The purpose of this paper is to develop a new model for depicting organizational processes: the episodic spiral model (ESM).
On the basis of a strong process view as the orienting paradigm, the authors demonstrate the need for the ESM by discussing the shortcomings of two specific spiral types in the organizational literature – the knowledge creation spiral and the efficacy spiral.
A review of each spiral type through the lens of nonlinear assumptions reveals the treatment to date of organizational spirals as uni-directional and insufficient for understanding organizations. The authors propose that managers must undertake a paradigm shift in order to gain a greater awareness of both the environment in which they operate, as well as their process actions. To facilitate this shift, the ESM depicts choice points, chosen and rejected trajectories, and upward and downward environmental drafts, as well as a multi-dimensional environment, as a way of re-conceptualizing approaches to space, time, and change in organization studies.
The authors propose that the model provides a way for scholars to enhance the study of organizations by understanding that organizations exist in a more dynamic environment than previously studied; recognizing that the organization has a wider range of choices available, and acknowledging the long-lasting ramifications of both choices made and choices discarded; and obtaining a more comprehensive look at the way the organization moves through space and time at any given moment. Taken together, the authors hope that these contributions allow organizational scholars a new approach to theorizing, exploring, and writing about the organizations they study.
Boje, D.M., Baca-Greif, H., Intindola, M. and Elias, S. (2017), "The episodic spiral model: a new approach to organizational processes", Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 30 No. 5, pp. 683-709. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOCM-06-2016-0118Download as .RIS
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