The Hidden Power of Social Networks: Understanding how Work Really Gets Done in Organizations

Front Cover
Harvard Business Press, 2004 - Business & Economics - 213 pages
8 Reviews
Identifying and Leveraging the Hidden Social Networks That Drive Corporate Performance

In today's flatter organizations, collaboration in employee networks has become critical to innovation and to both individual and companywide performance. Executives spend millions on new organizational designs, cultural initiatives, and technologies to promote the sharing of knowledge and expertise across functional, hierarchical, and divisional lines. Yet these efforts have achieved disappointing results.

Rob Cross and Andrew Parker argue that's because most managers have little understanding of how their employees actually interact to get work done. In fact, formal "org charts" fail to reveal the often hidden social networks that truly drive--or hinder--an organization's performance. In this eye-opening book, Cross and Parker show managers how to find, assess, and support the networks most crucial to competitive success.

Based on their in-depth study of more than sixty informal networks within organizations around the world, Cross and Parker show how managers can implement a wide range of specific and inexpensive actions-from bridging strategically important disconnects in a network to eliminating information "bottlenecks" to recognizing key connectors-that will enhance the powerful impact networks can have on performance and innovation.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - ddailey - LibraryThing

My friend who is a trained social scientist specializing in social network analysis turn up his nose at this book. I, however, found it to be a good drive-by read on new form of analysis that is likely to gain ground in coming years. Read full review

The Hidden Power of Social Networks: Understanding How Work Really Gets Done in Organizations

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

That organizational charts rarely describe functional hierarchy is obvious to any employee who's ever tried to adhere to one. Instead, survival often depends on incorporating oneself into unofficial ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2004)

Rob Cross is an assistant professor at the University of Virginia's McIntire School of Commerce in Charlottesville. Andrew Parker is a Research Consultant with the IBM Knowledge and Organizational Forum in Cambridge.

Bibliographic information