26 February 2007

According to visiting international expert at UQ, Professor Mats Alvesson, managers of so-called "knowledge workers" often don’t understand how best to manage their staff.

Professor Alvesson said many traditional management techniques were not effective when dealing with work that was largely intellectual.

“Workers in professional service firms, IT, high-tech, and pharmaceutical companies typically operate very autonomously and rely on their own judgement and authority,” he said.

“Knowledge workers are occupied by intellectually demanding projects and they often have more authority and influence over what is done – and how – than their managers.

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

Professor Alvesson, a visiting professor at the UQ Business School, and Professor of Business Administration at the University of Lund, Sweden, will conduct a workshop to explore the nature, problems, and possibilities of management in knowledge-intensive firms on Thursday, March 1.

The four-hour workshop to be held at UQ Business School’s city offices on level 19, Central Plaza One will be partly based on Professor Alvesson’s book Knowledge work and knowledge-intensive firms published by Oxford University Press.

To find out more contact Amy Hyslop on 3365 8561 or a.hyslop@business.uq.edu.au.

For more information contact Cathy Stacey on (07) 3365 6179 or 0434 074 372.