20 February 2006

Visiting professor at the UQ Business School Mats Alvesson will share his expertise on management in knowledge-intensive firms at a public seminar on Wednesday, February 22.

Professor Alvesson said consultancy services, IT, high-tech, and pharmaceutical companies were all examples of knowledge-intensive firms.

“Workers in these firms typically operate very autonomously and rely on their own judgement and authority,” he said.

“Conventional approaches to managing them – such as rules and output measurement – are usually only marginally useful.”

Professor Alvesson said his presentation would consider a range of management models.

“Should the manager function like a hotel manager and be content with supplying infrastructure and service?” he said.

“Or should the manager assume a policing role – trying to maintain order and control in an environment that has been likened to herding cats?

“Some managers find themselves operating like diplomats – always engaged in negotiations and trying to find compromises.

“I’ll also examine whether there is space for powerful inspiring leaders like Moses."

Professor Alvesson said the seminar would cover key themes including leadership, social and political processes, ambiguity, and corporate identity, and HR themes around retention and commitment.

The seminar will be held at UQ Business Downtown (Level 19, 345 Queen St, Brisbane) from 12.30-2.00pm on February 22.

For more information, Cathy Stacey, telephone (07) 3365 6179, mobile 0434 074 372, email c.stacey@business.uq.edu.au