Find out the uncomfortable truths about how organizations really work, what's wrong with the way we design and manage businesses, what makes managers tick... and how we can make things work better.
The brainchild of business guru and systems thinker, Russell Ackoff, Management f-LAWS skewer many of the behaviours and practices taken for granted in today's organizations.
What are f-LAWS?
f-LAWS (or flaws) are truths about organizations that we might wish to deny or ignore - simple and more reliable guides to managers' everyday behaviour than the complex truths proposed by scientists, economists, sociologists, politicians and philosophers.
Read more about what f-LAWS are
A sample f-LAW
'The less important an issue is, the more time managers spend discussing it..'
Read the full text of this f-LAW
What people are saying about f-LAWS
"A life-time of thinking about management and experiencing its arcane rituals is summarized in [these] f-LAWS, making for very entertaining reading. But make no mistake: this is a fun way of going about serious work. Each of the laws hits hard on common sins of management, and should be taken by the reader very personally as a stimulus to think 'out of the box' about what really matters."
Who said that? Read more reviews
f-LAWS are being talked about on these websites and blogs:
The Age, Melbourne
BBC News | BBC News (Part 2)
Hull University Business School
The Ackoff Center
Why your boss is programmed to be a dictator
Curious Cat Management Improvement Blog
Monash Business Intelligence Blog
Enterprise Thinking Network
Theory of Inventive Problem Solving
Russ Ackoff's f-LAWS are published in four different collections:
Management f-LAWS: How Organizations Really Work, was published by Triarchy Press in 2007. It has over 80 f-LAWS, each with a response from British author and consultant Sally Bibb. Responding in the light of current organizational thinking and best practice, her thoughts introduce a voice from another generation, another gender and another continent. You can buy the book here.
Systems Thinking for Curious Managers is published in March 2010. Finalised by Russ Ackoff shortly before his death, it includes 42 new and previously unpublished f-LAWS, a foreword by Ackoff's long-standing friend and business partner Jamshid Gharajedaghi and an extended introduction by Andrew Carey, which links the f-LAWS to Ackoff's lifetime of working with Systems Thinking and Interactive Design.
You can buy the book here.
Ackoff’s F/laws: The Cake is a full collection that brings together the original text of all Ackoff’s 122 f/laws and his commentary on each of them. It’s the ideal way to explore Ackoff’s thinking on organizations and management.
Published in 2012, Ackoff’s F/Laws: The Cake is available on Kindle, as an ebook and in print as a hardback.
You can buy the book here.
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Ackoff’s F/laws: The Cake