Temporary endeavours such as modern projects and programmes require new methodological approaches, given the rate and repetition of their failure in the face of complexity. Management scholars and practitioners can rely on an abundance of pivotal cases that have shaped the 20th century. Described as the fulcrum of the 20th century, the Fall of France in 1940 at the hands of Nazi Germany provides a compelling and extreme case in which two basic management mind-sets clashed. Although in many technical aspects superior, the mighty French army failed to stop a German force which rather outsmarted than outgunned their foe. Relying on a methodology of causal mapping and nominal group technique, this paper provides a fresh insight into the importance of operational common sense in one of the most puzzling military encounters and yet provides managers with a compelling proposition to decentralise in complex environments typical of the 21st century.
|Translated title of the contribution||Centralization in temporary organizations: The importance of operational common sense during the Fall of France 1940|
|Title of host publication||11th EURAM Conference, Estonian Business School, Tallinn, Estonia|
|Publication status||Published - 4 Jun 2011|