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Four-Frame Model
Reframing OrganisationsBolman & Deal identify fourdistinctive ‘frames’ from whichpeople view their world -Structural, Huma...
Frames   Lenses – focus, filter some   things and allow others to   pass through, help us   order experience.
FramesTools – strengths andlimitations. Wrong toolgets in the way, right toolmakes the job easier.Possess a tool – but kno...
Structural Frame• Origins - sociology &  management science.• Goals, specialised roles,  and formal relationships.• Struct...
Structural Frame        Problem arises when the        structure does not fit the        situation.
Human Resources Frame• Organisations as          • Origins - psychology.  extended family.          • Capacity to learn – ...
Human Resources FrameChallenge is to tailororganisation to people –find a way for individualsto get the job done whilefeel...
Political Frame• Origins - political science.   • Bargaining, negotiation, c• Organisations as                 oercion, co...
Political Frame        Problems arise when        power is concentrated in        the wrong places or is too        broadl...
Symbolic Frame• Origins - social and  cultural anthropology.• Organisations as tribes,  theatres, or carnivals.• Culture –...
Symbolic Frame       Problems arise when       actors play their parts       badly, when symbols lose       their meaning,...
Overview of the Four-Frame Model                       Structural         Human Resource            Political             ...
Choosing a FrameQuestion                   Frame if answer is Yes   Frame if answer is NoAre individual             Human ...
Reframing Organisational Process                               Structural           Human Resources                 Politi...
Reframing Leadership                  Structural          Human           Political             Symbolic                  ...
Reframing Change                        Structural       Human Resource             Political            SymbolicBarriers ...
Four-Frame Model• How do you see the four  frames in your  organisation/institution?• What is the problem, and  what is th...
ReferenceBOLMAN, Lee G. and DEAL, Terrence E. (2008).Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, andleadership. San Francis...
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Four-Frame Model - Reframing Organisations

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Bolman & Deal identify four distinctive ‘frames’ from which people view their world - Structural, Human Resources, Political, and Symbolic.

Each frame comes with a range of concepts, metaphors and values which provide the scaffolding for organising raw experience of the world.

No one uses only one frame all the time, although people often show a preference for one or two frames.

Four-Frame Model - Reframing Organisations

  1. 1. Four-Frame Model
  2. 2. Reframing OrganisationsBolman & Deal identify fourdistinctive ‘frames’ from whichpeople view their world -Structural, HumanResources, Political, andSymbolic.Each frame comes with a rangeof concepts, metaphors andvalues which provide thescaffolding for organising rawexperience of the world.No one uses only one frame allthe time, although peopleoften show a preference forone or two frames.
  3. 3. Frames Lenses – focus, filter some things and allow others to pass through, help us order experience.
  4. 4. FramesTools – strengths andlimitations. Wrong toolgets in the way, right toolmakes the job easier.Possess a tool – but knowhow to use it well.
  5. 5. Structural Frame• Origins - sociology & management science.• Goals, specialised roles, and formal relationships.• Structures fit organisations environment and technology.• Responsibilities, rules, policies, procedures.
  6. 6. Structural Frame Problem arises when the structure does not fit the situation.
  7. 7. Human Resources Frame• Organisations as • Origins - psychology. extended family. • Capacity to learn – and• Individuals with needs, capacity to defend old feelings, prejudices, attitudes and beliefs. skills and limitations.
  8. 8. Human Resources FrameChallenge is to tailororganisation to people –find a way for individualsto get the job done whilefeeling good about whatthey are doing.
  9. 9. Political Frame• Origins - political science. • Bargaining, negotiation, c• Organisations as oercion, compromise, and arenas, contests, or coalitions. jungles.• Different interests competing for power and resources.• Rampant conflict – difference in needs, perspectives, and lifestyles.
  10. 10. Political Frame Problems arise when power is concentrated in the wrong places or is too broadly dispersed.
  11. 11. Symbolic Frame• Origins - social and cultural anthropology.• Organisations as tribes, theatres, or carnivals.• Culture – rituals, ceremonies, stories, heroes, and myths.• Organisation is theatre – actors play role while audiences form impressions.
  12. 12. Symbolic Frame Problems arise when actors play their parts badly, when symbols lose their meaning, when ceremonies and rituals lose their potency.
  13. 13. Overview of the Four-Frame Model Structural Human Resource Political Symbolic Metaphor for Factory or Family Jungle Carnival, temple, Organisation Machine theatreCentral Concepts Rules, roles, goals, Needs, skills, Power, conflict, Culture, meaning, policies, relationships competition, metaphor, ritual, technology, organisational ceremony, stories, environment policies heroes Image of Social architecture Empowerment Advocacy Inspiration LeadershipBasic Leadership Attune structure Align Develop agenda Create faith, Challenge to task, organisational and and power base beauty, meaning technology, human needs environment Organisational Excellence Caring Justice Faith Ethic Leadership Authorship Love Power Significance Contribution
  14. 14. Choosing a FrameQuestion Frame if answer is Yes Frame if answer is NoAre individual Human Resource, Symbolic Structural, Politicalcommitment andmotivation essential tosuccess?Is the technical quality Structural Human Resource,of the decision Political, Symbolicimportant?Are there high levels of Political, Symbolic Structural, Humanambiguity and Resourceuncertainty?Are conflict and scarce Political, Symbolic Structural, Humanresources significant? ResourceAre you working from Political Structural, Humanthe bottom up? Resource, Symbolic
  15. 15. Reframing Organisational Process Structural Human Resources Political Symbolic Strategic Planning Strategies to set Gatherings to promote Arenas to air conflicts and Ritual to signal responsibility, objectives and participation realign power produce symbols, negotiate coordinate resources meanings Decision Making Rational sequence to Open process to Opportunity to gain or exercise Ritual to confirm values and produce right decision produce commitment power provide opportunities for bonding Reorganizing Realign roles and Maintain balance Redistribute power and form Maintain image of responsibilities to fit between human needs new coalitions accountability and tasks and environment and formal roles responsiveness; negotiate new social order Evaluating Way to distribute Process for helping Opportunity to exercise power Occasion to play roles in rewards or penalties and individuals grow and shared ritual control performance improveApproaching Conflict Maintain organisational Develop relationships Develop power by bargaining, Develop shared values and use goals by having by having individuals forcing, or manipulating others conflict to negotiate meaning authorities resolve confront conflict to win conflict Goal Setting Keep organisation Keep people involved Provide opportunity for Develop symbols and shared headed in right direction and communication individuals and groups to make values open interests known Communication Transmit facts and Exchange information, Influence or manipulate others Tell stores information needs, and feelings Meetings Formal occasions for Informal occasions for Competitive occasions to win Sacred occasions to celebrate making decisions involvement, sharing points and transform the culture feelings Motivation Economic incentives Growth and self- Coercion, manipulation, and Symbols and celebrations actualisation seduction
  16. 16. Reframing Leadership Structural Human Political Symbolic ResourcesEffective Leader Analyst, Catalyst, Advocate, Prophet, poet architect servant negotiator Effective Analysis, design Support, Advocacy, coalition Inspiration, framing Leadership empowerment building experience Process Ineffective Petty tyrant Weakling, Con artist, thug Fanatic, fool Leader pushover Ineffective Management by Abdication Manipulation, fraud Mirage, smoke & Leadership detail and fiat mirrors Process
  17. 17. Reframing Change Structural Human Resource Political SymbolicBarriers to Change Loss of clarity and Anxiety, Disempowerment, Loss of meaning stability, uncertainty, conflict between and purpose, confusion, chaos feelings of winners and losers clinging to the past incompetence, neediness Essential Communicating, Training to Creating arenas Creating transition Strategies realigning and develop new skills, where issues can rituals – mourning renegotiating participation and be renegotiated the past, formal patterns involvement, and new coalitions celebrating the and policies psychological formed future support
  18. 18. Four-Frame Model• How do you see the four frames in your organisation/institution?• What is the problem, and what is the situation in which it is embedded?• Which frames are in play?• Which frame(s) is most likely to lead to the desired change?• How can the concepts, metaphors, and values of that frame be used to reframe the situation to resolve the problem?
  19. 19. ReferenceBOLMAN, Lee G. and DEAL, Terrence E. (2008).Reframing organizations: Artistry, choice, andleadership. San Francisco, Calif, Jossey-Bass.

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