CHAPTER 21
Industrial Dynamics in Business

Industrial dynamics studies of the corporation should be started as a long-term program at an activity level low enough to avoid pressure for immediate results. Selection of proper men with the managerial viewpoint and the necessary technical skills is crucial. They must be given time to develop their understanding of the company's problems and of system dynamic behavior. Suitable men will be those also in demand to fill management positions in the company.

A frequently asked question regards the procedure for making industrial dynamics an effective tool in the management of a company. There are at least two important considerations. First a company must begin with the proper intent of continuity of effort and with plans for long-term, gradual development. Second, it must select suitable men who will undertake to analyze the major corporate problems and the factors on which improvement depends.

The rapidity with which results can be obtained in a particular company will depend greatly on the kind of people available for assignment to the industrial dynamics work and also on the environment within the company. Even under the most favorable circumstances where the proper kinds of men are initially available, a period of three or four years would usually elapse before the industrial dynamics studies have reached a point where definite managerial recommendations begin to emerge. This period of time is needed to establish the proper perspective and attitudes on the part of the study group, to allow them time to instill some confidence for their work in the operating managers of the company, to identify the truly important problems, and to clarify the company and market factors on which the indicated courses of action may depend. After this, a first experiment in applying results to an actual operating situation may require two or three years or more to inaugurate and to evaluate. The whole undertaking can well require a decade before the approach is generally accepted as valid and powerful by the responsible managers of the company. During this decade, men who have acquired personal experience in corporation design will move into managerial positions and they can accelerate the acceptance of new methods of management.

If this interval seems unduly long, understanding corporate dynamics should be compared with other much simpler undertakings that have required at least as long. Electronic digital computers for the routine clerical processing of information have been known for over a decade, and yet we really should regard most of the computer installations in 1961 as providing experimental evaluation of things to come. A new product may take ten years from the beginning of research and development until it is successful in the market. In the use of industrial dynamics as a managerial tool, we are

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