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In this lively and entertaining book, Robin Wensley guides the reader through the basic analytical approaches to decision making required for more effective management practice.
Packed with diagrams, anecdotes and examples which bring the book to life, Effective Management in Practice:
- clearly presents a wide range of management tools, techniques and theoretical insights in just the right amount of depth for current and future managers
- illustrates the need for a balanced approach, emphasizing the importance of the questioning process in clarifying the nature of action proposals and any underlying assumptions
- eschews any approach which advocates one right way but at the same time encourages a greater appreciation of practical issues through analysis and theory
Students of management, academics and any practitioner interested in exploring a range of different approaches to management will enjoy and treasure this book.
Robert Wensley is Emeritus Professor of Policy and Marketing at the Warwick Business School. Professor at Warwick since 1986 and Chair of the School from 1989 to 1994, and Chair of the Faculty of Social Studies from 1997 to 1999. Most recently Director of the AIM Research initiative from 2004 to 2011. He was previously with RHM Foods, Tube Investments and the London Business School and was visiting Professor at UCLA (twice) and University of Florida. He was Chair of the Council of the Tavistock Institute of Human Relations from 1998 until 2003 and a member of the Sunningdale Institute (2008 -11) He is a Fellow of the British Academy of Management (FBAM), the Chartered Institute of Marketing (FCIM) and The Academy of Social Sciences (FAcSS). He was awarded the BAM Richard Whipp Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012 and previously awarded the 1981 and 1988 Alpha Kappa Psi prize for the most outstanding article in the US Journal of Marketing and the Millennium Prize for the best paper in the Journal of Marketing Management He was appointed to the Council of the ESRC from 2001 to 2004 and was a Board member of the ESRC Research Grants Board from 1991 to 1995. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Warburg Institute and the Academic Advisory Board of the Chartered Management Institute. Over his academic career, he has been involved with consultancy and management development for many major organisations.
INTRODUCTION The Four Starting Issues The Four Strands The Chapter Sequence CHAPTER 1: EXTENDING ANALYSIS IN EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT The Legacy of the Sixties Extended Analysis: Both Analysis and Synthesis The Interrogative Mood Issues of Representation Introducing Time and Movement Choices, Decisions and Action Rationality in Practice: Simplification Approaches Conclusion: Coping with Complex Rationality CHAPTER 2: NEVER STOP LEARNING Some Basic Ideas The Reflective Practitioner Sources of Learning beyond One's Own Practice Conclusion: Reprise on the Reflective Practitioner CHAPTER 3: EVIDENCE AND ENGAGEMENT Evidence-Based Management Risk, Uncertainty and Profit The Wisdom of Crowds (Sometimes) Isomorphism and Lemmings Unexpected Events and Isolating Mechanisms Dialectic, Rhetoric and Consensus Engagement and Management: Scientific Knowledge and Folk Wisdom The Nature of Academic Practice: Statistical Analysis and Evidential Claims Learning from the Clinical Medical Experience of Evidence-Based Practice Return to Managerial Relevance and the Issue of Timeliness Conclusion: Getting the Best out of Engagement CHAPTER 4: TOOLS FOR THINKING Introduction: Comparing Perspectives in 1975 and 2009 Complexity and Chaos The Structure of Systems: The Ubiquitous Tree Open and Closed Systems Modularisation and Loose-Tight Linkages Basic Game Theory Insights from Simple Experimental Games Conclusion: Bounded but not Restricted CHAPTER 5: MAKING SENSE OF THE NUMBERS Concentration and Dispersion of Variables Forms of Representation: Frquency Plots and Box Diagrams Understanding Outliers Significance, Correlation and Causality: What's Significance Got to Do with It? Type I and Type II Errors Type III Error: Answering the Wrong Question Type IV Error: Asking the Wrong Question The Rule of 10 Per Cent Mediators and Moderators Time Series Datasets: Lead and Lag Structures Casual Causality Conclusion: Half a Stratistical Loaf may Be Beter than the Whole CHAPTER 6: RETURNING TO PRACTICAL WISDOM: THE FRAMEWORKS FOR ANALYSIS Practical Wisdom: Reasoned Analysis and Deliberate Action Watching Out for Boxes, Linear Diagrams and Other Simplifying Tools Introducing Dynamics into a Static Representation Dr Who and the Time Dimension Specific Representations and Implicit Assumptions Contradictory Common Sense Conclusion: Common and Uncommon Sense CHAPTER 7: THE CENTRAL ROLE OF STORIES Organisational Success and Failure: The Perils of "Learning from the Past" Fads and Fashions Revisiting the Onus of Proof Issue When and How Does the Decision Get Made? The Narrative Approach Conclusion: An Effective Role for Analysis in Management Practice CHAPTER 8: LINKING THE CLASSROOM TO THE WORKPLACE Learning from Case Studies The Challenge of Simulating and Learning from Management Practice Video Material Experiential Exercises: Simulations and Projects Conclusion: Learning through Questioning CHAPTER 9: AN ONGOING DECISION PROCESS OF QUESTIONING AND DISSONANCE Thinking, Seeing and Doing The Case for Slow Thinking and Procrastination Thinking Fast, Thinking Slow In Praise of Dissonance Debates, Dialectics and Dissonance Making Some Sense of Innovation Questions and Answers: the Central Role of "Interrogation" CHAPTER 10: PUTTING THE MASTERS BACK INTO MANAGEMENT EDUCATION AND DEVELOPMENT Administration, Management and Leadership Stress Testing and Analysis Innovation as Hard Work: The 3M Post-it Story Innovation and Entrepreneurship Understanding Strategic Leadership Useful Insights from Writings on Military Strategy Good Management Research as a Means to Useful Insights Getting Beyond the False Rhetoric