An Analysis of Use of Metaphors in Research

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An Analysis of Use of Metaphors in Research

By | November 2008
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The Chimpanzees’ Tea Party: a new metaphor for project managers

An analysis of use of metaphors in research

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Ram Kumar Dhurkari (FPM/02/04/IT) Ankita Tandon (FPM/02/01/O) The use of metaphor in organizational research is to highlight features of a process by way of comparing and contrasting. The metaphor provides a method to analyze parallels between the metaphor and the organization, at the same time, throwing light on the differences by way of comparing the phenomenon using different metaphors. The metaphor allows the researcher to analyze the same incident from various paradigms. Additional information using various methods can be used to triangulate information and reach an understanding of the phenomena is question. Using the metaphor of the chimpanzees’ tea party, the authors give a different perspective of project management in the IT sector. The new metaphor correctly indicates that standard procedures and control may not always lead to desired results. It advocates providing a free hand to the team so that they can come up with innovative solutions for projects. The IT industry is change and innovation driven. This implies a flexible work environment to stay competitive. IT projects generally follow a set procedure which does not provide the scope of team members to innovate. This might lead to time delays, poor quality output as team members do not understand the rationale of the tools provided to them. The metaphor correctly emphasizes that the project manager should look into the context of the team members and provide them flexibility to design their work environment. The chaos in fact will have some order as the goal will be achieved much faster and in a cost effective way. So far as this is concerned the metaphor does a good job of providing a different perspective of project management. However this metaphor...

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