Research Briefings in this month’s Oxford Review

The Oxford Review Vol 4 No 2
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In this month’s Oxford Review

 

Can Action Learning be used to improve knowledge, skills and confidence in communications?

Keywords: knowledge transfer, knowledge, Action Learning, coaching, behaviour change, organisational learning, skills development, confidence, communities of practice
Effective communications is an essential skill in any context. The development of high levels of communication skills is a critical development need in most organisations. Sadly, the connection between knowledge/expertise and communication capability often appears to be in some form of inverse relationship!
Again, using just experiential learning as a vehicle for individuals’ ability to learn and improve the effectiveness of their communication skills is often somewhat less than desirable. Anything that helps to increase the effectiveness of communications and knowledge sharing in organisations can only be an advantage.
A new (2019) research study has looked at whether Action Learning can be used to impact the levels of knowledge, skills and confidence of learners developing communication skills. This research briefing will be useful for anyone interested in Action Learning and Communication Skills Development.

Characteristics of a successful sales person: Valid measurements of performance

Keywords: organisational development, sales, sales effectiveness, sales people performance, sales performance, salesperson measurement
In many organisations one of the central functions is sales. No sales, no business. Business and consumer buying behaviour has changed significantly over the years, particularly with the advent of the internet, e-commerce and other sales routes. As a result of this change in buying landscape, and with modern hypercompetitive and increasingly complex business environments, the question arises as to whether the current measures and descriptions of what constitutes an effective salesperson are still valid.
This research briefing gives you the entire lowdown on the characteristics of a successful sales person and is essential reading for anyone involved in sales management, developing sales capability in organisations or involved in sales person development.

Emotions and their role in the shaping of self-identity

Keywords: identity work, emotions, self-identity, social interactions, management, organisational studies
In the past 16 years identity work has become an established topic within management and organisation studies. Identity work is when a person needs to establish, maintain or alter their identity in order to carry out their work and includes situations where one’s identity is threatened or when the individual is required to take on a new identity to conduct their work. In short, identity work refers to any situation identity needs to be modified in order to be accepted, listened to and engaged with.
Identity work requires continual engagement in the forming and reforming of a coherent and distinct identity and continual thought about how to relate to others. It is an on-going sense-making process to develop a meaningful relationship between a person’s self-identity and their social-identity. This can be both conscious and unconscious.
This research briefing will be useful for anyone involved in management, organisational development or interesting in the role of emotions in the development of identity

Evaluating industry 4.0 organisational readiness

Keywords: industry 4.0, organisational readiness, assessing organisational readiness
One of the key issues that has sprung up from industry 4.0 is assessing which organisations are ready for these advances and working out what organisations need to do in order to be able to take on technological advancements as they arise.
Linked to the issue of digital maturity, industry 4.0 organisational readiness goes even further and asks the question how any particular organisation can capitalise on new and future technological developments.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone engaged in organisational development and design or engaged in preparing organisations for industry 4.0

Group identity and decision-making: information cascades and decision bias

Keywords: decision-making, group decision-making, social identity, herd behaviour
Frequently in group decision-making situations, people are asked one after the other what decision they have made. This form of sequential decision-making is a popular process in many groups, however, new research has found that there are significant issues with this approach.
Many previous studies have shown that individuals tend to act and make decisions that are biased towards their own ingroup and against outgroup interests. This form of herding behaviour has been shown to exist in boardrooms, judges’ decision making, politics and a range of other situations. In particular, a 2018 study found that the order in which people announce their decision can have a significant impact on inducing conformism with a group decision.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone interested in group and team decision making and decision bias

How to deal with disruption through knowledge management

Keywords: knowledge management, knowledge sharing, business disruption, disruptive technologies, change, organisational change, disruptive change, agile
At the current pace of change, one of the most frequent disruptive elements within most businesses is technological. As new technologies, software, and factors like artificial intelligence continue to develop rapidly, business disruptions are occurring daily across the globe. Some technological disruptions have almost completely wiped out some businesses and business models, such as satnavs moving onto mobile phones, for example. Other technological disruptions have caused such significant change within other business sectors that organisations and companies have had to pivot into almost unrecognisable, and hitherto unthought of, business models.
Understanding how to deal with such fast-paced disruption is developing into a critical research area for researchers and organisations alike.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone interested in how organisations can deal with disruption in their market or industry and anyone involved in or interested in knowledge management

Identifying entrepreneurs: the role of entrepreneurial goal intention

Keywords: entrepreneurship, entrepreneurial goal intention, entrepreneurs, self-
efficacy, entrepreneurial development
Being able to identify the natural entrepreneurs within an organisation can help organisations leverage an important resource. Entrepreneurship thinking skills can add tremendous value to any organisation or service and has been found to be able to increase productivity and performance, revitalise services and products, extend organisational market reach, as well as broadly develop the finances of the organisation in general.
Most recently, research and organisational attention has turned to a relatively new concept known as EI or Entrepreneurial Intention.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone involved in entrepreneurship or developing and identifying the natural entrepreneurs in an organisation

Interactive learning performance through collaboration and personal response systems

Keywords: learning, active learning, active collaborative learning, learning
Personal response systems are being increasingly used in classrooms and in virtual class situations. Modern personal response systems allow students in large groups to interact individually, respond to questions, see each others’ answers, hold opinion polls, share ideas, collaborate in dispersed groups in the class and a range of other activities.
Recently, personal response systems have developed as apps that students can use from their own personal devices such as laptops, tablets, mobile phones and even watches.
This research briefing shows the relationships between learning performance, collaborative learning and using personal response systems during learning events and will be useful for anyone involved in organisational learning, training or teaching of any type.

Predicting team member proactivity

Keywords: proactivity, proactive personality, team member proactivity, proactive behaviours, teams, high-performance teams, high-performing teams, team performance
One of the core predictors of a high-performance team is team member proactivity. The understanding that proactivity is a core attribute for a range of personal, team and organisational outcomes has been around for a long time. As a result of continual research activity over the last 25 years, proactivity, or taking the initiative to improve a situation and challenge the status quo, is becoming increasingly better understood.
There are a range of factors which impact proactivity at both an individual characteristic and a contextual level.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone involved in team development, and managing and leading teams.

Superior incremental innovation performance and what develops it

Keywords: innovation, incremental innovation, innovation performance, knowledge creation, teamwork, job rotation, environmental dynamism
Companies and organisations tend to create new innovations by recombining existing knowledge. Indeed, it is estimated that approximately 99% of all innovations and patents are re-combinations of existing knowledge and ideas.
As a result, the quality and quantity of any organisation’s innovative capacity depends primarily on the knowledge flow, knowledge management and handling within the organisation. A number of previous studies have found that, at the heart of this process of turning knowledge into innovation, is the organisation’s human capital pool and its capability to manage and re-engineer knowledge and how they interact with human resource management practices and systems.
Understanding how knowledge management, knowledge stock and knowledge flow combine with people and systems within the organisation, as well as external factors such as technology, market innovation, the economy et cetera, is an important part of understanding how to generate superior incremental innovation performance.
This research briefing is essential reading for anyone interested in developing innovation behaviours and capability in organisations.

The learning orientations of successful entrepreneurs

Keywords: learning, learning orientation, entrepreneurship, entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurship is essentially a learning process. However, not all entrepreneurs learn in the same way or at the same rate, therefore, it is important to understand how successful entrepreneurs develop as learners and how learning facilitates their success.
New (2019) research has conducted a series of studies to understand entrepreneurs’ learning orientations and how they contribute to entrepreneurial success. This research briefing is essential reading for anyone involved in entrepreneurship or developing and identifying the natural entrepreneurs in an organisation.

Trust and revenge between teams: how we discriminate against outgroups

Keywords: trust, revenge, group identity, ingroup, outgroup, intergroup conflict, group reciprocity
As humans we are largely organised in an interlinking and overlapping series of groups and teams, such as families, organisations, departments, nations, interest groups et cetera.
Research studies spanning the last 40 years have found that we tend to identify with, and are significantly more altruistic and prosocial towards, in-group members and are significantly more likely to stereotype and breed prejudice against outgroup members. This research briefing looks at the impact of team work and how we build inter-team trust or mistrust between teams and groups.

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David Wilkinson

David Wilkinson is the Editor-in-Chief of the Oxford Review. He is also acknowledged to be one of the world's leading experts in dealing with ambiguity and uncertainty and developing emotional resilience. David teaches and conducts research at a number of universities including the University of Oxford, Medical Sciences Division, Cardiff University, Oxford Brookes University School of Business and many more. He has worked with many organisations as a consultant and executive coach including Schroders, where he coaches and runs their leadership and management programmes, Royal Mail, Aimia, Hyundai, The RAF, The Pentagon, the governments of the UK, US, Saudi, Oman and the Yemen for example. In 2010 he developed the world's first and only model and programme for developing emotional resilience across entire populations and organisations which has since become known as the Fear to Flow model which is the subject of his next book. In 2012 he drove a 1973 VW across six countries in Southern Africa whilst collecting money for charity and conducting on the ground charity work including developing emotional literature in children and orphans in Africa and a number of other activities. He is the author of The Ambiguity Advanatage: What great leaders are great at, published by Palgrave Macmillian. See more: About: About David Wikipedia: David's Wikipedia Page

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