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The Transformation of an Organization from Complicated to Complex

Join Marc Narkus-Kramer and Prucia Buscell for the first of a yearlong series of Catalyzing Story Conversations. The presentation and discussion features two companion pieces, by Marc Narkus-Kramer are part of the Catalyzing Stories Project.

Marc Narkus-Kramer shares his experience and reflections while working in a Division within MITRE Corporation that was extremely hierarchical, dominated by an expert culture with limited stakeholder and staff involvement, which led to poor results and a crisis that threatened its existence.  Marc will describe how a new leader and the people around him created a new culture, and how that new culture embodied elements now associated with complexity thinking and management.  His reflections on how new complexity thinking and management led to some extremely significant advances in aviation is illustrated through a detailed overview of the Alaskan Capstone Project. Marc’s story provides detailed examples on how some organizational changes had widespread systemic impact and dramatically improved safety for small aircraft in notoriously dangerous Alaskan air space.

Event Details

When: Wednesday. January 29, 2020

Time: 12:00 – 1:00 pm ET, 9:00 – 10:00 am PT

Where: Virtual on Zoom : https://zoom.us/j/682805713

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Prucia Buscell, the series moderator, was formerly communications director at Plexus Institute and has written about complexity-inspired processes in health care, education and other fields.  She is a former newspaper reporter and a freelance writer and editor.

Marc Narkus-Kramer is a Plexus Institute Board member.  Marc worked for 30 years at the MITRE Corporation. Though his training was in engineering, the most challenging part of his work was working with many stakeholders and developing enough consensus to ensure that projects could be successfully deployed. Marc, without knowing the principles of complexity theory and management, instinctively began applying these to his work. He is now retired and is interested in learning more about what he instinctively used in his job.