This one reminded me about the structures we have to live with, or not:
Doing business is all about process, in which value is created (or rather added).
For the processes to work you need a framework, some structure that leads the flows and handles exceptions.
As I see it there are three:
1. Organisational Hierarchies.
The classic decision and reporting structures created ages ago, supporting a whole industry of academia, authors and consultants. It's the core framework, and it's what we have. Kind of.
2. Business Rules & Practices.
Extending the hierarchy mechanism into the daily life of the organisation. The structure for when the boss or the meetings have no time, or is not available. Usually found on piece of paper in drawer or pinned on wall behind computer screen. If this then do that.
3. Enterprise Software Systems.
Now this is interesting. Enterprise systems in many cases offers the structure previous delivered by the hierarchy or the rules.
But when you study the legacy enterprise software systems you'll find built-in features where rules, practices, decision and reporting mechanisms can be set.
That I think is quite funny, and rather something superfluous - frameworking a framework.
But of course, the decision and reporting structures as well as the written and unwritten rules are so ingrained that nobody really knows why they're there anymore. Just questioning them is met with blank stares, and to suggest that a software framework could replace them is seen as utterly bollocks.
Well, I'll go with bollocks. Rethink and rewrite 3, then let 1 and 2 slowly disintegrate, or whatever. Heck, social software is already hacking away at the hierarchies, why not go all the way in a slightly more conscious way?