Email Reveals Who’s Really in Charge

By Deane Barker on October 10, 2003

E-mail reveals real leaders: Network analysis maps companies’ informal structure.: Fascinating and so, so true. The real people you to look to for leadership are the people in your Sent Items folder.

“The researchers have developed a way to use e-mail exchanges to build a map of the structure of an organization. The map shows the teams in which people actually work, as opposed to those they are assigned to.

The technique can also reveal who is at the heart of each sub-group. These people often correspond with company-designated leaders such as project managers. But unofficial de facto leaders can also emerge. The approach might even help to pinpoint the heads of criminal or terrorist networks.”

I wonder how the increasing use of IM in the office will skew these results? If you’re tracking IM, I suppose you could always take that into account. May as well throw the phone records in too. The theory, really, applies to any type of communication. Watch what people actually do, rather than how they’re told to do things.

Via Fast Company.