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Saturday, March 17, 2018

Heller Faculty Notes

Using the power of relationships to drive performance and quality

Jody Hoffer Gittell's theory of relational coordination can lead organizations to design more effective work systems.

Jody Hoffer Gittell's research explores how coordination by front-line workers contributes to quality and efficiency outcomes in service settings. She has developed a theory of relational coordination, proposing that work is most effectively coordinated through relationships of shared goals, shared knowledge and mutual respect, and demonstrating how organizations can support relational coordination through the design of their work systems.

Gittell's discovery of relational coordination and its performance effects is documented in The Southwest Airlines Way: Using the Power of Relationships to Achieve High Performance (McGraw-Hill), and in High Performance Healthcare: Using the Power of Relationships to Achieve Quality, Efficiency and Resilience (McGraw-Hill).

Through the Relational Coordination Research Collaborative and a new Brandeis spin-off, RC Analytics in Cambridge, Gittell has had the opportunity to support work on relational approaches to organizational change. Some of these change strategies will be described in her latest book, Learning to Coordinate - A Relational Model of Organizational Change, which is in progress with Stanford University Press.

Both doctoral and MBA students have participated in the growth and development of the Relational Coordination Research Collaborative. A graduate of Heller’s doctoral program now serves as the Chief Operating Officer of RC Analytics in Cambridge. 

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