A company's installed business processes are typically designed
to execute routine activities. As such, they can have great
difficulty handling novel initiatives, particularly when it
requires coordination across different business units. Such cases
are often better handled by a new framework that views the
organization as a nexus of personal promises that employees make to
each other. As defined by the authors, a commitment is a promise
made by a performer to satisfy the concerns of a customer within
the organization. "Customer" and "performer" refer simply to roles:
An individual acts as a customer when making a request and a
performer when fulfilling a request. In committing to a customer, a
performer promises to fulfill the customer's "conditions of
satisfaction", that is, the specific terms (such as cost, timing,
and quality) required to meet the customer's needs.
In general, the most powerful commitments are public, active,
voluntary, explicit, and motivated.
Moreover, effective commitments tend to arise out of ongoing
discussions between the customer and performer that proceed through
four basic steps: preparation, negotiation, execution, and
Business processes, Business unit, Commitments, Communication in
organizations, Leadership, Operations management, Operations
research, Organizational learning.
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