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Internal noise and confusion

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The business continues to grow.

People are recruited. The need for interaction increases. Loose lines of communication are opened.

Fragmented, indistinct and inconsistent processes, fuzzy delegation of responsibility without authority, limited resources, conflicts of interest, communication barriers, organic interdependencies and interpersonal conflicts all add to the confusion[1].

The environment becomes increasingly ambiguous.

Ambiguity “makes it difficult [for people] to anticipate, plan, implement, coordinate and control[2]” actions and events within the business.

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Mistakes increase. Client-seen snags increase. There can be no lessons learned: because it is not possible to connect negative results with the actions that caused them. In any event, no-one has the time to try. They are all working harder, seemingly to get less done.

Add to this a leader or leaders who are under pressure because they are losing control.

Sooner or later, something must give. Staff can’t cope with the stress and move on. Clients can’t cope with the unreliability and find alternative suppliers.

Contraction begins. The pressure on leadership grows.

[1] Alessandra, T., & Hunsaker, P. (1993). Communicating at Work. New York: Fireside. [2] Weick, K. (2001). Making Sense of the Organisation. Malden, USA: Blackwell Publishing.