Why would you want to know?
I have a secret, many actually don’t we all, but I have decided to share this one with you. I wasn’t initially, I thought I’d keep it to myself – but this deserves to be shared as it aims to build a better world by keeping us up to date and closing the mythical gap between research and practice – the king of gaps between Academia and Practice and hence also the “Knowing-Doing Gap”.
What do they cover?
In broad terms, the areas covered are within the People and Organisation space which amongst others also encompass Leadership & Management, Human Resources, Organisational & Digital transformation & Development, Coaching, Work psychology, Learning & Development and a multiple of related areas – illustrated below in figure 1.
Fig.1. Knowledge & research areas in The Oxford-Review (2020)
Who are they?
A small company called The Oxford Review headed by Editor in Chief David Wilkinson and a passionate group of people (employees) and members all striving to bring research and evidence-based knowledge to all of us in digested, condensed, and readily understandable in common language – now there are multiple win-win situations!
How does it come about?
The short version goes something like this. Published research is scanned continually, and interesting & relevant papers are reviewed and published in so-called Research Briefings. The Research Briefings are typically 3-6 pages written in common language (you actually don’t need to be an academic to understand them).
The Oxford Review drive out the essence and implications of the research and present it in a digestible format – which means you don’t have to work your way through 15-60 pages of academic language, research method, and statistical analysis – that honestly, most of us do not have time for, nor the needed background to fully comprehend nor translate into something applicable in practice.
From output to outcome
The Oxford Review produces an astonishing amount of research and evidence-based output. This is in itself hugely valuable for individual consultants, business members, and organisations as input to their own production of outputs and outcomes. What is fundamentally valuable is that the Oxford Review helps you produce high-quality outcomes with impact by ways of the individual products & services (outputs) and the combination of these products & services to your specific context.
Inherent nature of the value proposition
Some would say that a lot of companies do this or something similar, and I would agree.
The KEY difference is that The Oxford Review defines reality based on research and evidence being a key part of the value proposition, in the sense that this drives the business model not the other way around. What this means is, that knowledge and information are not adjusted to fit a business model or value proposition – it simply is the benefit provided (outputs) that is then situated in customer context producing both specific and general outcomes. In short, the business model and value proposition are driven by the knowledge presented in reality and not selected, altered, and adjusted to fit the business model or value proposition – and this is a cardinal difference to many other providers that make reality fit their business models and value propositions.
An amble available example of this reality investigative attitude of the Oxford Review is the video research briefing: “Do 70% of change programmes fail? What the research actually says?”
Another example showcase knowledge accessibility, condensed format, and easily digestible format in “Evidence-based list of barriers to organisational change” providing huge value to any change program and with little effort or time consumption – which is the king of pain (time & speed) in modern business (use it as a checklist).
The Oxford-Review output as input to joint outcomes: Use case example.
In a client assignment preparing a transformation program within the IT/Digital space, we requested knowledge specific to organisational change management beyond and enriching the generalised models available on the market. After our initial request and a brief talk, we were recommended a number of Research Briefings and Special Reports (10-20 pages topic-specific reports) within the organisational change & transformation management areas. Establishing and referencing the same validated information creates a common language and shared knowledge – it can even be reconfirmation like Is the change curve a myth?
This was helpful in informing the change stream team participants incl. killing the myth of change project failure rate and confirming the change curve implication to the specific context – actually being on the same page in the same book!
Fig. 2. Change curve – managed/unmanged change
Another crucial element came from the advanced Emotion Regulation course that the Oxford-Review provides. The course is usually provided 1-2 times yearly for members and a basic edition likewise as an open and free course. In a joint scoping and designing effort with representatives from The Oxford Review we managed to develop a training and coaching path during the change program based on change scope, the change curve (simulations), specific changes aligned to both general and specific emotional reactions within leaders, managers, teams, and employees involved in the program.