decide the relevance and performance of Org.

The aim of orgamatics is to drive a Relevant and Performing Organisation (RPO). The aim of organamics is to help employees to be Relevant and Performing Individuals (RPI). The base of this theory is the hypothesis that any entity must perform and stay relevant at the same time. It must use its intelligence, energy, and intent to outperform similar entities. Moreover, it must stay relevant to the environment that sponsors their existence.

To create an RPO, an Orgtologist will work with three systems. They are the resource-, the orgtelligence-, and the relationship- systems. Jointly they facilitate a maturity that will enable an RPO. The people, money, and assets of Org holds the key to its efficiency. Its relationships hold the key to its effectiveness. Orgtelligence gives the ability to be efficient and effective. To assess the maturity of Org to be both relevant and performing, we use an EOP analysis. EOP stands for Exposure, Opportunities, and Process.

The EOP Analysis – redefining how we understand organisations

EOP is an acronym for Exposure, Opportunities, and Process. It replaces the old SWOT analysis. SWOT means Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. As with SWOT, the EOP aims to help us understand a current reality. Although SWOT is a helpful way to prepare for strategy, it has limitations. I discuss the detail in my post:

To help a person be both, relevant and performing, we work with three dynamics. They are leadership-, team-, and intrapersonal- dynamics. Jointly they deal with three human relationship types. (1) The relationship with power and authority. (2) The relationship between and within groups. (3) The relationship with oneself.

The flowchart below shows a basic model for the practice of orgtology...

A model for the practice of orgtology

The IOI has an Orgtology Body of Knowledge (OBoK). This is a container for the theories of orgtology and their application.

The Orgtology Body of Knowledge - OBoK

The  O rgtology B ody of K nowledge, or OBoK, has the task to keep and uphold all the theories, systems, dynamics, models, tools, and concepts that we create in orgtology. In so, we base the practice of orgtology entirely on the OBoK. In orgtology we study a theoretical model that uses one hypothesis, which in turn joi...

Through the OBoK, we also learn the difference between management and leadership. Instead of playing one down against the other, it guides us to find balance between the two. It helps us to see that the practice of both are vital to the existence of Org. As rule of thumb, management relates to the theories of orgamatics, whilst leadership relates to the organamics theories.

There must be a set of standards for any field of study. This ensures that we can regulate it in a neutral way. In 2018 we founded a non-profit institute called the International Orgtology Institute (IOI). Within its first year, the IOI gained 175 members. To practice in orgtology, the IOI must certify you. The certifications that they offer are an Orgtology Specialists, or an Orgtologist.

Orgtology is certainly not a new name for old stuff. Our aim is to probe every aspect and part that creates the outputs and outcomes of Org. We do so with scrutinising minds. This helps us to deconstruct and reconstruct new and better constructs. These new constructs should then perform at higher speed and with intelligent complexity.

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© 2018: CFT Hendrikz

The Orgtology Body of Knowledge - OBoK

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