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Will your intuition be effective in a social enterprise? Developing Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Co-operators (TKIC).

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Will your intuition be effective in a social enterprise? Developing Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Co-operators (TKIC).

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Managing any socially innovative company seems very difficult. All the regular management functions seem undermined by a changed distribution of power. We should speak rather of governance than of management. However, to be able to govern effectively, we should be able to educate the future and present leaders of socially innovative companies. This requires appropriate tools. As was stated by Glaser (1966) guru of instructional science, to develop an educational program, you have to know what you want your learners to know and what they already know. To meet that goal we should measure the management knowledge of co-operators. Unfortunately, management is not biochemistry or software engineering, where it can be strictly defined. It has more tacit character. Wagner and Sternberg (1991; Sternberg et al., 2000) proposed a tool and a procedure to develop such tools including Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Managers (TKIM). If developed for co-operatives, such tools might measure tacit knowledge and have unprecedented influence on development and recruitment of future co-operative or other social enterprise leaders. In this paper, I describe the process of development of a tool measuring tacit knowledge of co-operators, that is persons for whom a co-operative plays an important role in their lives. They are aware of a co-op's specific values and principles and are actively involved in their co-operative's functioning, regardless of their position.
From the experts’ maps, I have elicited three main domains: (1) Values and needs domain, (2) Co-operative cohesion domain, (3) Co-operative management process. With the help of two practitioners, I wrote the case study stories with 10 possible solutions for each story. I sent this tool to 7 successful and highly appreciated practitioners from three countries. On the basis of agreement in the answers of the experts I have selected 10 case studies and created a key with which other participants can compare. This paper presents the first pilot results of testing the tool on a group of 29 persons, mainly from socially innovative companies.

Managing any socially innovative company seems very difficult. All the regular management functions seem undermined by a changed distribution of power. We should speak rather of governance than of management. However, to be able to govern effectively, we should be able to educate the future and present leaders of socially innovative companies. This requires appropriate tools. As was stated by Glaser (1966) guru of instructional science, to develop an educational program, you have to know what you want your learners to know and what they already know. To meet that goal we should measure the management knowledge of co-operators. Unfortunately, management is not biochemistry or software engineering, where it can be strictly defined. It has more tacit character. Wagner and Sternberg (1991; Sternberg et al., 2000) proposed a tool and a procedure to develop such tools including Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Managers (TKIM). If developed for co-operatives, such tools might measure tacit knowledge and have unprecedented influence on development and recruitment of future co-operative or other social enterprise leaders. In this paper, I describe the process of development of a tool measuring tacit knowledge of co-operators, that is persons for whom a co-operative plays an important role in their lives. They are aware of a co-op's specific values and principles and are actively involved in their co-operative's functioning, regardless of their position.
From the experts’ maps, I have elicited three main domains: (1) Values and needs domain, (2) Co-operative cohesion domain, (3) Co-operative management process. With the help of two practitioners, I wrote the case study stories with 10 possible solutions for each story. I sent this tool to 7 successful and highly appreciated practitioners from three countries. On the basis of agreement in the answers of the experts I have selected 10 case studies and created a key with which other participants can compare. This paper presents the first pilot results of testing the tool on a group of 29 persons, mainly from socially innovative companies.

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Will your intuition be effective in a social enterprise? Developing Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Co-operators (TKIC).

  1. 1. Will your intuition be effective in a social enterprise? ! Ryszard Stocki! To be presented at 8th International Social Innovation Research Conference, Glasgow, 5th - 7th September 2016 Developing Tacit Knowledge Inventory for Co- operators (TKIC)
  2. 2. Social enterprises are different from ordinary companies in many aspects, eg in: Complexity and Cohesion Goals and Strategy Activities sometimes become goals and people are never resources Resources $ Activities Resources Goal $ Multiple goals are difficult to measure Ordinary companies Social enterprises
  3. 3. Worker co-operatives are an example of social enterprises which by definition help to meet economic, social and cultural needs of its members. I was trying to find out a common set of management rules that are characteristic for co-operative management and when defined can help us develop co- operative leaders who will be successful in managing worker co-operatives and other co- operative enterprises. by Wake Forest University School of Law
  4. 4. Using Cmap, I asked seven experts to draw their maps of effective co-operatives. This is what they proposed:
  5. 5. Expert 1
  6. 6. Expert 2
  7. 7. Expert 3
  8. 8. Expert 4
  9. 9. Expert 5
  10. 10. Expert6
  11. 11. Expert 7
  12. 12. First conclusions • Each map was completely different. It suggests that each expert may have a different concept of what co-operative management is. • To elicit essential common knowledge the maps had to be thoroughly analysed and the content compared and categorized. • Each map was like a good lecture on co- operative management. • Each expert had interesting perspective, but… by UN Women Asia and the Pacific
  13. 13. Map analysis: Building vocabu- lary and finding most common concepts Values and needs domain! 1. Appreciating diversity of values among members? 2. Balancing between individual and social needs 3. Finding a fit between personal values and the type of organization that people develop ! Co-operative cohesion domain! 5. Promoting psychological unity within a co-op – creating community. 6. Ensuring high quality of decision making in a co-op. 7. Prioritizing the role of governance systems in a co-op. Co-operative management process! 8. Building strategy in a co-op. 9. Ensuring the effectiveness of organizational systems in a co-op. 10. Ensuring specificity of business management processes in a co-op. 10 Most common themes Values and needs Co-operative cohesion Management processes
  14. 14. Second conclusion Co-operative management knowledge most probably has tacit (intuitive) character and we have to analyse it by means of tools used for analysing and diagnosing tacit knowledge based on real case studies (critical incidents), which are then solved by experts. I asked two experts to elicit more than 20 such case studies and seven experts (5 new) to evaluate 200 specific solutions.
  15. 15. An example of such a case study - the problem A consumer co-operative finds out that their competitors are successfully using weekly grocery flyers to use a few very low prices to get people in their store. Any marketing specialist can see that the flyers are manipulative in focusing the customer’s attention on some selected products while the remaining products, not in the flyer, are not low prices. To make things more difficult for the co-operative, the customers from time to time complain about lack of such flyers in their co-op as, according to them, it makes shopping more difficult. For shoppers who see the co-operative as 'just another store' they expect flyers but the Flyers make the co-op look like 'just another store'. How should the co-op react? by Christopher Porter at Flickr
  16. 16. An example of such a case study - the problem Possible solutions! 1. Start publishing their flyers and use the same strategy in lowering the price of some products to sell others more expensive ones. 2. Start printing flyers but make them completely different, more of an educational tool explaining that the cooperative is competitive on a basket of groceries and saves you having to shop around. 3. Publish not weekly but monthly consumer reports comparing the prices and quality of coop’s and the competition products. 4. Start a “No Flyers” campaign in the shops to explain how flyers bring about a lack of customer loyalty and price war destructive to the mutual interests of stores and its customers. 5. Start a “Lowest price” campaign showing the customers that the co-op is always offering the lowest prices for their products. Explain that the apparent difference may be due to either lower quality of the competition’s products or their unethical, unfair practices. by Jim Forest at Flickr
  17. 17. For the final version of the Tacit Knowledge Inventory ! for Co-operators! I chose only 57% of the solutions from 10 case studies, where the seven international co-operative experts agreed on. by
  18. 18. Pilot study with 29 participants The main measure of expertise was the difference between the person’s answers and those of experts. The results were calculated for three domains. The histograms and Cronbach’s alphas show that the tool may bacome a good diagnostic method for future co-operative managers. Values (α=.81) Cohesion (α=.89)Management (α=.65) Distribution ! of all results (α=.90)
  19. 19. Final conclusions • Disagreement of the first group of experts suggests tacit and domain specific character of co-operative management knowledge • 57% agreement of experts and historical and geographical spread of the co- operative movement point to universality of the co-operative values and principles. • The scarcity of co-op management programs is a result of complexity and negligence. by Alan Levine at Flickr
  20. 20. This tool is a part of a larger EU research project “Co-op Isomorphism” The research and writing of the paper was sponsored by EU Marie Curie Actions – International Outgoing, Fellowship Grant no. 623051. ! ! ! ! If you want to download the full paper related to this research click here. ! ! If you want to learn more about the research and participate in it, sign for a newsletter on this web page: http://www.stocki.org/community You can also write directly to me at: ryszard(at)stocki.org

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