Handbook of Organizational and Managerial Innovation

Handbook of Organizational and Managerial Innovation

Elgar original reference

Edited by Tyrone S. Pitsis, Ace Simpson and Erlend Dehlin

The Handbook of Organizational and Managerial Innovation places humans, their acts, practices, processes and fantasies at the core of innovation. Bringing together some of the world’s leading thinkers, academics and professionals, both established and emerging, this multidisciplinary book provides a comprehensive picture of the vibrant and engaging field of organizational and managerial innovation.

Chapter 16: Storytelling in transforming practices and process: the Bayer case

Patrick Thomas and Richard Northcote

Subjects: business and management, organisational innovation, organisational behaviour, strategic management, innovation and technology, organisational innovation


Large organizations, for the most part, are complex. The larger the organization, the wider its sphere of activities and the greater its geographical reach, the more complexity is added to the structure and, specifically, to the role and effectiveness of a leader. There are many reasons for complexity in organizations and there appears to be a consensus in academic and business thinking that leadership can suffer as a result of over-complex structures. But, true leadership must find routes through the levels of complexity, breaking down barriers and bursting through blockages to ensure that messages are heard by those who need to receive them. In time, complexity can be removed, but there are often many well-justified reasons why it exists in the first place. Often it is a result of merging organizations or cultures; or a historical legacy of growth or diversification. But sometimes it is even more ingrained; a result of market dominance, reward and recognition, fast growth or geographical expansion. More than likely, however, it is a result of many of these factors and sometimes all of them.

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