The Placebo Organization

by Richard Barthol



The author suggests that the most effective way of restructuring an organization is to introduce a placebo organization. The placebo organization has no known function except to exist. But its existence placates anyone who might resist organization because of fear of losing a job or status. Besides making reorganization possible in the first place, the placebo unit can be useful in other ways. Its personnel are trained and ready to move into the functioning organization. It can serve to satisfy the investigative needs of congressional committees without interfering with jobs to be done. Furthermore, the placebo payroll will gradually decrease through normal attrition, until another reorganization is needed.

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