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. Org does not work like that. It has a "X-Factor" called humankind. Our species have created intelligence beyond systemic algorithm. We have created complexity within simplicity.
In 2018 I created an egis concept that aims to understand organisations. In so, it studies both the algorithmic and abstract thought that gives life to Org. I called it 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" as "Org".
If Org exist through implied processes and abstract thought, then its existence is both physical and non-physical, because as processes create things, thoughts will create processes. Therefore, Org is both mathematical and abstract.
Orgtology studies this phenomenon in two parts. The first is to understand the mathematical flow of activity that creates the outputs of Org. We call this study "Orgamatics". The second is to understand the abstract thought that defines the outcomes of Org. We call this study "Organamics". Jointly orgamatics and organamics co-exist in duality to create the phenomenon that we know as Org.
To grasp orgtology, one must understand duality. For Org to exist, it needs receptive and projective parts that interact. This creates its duality. Orgamatics deals with organisational processes and systems. This is the receptive part of Org because like an eco-system, it cycles without restraint. Organamics deals with strategy and leadership. This is the projective part of Org because its aim is to disrupt and create change.
In this duality, Org holds simplicity through algorithm and creates complexity through abstract thought. Simplicity is a receptive element, since it depends on the complexity that it must hold. Complexity is a projective element because it changes simplicity. Therefore, simplicity is the most complex way to understand Org.
Hypothesis 2x is the core of orgtology. The "2" in Hypothesis 2x shows the dual existence between receptive algorithm and projective thought. The "x" shows the "X-Factor". The unique and unpredictable humans who project their thinking into Org create this X-factor.
Through the dynamic explained in Hypothesis 2x, Org creates relations and relationships, without which, Org cannot exist. 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 relevance. 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 to be innovative. Hypothesis 2x enables a study of this phenomenon.
The aim of orgamatics is to study the receptive and projective parts that create the core construct of Org. Through such study, we ensure a Relevant and Performing Organisation (RPO). To understand the construct of an RPO, one must grasp the duality of intelligence (orgtelligence), work, and results. This leads to the four base-theories or orgamatics. They 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).
The first three, Theories 2I, 2P, and 2E, give core organisational perceptions to receptive / projective duality. Theory O brings them together. Having a good grasp of these theories will help one to ensure high performance. I explain each theory in its own write-up.
Organamics studies the X-Factor, which disrupts and changes Org. Where the people who create the X-Factor are not relevant and performing, they create an immense risk to Org. In so, the aim of organamics is to understand the Relevant and Performing Individual (RPI). RPI's keep Org relevant. It is thus important to attract and keep them. To grasp the construct of an RPI, one must grasp human intellect, perception, and distinctiveness. This leads to the four base-theories of organamics. They are:
1. Theory Ix on Intelligence;
2. Theory Px on Paradigm;
3. Theory Ex on Identity; and4. Theory D of the Relevant and Performing Individual (RPI).
The first three, Theories Ix, Px, and Ex, give core organisational perceptions to receptive / projective duality. Theory D brings them together. Having a good grasp of these theories will help one to ensure high performance. I explain each theory in its own write-up.
The table below shows the theoretical construct of orgtology. An Orgtologist will use these theories to help organisations perform and stay relevant. It begins in Hypothesis 2x and then splits into orgamatics and organamics. Orgamatics studies workplace systems through organisational duality and abstract ability. Organamics studies the X-Factor. The aim of this study is to grasp workplace dynamics.
For Org to exist it must receive and project. 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 will bake the bread, whilst strategy makes sure that there is a relevant need for such 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.
The X-Factor is an unpredictable element. According to Hypothesis 2x, 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.
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 how Org adapts and changes. Simplicity and complexity create 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. That is why those who hold authority to change and transform Org, poses its highest risk.
To help Org be performing and relevant, one must work with both, its concrete and abstract parts.
We call the concrete part of Org its construct. Unlike a structure, a construct is not physical but a well-planned blueprint. The physical manifestations of Org are mere products of such construct. It is the mathematical wiring of processes, projects, and relationships. During an organisational design project, an Orgtologist will create a construct for Org. People, money, and assets are the resources that brings such construct to life.
We call the abstract part of Org its dynamics. There are three core dynamics within Org. They are the intrapersonal-, interpersonal-, and leadership dynamics. I.e., how people deal with themselves and with others. Jointly these dynamics create the X-Factor within Org. The effect of such dynamics will show in the effectiveness of organisational strategy.
At the heart of any science is measure. To study Org, we must have 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. They are 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, risks, opportunities, resources, etc. The data contained within an activity is infinite. 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.
To measure the level at which Org operates, one must grasp two things. They are (1) complexity of its design and (2) simplicity of its presentation. I.e., it is not about how much activity Org can contain, but how intelligent its activity behaves. The core task of an Orgtologist is to help Org increase the efficiency of its outputs and the effectiveness of its outcomes. Our primary tools for this, is organisational design and strategy development.
Orgtology begins with Hypothesis 2x, which in turn defines the core theories of orgamatics and organamics. The orgamatics theories will enable a core consciousness around Org's processes, projects, and relationships. In my experience as an Orgtologist, all activity within Org, fits into these three constructs. Their aim is to empower a Relevant and Performing Organisation. In turn, the organamics theories will work with the human minds that create these constructs. The flowchart below shows the scope and clusters of orgtology.
I explain the constructs and dynamics of Org in other write-ups. The table below only gives a brief explanation.
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.
Through orgtology, organisations can reach a higher grasp of organisational design, strategy, and leadership. Unlike old models, orgtology strives for balance and not dominance. It preaches duality, and in so it will find equilibrium with its environment. This should ensure its continual survival and prosperity. Without organisations, humanity will return to being primal animals. It is our task to look after Org, so that it can take care of us.
© 2018-01-21 CFT Hendrikz