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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Unusual routines: Organizational (non)sensemaking

  • Author(s): Rice, Ronald E.
  • et al.

Unusual routines are contradictory and frustrating subprocesses that inherently generate negative consequences for some organizations, system users, organizational representatives, customers, and clients while generating completely sensible and even effective outcomes for others. They embroil both customers and organizational members in work, delay, error, and blame subroutines. They may be caused by conflicting goals, poor feedback, symbolic uses and manipulation, and barriers to perception. They may be difficult to identify, overcome, or resolve through feedback due to inherent problems in communication and organizational feedback processes.

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