Explaining Reverse Outcome Tight Control: A Case Study of Mindless/Mindful Governance
In reverse outcome tight control, controlees' behavior is correctly aligned with tight controls, but this results in harm to the project. Using the lens of mindfulness, our case study of a construction project reveals why mindless enactment of controls leads to reverse outcome tight control—controllers replace project feedback with feedback from controls. When a project has both unknown unknowns and tight control, controlees respond to tight controls instead of to unknown unknowns. Controlees behave as controllers expect, leading controllers to be unaware of brewing problems. One solution is "unprocess"—deliberately seeking information outside of standard project routines.
Chen, W., Huang Chua, C. E., Young, R., & Xu, X. (2022). Explaining Reverse Outcome Tight Control: A Case Study of Mindless/Mindful Governance. Project Management Journal, 53(3), pp. 309-324. SAGE Publications.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.1177/87569728221091484
Business and Information Technology
Keywords and Phrases
Mindfulness; Mindlessness; Reverse Outcome Tight Control; Unknown Unknowns
International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)
Article - Journal
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01 Jun 2022