Organizations are increasingly being described as complex adaptive systems (CAS). In this view, the behavior and structure of an organization emerges out of the interaction of a collection of organizational agents. Seemingly, there is no role for strategic leadership because the system self-organizes. We argue that strategic leaders play a crucial role in moving organizations to the "edge of chaos" and aid in organizational learning and adaptation by influencing the tags that produce the structure of interactions among organizational agents. Through dialogue and storytelling, strategic leaders shape the evolution of agent interactions and construct the shared meanings that provide the rationale by which the past, the present, and the future of the organization coalesce.
- Complexity theory
- Strategic leadership