Follow the Joy

2008

If you want to find performance in an organization, follow the joy! That's the starting point for Dawna Jones' discussion with Nick Zeniuk, a former Ford executive who is now best known for his work on organizational performance and learning.

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If you want to find performance in an organization, follow the joy! That's the starting point for Dawna Jones' discussion with Nick Zeniuk, a former Ford executive who is now best known for his work on organizational performance and learning.

Nick argues that traditional management structures – which are all about control – are now redundant because the way that things really get done is via informal, self-organizing social networks - the antithesis of the sort of hierarchical order beloved by old-school managers.

So the role of the "new manager" must be far more to listen, understand and tap the power of these network rather than seek to impose structure on them.

As a senior executive of Ford Motor Company, Nick Zenuik directed up to $5 billion of luxury car business and investment worldwide. His work in building the 1995-1998 Lincoln Continental, which set company performance records in multiple measures of quality, timing, and cost savings, was the subject of an MIT case study and subsequent book, Car Launch: The Human Side of Managing Change.

Known for his results oriented approach, Nick's story has been featured in Fortune, Personnel Journal, Automobile and on PBS Television and National Public Radio. In addition, Nick's role in creating high performing teams through organizational learning was depicted in Working With Emotional Intelligence.

Based on his success at Ford, Nick has developed Team Learning Labs and Performance Leadership Labs. These Labs provide a facilitated process for engaging leadership to institutionalize performance through social networks. The Labs develop organizational capability for supporting, integrating and sustaining change.

Nick is also the co-author of Project Based Learning and contributor to The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook and The Dance of Change. He has written numerous articles appearing in Managing the Rapids, The Systems Thinker, Reflections, and Ford¡¦s Engineering World.

After retiring from Ford in 1995, Nick began working as a consultant, executive coach, lecturer and research affiliate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also founded KINSoL (Knowledge and Innovation Network of the Society for Organizational Learning).

Evolutionary Provocateur

Dawna Jones
Dawna Jones

The Evolutionary Provocateur bi-monthly show is for executives, managers, and supervisors (OR for leaders at all levels) who have noticed that it is not what you know but who you are that has the biggest impact.

Dawna Jones, the show's host, believes that by raising awareness and understanding we can make a quantum leap to a new level of innovation in business - but it has to be done collectively.

What better way to do it than by provoking the evolution of how you see yourself and your role!

Find out more about Dawna at www.FromInsightToAction.com