There are two ways in which we can learn, during a small projects which we call internship. One is a very particular technical knowledge ,which can be knowledge about a particular organization or a particular type of problem and the solution of the problem which organization is currently facing. The other is a very general knowledge ,which can be mainly the insight you get just by working with people, processes, problems. The main differentiation between these two types is while first is very particular in nature and is NOT applicable to other situation while the second is very generic and is applicable to other situations also which helps you develop insight. This essay is about second type of generic learning.
The first and very important thing which I learned during this project is that organizations can be more disorganized than you might feel. I think the main reasons for this situation is departmentalization. Due to this departmentalization free flow of information is blocked which leads to problems. The more I read about this, the more I feel this system based on ' silos ' should be abandoned. I feel automation in any form will not solve the problem, even though it reduces it to a great extent making information available. Ultimately it is the management will, of creating a system of sharing information, which will change the scenario.
The second thing I learnt is that not all people in an organization know that they have problems. Even if they are aware they might not know the extent to which the problem is deep or complicated. It might seem very simple to say that more co-ordination between departments is required but the actual implementation of a system to make so can very complicated.
Third point which I would like to mention over here is the availability of employee's time to give you right information. Since I have taken up this assignment as a consultant, information is very essential in solving a problem but people are not available to provide you right information. Thus it seems consultant should only take up an assignment if management is committed. Management should make sure that the information required by consultant is available.
More often it might also happen that problems and solutions are both known but people are not ready to change. In this kind of a scenario a consultant can suggest solution once again but it is the management which has to force/sell the solution to employees. A consultant will sell solution to management and management has to sell it to employees, it's not a job of a consultant to sell the solution to each and every employee in an organization.
Again emphasizing the same point once again that it is the management which has to committed to bring about change in an organization and without it's will power problems will stay regardless of how many consultants are appointed or which Enterprise Solution is implemented.