"Visions of World Benefit & Global Responsibility: Perspectives of McGill Students

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Quantum Mechanics Applied to Management: Is it Possible?

Quantum management originated from the theory of quantum mechanics which was invented in the 1920s. Quantum mechanics changed the perception of mechanical, physical, electronic and cryptographic sciences. It was a revolutionary discovery because it contradicted the traditional way of solving problems in science. No longer were scientific theories based on Newtonian theories, which had held that all problems had one optimal solution. Quantum mechanics posited that there can be multiple optimal answers to a problem. This radically changes the traditional method of management which had previously been based on more linear theories of planning, organizing, directing, and controlling. In its place, a more fluid method of management is gaining acceptance. This new theory is composed of seven fundamental quantum skills grouped in three sets: thinking, seeing, and feeling; knowing, acting, and trusting; and being.

The first set of quantum skills, composed of thinking, seeing and feeling, are primarily psychological in nature[1]. They allow leaders to be creative while adopting a more intuitive approach when they implement new strategies for a company. For instance, these leaders often work in the technology sector for companies such as Google, 3M and Rethink. In order to maintain dominance in this sector, companies have to be much more innovative in their thinking, a point not necessarily true of older industries like retail and manufacturing. As a result, this new theory of management has gained much greater acceptance in this sector.

The second set of quantum skills, composed of knowing, acting, and trusting, brings additional skills to the manager. They are known as spiritual skills because they force us to move beyond our own self-interest and consider others. Those skills are acquired through education, experience and involvement with others. These skills push us beyond mere knowledge by including more actionable skills like trusting and acting. For instance, lawyers and managers rely heavily on these skills because their profession requires they interact closely with others on a daily basis with constantly changing set of clients.

The third quantum skill is quantum being: the ability to own and control one`s own emotions and learn from one`s relationships. This skill is situated in the middle of all the other skills, creating a relationship between those skills by bringing them together. They don’t just connect together but merge to create an entirely new theory called the quantum skills model in management. This theory is significant for the 21st century because it brings together all necessary skills for a new kind of manager that can contribute to enhance future organisations. Quantum management will eclipse all old theories because human beings are complex, chaotic, futuristic, spiritual and non-linear. Furthermore, it will be reveal the real nature of the managers who will be the leader of tomorrow.
[1] Shelton, C. K. and Darling J.R (2001) The Quantum Skill Model in Management: A New Paradigm to Enhance Effective Leardership. Leadership and Organisation Development Journal. 22(6). Pp.264-273.

No comments: