T
I
M
E
I was your
slave,
Now you are
mine,
I am Time. Incredible String Band
On the slavery of time
• Over the past thousand years,
our notions of time have been
radically transformed.
Mechanical clo...
On the logic of hesitation …
Two-Player Game
• I have three disks
• I put one disk on
each player’s back.
• How long does it
take to work out
the colou...
If I had a black
disk, he would
not hesitate to
conclude that he
had a white disk.
It would be easy
if he had a black
disk...
Lacan’s theory of
time
Instant of Seeing Time for Understanding
Moment to Conclude
Delay, doubt, hesitation,
procrastinati...
Three-Player Game
• I now have five disks
for three players
• How long
does it take
this time?
Decision-Making
and Complexity
Instant of Seeing Time for Understanding
Moment to Conclude
So-called real-time decision-
m...
Microsoft Example
Instant of Seeing
Moment to Conclude
“Perhaps you have already seen memos from
me or others here about t...
So what is the speed of thought?
Conclusion
• People and
Organizations need
Time for
Understanding.
• This is known as
Appreciation
(Vickers) or Sense-
Mak...
Notes
• John Forrester, The
Seductions of Psychoanalysis:
Freud, Lacan and Derrida
(Cambridge 1990), Chapter 8.
The prison...
Mastering Time
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Mastering Time

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Both business agenda and technology agenda are obsessed by time. Time to market, just-in-time, cycle time, webtime. Frequency, speed, acceleration. Time has become the most precious resource, and we are intolerant of journey time, waiting time and idle time.

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Mastering Time

  1. 1. T I M E I was your slave, Now you are mine, I am Time. Incredible String Band
  2. 2. On the slavery of time • Over the past thousand years, our notions of time have been radically transformed. Mechanical clocks were invented around 1000 CE. Monasteries used the clock to control work and prayer. Early factories took over the clock- based work ethic. Clocks are now everywhere. • Both the business agenda and the technology agenda are obsessed by time. Time to market, just-in-time, cycle time, webtime.  Frequency, speed, acceleration. Time has become the most precious resource, and we are intolerant of journey time, waiting time and idle time.
  3. 3. On the logic of hesitation …
  4. 4. Two-Player Game • I have three disks • I put one disk on each player’s back. • How long does it take to work out the colour of the disk on your back?
  5. 5. If I had a black disk, he would not hesitate to conclude that he had a white disk. It would be easy if he had a black disk, because then it would be obvious I had a white disk. … therefore I must have a white disk. Instant of Seeing Time for Understanding Moment to Conclude
  6. 6. Lacan’s theory of time Instant of Seeing Time for Understanding Moment to Conclude Delay, doubt, hesitation, procrastination, the ability to make nothing happen (ungeschehenmachen) - these characteristic features of decision-making are grounded by Lacan in the phenomenology of obsessional neurosis.
  7. 7. Three-Player Game • I now have five disks for three players • How long does it take this time?
  8. 8. Decision-Making and Complexity Instant of Seeing Time for Understanding Moment to Conclude So-called real-time decision- making assumes we can go straight from instant-of-seeing to moment-to-conclude. But complex sense-making and decision-making require time-for-understanding.
  9. 9. Microsoft Example Instant of Seeing Moment to Conclude “Perhaps you have already seen memos from me or others here about the importance of the Internet. I have gone through several stages of increasing my view of its importance.” “Exponential improvements in communications networks … the Internet is at the forefront of this” “Now I assign the Internet the highest level of importance.” Bill Gates “Tidal Wave” May 1995 Time for Understanding
  10. 10. So what is the speed of thought?
  11. 11. Conclusion • People and Organizations need Time for Understanding. • This is known as Appreciation (Vickers) or Sense- Making (Weick). • And is a critical component of my framework for Organizational Intelligence. • Intelligence is required to escape the slavery of time.
  12. 12. Notes • John Forrester, The Seductions of Psychoanalysis: Freud, Lacan and Derrida (Cambridge 1990), Chapter 8. The prisoner story can be found on p178 ff. • Richard Veryard, Organizational Intelligence Primer (LeanPub 2003) http://leanpub.com/orgintelligence Slidedeck updated Feb 2016 to include “Leadership Lessons” from Davos.

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