Complexity: The biggest challenge for managers

“Uncertainty is the only
thing to be sure of!”
Anthony Muh

Complexity: The biggest challenge for managers

For complex situations, we need techniques referring to the interactions between social systems. Therefore, we developed the concept of iterative consultancy. The old motto: “Analyse, then plan and afterwards realise the things planned” is replaced by the new motto: “Try something out, observe the effects and side-effects, and react”. Thus, the change process is controlled in a circular mode, step by step, and in an iterative way.

flow consulting’s research team developed the concept of iterative counsultancy taking into account the current organisation and management theories. We adapted models and instruments to this concept and have tested them in the leadership and change practice of organisations. The iterative consultancy is not a new solution, it is rather forming our understanding of consultancy with which we work. Besides newly developed instruments, methods and techniques, we also use selected methods of systematic consultancy, organisational development and of the expert coaching. The decisive factor is, how these methods are applied. Some central elements of iterative consultancy can be found on our homepage. Further examples can be experienced during your practical collaboration with us.

Some elements of iterative coaching can be found in this video of crossroads in Hanoi: a continuous adaptation of rules, being prepared for the unexpected, and being extremely careful (Mindfulness and Anticipation).

flow turn map®

Consulting services in complex situations with the help of the flow turn map

The flow turn map® is our guideline for the development of our consulting services within complex contexts. It is not a tool and no operation model, because such tools and models cannot be used in complex situations. They offer a deceptive and hollow safety which really does not exist in change processes. The flow turn map, however, offers a basis for discussion to structure and to reflect the different experiences of both the coach and the customer.

The flow turn map consists of five starting points, and we will interpret their interactions to create change processes. The ambivalences, paradoxes, and dilemmas both for the coach and for the customer, will not be solved or denied by using the turn map and their tools. On the contrary, there will all be revealed with or in the turn map, they will then be discussed and thus be treated. For this treatment, we have adequate instruments at our disposal. Therefore, we will not use the turn map® as a sequential scheme, we rather juggle with the individual elements, mostly relying on a high-quality analysis and on our experience and intuition.

flow change® navigator

start flow change navigator®

turn map interaktiv

start flow turn map®

flow malex cube®

The flow malex cube is an excellent guideline for insecure spheres

Leadership is a multifaceted term often used as the ultimate sanctuary. If all others or all other things fail, then, there will be the call for leadership as the last means to fix everything. However, leadership is no anchor, no fixed star and certainly no stopgap solution. Leadership is the continuous attempt to keep an organisation capable of acting by juggling with the help of concepts and actions under contradicting circumstances. Our model is a guideline for this attempt. It combines leadership-relevant elements from the New St. Gallen Management Model and the EFQM Model for Excellence as well as from the new identity theories. The results are, firstly, an integrated starting point for leadership concerning the concept and action related tasks of management, leadership and excellence (malex), and secondly, the opportunity of a first self-assessment of the own way of leadership acting, and thirdly, a reason for modern leadership preferring creativity to coherence. The flow malex cube® is our guideline to coach managers for their further development.

Action Learning

flow action learning for a sustainable development

Classroom learning only has a limited scope in seminars. A progressive separation of the seminar environment and the working environment has become apparent. Most participants find new sales seminars exiting but have become immunised as to the implementation in the day to day business. Simple concepts of learning transfer and educational control do not really help.

It is vital to eliminate the separation of these two areas. The best way of doing so is by using concepts from the action learning approach.

With flow action learning for sales

  • you effectively utilize your resources for personnel development,
  • you implement new findings and new behaviours more rapidly,
  • you support the necessary change in the sales department.

This short video gives you an impression of the positive effects that action learning has in business:

Please, respect our copyrights. It is neither allowed to reproduce these films nor to use them, particularly not on a commercial basis.

Lateral Leadership

Lateral leadership and ambidexterity management complete the hierarchic principle

In Organisations, there are an increasing number of leadership situations, in which hierarchic orders alone do not work any longer. Complex situations require a quick grasp on all levels, a fast coordination between the departments as well as decision processes on the basis of negotiations.

The concept of the lateral leadership offers a frame of understanding and definite starting points to deal with the increasing requirements in an adequate way.

Important elements for the lateral leadership are communication, trust and power:

  • How do you negotiate aims and goals?

  • How do you consider the different interests of the stakeholders?
  • How do you develop trust and acceptance?
  • How do you change the rules of collaboration?
  • How do you include structures and games of power, and how do you use them?

Moreover, managers are much more effective, when they are able of double-handed management (ambidexterity). On the one hand, there are all integrated forces like the promotion of team spirit, compromises, and trust. On the other hand, there are all generating forces like heterogenity, conflicts, and arguments. The decisive factor is to deal with both sides in an adequate way depending on the context.

Lateral leadership and double-handed management are models used by us for our consulting services, trainings and coachings. They are elements of the iterative consultancy.


flow simulations – Vital Learning with haptic business games

Business games and simulations will ensure a vivid, quick and lasting way of learning. It is, however, decisive to depict the correct mechanisms and to take your time with the transfer of learning.

Make use of our competence and experience in developing and implementing haptic business games – because, haptic business games will make the course of events and actions as well as the results much more transparent and vivid.

You can use a standard solution or an individual solution.