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A Surrealistic Mega-analysis of Redisorganization Theories (real research)

Posted By Mark Haas CMC FIMC, Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Never forget that there is another world (the "real" world?) that exists outside of consulting and they sometimes do actual research on consulting. Here is an abstract of research published in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine consulting, with some presumably unflattering things to say about marketing, sales and delivery of consulting services.

Authors: Andrew D Oxman, Researcher, Norwegian Centre for Health Services Research, Oslo, Norway; David L Sackett, Director, Trout Research and Education Center, Markdale, Ontario, Canada; Iain Chalmers, Editor, James Lind Library, Oxford, UK; and Trine E Prescott, Physician, Medical Genetics, Rikshospitalet University Hospital, Oslo, Norway

Correspondence to: Andy Oxman, Norwegian Centre for Health Services Research Pb 7004, St Olavs Plass, 0130 Oslo, Norway, E-mail:

Background We are sick and tired of being redisorganized.

Objective: To systematically review the empirical evidence for organizational theories and repeated reorganizations.

Methods: We did not find anything worth reading, other than Dilbert, so we fantasized. Unfortunately, our fantasies may well resemble many people's realities. We are sorry about this, but it is not our fault.

Results: We discovered many reasons for repeated reorganizations, the most common being ‘no good reason’. We estimated that trillions of dollars are being spent on strategic and organizational planning activities each year, thus providing lots of good reasons for hundreds of thousands of people, including us, to get into the business. New leaders who are intoxicated with the prospect of change further fuel perpetual cycles of redisorganization. We identified eight indicators of successful redisorganizations, including large consultancy fees paid to friends and relatives.

Conclusions: We propose the establishment of ethics committees to review all future redisorganization proposals in order to put a stop to uncontrolled, unplanned experimentation inflicted on providers and users of the health services.

Download the full article (it is really funny).

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