The Knowing-Doing Gap

06/04/2014
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book_kd-gapStanford organizational behavior professors Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert I. Sutton expose an alarming gap between what senior managers know and what they do – and their book provides clear, worthwhile guidance for bridging that Knowing-Doing Gap.

Corporate culture too often prioritizes well-crafted presentations and “smart talking” above taking risky steps to implement new ideas. Leaders must act to overcome such cultural obstacles. Evaluation systems should emphasize long-term development over short-term goals and should give staffers the flexibility to improve procedures. Corporate culture should stamp out internal rivalries and nurture a team environment. A sound business tolerates uncertainty and occasional mistakes, in part because practical knowledge grows with experimentation and experience. Information technology systems often widen “the knowing-doing gap.” Data collection can fail to illuminate – or can even obscure – your firm’s values and culture. Information seldom translates into action because true knowledge comes from doing. Failing to execute on information is worse than not knowing it.

getAbstract recommends this collection of practical advice to managers seeking to change their firms for the better. Why you should read The Knowing-Doing Gap

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